Thursday, January 30, 2014


Happy New Year
to my tatting friends celebrating
The Year of The Horse!

From me and Mary Konior (Queen Anne’s Lace) 
via Liyarra’s Anchor Liana #20 and Glitter YLI

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Blog As Muse

Last night I read a question at InTatters about how bloggers felt about setting up a tatting blog. 

I wrote a response, getting somewhat carried away.  Ahem... 

This morning, when I re-read it, I kinda liked what I had written, so I am posting it for anyone ambitious enough to slog through some of my - sigh - gushiness...


Well - I can get wordy, but here goes!

I started tat-ology in 2009, after I had been tatting for only about 5 months. I was a novice about all of it, but I must say it was the best thing I could have done - to start tatting and blogging simultaneously.

I have made wonderful on-line tatting buddies, exchanged tatting treasures with tatters all over the entire globe, had fantastic advice and lots of laughs, received unexpected snail mail from far, far away and experienced an insanely obsessive personal challenge to tat better - to be the best tatter I can be.

Through these experiences I surprisingly find I have tons to write about on tat-ology. It astounds me that after nearly 5 years(!!!) I can still find enough to compose a few posts per week.

There is also a colourful record of my progress, for I have used an online company to make books of all my posts, from the very beginning. I love having the history of my work and I hope the books inspire my grand kids or their friends to pick up shuttles and play some day.

Tat-ology is a way for me to keep pushing past barriers, as I share my ups and downs, constantly striving toward mastery. Truth is, I am very shy and private, yet the blog provides readers, comments and support galore. It makes me feel so acknowledged if I read just one friendly comment.

At the start I felt I had absolutely nothing to say! Go to my first post and see that I was just like every tatter who wants to start a blog, feeling scared, shy and very uncertain. It is confronting; I know.

Tat-Land, found online, mainly through blogs, is a wonderful community. There it is possible to talk to one another over vast distances, so we do not tat alone. Many of us, myself included, tat in a vacuum, with no in-the-flesh tatter to share tea and a tat, except through our keyboard and the desire to belong to a lace-minded group.

Blogging is the conduit to that world where we can share our passion with one another. Blogging is a doorway to the many wonderful things that do indeed happen between strangers with nothing in common sometime except a simple knot and a shuttle, or a tatting needle and thread.

We connect, we learn, we support, we challenge; sometimes we even argue! Blogs are an amazing tool to be able to share this obsessive addiction from which we all derive such pleasure. It is just so much fun to have knowledgable and talented tatters just a few keystrokes away!

Blogging is definitely not for everyone. But if you have the thought that you might find some satisfaction and pleasure in the vehicle of a tatting blog; should you feel excited and have a little flutter in your chest when you think about it, I urge you to just dive in, pick a heading and let your fingers type a hello, whether on Blogger or WordPress - it doesn’t matter which. Just do it! We will be watching to hear from YOU!

Monday, January 27, 2014


Venus #40 from Liyarra

 I am sure I have tried Venus in the past as I recall being sent some, but have not used it in a while. I quite liked using this thread, which is a tad soft but very enjoyable. 
Thank you, Liyarra!

From here:

What IS it?

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Missing Manhattan

That can be the only explanation for this flight of fancy. Jane really has us guessing this time around. I haven't got a clue!

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Tatting the Terrible Twists

Can you believe this?
Wendy and I completed  Challenge #2!
Thanks, umintsuru! That one was tough.

Annarita by Iris Niebach
#80 Lizbeth; about 6 inches across

This time I have not enjoyed the challenge as much. Perhaps this is so because this pattern has the same element repeated eight times. Perhaps this is so because I needed to continually look at the pattern and still had to un-tat about twenty times! Whatever the case, this was not as fulfilling as the last one.

On the other hand, I am so grateful that I had this to distract me, as poor Mr. G. has been suffering with an infection. Finally the medication seems to be kicking in. He has been miserable, but is now showing his true colours again!

Having pets is often more difficult than having children!

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Liyarra and a Lovely Load of Luscious

All the way from Australia. 

Some colour to brighten up the way-below zero temperatures. 
She knew my stash was low and decided to send me this: 

Thank you Liyarra!

Wendy and I are tatting up another challenge. 
While taking a break, I decided to look in here:

I tatted one of the motifs and then could not find it. Looked for ages and 
when I reached for my empty coffee cup to take to the sink...

How do these things happen?

After the wash...

There is a major mistake, so I can’t use this one.
However, I want to tat 4, for a large square. I used #40 Lizbeth.

Tatting the Iris Niebach patterns has helped me a lot. I could not tat anything in this book last year and found all the patterns too confusing. This does not seem to be the case now, as I understood everything in this one and have looked through the book and nothing looks terribly complicated anymore! 

I think tatting Iris doilies is an excellent learning device for intermediate tatter.  My humble opinion. Thank you Iris!

Pet Peeves

Says Mr G,
Tat It And See
Is  Definitely Not
Where I Want To Be.

Give Me A Mouse, 
 A Beetle, A Bat or All Three,
Some Catnip, Some Liver 
A Bird Up A Tree.

But A Shuttle And Thread?
I'm Going To Bed!

