Saturday, May 31, 2008


I'm making progress with Stella Alpina, and I haven't had to undo too many mistakes. I'm paying much closer attention!

I decided to make another bookmark today to give myself a little mental break. This hand-dyed thread is from Sherry Pence aka LadyShuttleMaker. I've lost the tag and can't remember what the color is called, but it sure is pretty!

If you click on the picture to make it larger, you get a much better idea of the true color of these two pieces.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Fresh Start

I had to prove to myself that I could start Stella Alpina correctly. So, here it is! I've looked at my tatting and the pattern several times, and I think I finally got it right. I'll quit for tonight and check it again tomorrow before doing any more tatting. This is Altin Basak #381, size 50. I really like working with this color. It's bright and easy on the eyes.

Learning from my mistakes...

I admit it. The fact that I had a less than perfect bookmark to give away was weighing on my mind, so I tatted another. The top one is one ring short. There should be seven rings on each side. As my mom would say, a blind man on a galloping horse would never know the difference! However, I know! The up side to this experience is that I now have a Jimi Hendrix bookmark for me!

I think the end of the school year has taken its toll on my brain. I started Stella Alpina over again, because I realized I made a huge mistake! If you look near the quarter on the doily on the right side, you'll see a beautiful line of clovers. Too bad that's not the way they're supposed to look! Now look at the doily on the left side. Note that the two clovers on top are NOT joined. Ahh! There lies the rub! See the next set of clovers? Notice how beautifully they are joined. That's how the top two are supposed to look. Guess when I noticed the mistake? As I was placing the pieces on the scanner! I think I'll start Stella Alpina over in a different colored thread... this one must be jinxed!

Monday, May 26, 2008

Tatting promises...

I promised to post a picture of my bookmarks with the book, threads, and shuttles. It's kind of hard to see the detail, so I took close-up pictures too.

Purple Lime Tie Dye from LadyShuttleMaker, Clover tatting shuttle

Golden Glow from Yarnplayer, Peter Cua buffalo horn shuttle

Tie Dye Blue from LadyShuttlemaker, ceramic shuttle from LadyShuttlemaker (I think this is my favorite ceramic tatting shuttle!)

Jimi Hendrix from LadyShuttleMaker, ceramic shuttle from LadyShuttleMaker (Note the Clover shuttle already wound and ready for another bookmark!)

P.S. - I'm counting these bookmarks as my personal challenge no. 4!

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Jimi Hendrix... I think!

I finished my fourth bookmark! Yea! The recipient will never notice, but I forgot a ring. I didn't notice until after I had hidden the ends. I lost the tag for this thread. I know it is from LadyShuttleMaker, and I'm pretty sure it's Jimi Hendrix size 20. Let me know if I'm wrong, Sherry!

Tatted bookmark no. 3

I finished my third bookmark this morning on the way to Chicago. I don't get to see my husband much between Easter and Memorial Day, because he is very busy with spring plant sales. He's a tropical plant wholesaler. So, this morning when he asked me if I wanted to go with him on a delivery to Chicago and then go out for breakfast, I said yes! Since the scenery is so familiar to me, it was easy to decide to take my tatting along.

This little beauty was tatted in size 20 Tie Dye Blue from LadyShuttleMaker, using one of her beautiful ceramic shuttles. When I finish the fourth bookmark, I'll post a picture of all the bookmarks, the book, and the shuttles I used. I love having a variety of shuttles to choose from!

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Another tatted bookmark!

I really should finish the laundry and do some dusting, but I just had to tat another bookmark today. This one is similar to the one I made for Mom. It's Yarnplayer's "Golden Glow", size 20.

Two down, two to go!

Tatting bookmarks for teachers

It's hard to believe, but school will be over for the year this coming Friday! Where has the time gone? We're going to have a staff cookout on Thursday and say farewell to four of our colleagues. The high school principal is taking on a new post near his family home in western Illinois. Our high school business ed/home ec teacher is moving to Arizona to be near her mom and brothers. One of our middle school resource teachers is also moving closer to family. One of our kindergarten teachers is moving closer to home and has accepted a position as a middle school language arts teacher. I sense a theme here... there's no place like home!

I'd like to do something special for these dedicated educators, and I've decided on bookmarks. This is the pattern I made for Mom (No. 36: Insertion from The DMC Book of Charted Tatting Designs by Kirstine Nikolajsen & Inge Lise Nikolajsen). This is a very easy pattern to follow, and it tats up quickly. The thread is LadyShuttleMaker's Purple Lime Tie Dye, size 20. I love the way this worked up. The sections of green remind of grape seeds next to purple grapes.

I haven't decided yet if all four bookmarks will be the same. After all, variety is the spice of life!

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Tatting "Stella Alpina"

I can't help myself. I am addicted to Iris Niebach's designs! I've started "Stella Alpina" from her book Tatting Fantasia. I'm using Altin Basak #3052.

I looked through several of my tatting books trying to decide which pattern to make for my personal challenge. I kept coming back to my Iris Niebach books. I am so tempted to change my challenge to tatting all the designs in one book!

