Saturday, December 27, 2008
Tuesday, December 23, 2008
Sunday, December 21, 2008
Sunday, December 14, 2008
Lock chain ornament in yellow and red DMC size 30 tatting cotton on a yellow satin ornament. The top is the same as the pattern on this blog (September 25 post), except it repeats only 5 times because of the size of the thread. The bottom is a long stretch of lock chains between sets of rings. When it's hanging, it looks a little bit like a hot-air balloon. This one also went to a friend in England. Her favorite color is yellow, so I hope that's yellow enough for her.
Ornament Six is another of my first pattern, but this one is done in DMC size 80 orange tatting cotton with clear yellow beads, also fastened to a yellow satin ball. This one went off to Minnesota. Even though it's not traditional Christmas colors, this is one of my favorites. There's something so cheerful about primary, crayon-bright colors. The orange on yellow doesn't contrast very well in a photograph, though. It's probably my picture-taking ability (or lack thereof) again.
Friday, December 12, 2008
Thursday, December 11, 2008
Isn't that great? Talk about generosity. I was thinking some little samples or one skein. I've got six (yeah -- 6!) full-sized skeins of thread here. I'm thinking pigs for the size 10 "cotton candy" pink and dragons for the size 10 "blue jay" and "blue raspberry" -- I just acquired Karey Solomon's "Here Be Dragons". The size 10 "licorice" is going to become fall leaves, I think. I might do a frilly decoration with the size 30 cammo to "girly" up my niece's cammo pants. Even though Heather says the last size 30 is "over the rainbow" I'm thinking Christmas red, green, gold and silver -- so that's destined for ornaments.
Wednesday, December 10, 2008
I don't have a written pattern for this one, because every time I make it I change something. I like it, though, so need to get it at least diagrammed.
Sunday, December 7, 2008
First, a lot of split rings and some chains in variegated red and green quilting thread with a backing of white sewing cotton. This one also has red and green seed beads at most of the picot joins. The central band of split rings is not attached to any other part of the tatting -- it's just floating there. The pattern was accidentally adapted from another of my ornament patterns. Hey, I made it up, I ought to know how it goes. Nope. This worked out really well anyway -- once that central band was added.
The tatting is pinned to the green satin ornament with gold pins passed through a red seed bead. I used to lace the tatting onto the ornaments with gold or silver thread, but had a hard time getting them straight. Pinning works better for me.
Friday, November 21, 2008
Doesn't look like I've been busy, since I haven't posted since September! I have been, though. Work (such an icky word, spit, spit) has been more work than usual, and I've been making Christmas gifts. Those I can't show -- don't want to let the cat out of the bag, you see. However, these two were birthday gifts for a friend who decorates her Christmas tree all in white. The first one is my lock-chain ornament cover with a different sort of bottom. Held up it looks a bit like a hot-air balloon. I was concerned about white on white, so I added gold beads. This one was made from 1 strand of Gutermann white cotton sewing thread and 1 strand of Signature polyester machine embroidery thread. After finishing I thought maybe it was too much color for her white tree. The second one is my first original ornament design. Wanting the design to stand out, I used size 20 Cebelia for the second one and added a very few silver beads. She likes them. I think they need COLOR!!
Thursday, September 25, 2008
[PS -- thanks, Jane Eborall for introducing me to lock chains. I'd never neard of them before your hippo TIAS]
Here goes (oh, and keep in mind, nobody's test-tatted this thing):
2 colors size 80 thread
Self-Closing Mock Ring
- or p = picot
— = double-length picot
—— = quadruple-length picot
lj = lock join
RW = reverse work
SCMR = self-closing mock ring
Sh = shuttle
SR = split ring
vsp = very small picot
Begin at SR A: [Sh 1] 4-4——4 / [Sh 2] vsp 5-5 (the vsp is used attach the final lock chain)
*Lock Chain : 4-3-3-3-3-3
Inner Ring B : [color 2] 6 (+) 6-6 (on subsequent Rings “B” join to free p of previous ring B, shared join with lock chain between Rings H and I)
Lock Chain : 3+3+3+3+3+4
SR C : 4+4-4 / 5 — 5 (to quad-length p of Ring A, after twisting the p 3 times)
Lock Chain: 6
SR D: 4-4-3 / 5
Chain: 6-6 RW
Ring E : 6+3-6 (to free p of Ring “C”) RW
Chain : 6-6 RW
SCMR F: 8+4 (Ring f 8-8) 8 (to free p of Ring “E”) RW
Chain : 6-6 RW
Ring G : 6+3-6 (to free p of Ring f – the ring thrown off the SCMR) RW
Chain : 2-2
Ring H : 6+8-4 (to free p of Ring G)
Chain : 2-2 lj to free p of Ring H
Lock Chain : 6 (lj to free p of Ring B) 6 (place size 30 thread or fine paperclip to create a joining space for Ring I) and continue with
Chain : 2+2 (join to free p on the Chain between Ring H and the Lock Chain) RW
Ring I : 4+8-6 (join to space created by thread or paperclip in previous chain) RW
Chain: 2+2 (to free p on Chain between Rings G and H) RW
Ring J : 6+3-6 (to free p of Ring I)
Chain : 6+6 (to free p of Chain between Rings F and G) RW
SCMR K: 8 (Ring k 8+8 [to free p of Ring J])4-8 RW
