Reading Tatting Patterns

Traditional tatting patterns are usually very wordy. In this tutorial, we have used a system of abbreviations and symbols, after a little practice, will make it much easier and faster to follow tatting instructions.

Each set of instructions is graded as to the suggested level of skills required:

  • * Beginner
  • ** Intermediate
  • *** Advanced

Before starting a tatting project, it is always best to carefully read the instructions. As you go over them, trace the pattern with a crochet hook over the illustration in order to follow the sequence of the design.

Abbreviations and symbols

In the U.S., the instructions are written row by row or round by round with the help of abbreviations, symbols and terms. Instructions in other countries usually use charts and symbols rather than row- by-row written instructions.

Most tatting instructions are written using a standard set of abbreviations and symbols. DMC recommends printing this abbreviation list and mounting it on a card to keep handy while you work.