Thursday, June 30, 2011

Some Days You Just Get Lucky...

WOW!  Yesterday I was moaning about the shuttles I lost and then to-day...I will let the photos speak for themselves!  In the morning I got  letter from Michelle with a surprise inside!  Thank you, Michelle! I had no idea you were sending me one of these. ( Did I sign a petition? Plead on your site? Beg in  Latin? I forget!) What fun!

I forgot to give you all the link to the "shrinky dink" data on Michelle's blog here: Lots of you had heard of this technque, but not me!  This is a brand new experience and I like it!

Then, later in the day I went to the post office to pick up what I thought was a book from Amazon that had been delayed in the postal strike.  Wrong.

It was a HUGE box from far away, from my buddy, Suneeti!

What a surprise this was!  Loads of goodies, including T-shirts, with FOX on the front, decorated with tatted motifs for The Boss nd Mini-Boss, a very pretty beaded necklace pour moi, hairbands with tatting and beads and all kinds of findings and great tatting bags and fantastic threads ... Oh, goodness! There was so much I was overwhelmed and very touched.  Thank you, Suneeti.

So, you see, you just never know.  : )
Not to be stuck with just one bobbin shuttle, I remembered that I did have two Pony shuttles tucked away... (Of course THEY were not the ones that got tossed!) So, I tried them and they felt terrible with that big bulky tail, so...  Ta-da!

Improvement On A Small Scale

I do see a big leap in the uniformity of stitches...

 #80 DMC thread compared to the slightly larger 
 #70 Vintage Coats

Though I am still enamoured with the fine thread - it tats up so crisply and the colours are so good in the DMC, though I understand that the choices are greatly reduced - I need a break!  Not in the thread either!

There is only this yellow and the red for the hankie of this #80 DMC in my stash, so I have run out of colours anyway.  I am sure when or where I acquired this yellow one.  Not a colour I would normally choose, but I like it!

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Shuttle Shock

I can hardly believe what happened to my lovely LaCossette shuttles -   all of them but the one I received this morning in the Canada Post, which is now up and running:

Before the postal strike, I wrote to LaCossette and told her it was with great sadness that I had to retire her shuttles for a while due to a sudden and ...ahemmm.....rather severe injury. (SO embarrassing!)  

Okay - so far so good.  I switched over to Clovers, which though adequate are not my idea of a fun tat.  I packaged up all the hook shuttles and bobbins and stored them in a little red tin given to me by my lovely daughter, when we were shopping in Chinatown, in Manhattan, several visits ago.

You with me, so far?  After the injury, late one night,  I was in a cleaning frenzy, and I organized my entire thread and bead stash, cupboard, desk, and then got into my wardrobe; then lastly, the kitchen.  It was a marathon clean and purge...    There were bags for recycling, for Goodwill and for the garbage chute.

Can you guess?

When I could not locate my shuttles, days after the midnight madness, I realized the worst had happened.  My little red tin had also disappeared.

All that remained was the language - ooohh là là, you should have heard me, when I realized what I had done.  I am only thankful that Gian had not yet come to stay to hear and did not witness the histrionics.

There you have it.  I feel like such an imbecile.  At least I have my sweet new shuttle.  As it must be lonely, I will have to consider ordering a few mates.  : ))

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Better Than I Thought

This measures just under two inches - it is SMALL!

This is a lovely pattern to tat - from The Tatter's Treasure Chest, using the #70 vintage thread from Michelle.

Though better than I imagined it would be, this motif exhibits very well the areas where  I have lots of room for improvement while using fine thread.

I like the skinny stuff A LOT, so I am afraid I will be subjecting any who read tat-ology to more of the same - but I am determined to clean up these tiny, inconsistent stitches!  This thread is a hard task-master!

Monday, June 27, 2011

The Resounding "F" Word...

It was embarrassing.  But, beyond that it was extremely irritating.  The thread broke; I lost my temper.

Trucker -mouth suddenly appeared in all her glory, and it is astounding that I was not thrown out of the crowded Tom Hortons today.  Mothers covered their children's ears; men in suits narrowed their eyes and gritted their teeth.

No one made a move toward my table, so I just carried on and attached new thread,  perhaps a tad subdued, but otherwise not affected much by my own outburst.  I never am.  ; )

This is the piece.  It is from the Tatter's Treasure Chest and it is a sweet pattern.  In the thicker thread it looked bulky, but now it shows every single flaw in the #80.

The hankie edging does not seem to present so many problems, but I think the DMC is coarser and thicker than this:

I am finding it very challenging to work with this thread, for although I like it very much, it is so difficult to get the stitches the same size, the tension with the right amount of pressure, the picots consistent.  Seems all the flaws glare big time!  And, I am really trying my absolute best....@%*&*!