Chain : 6+6 (to free p of Chain between Rings E and F) RW
Ring L : 6+3—6 (to free p of Ring K) RW
Chain : 6+6 (to free p of chain between SR D and Ring E)
SR M : 3+4-4 / 5 (to free p of SR D)
Lock Chain: 6†
SR (A) : 4-4——4 / 5 (+) 5 (to free double-length p of Ring L)**
Repeat from * to ** 4 times and from * to † once; end with lj to vsp at beginning. Cut and tie ends, hide with magic threads
Sunday, September 21, 2008
I had to start over after day five, because I got the colors backward. I suppose I could have cut day five off and just redone that -- but I decided I didn't like the colors anyway, and I was having difficulty getting the rings fastened to the sides of the block tatting on element two. The first set were done using Jane Eborall's new method of block tatting (the one on the right in each picture). I don't think I've quite got that mastered, so I did the second set using the more traditional method shown in Iris Niebach's Fantasia. Hmmmm...I still need a lot of practice. The two colored element three looks more like one and a half color. I also noticed that the "traditional" ones were a lot shorter than the others. I hope they work anyway. Those threads sticking out of the second set are not unhidden thread ends -- they are the ends of the hidden threads I haven't trimmed yet. I trimmed the ones on the first set and drat if I didn't pull one completely out and have to hide it in one of the pink rings -- since it was less than a quarter inch long and was a bit frayed at the end, I didn't really think it would stay hidden.
I do know what we're making -- although I can't figure out how I'm going to use fancy-dressed caterpillars.
Thursday, September 11, 2008
Starting over with DMC size 80 with plain red on one shuttle and a red variegated on the other shuttle, I thought maybe beads would cover the deficiencies in those long picots. Not quite, the yarn stitch holders I used were way too big and left too much bare thread. At that point, I lost track of the challenge image and wandered off somewhere into the ozone layer. Oh, well. This one would no way make a 6-sided snowflake anyway. It's not even an attractive 5-sided star. Poor limp thing didn't even want to settle into any proper shape on the blocking board. But here it is in all it's ...er... oddness.
Stubborn (me or the motif? -- could be either or both), I started again with green and yellow size 30 DMC Cebelia. Instead of regular chains I made lock chains to separate the repeats so they wouldn't try to curve. A few other minor changes in ds counts and picot size resulted in what I'm calling my (ta-da!) finished design. Those knobbies around the edge are an ...ummm... embellishment (yeah, that's what) to the challenge image. The large rings at the top of the lock chains need to have a bigger picot for joining so they're not so stressed when blocked, but it's done. The only really nifty thing is that it's all done in one pass so there's only one set of threads to hide at the end. It bears a passing resemblance to the challenge image ... doesn't it?
Now I have to go dig out my threads and extra shuttles for TIAS 4 -- thanks Sherry!
Sunday, August 24, 2008
Whew! This bit got dragged from pillar to post in the last few weeks, but finally got done. It only took me another week ...or was that two?... to get it blocked. The blocking was actually a damp cloth, the iron, and a bit of finger manipulation. It behaved well, didn't it? The first time I made this pattern (about 4 years ago), in size 30 white thread, I made an extra pair of rings at the outside of one repeat. I never noticed it until I tried to block it. It's sitting in a box somewhere. I tried it again while I was on vacation in blue variegated size 80 thread. However, I didn't carry the book with me, just kept looking at what was done -- and repeating the same mistake over and over after the second repeat. If I'd made the same mistake from the beginning, I would have finished it to see if it would work. It looked too weird though, so I threw it out in disgust. Determined to get through it at least once, this one has seen a lot of unpicking and redoing. This just isn't an autopilot pattern for me.
As for this beautiful thread, I think there might be enough left to make a pair of small earrings...maybe.
Tuesday, August 12, 2008
The giving was just as fun as the getting, but after the loot I got, I feel like a piker! Maria, my exchange partner from Portugal, received those things in the second picture. (You'll note the absence of anything so large and pretty as the hand-towel and the mat).
Hey! When's the next exchange? I've got to get started!
Tuesday, July 22, 2008
I also need to hunt up some more thread holders. I am considering rummaging in the basement (still with just a little bit of horror -- gotta get over that first) to find my embroidery thread winder and those little cards that fit in the sorting box. I should be able to act as the thread holder and convince one of my nieces she really, really wants to turn that little handle.
The collection of beautifully bright cotton thread, the Purple Punch and Rhubarb Pie are from Yarnplayer Arts on Etsy (Marilee Rockley). Isn't is pretty? I'm going to have to use those brights all together -- like a rainbow! But what sort of rainbow do I want to make??
