With Valentine's Day fast appproaching, I noticed several tatters seeking the same heart pattern online recently. It is the "Heart's Desire" pattern from Susan Fuller's "A Potpourri of Tatting Patterns" which has been out of print for some time. Susan gave permission for her pattern to be posted for use by the online tatting class many years ago. Many thanks to her for sharing with all of us.
Susan mentioned back then that she has not explored the world of tatting online and was not sure about reprinting her book. Now, however, She is online and hosting a class on Tatting Design. For information, please contact her at http://www.tattedthreads.com/diagrammingtatters.html
You can find the pattern here:
On Tuesdays Susan Fuller also leads a free tatting design class in the Online Tatting Class cyber classroom (free lessons for tatters of all levels of experience.) The next lesson they will be studying Picots in Designing. Susan is now offering a new Diagramming Tatters class in on Thursday mornings and/or afternoons in a different classroom as it is a fee course. For more details please visit:
For myself, the only way to design tatting is to tat it. It is often a matter of trial and error. View this page:
https://www.georgiaseitz.com/2002/meloni/ambow.html for an example. Remember, lace is but a hole surrounded by thread. We design the lace to either fill the void or to keep the void and surround it. And, negative space in lace is as important as the thread.
One tool I use is a 2 foot long tatted chain. I get the outline of the design in mind then I layout the chain following the design. Where the chains needs to form a ring or cross itself, I place a pin in it. Afterwards I have the approximate design and since the chain is tatted I can estimate the number of ds needed in each ring or chain.