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BellaOnline's Tatting Editor


August 30 2011 Tatting Newsletter

Albert B. Collingbourne, 1876 - 1959, prior to 1912, worked for the Richardson Silk Company (a story we have yet to read.) He left then and worked for the Western Thread Co. as a salesperson and rose to be the president of the company. He changed the name to Collingbourne Mills, Inc. Collingbourne's cotton threads were suggested for many types of needlework. As with all the other thread companies which we have studied this summer, Collingbourne's also offered pattern books to increase thread sales. This brought about the separate founding of the Virginia Snow Studios around 1913 which created patterns for the public and once again increased use of the threads manufactured. Pre-stamped quilt blocks were very popular as were household linens and pre-stamped embroidery projects.

You may recall from our study of the Dexter Yarns, that Dexter was acquired by Collingbourne Mills, Inc. and that the advertising name "Grandpa Dexter" morphed to "Grandma Dexter" to popularize the quilt-related projects produced by Virginia Snow Studios. During the great depression in the USA (1929-1940) the name changed again to Dexter Thread Mills. The recovering economy and the start of the "baby-boomer" era, saw Dexter sold to LeeWards which was eventually sold to the national chain Michael's

There are two complete Collingbourne booklets available for free download:

Collingbourne’s Authority on Fine Arts: Crochet, Tatting, Knitting, Embroidery, Book No. 19. On page 26 of the original document or page 39 of the new scan there is but one tatting pattern. On page 32 of the original booklet there is a very interesting advertisement showing the Collingbourne Rapid shuttle, a flat tatting shuttle.

Collingbourne's New Easy Way of making real Tatting and Maltese Art, Book no. 11. This booklet has about 20 pages teeming with tatting patterns and there are several patterns for hairpin or maltese lace, too. (Albert Collingbourne also holds a patent for what I believe is a hairpin lace loom guide: ) And the third to last page of the booklet has a list of Collingbourne publications.

Here's the latest article from the Tatting site at

Single Shuttle Chain
Creating a chain using only one shuttle.

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Georgia Seitz, Tatting Editor

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