I suppose with a lot of practice it will become easier. My temper will have to be managed long before any improvement becomes discernible.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Mail Strike Over! Whee!

That is the best news.  

This stuff?  Well, one is old hat...

Trial Version...

There is a new one of the above trial-tat on my shuttles, loaded with Michelle's gift thread, size #80!  It is surprisingly nice to work with.  

I suppose I am really becoming accustomed to using to the thin stuff because the hankie is so darn BIG!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Far From The Madding Mail...

I had the thought that I will do just about anything to distract myself from a hankie border.  One wonders why I have been eager to tat so many, if I need the many excuses  I have created over the long months I have been playing with edgings...  Imagine!  A new cat... Hmm.... just a thought.


... a pair for Mini-Boss to be popped in the mail.  THE MAIL!  Oh, Canada, the MAIL!  The strike struggles on and on and on...  Whatever happened to:
 “Neither snow, nor rain, nor heat, nor gloom of night, stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds.”
Ignoring the politics endured by by the union, management, the Crown Corporation, the tired legislature and the locked-out postal workers themselves, I fret about my tatting supplies languishing somewhere between here and there, stranded out there, decorated with pretty foreign postage stamps, stalled in the  striking postal service, held-up somewhere en route.

Ah, selfish, self-centered tatter that I am, I have been fretting over pattern book, fancy shuttle and ball of red thread!

Saw these, whatever they are, on a walk the other day and marvelled at how they reminded me of tatted lace.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

With A Little Help From My New Friend

My style is simple: black, white and maybe navy.  Jeans.  Boots or sandals. Two pairs of earrings.  One ring.  No other jewellery.  You get the idea.

So, when I found a tiny hole in one of my favourite tops, caused by pulling fabric threads with a crochet hook, of course, I was sewing it up with plain thread, when I saw The Look  from Blue Eyes - something like...pity!  Gian, the Most Beautiful, was adamant that I do something different, something a bit colourful, even fun.  I followed his advice:

Thus inspired I did not stop with the sewing till I had added another on the back of a plain T-shirt.  Small, but tasteful, I think.  Hmmm.  Could be the start of something, but I doubt it.  I loathe sewing!

I gave up the needle and picked up the shuttle to nearly complete one little sock for Mini-Boss. So pretty, this thread!

I am tiring of the iddy-biddy projects and feel the need to tackle something larger.  Not like a hankie.  That is  an ongoing tat that could serve as the break from a larger endeavour.  What to do...

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Be(ading) Prepared

I saw a very pretty edging motif on Bree's blog.  I have several of this type in vintage books, but have never found one I could easily tat.  Bree's photo made it all so clear...I figured out a way of tatting it.

I then realized it had been a most auspicious move to have purchased the green beads, when I did not even have a plan for them - not even an inkling!

As a matter of fact, I did not have an intended use for either the gold ones or the dark green ones, and just look at where those Delicas ended up - on the new red border for Diane's hankie!

And now, I have remembered a gorgeous thread I have - Lizbeth #40, though it is the old stuff and is terribly twisty and it shreds easily.

Bree's lovely example has been the catalyst needed to put the lime beads to their highest and best use:

Mini-Boss needs fancy socks, don't you know!  Really, with this thread?  Can you see why I got so excited and had to start tatting right away?

Ah, the creative muse trills a hearty yodel ...  : ))

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Under Maebh's Wing...

..pronounced Gee-ahn,  as in Gian Bernini or Jian Ghomeshi (CBC "Q" Broadcaster, for any Canucks out there in Tat-land!)

We have been to the vet and Handsome, here, is in splendid health and is only 24 months old!  The animal shelter, where I found him, told me he was about 4 years old.  Bonus!

Get this - he was left in a huge suburban furniture store parking lot, in a carrier.  A Chocolate Point, neutered and declawed Siamese! (I hate the fact that he is de-clawed, front paws) as this is a barbaric thing to do to an animal, but that's just the way it is.)

He is an amazing, affectionate, talkative, sweet soul and we are already fast friends.

He has made another friend, who is eagerly teaching the importance of shuttles and thread to  Gian...

I have been busy being adopted, but have managed a bit of border:

I could not get rid of the idea of that green bead somewhere in the pattern for this hankie:

This #80 is surprisingly easy to work with when there are mistakes.  I cannot tell you how many of the Josephine Knots I have had to un-tat (pathetic admission, n'est-ce pas?) and all of them have worked out just fine, an event that does not approach success when dealing with Cébélia!  This DMC is so crisp: a pleasure!

