Tuesday 4 September 2018

Little Tatted Box and Lids

Do you remember this little tatted box from last year?  

The lady of the box is a bit of an ice-drop addict.  She was keen to have a lid for her box that had a cabochon in it, ice-drop style.  She asked if I might help...

The first design I came up with is the simplest:

And here it is on the box:

I'm sorry my choice of thread and cabochon is not the best... I just grabbed the first one out of the bag thinking I was just making samples and it didn't matter!

It gives you the idea though so you could put any pretty cabochon of your liking in there, of a size approx. 20mm.

Then I wanted to try something a bit different...  and wondered whether I could come up with an onion-ring type design...  but it had to work in one pass so required some pondering...

And this is what I came up with:

Both designs require the use of split rings to make them "one pass" and the second design also requires a split chain.  I'm really comfortable working with both but I know some tatters are not, in which case, you'd have to cut and tie and start again as you move from round to round.

I said it before (it was even the title of this blogpost!) and I really think that...  "Split rings and chains are a tatter's best friend!" - I say that because I just love designs made in one pass and always strive to find a way of making as many things as possible in one pass and split rings and chains are essential in many cases to be able to move from round to round without having to cut and tie.  I have videos on making both if you're not confident with them yet.  I particularly recommend Mary's method of making split chains which has revolutionised my relationship with split chains.
I also have two other videos with annotations only (no speech) which show both ways of making the split chain using that method which can be found on my channel.  Going to look at the videos has made me realise that I was due to make a second talking video showing how to make the split chain when working FS/BS.  I've added it to my list! 

Anyway, I digress...

Here is the second lid on the box:

And all of them together:

I believe the ladies at Palmetto will be working on this box later this week at their "Tat Days".  I hope they enjoy it.

I'm lucky to have a mould for the box but if you don't have one, you can easily make yourself one with a spray can plastic top for example which you could use for the base, then use another around which you wrap some making tape a few times to make it a bit wider for the lid (I find about 3mm wider works well, if using size 20 thread to make the box).  In fact, I've just gone and measured a spray can top and it measures exactly 50mm which is the same size as my mould.  Perfect.

Best wishes,


  1. What a wonderful post. I also find the use of split rings and chains are a tatters best friend and worth the effort to learn.

  2. Simply beautiful and a lovely idea! I agree about the SRs and SChs, which can be decorative along with being functional. But now I don't mind whip stitching tails either. Seem to have come a full circle 😉

  3. I like all three versions. Knowing how to do split rings and chains is certainly useful, they create all sorts of design possibilities beyond climbing out from one round to another.

  4. Those boxes are amazing!! I've just discovered here that I needed one, I didn't know :-D thank you! Agree about SR and SCh, great techniques. Thank you for the tip for the mould, I haven't one yet.

  5. Your boxes are wonderful! I'm lucky enough to have a mold, but I haven't attempted a box yet. I have to find a thread that inspires me! ;-)

    I especially like the top with the onion rings, something I'm trying to perfect. I'm becoming more comfortable with split rings since my friend Heidi showed me a different way to hold my hand when making them. I find split chains much easier!

  6. These little boxes are beautiful! I really like the one with the onion ring cabochon.

    I love doing split chains and split rings as both of these represent learning and growth for me. They were the first new techniques I learned after 30 years of tatting. Your video of Mary’s version was a real game changer for me. Thank you so much!

    1. Do you know where one can find/buy this pattern?

    2. Hi Michelle, I will post the pattern here on my blog very soon (as soon as I can get organised!). I just needed to check with the lady of the box as that's her pattern but I have now so will share her pattern for the base and lid and then my pattern for the two cabochon lids. :-)

    3. Great!!! I was just going to ask the same question 😉 I've been admiring your boxes for a while, and now I feel confident enouhh with my huttles to try. Thank you for writing the pattern, and also a huge thank you to the lady of the box 😀💚🌺

  7. I have seen a green box on ice drops addicts, I love your beautiful design and hope the pattern will appear on ice drop addicts. Thank you sharing how you made it.

  8. Beautiful! Love the variation with ice drops.

  9. These little boxes are just wonderful! I collect not only bags, but containers of all kinds. I would dearly love to make all of these! I do love the techniques that allow one-pass tatting, as I really dislike cutting and tying and weaving in ends. The onion ring cover is my favorite!


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