Thursday, 18 February 2016

Better late than never — the pattern for the Dagmar Cross

In April 2013, the Danish Tatting Association sent out a call for tatting designs. They were celebrating their 20th anniversary, and they wanted to put out a commemorative issue with new designs. I heard about this through Craftree/InTatters (here's the discussion thread). I decided to try doing something for them.

I cogitated for a while. I felt I ought to design something Danish. The first thing that occurred to me was a Viking longship. But I felt it ought to be 3-D, and I didn't feel up to tatting that. Then I thought about Hans Christian Anderson's fairy tales. Swan? No, that had been done. Mermaid? That had been done, too. Tin soldier? Yeah, he was steadfast, but he didn't seem compelling. Then I thought that, just as there was a Celtic cross, there might well be a Danish cross. I Googled "Danish cross", and found the Dagmar Cross (have a look at it here — scroll down to see a picture of the original two-sided Dagmar Cross and read its story).

So I designed a tatted version of the side with the five medallions. And here is how my design looks:

I submitted this pattern to the Danish Tatting Association in July 2013, in good time for them to include it in the December 2013 20th anniversary edition of their magazine, Orkis Bladet.

After that, with their permission, I started getting the pattern ready for publication on this website. I did the instructions and the diagrams and got them test-tatted. And then... well, I didn't like the tatted models I had. One (the green and pink) was in Milford Mercer thread, which is rather sticky. When I retatted it in better Lizbeth thread (Herbal Garden and Autumn Spice) the ring sizes came out a bit different. But then, I didn't use flat colours for the Lizbeth model, so the construction of the cross wasn't so clear. I thought I ought to tat another model. But — I will confess to you — this pattern was no fun to tat! And none of the flat colours I had seemed right, anyway. So I kept putting this task off, since there were lots of other things that were more fun to do.

But, tonight, I finally looked at my pattern again. It's really all right! The instructions are test-tatted; they are clear enough, and mistakes have been fixed. My two models do show quite well how the cross should look. So why am I making such a fuss? It's not perfect, but it will do.  So, all I did tonight was to add the watermarks to the pictures and diagrams, and at long last, HERE IT IS. :-)


  1. It's great to see you are still here!! :)
    Hope to see more of your beautiful tatting again soon!! :)

    1. I haven't stopped tatting! But I've been lazy about posting my work - I post it at Craftree and don't much bother to post it elsewhere. :-)

  2. Great post Grace, I'll keep a copy for future tatting, many thanks.

  3. Nice to see you blogging again, Lovely cross very interesting design, I look forward to trying it and will put it on my to do list.

  4. A very intricate cross Grace, well done!

  5. I love your take on the cross. Read a bit of the pattern to understand how you went about it - very interesting :-)Great job & good for you for finally getting the pattern out.

  6. Thanks so much for sharing the pattern and your story. I can really identify. Great job!

  7. Interesting story! Thank you!

  8. This is very beautiful and I love you design too. Somehow I don't belong to your blog and was reading a comment you left on my blog long ago, I will correct this mistake sorry I missed out on all your nice posts :(