Sunday, April 29, 2012

Cluny Compensation

...for all the time and energy not to mention metres of wasted thread!  I had to put down that Sunflower pattern as it was twisting all over the place. Maybe I should use another type of thread. I am still working away at it, but sometimes it works to put it down for a few days...

In the meantime, I finished the cluny piece. Clunies used to be my tatting boogeyman, before the Blomqvist Blues took over! They do not seem to be so confronting now that there is something way more difficult for me to kvetch about.

#8/100      Pattern: “Rose de Noel" by Elisadusud    
#40 HDT ‘Garden Afternoon’ by Yarnplayer

Well, they are not perfect by any means, but these clunies - and there are a lot of them - are a lot better looking than most of the ones I tatted a few months ago. Maybe they are a mite misshapen, but after all there are 24 of them!

I suppose the trick is to bite off more than you can chew and then go back and see what was so difficult about the precious Mount Everest.


I have referred to needles a lot it seems in recent posts, so I thought I would post a photo  of what I usually use to sew in the ends.  For me, sewing them in rather than tatting over them is much less obvious.  

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Nocturnal Ninja Nonsense

I am a tatting warrior.  I have been at this for about 12 hours!  

I sent two emergency S.O.S. messages last night, but kept trudging along with the true Taurean steadfastness of a stubborn Bull, et voilĂ !  By George, I think I’ve got it!  Well, for now anyway.

This is the ‘Sunflower’ pattern from the Blomqvist, Tatting Patterns and Designs book.  Wow.  Confusing.

Went yesterday on a hunt for white kiddie-socks for Maeve:

I am not sure if I will use the invisible thread that Jane uses (it is a real pain) or #50 DMC thread in white to sew the edging on.  It is so pretty!

I had to take my mind off that wretched doily for a bit so I started something... Nothing like a couple of clunies that I have not tatted in ages to keep the mind from wandering.

This HDT is Garden Afternoon #40, by Yarnplayera gift from my good pal Suneeti.  Seems I have loved this colourway, since 2009, when I first saw it on Yarnplayer’s blog and had to have it! I love it!

Wander, it did, however, when I sewed in the ends with my mind 
still meandering around the Blomqvist pattern:

No sympathy from this quarter:

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Can We Talk?

I have been thinking lately - usually a prelude to some misadventure!

Before I ask your opinion I wanted to show you this, because the question concerns this motif and its construction...

#7/100      Cebelia #20      Free Pattern: Mark Myers: Tatman 

It was difficult to photograph this well because it is white, which I had a real yen to use because of all the beautiful white and ecru pieces I always admire on Carla’s blog.  She tatted one similar to this here and I loved it.

Here’s the thing. I recently had an interesting conversation about frontside/backside tatting with another tatter.  I wanted to know if she used this technique, as I have employed it since the first few months of picking up a shuttle.

It was my impression, as a newbie tatter that if you were a committed tatter, striving for perfection (and who among us isn’t one or either of these?) you would use the fs/bs technique.  Otherwise your work would not be considered “up to par.”

Even after the T.A.T. course, where they referred to both - I do not remember any emphasis on one or the other, nor any judgmental attitude -  I came away thinking I had best stick with this route.

So, here I am almost four years later, and I decided I would tat a motif using ‘regular’ tatting, have a look at it and also monitor how I felt when I was tatting.

It was so relaxing and I found I was not half as anxious or tight-fisted as I can be when I tat fs/bs.

Also I realize that a lot of my un-tatting has been to correct a stitch or two wayyy back there that was tatted on the wrong side.  A LOT of un-tatting....

So, now you see my dilemma.

This tatting topic has been around for years, I know, but I thought I would re-visit the conversation as some of you out there might not have been involved in the last go-around.

What do you do?  Why?  Thoughts?

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Tischband Terminus

This is as good as it gets.  I am putting this book back on the shelf, as I have given it a hearty workout, completing two Tischbands.  Not my favourite kind of tatting, though I love the little flower.