I'll have two weeks to consider it, and a good place for inspiration. I'm leaving for Alaska on July 27 for a "land-tour cruise." I think that means "If it's Tuesday, this must be Talkeetna." There's just no way to see everything, but I want to try!
Sunday, July 20, 2008
Instead of actually doing those things for which I needed to get A Round Tuit, I've been admiring the nifty item and considering ways to embellish it for tatting purposes. Maybe like this:
Wednesday, July 16, 2008
This was a fun challenge. Sharon is good at thinking up those -- keeps the tatting community on its toes (or firmly attached to our favorite tatting chairs) participating like mad. I don't know about other tatters, but these challenges are good for me. They keep me tatting, and for the first time ever -- designing (which I never thought I could do).
Saturday, July 12, 2008
Tuesday, July 8, 2008
There. I think I'm done with this pattern for a while. After fussing and fiddling to eliminate those three rounds of chains this is what I ended up with. The chains and I just couldn't get along -- they looked like a pile instead of elegant lace when I did them. However, I'm still not satisfied with the last round because it's too big. It required lots of finger manipulation to get it to settle down this flat. Made with DMC size 30 Cébélia, it measures 8 inches (just over 20 cm) in diameter. The big question now is -- what am I going to do with it? It's sitting in a pile with some other things about which I am undecided. I keep wondering if there is a home for purple and green doilies (or maybe just a "Home" for the people who make them). Given that minor worry, I'm moving on to something else. Maybe I'll revisit it again sometime in the future. I can see it now: I go up to the fence at the purple-and-green-doily-home and say, "Hi, doily," then wander away knowing it's doing well and is as happy as can be expected.
Saturday, June 21, 2008
1. Link back to the person that tagged you. [Yup, did that]
2. Post the rules on your blog. [Oh, yeah -- here they are!]
3. Share 6 unimportant things about yourself. [That comes after #4]
4. Tag 4 people at the end of your entry. [These lucky people are at the end, like it says]
Unimportant things...that's difficult. Everything about me is important -- most especially my modesty. Maybe I can think up some though...like
1. I am a packrat. I keep all manner of unimportant stuff. I find a nice, memorable place for it (or a reasonably flat surface on which to stack it) then can't ever find it again -- or it turns out to really be unimportant so I forget I've got it. This results in stacks of things I can't bear to even think of looking through. Just as an example -- here's a bit of my desk:
2. I collect stegosauruses and frogs (which, in turn, collect dust) -- like so (and yes, I know that one is the Starship Enterprise, not a stegosaurus):
3. I don't mow my lawn, and haven't for thirteen years. No, it's not xeriscaped or zeroscaped or weedy. I have a lawn service.
4. I got on the music train via the way-back machine in the 1920s and got off in the early 1970s. Don't ask me about anybody making or pretending to make music since then. I don't know 'em -- except for Dana Owens.
5. I like mechanical pencils. I buy lots of them. If I see some in interesting colors I buy them. I don't care if they can be refilled or not -- I just buy them. This is part of my stock. I think I need more pencils.
6. I talk to all the other drivers on the road -- all the time. I tell them they have ugly cars or picked a bad color (like NO color: black, white, gray, "silver", various shades of brown or olive drab) -- my car is blue. Blue is a good color. Sometimes I tell them they are deserving of their ugly car because their driving is equally ugly. I tell them to get off my road if they can't drive. I sometimes even tell them their taste in music stinks (it doesn't fall in the 1920-1970 range), especially if their base is trying to blow the doors of my car. When there aren't enough drivers to talk to, I talk to the pedestrians. Mostly I tell them they have bad taste in clothing, or they need glasses to find the crosswalk. I tell them how creeped-out I am by their tattoos (they have to be done with a NEEDLE! -- another reason I shuttle tat). Occasionally, I do tell somebody they've done something right or they've got good taste in clothes. Nobody listens.
Now I want to hear some unimportant things about:
Jeff Hamilton -- the Bridge City Tatter
Clyde -- the MadTatter
Monday, June 16, 2008
Sunday, June 8, 2008
Using that same purple and some mint green Cébélia with some shades of purple and green seed beads I'm making another bald doily. I like the center of this pattern really well. It's when I get to those three rows of chians that I choke on it. They just don't work for me. This one is now in the "thinking stage" -- I figure if I think about it long enough, I can come up with something that will suit me, and let me use the outer row -- which I find very attractive.
Finally, I've got Jane's TIAS3 up to Day 9. Poor, sad thing -- I think it's waving me off with a little misshapen hand. I do believe the beads were too big and inconsistently sized. I'm not too certain about the colors either. That pretty pink button is starting to look orange to me.
Now, I have to leave town for almost the entire month of June -- and my little old laptop doesn't have any capacity for wireless or high speed internet connection. I'll have to see if I can catch up on the weekends -- either that or start over. That would work, because now I know where to put in at least one set of magic threads! I'm wondering if three strands of quilting thread might equal size 20 thread (since I don't have any size 20 this one's all done with size 30). Maybe better thread and bead sizing would get it to shape up a bit.