Friday, July 24, 2009

My little tatting corner...

Krystle asked to see our tatting spaces in all their natural glory. So, here's my messy little corner of tatland!

I usually plump my little pillow before tatting, but this smooshed version is what anyone can see when I get up for new supplies (thread, shuttles, patterns, coffee...). The antimacassar is a tulip doily from my friend Denise. I've had it for years, and I love the way it looks on the back of my chair. Hmmm... looks like it needs to be straightened. ; )

This is the table to my right... thread, shuttles, scissors, crochet hooks, tweezers, i-cord knitter, remote control... everything a girl could want!

Well, maybe not everything! As you can see, there's quite a bit of clutter to my left... computer, camera, patterns, crochet project, knitting project, books to read.

I blame this little corner on my broken arm... I did venture beyond the living room before then. Nine weeks of vegetating in this corner developed a habit that's very hard to break!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

An award!

...from Sy. Thank you Sy! Unfortunately, I have a terrible time figuring out how to add awards to my blog. Please visit Sy's page and look at this adorable little badge.

On the tatting front, I haven't accomplished much. I had two of my grandchildren visiting for three days... we had a wonderful time! However, I accomplished very little. I did manage to make a few Kumihimo braids.

I am so glad I learned this braiding technique. With my grandchildren visiting, I didn't want to work on something that needed a great deal of concentration. This is so simple that I was able to be creative when I had a few moments, and I didn't have to worry about keeping my place in a pattern!

Monday, July 20, 2009

And the winner is...

Despite staying up until almost 10 last night, granddaughter Eva was up at the crack of dawn!

So, I put her to work choosing the winner of Jon's Magic Moment snowflake.

What? You say you can't see the name of the winner? Neither can I! I don't know how to disable the flash. I tried enhancing the photo, with no success. Eva can't read cursive. What's a girl to do? Duh! Look at the original, Diane!

...Clyde! Congratulations, Clyde! Please e-mail me your info, and Eva, Aidan, and I will get your snowflake off to you right away!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Finding time to tat

...has been unbelievably difficult this summer! I've been distracted by classes, books, and believe it or not, I've even allowed myself to spend time with friends! This morning, I was determined to finish something, and here it is! This is Jon Yusoff's latest pattern, Magic Moment. I tatted it with Lizbeth Violet/Pink Med. #634, size 20. I LOVE this pattern! Thank you for sharing it, Jon!

Now, I've decided to pay it forward. When Jon introduced this pattern, she held an unannounced drawing, and I am the winner! I would like to pass my first rendition of this pattern on to someone else. On Monday, July 20, I will draw a name from those who leave a comment on this post. Why Monday? Because I know I won't remember to go to the post office on Friday or Saturday! So, please leave a comment... you may be the winner! Good luck!

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Itsy-Bitsy Snowflake

Tattycat has inspired me! Yes, it's time for snowflakes! I had just a little bit of Coral Reef left after tatting a Spinning Wheel glass mat and Heart's Desire, so I decided to go with an easy favorite. The pattern is Itsy-Bitsy Snowflake from A Veritable Tatted Blizzard by Samantha Melnychuk. I guess I should have spent a few minutes blocking it, but I can always do that later. I wasn't very careful with the scanning. The odd looking piece of thread is for hanging the snowflake from my tree. I never did put my tree away... it's still up in my sewing room!

Saturday, July 11, 2009

A stroll through my garden...

Ah, as they say, the best laid plans of mice and men oft gang awry... I really meant to get a lot of tatting, crocheting, and bobbin lace done this weekend, but Dave convinced me that we needed to buy more plants for the garden! He's out busy planting now, so I'm sitting with my feet up and showing some pictures of what he's already done so far. This is a view of the north side of our house. Dave built the wooden walk as a surprise for me when I was working on my master's degree... I was so busy studying, I really didn't have time to check out what all the noise was about!

Here you see the very first flower bed created in the spring 15 years ago, right before Alison's high school graduation party. This garden has changed very little through the years. The biggest difference is that Dave no longer plants annuals in this bed. Instead, he brings home tropicals that were in too sad a shape to sell and nurses them back to health.

This is my favorite flower bed. Dave built the arbor from a design in Better Homes and Gardens. Some of the pieces rotted and fell off, but we think that just adds character. The birds love this flower bed too! I can sit on the porch with my morning coffee and watch them splashing around in the bird bath.