HDT #40, Fancy Fields, by Jess   
Pattern: OCCI, Schiffchenspitze FrivolitĂ©  
Actually, I really like the leaves as well on their own; the last two were easy to tat and looked just fine.

It was the tatting together with the flower motif that I did not like doing, as it always felt like such an awkward squeeze.

Maybe the leaves on their own with another motif...  Ah, we’ll see!

Monday, April 23, 2012

Trudging Along...

Often, I feel as if I am being spied upon...

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Tischband #2

Glutton for Punishment = Fox

p.s.  The pea pod IS Frivole’s!
(designed and tatted by Her Tat-ness, herself!)

HDT is ‘ Fancy Fields' from Jess.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Diversion and Disinfectant

diversion: an activity that diverts the mind from tedious or serious concerns.

 disinfectant:  a chemical liquid that destroys bacteria.

Both of these definitions are appropriate to today’s post.  
I’ll show you why.

The Diversion:
#5/100         Motif by Judy Banashek     Centre by MOI!        
HDT  by Jess

The Disinfectant:
Thanks once again
to Tabatha, who wisely 
saw the undeniable logic of her 
generous and most appropriate gift!

The diversion is with reference to 
a very temporary leave from Scharfe Leaves!

Friday, April 20, 2012

Why #80? Ever?

What is the fascination I have for using #8o thread.  It just frustrates me because I always have to un-tat and this is the worst for correcting stitches. Plus, I have only one good light and the stitches are very difficult to see in the evening when I usually tat.

Hankies? Okay. Seems reasonable to do borders in #80, but anything else, for me, makes absolutely no sense at all.

Why do I need to tat teeny, tiny motif, anyway?  It seems idiotic if I think about it...  However, the next two photos show what I have managed to produce using this ridiculously skinny stuff.

#4/100     Pattern is from The Tatters Treasure Chest.

It is SMALL! Compare it to the shuttle...


Something new: Another Great Video by Frivole!

I have to thank Frivole for her fantastic video, here.

I had read Wolfgang’s instructions over at InTatters, but kept starting with a lock stitch!  (Don’t ask.)

Then I watched this short, illuminating video. Easy peasy!

So, I started the Tischband leaf, and though the beginning is fine (only if you start with the CTM, however.) I seem to have messed up royally on the rest of it.

Why can I not follow instructions!

Next, I had to try a lovely, simple edging 
from my newest favourite book:


Tatted with Lizbeth #40.  Much more civilized.

An after-thought:
I just realized that yesterday was the third anniversary of tat-ology.  My first post was on April 19th, 2009.  Wow.  How did that happen?

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Lessons Learned

Thought I would practice up for the peacock pattern that I have been studying.  
I thought the onion rings in this would be a good warm-up
 and they certainly were.

But, this is not what I expected.

#3/100                        Design by Roger aka Freedman

I have been so enamoured of Wendy’s four beautiful motifs, here, here, here (My favourite) and here, that I looked up Roger aka Freedman’s pattern and tatted this one.

I do not like what happened, but I have learned an awful lot from this particular exercise.

1) The Catherine Wheel joins are no longer an issue - Yah!  That is the good news...

2) The colours really disappointed me, I'm afraid.

The thread (Tatskool’s Spice Collection HDT’s)  is wonderful to work with and was a generous gift from Suneeti, but for some reason, I got irritated with these shades and had to add beads to keep my interest going. These days, I have not been using beads, as I am trying to concentrate on the stitches themselves.

3) The white circle after the onion rings is much too prominent and the motif loses the emphasis of the lovely floral shape of the next row, which is darker thread.  These two colours should have been reversed.  Live and learn. Valuable lesson in colour.

4) The pattern is written for needle tatters, so I just used the stitch count and carried on.

Where it called for a cut and tie, I used a split chain beginning, so I could segue to the next row, but I made a counting error and had to wing it at the end of the row, causing an unsightly blunder.  However, I did not lose my temper and figured out an escape route, hid it as best as I could and kept going.

In the end the mistake is not too terrible and I was able to accept the lack of perfection in a whole new way.  I am learning!

