Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Birthday Brainwave

Although the next birthday isn't till May, I had an idea about what to give The Boss and her brother Gray for their birthdays.  

Last week I showed them both the goat and Gray really liked it a lot.  He is going to be three and has a mind of his own, having a typical Taurean nature - the best! (just like moi!)

Here is my thought:

Now to find plain white t-shirts - no easy task!


No big difference in the hearts. 

This is the newest and I think it is worse than the old one!

I know I am focussing way too much on that Catherine Wheel join (I am NOT done yet) and making it even worse,  (WHO thought this join up anyway?  What kind of mind would figure this join out?) so I took a break and started something new.
Any guesses?

Guess what? I used the Catherine Wheel join in this. How's that for synchronicity!

The pattern did not call for it and the photo shows that clearly the designer did not use it.  But it is the perfect application... I think!

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Not Quite There Yet

Still too tight...

#75-100 Motif Challenge

So, I took a break and tatted this from the book by Taiko Fujito.

#76-100 Motif Challenge

Monday, February 27, 2012

Details Details Details

Look at my heart.
Look at the Catherine Wheel joins I attempted.

Now look at this fabulous heart by Frivole.
Look at her Catherine Wheel joins.
You can't see them!

So, I am practicing...


Saturday, February 25, 2012

Fujito Flower Finished

#74-100 Motif Challenge

This went much faster than expected and was not as difficult as I had originally anticipated.

Perhaps I have grown into the book by Taiko Fujito; last year I found it frustrating, OR this pattern is not hard!

The Lizbeth #40 came  that came from Crazy Mom is lovely to work with. It has become regular thread. Thanks CM!

I just noticed how the variegated thread played out in the last chain!  Long repeats I see, which kind of works in this case - just.  I think I imagined the edge with the colour changes occurring more often.

What to tat next? I have no idea.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Mimicking Miranda

Tatting Fool has done this pattern of Teiko Fujito's justice, here.  Me, not so much, though I am making  an honest effort; it is rather a challenge!

A bit left to tat, but it is shaping up.  I do love picking one of LaCossette's shuttles to match my thread!  Silly me, but this is truly one of life's little pleasures.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Karey's Cookies Completed!

#73-100 Motif Challenge

Here it is!  Isn't it a treat!  
Such a fiddly piece (have I mentioned that?),
 but so worth it in the end.  

I just noticed that I am at #73-100 Motif Challenge.  I began this personal challenge on October 24, 2011, because I was tired of renewing my 25 Motif Challenge that Sharon holds over here.

So I set the bar higher and this is what has happened: nearly three-quarters of the way through.  Wow.   That is a lot of tatting!

This one is, of course, Karey Solomon's design. I used Lizbeth #40. The small, green, outer Delicas are from Tatting Fool. The large green beads are from  Crazy Mom.

Thanks everyone for your contribution!

Wednesday, February 22, 2012


...takes on a whole new meaning!

Almost done!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Decapitating the Pico : 0

Just when I thought I was into the home stretch, I saw I had missed a joining picot - four repeats back!

After cutting out the offending pieces, unfortunately and in true Fox form, I also beheaded a picot on a chain where a bead is to go.

Hmmmm.  Nasty bit of faking to be performed.... *sigh*

Monday, February 20, 2012

'Heart of My Heart'

This is Karey Solomon's pattern from Hearts Belong to Tatting. It is my newest favourite heart, for it is fun to tat and pleasing in texture, especially with beads. Also, it is not tiny, being about two inches or so across.  I am happier with a bit of a larger pattern, for I find the small ones often to be frustratingly fiddly (descriptor of the week!).

I just realized that one of the three threads - and all were leftovers languishing on bobbins - is the very last of her HDT. It is fitting that her pattern it is tatted with the last of her thread.

There are two variegated and one plain green thread here, all #40; it is amazing that it works! You just never know.

The beads are well matched to the odd bluish undertones of Kareys thread, and are from Crazy Mom.  Perfect!

#72-100 Motif Challenge

Now, back to "cookie monster!"

Sunday, February 19, 2012

"Cookies" Complete!

Gotta find the right beads for the last bit...   

So glad the 'cookie' part is tatted. Man, I do not like fiddly! 

Good to have persevered though,
as it is going to be a sweet motif when it is all finished - and blocked!

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Life Patterns

I don't want to grumble, but this is really very fiddly and you know how I do not do fiddly very well! But I do love Karey Solomon's unique designs.

The good thing is that it keeps me focussed and is a great challenge.

