Miscellaneous Tatting Lessons
"Folded Join"

The following notes include instructions for an important join technique that are needed in certain special circumstances in some patterns.

Sometimes when joining the last ring of a circular motif or medallion with the first ring of that round, you find that the join isn't quite as easy as the others. The last ring and the picot to which you have to join are not as accessible as the others were.

If you try to join as usual, you will find that the picot ends up twisted or that the join, done in the typical way, means that your shuttle and hand threads will end up on opposite sides of each other - making it impossible to continue. You're going to need the "folded join" to finish up the round.

The "folded join" is not too different that any other join, it's just a way of folding your tatting temporarily so that the picot and thread line up better so that you can complete the join and avoid a twisted picot at the join.

Unfortunately at this time, photos or illustrations of the technique are not available. The best attempt at a word-by-word description will be made. Illustrations will be added soon.

The best way to practice this is to make a small daisy pattern made of only five rings. Each ring is made with three picots with 5 ds bewteen each picot, and with joins made on the side picots. You'll need to do the folded join technique to join the side picots of the fifth ring and the first ring. If you have the opportunity, try the join as usual on a scrap piece of tatting. You'll find that as you pull the last ring closed, your work will be caught in the middle of the closing ring. That is why this kind of join is different. You need to re-position the tatting so that it is not stuck in the middle.

Step 1:
Make the entire motif up until just before the last join must be made between what would be the last picot on the last ring to the first picot on the first ring.

Step 2:
Fold your motif in half, forward, so that the first ring to which you are trying to join is on top of the last ring you are in the process of finishing. The picots that you need to join together will be lined up together - one on top of the other.

Step 3:
Insert the point of your crochet hook, from the back of the work to the front, through the top ring's picot (which is the really the first ring of the motif). To visualize this, imagine the point of the crochet hook pointing directly at you.

Step 4:
Rotate the point of the crochet hook upward. To imagine this, you will twist the crochet hook, which is inserted through the picot at this point, so that the point of the crochet hook is in the 12:00 position - pointing straight up. Yes, this does look like the picot will be twisted if you join in this way. However, the act of folding your work introduced a twist. By twisting the crochet hook upward (not downward), you are ensuring that the twist is being undone.

Last Steps:
Keeping your work folded still, grab the hand thread with the crochet hook and pull through the picot as with any other join. Complete the join by sending the shuttle through the loop pulled through the picot. Finish the last stitches of the ring as usual - still with your work folded. When the last stitch of the ring is done, gently unfold your work, then pull the ring closed. With a little smoothing, the join is made and you'll see that it looks like any other join. Also notice that there is no twist in the picot between the first ring and the last ring.

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