Monday, January 20, 2014

Gleam and Glimmer

Lizbeth #40

Again, from here:

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Bounteous Beads

#40 Lizbeth

This was fun. Small, about 2 x 2 1/2 inches and it is heavy! Great tactile appeal. Better than worry beads! From this book:

I am in the middle if tatting another, as it was so enjoyable. Go over to tatskool's blog and look around. That is where I was inspired to tat this.

Day 5 T.I.A.S.

Friday, January 17, 2014

Annalisa? Astoundingly!

Lizbeth #80

Is it really finished? Wow! That has got to be the most difficult piece I have ever tatted. When I finished the last stitch I sat there in sheer amamzement and could not believe what I have actually accomplished.

Ahem... I would like to thank my mom and dad and my Aunt Lillian umintsuru for tatting this with me. I never would have tackled this on my own. It is a very comforting thing to know there is another tatter there on the world, stitching away, challenged by the same pattern. Thanks Wendy!

This is a pattern I wil attempt again - not right away though! Now that I have figured out the directions, I would like to tat it without so much un-tatting involved. I think it will be far easier the next time.

Go to umintsuru’s blog here to see what my tatting partner has created.

Of course I must also thank Iris, for her amazing patterns and incredible mind and creative ability. Thanks Iris!

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Relaxing Reward

Thank goodness! A small and straightforward pattern. Using #40 thread and a few types of beads, I am enjoying this bit of relaxation. I’ll leave it up to you to figure out what book this is from till it is finished. 

Challenge piece being blocked... : )

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Entertaining T.I.A.S.

Day 4.

 Had to get in on the fun. Thanks, Jane! 
You really do put on a good show!

Only about fifteen minutes left in my challenge piece!
I am very excited to show it to you!

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

In The Interim

Just finishing the challenge with umintsuru (Have a look at her progress, as her tatting is wonderful!) and had to take a break, so tatted Sally's snowflake again. Such a delightful pattern.

Umintsuru has given some background to our challenge, here. Thanks! I had forgotten about this; we both had tatted the easier variation of Iris Niebach’s Annalisa last year.

#40 Lizbeth

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Four Days of Tatting

... and this is all I have!

I ended up using #80 Lizbeth. If I don't lose my temper and go really, really slowly, maybe I can get to the next element. Maybe.

Very, VERY fiddly  : (

Friday, January 10, 2014

Stymied By String

So, umintsuru and I have a challenge going on... We agreed on a pattern and Bob's your uncle. Right? Not exactly.

I have begun this pattern more times than I ever will admit over the last few days. Last night -late- I sent a pathetic email saying I could not do it and was taking a break.

Of course, ten minutes later I had rewound the bobbins!

Here are some of my paltry  beginnings...

Back to the shuttles for the 1,236 time...

Back to #1,345...

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Indulging- Iris's Irene

Again - this time in Sulky Blendables:

Finally I was able to use tiny green beads I got years ago from Crazy Mom! They are so small I must use a .4 hook, which terrorizes me - for good reason, for those of you remember the beginning of my dangerous tatting adventures!

For scale with the Altin Basik thread:

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Addiction Resumed

Ah, yes, though not entirely happy, I am definitely back to my old tricks, becoming totally obsessed with a pattern.

I figured I was done with "Irene" by Iris Niebach, but I am now on my third try at getting it going in Sulky, with which I am rapidly falling way out of love! Oh, but the palettes... They are so beguiling in this fuzzy skinny, 2-ply thread! I have wasted meters of it trying to get the piece looking right. 

In between cursing capers, I tatted this:

I believe I found this online; it appeared in The Big Book of Tatting. I used #50 Altin Basak and #40 Lizbeth.

Here is the beginning of the new, shrunken Irene:

I would like to thank everyone who commented on the last post and sent me such good suggestions about how to kick-start the old muse who won't be rushed, as we all really understand. 

But, the ideas were so good, and I heeded one of them. I won't tell you which one as I don't want to jinx it!

Friday, January 3, 2014

The Muse Is Missing

Iris Niebach
- two rows -

#50 Altin Basak and #30 Cèbèlia  

My muse has deserted me. This should have been far more challenging than it was. It started well but became so boring that I made a huge error and didn’t even see it till I posted this picture of it! 

The tatting was merely twisted!

I am very happy about this!

Imagine being bored with one of Iris’s patterns. I never thought I would be able to say that. Perhaps that is the upside of all this; I have become a bit more proficient. Maybe.

The colours? Lack of thread. Then the red beads to keep some enthusiasm.
I remember when Jon went through this kind of a mood, and I was amazed at how a person might suffer a loss of passion for tatting.Well, here I am! Not that I have lost interest - it’s just that I cannot find anything I really want to tat. Also the large threads produce unwieldy pieces. This thing hardly fit in the scanner! So, back to the skinnies and I do not know WHAT pattern! I need inspiration...

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Jaunty January

Well, off to a great start here! Can any of you Tatters out there identify this? It is a lovely tat as I have to lay attention. Not too difficult, but definitely challenging. 

Using some #50 Altin Basak... Not enamoured anymore with this soft, fuzzy thread.... Ah, thread grumbling and here it is only the second day of the year!

This is tatted in Sally's teal Cèbèlia and my own denim #30 of the same brand. It is “Harriet,” designed by Kirsten Christensen.

Blomqvest and Presson go-to pattern in Sulky, #80


Wednesday, January 1, 2014