tatting Newsletter


May 17 2018 Tatting Newsletter

Mary T. Mason and Adolph M. Calpini's Method of Tatting.
This information was found in the actual public patent application entered on July 24, 1922, and published on April 15, 1924. #1,490,176.

The tools:
fig 3 of patent shows tools and tatting started on the needle Mason & Calpini patent

The needle shown in the patent info is repurposed from other crafts such as needle punching and a method of making rugs. It shows a strangely formed needle acting as a ball thread and a crochet hook formed like a bullion or cro-tat hook as we know them today acting as a tatting needle. At first glance it appears "strange," but as one tatter noted perhaps strange is an understatement. If you are not a needle tatter then just be aware that the thread is wrapped onto the needle and then slid off onto the crohook and formed into rings or chains.

However, there is no mystery about manipulation. It is good ol' needle tatting with the ball thread being placed on a tool, the strange needle, to "help." We know that the tool is not absolutely necessary as you can see in the photo of needle tatting. So looking at the photo, imagine that funny needle tool taking the place of my finger to manipulate the strange needle just as you move your forefinger up and down in normal needle tatting.

first half stitch in modern needle tatting

The other crochet hook is used to pick the thread up and move it over. Then the needle is used again for the second half stitch.


I think the thread positioned inside the strange needle tool was an inducement to knitters to try this method

fig 6 of patent shows tools and tatting started on the needle Mason & Calpini patent

In fig 6 you see the ds moved off the needle to the thread. Looking back at Fig 4, you can see that the double stitches slid down the crohook/tatting needle over the eye and onto the carrying cord/thread. The ds are gathered up into a circle and this ring is tied.

fig 2 of patent shows tools and tatting started on the needle Mason & Calpini patent

This patent was a hoot to study as it seems so absolutely astonishing now. I think this was just an in-between moment in the development of the needle tatting movement as we know it today. Still, the crohook/tatting needle is a cut thread which limits the length of the working sections and requires the frequent addition of more thread.


Here's the latest article from the Tatting site at BellaOnline.com.

DY Knot Stitch, Unraveled During the May 7, 2018 meeting of the Online Tatting Class, this knot stitch method was discussed intensively. As a result, we have the solution!


Please visit tatting.bellaonline.com for even more great content about Tatting. To participate in free, fun online discussions, this site has a community forum all about Tatting located here -


I hope to hear from you sometime soon, either in the forum or in response to this email message. I thrive on your feedback! Have fun passing this message along to family and friends, because we all love free knowledge!

Georgia Seitz, Tatting Editor http://tatting.bellaonline.com One of the hundreds of sites at BellaOnline.com

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