So far I have had to cut off two of the wheels, have un-tatted for hours, and have nearly tossed the entire thing in the garbage.

However, I seem to be practicing unheard of restraint!  I put it down till the mood passed and was pleased and surprised that I had not acted impulsively.

This is new. I do believe I am changing a lifelong behaviour! Tatting rocks!

I hope I can finish it over the weekend, because I am looking at the pattern books.

Tatting Fool has me fixating on Iris Niebach patterns.  Check out these two terrific tats she just posted here.

Friday, February 17, 2012

A Keepsake; A Memory

I did not tat anything of Gina's for today, and I do not think I have any of her patterns in my box of tatted motifs.  So, I was at a loss as to how I could participate in today's tribute to Gina.

As I thought about our copious email conversations about techniques, patterns, problems, mistakes, blunders, how-to's (she was always so very patient with my endless queries)  and humour, I thought of a piece we had both tatted and discussed at some length.

I had very nearly given the little motif to The Boss, as she is the main recipient of my tatting, which she uses with a lot of scotch tape to make 'pictures'. At the last moment, I decided to keep the little piece, not at all wanting to part with it.

The desire to keep the tatting was very strong, so I just shrugged and put the little thing back in the box, shaking my head at my strong reaction to such an insignificant piece of my work.

I am so grateful that I listened to my inner voice, as this little motif is what I have, other than all that is in my heart to remember my dear tatting friend.

The tatting world has truly lost a treasure. However, I know for a certainty, as I read the tributes pouring in, that because Gina touched so many of us all over the world with her talent, her generosity, her dedication and her kind spirit, her legacy will live on in the hearts, minds, shuttles and needles of tatters everywhere.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Back To It

The news this week really sent me into a spin, so I have been very quiet, but tatting and tangling in my spare time.

This is one of Karey's patterns from this publication, but right after I heard about Gina, I cut off the extra threads, unfortunately snipping the two working ones instead!  She would have found that very funny, I know!

So, because it is such a lovely challenge and a cool pattern that I like a lot, I shall cut off that wheel and start the round again.

Then I finished up this Iris Niebach pattern - an absolute delight.

However, after the first faultless round, I reverted to former inglorious tatting and there was much to be undone!  The end result, in #40 Tat-ilicious thread, is lovely, says me.

#71-100 Motif Challenge

I keep tatting Frivole's sweet little heart.  
Great pattern for practicing  Catherine Wheel joining skills. 
Thanks, Frivole!

#70-100 Motif Challenge

Monday, February 13, 2012

Heartily Handled

I could not tat Frivole's sweet, little heart just once, because I had made such a hash of it - here, so I had another go at it.

#69-100 Motif Challenge

The HDT (I forget whose thread this is - sorry!) split and I had to actually cut the thread as I was doing the border!  But, at least it is better than the first attempt.

I also took the liberty of changing the pattern just a wee bit. Tatting the the bottom ring, I used a Josephine Knot of 14 stitches to make it large enough.  I like the way it looks!

I am paying dearly for my bravado in the last post; I have had to un-tat quite a lot of the Iris Niebach piece I am working on at the moment.  Ah, the ups and down of Tat-land...

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Never Would Have Guessed...

...that I would ever have tatted anything from the Ruth Scharf book. 

I ordered it because it was so unusual, but I probably never would have tatted anything in it, but for my reading umintsuru's blog and following her Tat-Along.  I figured everything was just too complicated.

Now, just look at this:

#68-100 Motif Challenge, 

Thank you, umintsuru!  
This one is for you.

Friday, February 10, 2012

A First For Me After Three Years!

I did not have one un-tat 
in the first part of this Iris Niebach pattern!  
Unheard of success for a brand new pattern! 

I think the zentangles are just the thing I needed. I seem to be more relaxed at tatting, but I hold that fine pen in an iron grip now!

Love the #40 HDT from Jess.  Such pretty colours, and I like the stiffness of the thread, for it holds the shape of the stitches beautifully.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

* Big Applause*

#65-100 Motif Challenge

Gian was very surprised and pleased with the 
superb outcome of T.I.A.S...


And then there was a leaf...

#66-100 Motif Challenge

There are three more leaves to tat and that will complete one square of the Ruth Scharf pattern. Umintsuru has posted some on her blog today over here. Go have a look! Her colours are terrific and she has tatted a bunch of sets.

Now, a pretty, small heart from Frivole.  I used two differing widths of threads again - will I never learn? Trying to be frugal just doesn't cut it.