Speaking of the front porch, here it is! The porch wraps around to the back door on the south side of the house. I don't deal well with heat or too much sun, so I take my morning and evening walks on the porch. It doesn't get boring, because there are so many beautiful plants to see, birds to watch, and traffic zooming by... we live on a two lane state highway.

There's a lot more to see, but I'll save that for another day. I hope you enjoyed the tour!

Friday, July 10, 2009

Heart's Desire

Yesterday I finished Susan K. Fuller's Heart's Desire in Coral Reef by Tatskool. I love the way it turned out! I also made another Kumihimo scissors fob. This one is out of DMC rayon floss. I love the way it shimmers, and it is so soft!

I feel like summer is just flying by! Is it really Friday already? Dave goes back to work on Monday. Today Alison and her kids are driving down, and we're going to Fairoaks Dairy Farm. I hope the rain showers hold off!

Dave's been working hard in the garden. I guess I should take some pictures and share them!

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Made by Dad...

I know I've posted about the display case my dad made for me in the past, but now I feel like I have it set up properly with doilies highlighting each tray.

This is the display case sitting on the table in the living room. Can you tell this piece is very special to me?

I laid all the trays side-by-side so that you can see the beautiful workmanship.

I guess you could call this my plastic tray! I love my Tatsy shuttles! There are times when I just want to be able to tat without joining threads or tat with size 10, and the Tatsy shuttles fit the bill. The purple shuttle decorated with tatting at the top was a gift from my friend Denise. She does a fabulous job of decorating shuttles! On the lower left are two decorated shuttles I won on eBay. On the right, you can see my very first tatting shuttles. I don't use them any more, because the Susan Bates labels are wearing off. I want whoever inherits my collection to be able to identify them! In the middle you can see my Comfi Shuttles... just had to have them!

Here you see my Pelc double bobbin shuttle... haven't learned how to use it yet... some day! I don't really like the metal shuttles, but they're part of my collection! My friend Denise gave me the tatted heart stamp... she and I know what to get each other for gifts!

This is my Lacis shuttle collection, along with shuttles from Nina Libin and gourd shuttles from Alexandra Beatty Designs.

My fish shuttles, pierced shuttle, and inlay shuttle are from Purse Paradise. The three etched shuttles on the bottom right are from Handy Hands. The two Corian shuttles on the bottom left are from Canada... sorry, I don't remember exactly where I got them! Oops! It looks like one of my ceramic shuttles lost its way!

Thank you Ladytats for identifying the source of my Corian shuttles! The Corian shuttles are from Gail at Tat's All.

This is part of my Grizzly Mountain Arts collection. Yes, I did say part! Some shuttles are being used right now, and some are in their special boxes/baskets that make a set.

Of course, Dad was always thinking! This is the top of the display case. I can show off my special shuttles and keep the dust at bay! If you look carefully at the left side of each tray, Dad inset little beads to indicate the tray number. There are also little pegs at the top left and bottom right with corresponding holes above so that each tray stays in place.

No, these are not all my shuttles. I have several bags, baskets, and boxes with works-in-progress. I might be happier if I only worked on one project at a time, but I'm very easily distracted! Maybe if I get my sewing room cleaned, I'll be able to show you more! ; )

Secrets of the shuttle chest...

Okay, Marilee and Carol. You two have been wanting to know all the secrets of the chest, so here they are! Please don't be deceived... this does not represent my entire shuttle collection! If I ever stop tatting, I'll be able to put all my shuttles in one place and count how many I have... who am I kidding? ; )

Aero shuttles, both English and German, as well as an Aero wannabe - lots of extra bobbins!
Large wooden shuttle from Handy Hands
Plastic (?) shuttle won on eBay
Tatting is the Daffodil Doily minus the last round from Learn to Tat by Janette Baker

Peter Cua shuttles
Spinning Wheel glass mat

From top - flat shuttle from Mielke Fibers
4 Diana Andra shuttles, center shuttle from eBay auction
Fish shuttle from Georgia Seitz
3 shuttles from eBay auction (csickler ?)
3 David Reed Smith shuttles
Spinning Wheel glass mat

Ceramic shuttles from Sherry Pence, LadyShuttleMaker
Spinning Wheel glass mat

Ceramic shuttles from Sherry Pence, LadyShuttleMaker
Daffodil Doily from Learn to Tat by Janette Baker

Ceramic shuttles from Sherry Pence, LadyShuttleMaker
Spinning Wheel glass mat
Note: lower left is the original "Diane" shuttle, named for me!