There were a few more things as well, but the hour is late and I cannot seem to recall what they were.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Monday, April 16, 2012

Occhi On...

#2/100                                                      Thread: Lizbeth #40

 Another from this book:

I had a lot of thread on the bobbins, 
but had to reverse the colours because
of the amounts, so I did this:

Have been studying the other peacock pattern and am baffled by 
the twisted threads at the start, after the head is tatted.  
Anybody know what I am taking about?

I notice I seem to have a liking for blue these days.  
The patterns I am drawn to have changed
a bit as well...

This is here only because I liked the photo!

Saturday, April 14, 2012

No Rhyme or Reason

Pattern by Mark Myers         #40 Lizbeth        #1 - 100 Motif Challenge

I have been wanting to tat this for a while and then suddenly it was the pattern of the day. Funny how it happens. I will be planning to tat something I have in a book, or seen on a blog and then I will get a thought about something totally different, hunt it down and begin immediately.

This happens a lot, so I never really know what is to be “next on the list,” though I speak as though I do!

The pattern is fiddly, employing two paperclips for those pesky joins that occur on the core thread.  Pretty though, don’t you think?

p.s.  I must be getting very cocky, as I have not shaped, pressed or ironed the last two motifs!

Friday, April 13, 2012

Ornery? Not Occhi

100th -100 Motif Challenge!         Begun October 24, 2011.

Just wanted to show you who already know I had purchased a copy of the ‘peacock’ book, brought to the forefront by Frivloe, here, that it contains not only complicated patterns, but also very simple ones to enjoy.

I love this book.  I tackled the easy one first!

The colour of this Lizbeth#40 thread is actually a vibrant magenta, which did not, unfortunately, well translate to the screen.  It is a wonderful shade.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

To Sally Forth

#99      Design by Sally Kerson     #40 HDT by Tatilicious

All done.  My tension was too tight for once - just when it is not supposed to be! Figures. This is a lovely little pattern, just challenging and small enough to finish quickly with much satisfaction.

I had just enough thread left on the bobbins to funish this up, but I sure wish the tension were better.  Alas, the button was just a wee bit too large, which added to the tension problem.

As you may have noticed in previous posts, I do  NOT sew.  So, why would I have buttons on hand? I don’t.  When I departed from my knitting career, I gave away a gazillion buttons, collected over at least a decade.

Who knew?  I had no idea I would look around one day, shuttle in hand, for the perfect button to accompany my hand-dyed thread!

Why I had a few of these odd shade of green ones still in my possession, I have no idea.  But, with four holes, this is all I’ve got.
Thanks Sally!


I have a question:  
How do you manage that last join?  
Do you leave a tiny picot? 

I find it so difficult to get the thread through the beginning stitches and wonder how you in Tat-land manage your last join. I used a needle on tis piece as I could not get the hook through.  Then I sewed in the two ends. Getting the needle into the beginning of the motif is murder, though. My thought is to leave a very small picot, but I always seem to forget...

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

‘Seitz’ - Seeing

Georgia Seitz that is!

Pattern by Georgia Seitz               #98-100 Motif Challenge   Jess’s  HDT

Found it a bit difficult to get this to lie flat.  It is about four inches across, like the last one I tatted, designed by Karey.

I am now ready (I say this once again!) to try something different, I think; I do get bored by the repetition of the doily-like motifs.  But the thought of another Tischband makes me start to squirm...  must be where I'm headed!

Friday, April 6, 2012

A Mixed Bag

First off, this is the great  #40 new thread from Jess.  I love how the colours match my new shuttle perfectly.

Also, this thread has terrific body. ( I think it is Lizbeth, but I am not sure)  I keep wondering how #40 can remain so stiff after all my un-tatting!  Un-tatting - there is lots of it - with this Georgia Seitz pattern called Dorethea's Teardrop Edging.  (Tatting On The Edge)

I am just now noticing how the colours pool just right, with the dark appearing consistently at the top.  I hope this continues through all twelve repeats!

Perhaps I should be using these to un-tat the stitches:

They are cactus points, kindly sent to me by Karen when I expressed an interest in knowing what they were.  