#67-100 Motif Challenge

So, there is some cupping and you can see through the chains, but I tatted this very quickly to see how I would cope with the Catherine Wheel joins.  Not a problem at all!

Unfortunately, I did not consider the two colour situation in the split-ring either!  {This is what happens when you have one foot in Tat-Land and another in Tangle-World; my other  blog is foxtangles, newly begun in order to pursue my progress with the new passion that is cutting into my tatting time.  : () }

Lovely, pattern, Frivole.  Thank you.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Taking A Page From Umintsuru's Book

So far so good!  If you want to tat along, check out Umintsuru's blog here.


T.I.A.S. is almost done!

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Raspberry Repeats

Umintsuru has thrown down the gauntlet and challenged us with a Tat-Along on a pattern she has posted with permission of  Ruth Scharf,  here. It is a pretty one, not too difficult, just repetitious.

This was my first try - WAY too tight! I seem to have gone from being a floppy tatter to a tatter with an iron grip! So, I am trying again, and hope I have enough of this thread. (HDT  in #40 from Jess - I like her threads a lot.)

I also took a page from Tatting Fool's book and began a pattern she followed -  It is beautiful.

But, I am not going to continue, as I have completed one of the four repeats in the pattern and I am now tired of tatting the heart!  It requires a lot of concentration - as experienced over at A Happy Bluebird as well.  Can be tricky, this one.

#63-100 Motif Challenge

Monday, February 6, 2012

This Struck Me As Very Funny...

T.I.A.S. has been a lot of fun!  Thank you, Jane.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Baffled By A Bead

#62-100 Motif Challenge

At the very end, I did not add a bead to the cord properly.

I am still not sure how to get the second half of a split ring bead to look the same on both sides when adding a bead to each.

Somehow, I do not think the recipient will ever notice this, and if she does, I do not believe she will give a whit!

Miranda guessed right; this is Mary Konior's cross, which I have never tatted before.  Straight tatting, no tricks, just paying attention will do. Nothing fancy and yet it makes a lovely cross.

I could not bear to tat in red and white - not my favourite combo - so I had to do something to please myself in order to abide by the wishes of my friend!

Thanks for the silver beads, Suneeti!

Friday, February 3, 2012

Slow Stitching

It doesn't look like much and I do wish it were all red - a gorgeous shade in #40 Lizbeth that I have not used before, - but this is for someone who ordered red and white. I added beads to make it less, hmmm, red and white!

Slowing down has really made a huge difference in the quality of my tatting; I wish you could feel how sturdy this motif is.  Suddenly, the change in tension is remarkable.

They  - whoever 'they' are -  say that 'a rest is as good as a change,' and I see the validity in this aphorism as I spend a little less time with the shuttles.

Tangling has occupied the majority of minutes in the past week and this has affected my tatting, all to the good.  There is a valuable lesson to be learned here for the obsessed and addicted portions of my personality!


Thursday, February 2, 2012

Can I Brag?

Seriously.  Just when I thought my tatting would suffer a great loss because of my obsession at the moment with 'foxtanlges', my beginner zentangle blog, (shameless plug here!) I finished this.  I am really proud of the stitching; I un-picked very large parts of it about five times to get it corrected.
Worth it big time.

#61-100 Motif Challenge

Changing the subject completely, can I show you something I rescued yesterday? Somebody threw the black book holders in the garbage. They were like new, and so useful, so there they are holding a lot of tatting books that had a propensity to jump right off the rickety bookcase!

For years, I have been on the hunt for a bookcase that has been left by the side of the road, but have never seen a good one or one that was the right dimensions.  I have mirrors and chairs though! 

The blue above the bookcase is a case in point - a lovely old wooden framed mirror I found years ago tossed out in the garbage. I painted it and it hangs over the books.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Cutting My Losses

Karey Solomon's HDT

I have made so many mistakes with this motif - Frivole's 'Stellar,' that I cannot in all good faith continue.  It was just too messed up.  So, I have started it again in another thread - one colour, which will help.

The actual stitches are good now.  Also, I am getting more and more exacting, which is good, because the results are better, but I then I tat a lot more slowly  and have a lot less quantity.

Here is the new one. See what I mean?

T.I.A.S. is fun!  I am so glad I am participating this year.  Not what I thought it would be at all. I had to get over my "Bah Humbug" mentality (yet again!) to finally join up.

It is looking a lot like a goat. I told Jane I thought it looked like a lamb and then remembered that lambs do not have horns... So much for animal husbandry...