Monday, June 20, 2011

Sunday, June 19, 2011

The Boss's Pick

She has claimed it and informed me that she wants to learn to tat.  She is four.  I shall watch this development with reserved interest and narrowed eyes.

Kira's Star by Birgit Phelps, 

I altered the pattern by tatting the outer rings as rings instead of chains.

I could not get the beautiful navy thread to show in the image.  A good navy is difficult to find in thread or bead and I have managed to acquire both, but they do not seem to photograph well at all.

Must admit that as much as I am having fun with it - and it IS about fun, right Gina? - I am finding the Perle cotton to be a mite chunky...

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Plans Re-Vamped or The Inevitable Switcheroo


Pattern is by Cathy Bryant, from Tatting

Can you believe I have gone through almost a complete ball of that red thread?  Luckily, I ordered a few more balls, as I envisioned running out even before I decided to change the pattern.  

I took a bit of a liberty with this pattern, changing the number of ds from 10 in the Josephine Knot to 14. Looks better to me: more substantial.  Plus, I love tatting JK's!

As pretty as it was, I knew I would NEVER have finished the border in the other pattern - way too much work and the thread is just too small for a pattern that I found to be so challenging.  There was a lot of un-tatting.  And it is a hankie, for goodness sake!  Maybe if it were on something else, I would have persevered.  

Who am I kidding!  Never!  It was driving me nuts!

At any rate, this one is fun and easy; I really like it, I get to use the wonderful, gold  Delica beads, and I do not have to worry about a fancy-dancey corner.  So there.

My car has a new treat:
(Kelly's Clue... ☺)

And finally, to break up the monotony of the fine-thread border, I am really enjoying the #8 DMC Perle cotton.  This elicits mirth.  never thought I would use this stuff, let alone enjoy it.  Live and tat!

Friday, June 17, 2011

Another Version

Miranda's  rendition of Jon's motif inspired me and I shamelessly copied her placement and size of beads. Definitely not as pretty as the first one as one does not see the cross shape as well as when two plain colours are used.  The variegated detracts from  the lovely shape.  Here it is:

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Redeemed in Pink and Green

Well. this is a lot of fun to tat, so much so that I have started another one using larger beads in different places than I would have done had I not seen Miranda's!

To my surprise, I am continuing to enjoy  the DMC Perle cotton #8.  Surprise - a new tatting thrill!

The hankie languishes unattended...

Wednesday, June 15, 2011


What a design challenge! This corner took a lot of time.  I had to try many ways of getting around it with the large repeat and this is what I have arrived at.  Ohhh, it was challenging!

What do you think?  In each corner will be 8 tiny Miyuki Rocailles that I got ages ago from Crazymom that I  have been saving for the perfect project.  This is it!.  She sent me red ones and these green multi-coloured ('variegated' in bead-talk is?) Also, I used three Josephine Knots of 14 ds, which is larger than the regular ones I usually do (12).

Thanks, Crazymom!

I have no idea what happened here. After the edging, one would think I would find this a quite easy tat.  Wrong.

The re-tat has begun.  

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Lightening The Load

Eliz of tatknot left an interesting comment yesterday:
...I tat because I enjoy it and I think you do, too. While I love a challenge, I refuse to let my hobby become a dreaded chore. While I don't give up easily, I think it is perfectly acceptable to put a project in the UFO bin to be revisited on another day (maybe a very distant day) or just toss the thread, toss the pattern, or toss the whole project into the recycle bin.
I found this interesting as I have been busy at work finding a home for the threads I really do not enjoy using - loads of it!  Bye bye  Cebelia #20!  I kept the #30, #80 and all the white #20. There are only a couple of balls of these.

It feels very freeing to accomplish this whittling down and the thread went to good use. I do not feel so pressured by having so much thread I will never use.  So, there you are, Eliz; I followed your advice and am feeling so much better!

I got so excited about the "space" created that I started Jon's Medallion from her Sweetheart patterns. This is a really pretty motif used in a number of patterns... Thanks, Jon!  It is always a pleasure to tat your designs.

What I find curious is that I could not bear the Cébélia and have ranted about it for the entire time I have been posting on tat-ology.  But, I do not mind using this Perl #8, which I bought in New York, in that funny old establishment in the Garment District.

It is soft and floppy, but does not try to be what it isn't and the colours are great, I love the shine, so for a break I enjoy using it - with Boye shuttles!

Maybe because I purchased it with my daughter, on my birthday and met a ginger cat in the store accounts for the fondness, but I do no think so.

