Linda Davies has been tatting since 1967, when she first taught herself to tat. Once she went through all the patterns she owned, she decided to design her own patterns. Her flower collection began from a doily that didn't want to cooperate. Between the doily that wouldn't, and the sugar flowers she made for her confections, her 3D flower collections sprang to life.

As she states on her blog, flowers are her inspiration - and they are some true eye candy.

In fact, just recently I was talking to a girl about tatting, and had the opportunity to show Linda's website to her. She was awestruck and went on about the beautiful tatted flowers.

In 2008 Linda put together a video showing her beading technique - so simple!

If you haven't seen it, check it out. You can also visit her YouTube channel for more videos.

TC:

Hi Linda, thanks for joining me in this chat... 

In your blogpost "I have been tagged", you mentioned that you taught yourself how to tat in 1967.

Where did you first learn about tatting, and what intrigued you?

Linda:

I heard about tatting when I was 16. I used to stay with a great aunt occasionally and she was aware of my craft abilities.....I was always knitting, crocheting, sewing....and she pointed out tatting in a little needlework dictionary. I said that I thought it looked really interesting and so she took me, the very next morning, to her local needlework shop and bought me a shuttle, thread and pattern with instructions. When we got back to her house I said, "OK Aunt Flo, teach me how to do it!" Her reply was, "Oh! I can't do it!" I spent every moment of that weekend and the journey home on the train trying to master the knot, but couldn't get it. When I got home I told my mum that I would give it one more go and then ditch it. I read the instructions one more time, very carefully, and noticed the pull tight with the right and loose the left and BINGO I had it!

TC:

It's amazing what can happen when we give things another go! When I first started out, I had so much trouble with the shuttle - and at that time the only ones available to me were the Boye metal shuttles! - Needless to say, I gave up for awhile and went to needle tatting. Nowadays... I'll pick up the shuttle first.

You also mentioned you started designing flowers because one of the doilies you were making wasn't turning out quite right... Was it difficult in the beginning to design?

Linda:

I had bought most available tatting books that were available in England in the 1960s and 70s and moved on to designing in the 1980s as I was bored with doing the same old patterns. It is true that one day I decided to design a circular doily and the thread on my shuttle just happened to be yellow and after doing the first round, and it not lying flat, it occurred to me that it looked just like the trumpet of a daffodil. I wondered what it would take to make the rest of the flower and that is how my 3D interest started. I had already, by that time, learned how to make sugarcraft flowers for cake decorating and so making tatted flowers seemed a natural progression.

TC:

And do you have a favorite flower that you tat, or do you like them all equally?

Linda:

I don't really have a favourite flower, but I do tend to make a lot of the bridal flowers as they make great decorations for head pieces, corsages or for putting on cards.

TC:

How about your funniest tatting story... do you have one of those?

Linda:

I think the funniest and the most complimentary tatting story I have is when I had made a corsage to wear at a tatting meeting and had put a picture of it on my blog a few days before the meeting. I was making a cup of tea in the kitchen of the venue when a tatter came in and said, "Oh my! It's you!" I dropped to her knees and held my hand! Evidently she was a keen follower of my blog, had seen the picture of my corsage and realised straight away that it was me. At the end of the meeting I gave her the corsage as she was setting up her own tatting group in her own local area. In subsequent meetings she told me that the corsage had travelled the world with her.

 

TC:

Could you tell us... what is your most rewarding story?

Linda:

The most rewarding story? Mmmmm....I suppose it is receiving a lovely thank you card from the organisers of Palmettos Tat Days as I always send them something that they can auction to help raise funds for the bursaries they offer.

TC:

In July 2008, you received tatting needles from Sue Fuller. Did you ever get the hang of tatting with a needle? What is your opinion of of it?

Linda:

No, I never did get the hang of tatting needles although I wouldn't dream of getting rid of them. All tatters are real hoarders LOL!

TC:

Do you teach tatting? If yes, I'd love to hear more about that - like - what is the age of your youngest student, and oldest student.

Linda:

I have taught a few people to tat over the years but it is not something I have done a great deal of, I did much more demonstration work instead, mainly with the Womens' Institute.

TC:

What is your favorite thread to work with?

Linda:

I think my favourite thread is Lizbeth. At first there was a problem with too much twist but I think they have resolved this now. Mind you, I will tat with anything if the colour and size is right for whatever project I am working on.

TC:

And finally, what advice can you offer to a beginning tatter?

Linda:

Beginning tatting today is much easier as there are so many resources available, especially the internet. I would advise beginners to join an on-line forum group as they are packed with tatters, both old and new, who can give endless advise and tips and how to avoid pitfalls. I would also advise them to look at the many tatting videos on how to do lots of techniques.

 

Thank you, Linda!