Shuttles and thread winders from Chris Hinton at The Shuttle Shop
Outer row of Daffodil Doily from Learn to Tat by Janette Baker, attached to hemstitched round

3 shuttles for Beanile tatting by Nina Libin
3 shuttles won on eBay
2 SewMate shuttles
3 Jan Stawasz shuttles
Spinning Wheel glass mat

2 Shuttle Brothers shuttles - double shuttle was a gift from my friend Denise, carved from a tree from her yard!
3 Silent Tatters from Roseground in England
Lots of extra bobbins for both the Shuttle Brothers shuttles and the Silent Tatters
3 Noreen Crone-Findlay shuttles
2 hand-crafted wood shuttles from England - I've forgotten the name of the woodworker, but I believe he has passed away. These shuttles either came from Roseground or Lyn Morton Designs in England. If you are familiar with these shuttles, please let me know who made them!

How I spent my summer vacation...

Remember those wonderful back-to-school essays? Believe it or not, children still write about their summer vacations when they return to school in August/September. Luckily, teachers have become much more creative with the starter sentences!

I managed to knit one dish cloth... I really need to finish some more... mine are getting pretty ragged looking!

I finished my Coral Reef Spinning Wheel, and put it in its drawer.

My sister bought this chest for me last year as a birthday present. Whatever its original purpose, we both thought it made an excellent display case for shuttles. We lined each drawer with felt, and I decided that tatted doilies would be perfect for showing off the shuttles. Most, but not all, of the drawers now sport Spinning Wheel glass mats!

I read The Canterbury Papers by Judith Koll Healey. I love historical fiction! I get a feel for the time period, and I find fictional accounts to be much more interesting than the history classes I took in high school and college! This was an easy read, and thank goodness, it was missing the steamy scenes that leave nothing to the imagination!

We visited Superior Shores Resort, where Joanne and Jan will be married August 15, 2010. It's a beautiful, restful spot.

After checking out the resort, we headed up to Gooseberry Falls. Joanne would love to have her wedding pictures taken there, but we're not sure how practical that would be! On the way back, we stopped at Betty's Pies for a treat to take to Andrea's the next day. That pie makes me want to learn how to be a pie maker! We also stopped at a wonderful little yarn shop, Playing With Yarn. Of course, we had to buy yarn, needles, hooks, and patterns!

We drove to the top of the hill in Duluth to get a view of the bay... fascinating!

On Sunday, we drove to visit Andrea and her family at their fishing cabin in Wisconsin.

Ella had her first piece of watermelon,

...and Lily showed off her swimming skills!

We're hoping to take Alison, Eva, and Aidan to Fairoaks Dairy Farm this week. Dan won't be able to go with us... poor guy has to work! I'll be getting together with my study partner this week to finalize our last class, and then I'll be free to do as I please! I'm thinking I'd better get in an straighten up the sewing room... it's a mess!

Friday, July 3, 2009

Finished with classes!

Well, almost! I've completed all the reading, watched all the videos, and responded to all the questions. Next week my study partner and I will get together to review our work, and then we'll send it off to be evaluated. Now I can get back to some of my projects!

While watching videos, I practiced Kumihimo, Japanese braiding, which I learned at the Downers Grove L.A.C.E. event. Using a Kumihimo disk makes the project very portable, and easy to put down if you have to take notes!

I'll have to pack a bag of supplies this morning. Dave and I are heading up to Minnesota to visit Joanne, Jan, Andrea, Jake, Lily, and Ella. I get really bored in the car if I don't have anything to do. Let me see... I really need some new dish cloths. I want to finish my Coral Reef Spinning Wheel. I could work on Yvette's beaded bag. There's that lace scarf I started last summer... I think I'll be able to stay busy!

Tuesday I'll be able to get back into my blogging routine. I have a lot of catching up to do... blogs to read, responses to make. Oh, how happy I am to be finished with those classes!