Thank you Karen.  They are lethally sharp and scary, but I shall try them one of these days when I am feeling particularly brave!

Karen also sent me her photos of her finished Tischband tatting.  
I think she did an amazing job!  

Karen's Tischband Tatting

What a great idea Umintsuru had ( just tlook at what she is up to now!  It is gorgeous.) offering Tat-land this challenge.  There have been so many beautiful examples of how this pattern looks when tackled by different tatters.


Bookmark for Bev 
October, 2011

I had forgotten to post this bookmark that I made for Ridgewoman last year.

It is a Lenore English pattern, tatted in #40 something or other
along with silk from Krystle with three different colours of beads.
She liked it.


Lastly, I ordered this book and was stunned when I received it.  Although it is in Deutsch, which I can speak and read a teeny bit, it is so well-diagrammed that I imagine it will not be too difficult to follow.  It is in hardcover format, full colour and a real delight.  One of the best tatting books I have ever seen!

We'll see what happens when I actually begin to use it...

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Thank You Dear Friend

Misha has been gone for a year
and almost to the day of his departure
I found this in the mail:

I knew I had not ordered anything from LaCossette, though I am sorely tempted about once a day! So, I could not figure out why I had been sent a package.  Maybe it was a mistake, I thought.

Well, a certain person had conspired with LaCossette, resulting in my receiving a wonderful commemorative shuttle, wrapped in the recognizable  envelope with a tiny logo motif attached. So pretty - all of it. Just look at those eyes!

Thank you so very much for your sensitively, generosity and most of all your friendship.  I love it.

Gian does not.  : ))


Here is what I completed with my new shuttle:

#97                           Design by Karey Solomon               Thread #80 DMC

This is another of Karey's designs, this time from a booklet called Sweet Knottings.  I have never seen it before online - though someone out there in Tat-Land has completed one of these motifs, I'm sure, as the book is not new.

The white #80 thread I used is fairly new, but it broke SIX times!  Also, there were tons of knots.  This is why I took so long tatting this one, (aside from the new cellphone excuse!) which measures only four inches across.  The fine vintage thread is from Tattin'Kat - love this colour blue.

If you look closely you can count four different colours of beads. Three are Delicas and the fourth, the green ones, are from CrazyMom.

(This is almost the hundredth motif for the 25 Motif Challenge that I turned into the 100 Motif Challenge!  My #1 is here, on October 24, 2011.  Yikes! Sure is a lot of tatting!)

This was a fun one.  I do love Karey's patterns.

Monday, April 2, 2012

Tied Up With Technology

This is going very slowly and I did not tat at all yesterday.  Usually I tat at least for a few minutes and it seems so ironic that on that particular day of the entire year I did not manage one ds! There is a reason...

I have never had a cell phone.  Never wanted one. Nobody looks up anymore; if an enormous spaceship like the ones in the movies and all the comic books were to hover low above Toronto, I think I would be the only one to see it!

Well - Saturday morning I became the reluctant owner of this:

Over the weekend, my eyes have been glued to this tiny powerhouse that has replaced my landline.

Yup, technology has finally wrestled me to the ground and I decided it was not financially feasible to have both landline and cell.  So, I had to learn the ins and outs of what everyone in the 21st Century knows already very fast.  Enter obsession. Big time.

An enormous learnng curve made sure I was totally (and I mean about 18 hours yesterday) occupied, so I forgot about International Tatting Day entirely - a belated happy one to you all.

Now I can talk anywhere, text, blog, take photos, read, and email with the big kids wherever and whenever I wish! I admit it is a wonderful freedom to have this little gizmo.  Ah, and yes, it is actually great fun.  : )


I have received word that Let's Tat, which began the journey around Tat-Land on April 1st,  two years ago, to honour International Tatting day, has arrived to visit with Miranda.

Being ALMOST half way through the list at this point means it will take almost another two years to complete the entire voyage! (at approximately three weeks per tatter)

Miranda tells me that Angeline is in great shape and has weathered the postal services of all the countries she has travelled to just fine!  Yah!