THE HANKIE?  Good news!  I am so excited to show you what is happening with the old "H"! It's all good!  Tomorrow...   I am glad I am so blasted stubborn. : ))

Monday, June 13, 2011

Horrific Heinous Hideous

These words start with "H".  So does "hankie." I have had to order more thread. 
Say no more.


On a happier note, I finished the Swedish vintage design and it is okay, but still cups.  I am done with this pattern.

Did I say "happier"?  Silly me.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Dyslexic Drama

This is #25 of yet another Motif Challenge.

The pattern is Jon's - one of her snowflakes from the book.  I took liberties with the top rings and changed them into Josephine Knots.  I was afraid I was going to run out of Flora.  Which, of course I did anyway!  Funny how we already know about impending disaster, but live in hope anyway!

Hanky Horrors

A non-tatter would think I was crazy; I mean certifiable, if they knew how many hours I have been working at this.  

A tatter would wonder why I was committed to tatting this after witnessing the HOURS of frustration. The pattern challenges my worst dyslexic weakness and the directional instructions caused me such !   Unable to commit the moves to memory, I repeated the same mistake over and over and over....

Finally, I was able to grasp the problem and managed the repeat.  Once.  After two days of trying! I will attempt this Everest  again today.

  ☀ ☀ ☀ ☀ ☀ 

As a break from the woes of the above, I am re-tatting the Swedish pattern that was cupping so badly and followed the suggestions et voilà! It is working much better.  Thank you for your help!

  ☀ ☀ ☀ ☀ ☀ 

I thought I would wrap up with this:  one of Sis's wonderful creations!

Friday, June 10, 2011

Tatting Trepidation

Threads are in the mail for: Bri, Tatterjil, Shannon, Red, Karen and Martha.

I was not thinking about it when I included a little tatted motif in each package, figuring that I was putting some VERY old motifs to some good use instead of having them live in the darkened closet...

BAD idea!  I am now fretting and worrying that someone will actually get to inspect my OLD TATTING!  Just look at the EGO at work here!  I have to laugh at myself for being so small-minded and petty, but I also have to admit that I am truly anxious.  : o

Ah - this is a great opportunity to practice  Zen and The Art of Getting Over Myself!  However... Be easy, girls!  Most of these motifs were tatted a long time ago!  : ))

 ❃❃ ❃❃ ❃❃ ❃❃
Moving right along:

#24 Motif Challenge

This motif from the Vintage Swedish book has always cupped a bit when I tat it.  This time I had to omit the top bit entirely, or it would have been egg-shaped!  (I am surprisingly pleased with my zigzag chain though!)

This is the diagram form the book:

How did it get tatted flat in the book?  What am I doing wrong?  Why do I have to change my pattern to get it flat?  Am I using too large a thread perhaps (#20 Flora)?


Almost forgot!  Look what Sis sent to me for holding all my tatting on my lap!  I asked for a little quilted piece and she surprised me with this amazing piece! I had no idea what she was going to quilt.

It has some of my old my tatting (from the Piecework Magazine piece - the pink and green) and an embroidered piece of our aunt's silk hankie, and 'tat-ology' stitched on and a piece of tatting on a carbone ring (Jon's pattern) that I do not like, as the colours are weird that keeps coming back to haunt me, and there it is again!  On my quilt!  Where I shall come to love and accept it I'm sure!

Thanks Sis!  I LOVE it!  Plus, it arrived on her (Sis's)  birthday. How cool is that?

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Threads 'R Us

Tatted In The ThreadsYou Won
I doubled the thread for these motifs.



 My email can be found at the bottom of tat-ology, in my profile.  Just click.

Karen's email came in at 1:10 a.m.
My computer is refusing to let my comments go through on your blog.  I'd love to take you up on the offer of thread and I'm interested in spool #2.  If that one's taken, any of them will do.  Are they the rayon thread?  I like the vibrant colors.  Thank you for being so generous.I've been meaning to comment on the tattoo.  I love the idea, but I've been told that a tattoo on the finger will wear off as skin wears away.  Still tempted, though...
That is why she is #5, when her email did not show up on the comments.

Karen, the thread is all cotton as the label says.

I have sent a lot of samples of these threads already as the spools hold an awful lot of thread, except for the red one which is smaller, but still more than  ample.

If you find there is too much thread for you, perhaps you might be moved to check the names of the people who also wanted to win and you could share your booty with another, who wanted the colour you won.  Just a thought!

I would have divvied it up myself, but I have sent out lots of samples of this stuff already and mailing costs can get prohibitive. I need to save my shekels for ... well.... tattoos and stuff! That's my story and I'm sticking to it!

So, ladies, enjoy the skinny and Happy Tatting!  Thank you all for participating and I am glad to lighten my stash a bit more!
: ))