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Tatting for Mom

I really meant to do something special for my mom this Mother's Day, but I had a hard time thinking of what I could do that would be meaningful without taking up a lot of space. Mom works very hard to keep clutter under control.

This morning, it hit me... a tatted bookmark! My mom has been my greatest influence when it comes to a love of reading and needlework. So, Mom, this bookmark is for you! Belated Happy Mother's Day! Love, Diane

The pattern is No 36: Insertion from The DMC Book of Charted Tatting Designs by Kirstine Nikolajsen & Inge Lise Nikolajsen. The thread is Yarnplayer's "Golden Glow", the same thread I used for the tatted crosses for the stole Mom is weaving.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Personal tatting challenge no. 3

I've completed my third personal tatting challenge! This is "Beatrice" from Tatted Doilies by Iris Niebach. I am fascinated by Iris's designs. I love that a complex piece can be completed in one round. Even if I do reach a level of expertise where I feel like I can design, I doubt that I would be able to envision patterns the way Iris does! The thread is Altin Basak #3004, size 50. I used a SewMate shuttle, which I really like. However, when it comes to plastic shuttles, the Clovers are still my favorite.

Oh, dear! I just thought of something... now I'll have to choose a new project!

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Shuttling between projects

I've been spending time with "Beatrice" by Iris Niebach this week, but since I haven't been to therapy in two weeks, I decided I really need the workout I get from crochet.

Three evenings for a 6" crocheted doily is an awful slow pace for me, but at this point I'm just grateful that I can crochet! This is #11 from Mini Masterpieces: 30 Little Doilies by Patricia Kristoffersen.

Good news from the doctor! More therapy has been approved! The insurance company only approved 6 sessions out of the 12 the doctor requested, but something's better than nothing! I guess I'm going to have to force myself to tat, crochet, and knit this summer... all in the name of healing my wrist, of course! Sigh! A girl's gotta do what a girl's gotta do!

Monday, May 12, 2008

Thank you, Ruth!

Ruth is the president of our PTO (Parent Teacher Organization), and she has done a great deal to promote positive involvement with the schools in her four years of presidency. Beyond that, Ruth has helped me tremendously this school year. She subbed for me the three times I flew to Alabama to be with my parents, and she subbed for most of my absence with my broken arm. If any of you out there are teachers, you know how difficult it can be to find a sub who can or will follow your lesson plans. Without Ruth's help, my students would never have been able to complete the tasks and learn the skills I think they need to succeed throughout this school year and prepare for the next school year. I can never thank Ruth enough for all she's done for me this year, but I hope this little doily/coaster helps her understand how much she is appreciated!

The doily is #23 from Mini Masterpieces: 30 Little Doilies by Patricia Kristoffersen (my favorite crochet designer). I used some more of my Bre-Aly hand-dyed thread (there's still enough left to make another little doily). My Hitty basket from Grizzly Mountain Arts has become my new favorite sewing basket. The crochet hook is from Janel Brown, whose shop is on eBay. Can you tell I love to collect all kinds of needlework tools and accessories?

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Tatted hanky edging... finished!

I finished Tiffany's hanky tonight, and I think it looks really pretty. This completes my second personal challenge piece: size 20 Flora, Grizzly Mountain Arts Tatsy-style shuttle, "Forget-me-not" from A Pattern Book of Tatting by Mary Konior. The hanky is from Handy Hands Tatting.

The receiving blanket in the background has crocheted edging that I've been working on for the last few months. I've found that crocheting is much harder on my wrist than tatting, so an edging that I normally would complete in a few evenings while watching t.v., has taken me much longer!

Wednesday, May 7, 2008


I'm really trying to stay focused. I suffer from what my friend Denise calls "flight of fancy." There are so many tatting patterns I'd like to try, and I've been reading too many lace knitting blogs for my own good.

But, I do need to finish this edging. It's "Forget-me-not" from A Pattern Book of Tatting by Mary Konior. It's for a bridal hanky for one of our kindergarten teachers. We're having a shower for her in less than two weeks. I'm about half-way finished, but I haven't decided how I'm going to attach it to the hanky yet. I'm using size 20 Flora, which is probably a little heavy for this project. However, the bride-to-be thinks it's beautiful, and that's all that matters to me!

The shuttle is the Tatsy-size shuttle that I commissioned from Grizzly Mountain Arts. I really like the fact that I won't have to add more thread part way through the edging!

The background is a rug that my daughter Carol made for me several years ago. She's working on a wool braided rug for herself, but she needed to make some quick gifts. She's made three of these rugs out of cotton fabric strips. Since Carol refuses to be "drawn to the dark side," she insists that the technique she used is alternative braiding, not crochet! For some reason, braided rugs do not fall under the category of "the dark side" like knitting, crocheting, and tatting do.

Saturday, May 3, 2008


I completed the last of the three crosses for my mom last night. I really like the way they turned out. If you haven't seen them before, the squared cross is the Basic Cross pattern, and the other two are the Traditional Cross pattern from Tatting Patterns by Lyn Morton. The thread is "Golden Glow", size 20 by Yarnplayer (Marilee Rockley). The ceramic shuttle is from LadyShuttleMaker (Sherry Pence). I'm very pleased that I was able to finish all three crosses in a week's time!