Saturday 14 November 2020

Designing a Corner for Hen & Chicks

I recently shared a video on how to make the traditional edging often called "Hen & Chicks".  This made me think that it would be nice to have a corner for this edging.

The simplest way would be just to remove one lower ring on the corner and that will make it "bend" around the corner.  But I don't like the "empty" corner that this creates.  I prefer to have more on the corner rather than less.

So I made a little corner doodle to test the idea...

Yes, that might work.
Let's tat it and see.

I quite like the size of it but not sure about the empty space in the middle...

What if I remove the tiny rings...
would that be better?
Hmmm, the corner gets more rounded.

Maybe I want to keep the bigger corner
but fill the space?
Then it looks like this:

Here the three corners together:

I unintentionally made one too many picots in the centre ring...
but now I wonder, should I remove it or keep it?

This is often how I design.  As you can see, I don't have a perfect foolproof method!  I'll do some sketches of ideas, then make several testing samples, sometimes cut the samples and re-arrange them until I'm happy with the design.

In this case I think I prefer the last option, the bolder corner with the empty space filled in with the extra ring in the centre.

I'll now tat a longer length of Hen & Chicks with the corner to get a better idea of the overall look.

I'm sure other people have come up with their own version of a corner for this vintage edging and it would be nice to see other solutions as I'm sure there are many!

I'll write up this version of Hen & Chicks in the next blogpost if anyone is interested.  I made the rings smaller than the version I had in one of my vintage books as I thought it would look better for a handkerchief edging.

Best wishes,


  1. I, too, like the denser one with extra ring 💕

  2. Thank you, corners are always useful! If there isn't one, it is necessary some test tatting to figure it! Well, my favourite is the second. Great video, too, thanks you a lot!

  3. I like the third one best. As I was looking at the picture, I couldn't help wondering if it would work to tat another large ring to fill the space, joining it to the two rings on the bottom. I like seeing how you work out a design!

  4. I like the top one the best, your method of designing looks great and I love the way you do little bits to see what works. I love this edging and look forward to seeing what you end up with

  5. I like the third one, too. What about joining that extra picot to the space in between the two rings just below it?

  6. Hmm, I like the one with the extra picot as the outside rings make more of a point for the corner. Great idea to cut the designs to see how they might fit together.

  7. Thank you for your comments everyone! More votes for the third version but still some love for the other two! I'll write up the third one but everyone can see it will be easy for you to make the other two variations if you wish.


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