Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Day 7 TIAS

Thank goodness for Jane and the 2013 TIAS! This is the only tatting I managed to find time for today... a few split rings, and voila... a feeling of accomplishment! Now, if I could only figure out how to make that accent mark...

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

In the pink!

I read Frivole's post about her newly named Victorian Trellis Doily, and I really had the urge to try tatting it... especially after watching her new video! However, after looking at the instructions, I have decided that I don't have enough brain power left at the end of a school day to concentrate on that beauty. I think it will have to wait until school is out for the summer, or until someone diagrams the pattern so that I don't have to think so much!

I really wanted to work on something pretty, so I returned to my favorite tatting author, Mary Konior.

This is Hen and Chick edging in size 70 Coats & Clark. It's so pretty and delicate! It may become a hanky edging, or it may be just a length of lace saved for a future project. Time will tell!

Last night I worked some more on my Spinning Wheel in Tatskool's Raspberry Sorbet... yum!

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Before and after

I finally managed to transfer photos from my iPhone to my computer. I have no idea what I did differently, but it worked and I am happy!

Here's what daughter Carol's fireplace looked like at the beginning of the project. It was a little too plain for her taste, and she requested a new mantel for Christmas. She did not get a new mantel for Christmas. However, after Christmas Dave decided to undertake the challenge.

The timing was not perfect for Carol. She's in the middle of putting together the high school production of West Side Story, but we did manage to squeeze in some time this weekend to complete the project.

Here's how it turned out... one wall painted, mantel in place, and one happy daughter! I wonder what we can do to contribute to the happiness of our other three daughters?

The winter storm never appeared. It started drizzling about an hour ago. This is very strange weather for northern Illinois in January! Feeling kind of lazy, I decided to catch up on Jane's TIAS.

I completed Day 5 with very little trouble...

but Day 6 almost did me in! I wonder if split rings and I will ever become friends? They didn't turn out too bad, but I did catch Dave glancing at me every once in a while when he heard me mumbling!

There was a question on InTatters today about Lyn Morton's 5th Book of Tatting Patterns. This is a book I look at every once in a while, and then I decide I don't have the brain power to do that much work. Today I decided to take the plunge and try the center flower, using up the last of my Hydrangea Dark HDT from Yarnplayer.

I know Camelias aren't blue and purple, but I wasn't concerned about color, just technique. The pattern was very easy to follow, but I'm not sure if I was tatting it correctly, because it was very ripply. A little pinning and steaming did the trick, and I think it looks just fine. I'm not sure I'm ready to undertake this project yet, so I think I'll put the book back on the shelf for now. It might make a good summer project!

Just a quick post...

What a week! First I was laid low with the worst cold I've had in years... it was so bad that I stayed home from school and slept for two days! I didn't know I had it in me to sleep so much! Thankfully, I just feel like a normal person working my way out of a cold now.

Friday morning, I woke up feeling a little better, so I went on the Internet. No, I did not go on the Internet... I had no connection! I went to school, made it through the day with no problems and headed home to... no Internet access. :-(

I called our Internet service provider, and everything seemed to check out. The man I talked to suggested I have my router checked. Luckily, we had plans to go to daughter Carol's house to work on installing her new fireplace mantel that Dave made, so I was distracted from my Internet woes.

Saturday morning, I tried again... no luck! Daughter Joanne suggested rebooting my router. I did, and success! ...for about an hour. :-(

Saturday morning, I filled my time with chores... grocery shopping, laundry, a little cleaning... and then we were off to Carol's again to paint her living room and finish installing her fireplace mantel. The mantel looks beautiful. I did take pictures, but for some reason, I can't transfer the pictures from my iPhone to my computer... another puzzle for today. We arrived home around 10 p.m. and... you guessed it... no Internet access.

Well, I'm not one to sit around and wait for things to happen. I fiddled and futzed, plugged and unplugged, rebooted... everything I could think of! I have no idea what worked, but it worked, and I am grateful.

Dave turned on the weather, and they're predicting an ice storm today... great! If that happens, and I'll be surprised if it really does, I'm pretty sure I'll lose my Internet connection again. So, I figured I'd better get off a quick post, print out Jane's TIAS so that I can catch up, and do some blog reading before winter storm Luna hits. I wonder why they started naming winter storms? It seems so silly to me, especially since the the worst we've had is a half inch of snow that lasted less than a day.

Since I wasn't feeling well, I didn't get much tatting done, just these three little motifs with doodads from Hobby Lobby in the middle...

They first two are size 20 Lizbeth. The one on the left is #107 Tropical Fruit, next is #601 Snow White with beads from Michelle. The one on the right is size 20 HDT from Yarnplayer, Hydrangea Dark, with clear beads from WalMart. I was very surprised to find that WalMart had much larger containers of glass beads for half the price of the beads from Hobby Lobby. I'm sure there's a difference that a beading enthusiast would notice, but as a novice beader, I'm very pleased with my cheap beads!

Storm, storm, stay away!
Diane wants to tat today!

Monday, January 21, 2013

TIAS Day 4

I learned a new tatting technique today... make that two techniques... the Catherine Wheel join and undoing the Catherine Wheel join. I was quite pleased to complete the bottom row, until I realized that I'd put my very small picot in the wrong place. So, I retro-tatted the row and reworked it. I'm not thinking flower pot any more, I'm thinking coffee cup!

Since we had no school today, I spent my time between doctor visits (just routine, nothing wrong) tatting simple pieces. Yes, that's another braided doodad on the left in Lizbeth 166 Pink Cocoa, which makes me crave a bowl of Neapolitan ice cream! I played with layered flowers again. This one has three layers, which I'm not sure I like.

What's that in pink? Could it be another Spinning Wheel glass mat? Yes, indeed! I'm using thread that I've been saving for something special, and what could be more special for me than a Spinning Wheel? The thread is size 20 Coats HDT from Tatskool. The color is Raspberry Sorbet... yum!

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Emptying shuttles

Today I felt the need to empty shuttles, not because I needed a shuttle... heaven knows, I probably have enough shuttles to open a shop! No, I just felt the urge to use up the bits of thread left from other projects.

These are all doodle flowers. The three that look layered, are! I decided to see if I could layer my flowers without looking at anyone's directions, and I am quite pleased with the results. I have an idea for using my little pieces of tatting, but I'll wait to see if I follow through before telling you what I'm thinking of doing.

The two bobbin shuttles are from LaCossette. The shuttle on the left is a Clover that I decorated with origami paper a couple of years ago. I'm becoming more comfortable using bobbin shuttles, but I do still love my Clovers!

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Doodle, doodle, doodle

That's all I did today... doodle. Well, not all... I did do the laundry and the grocery shopping, but whenever I had a little free time... doodle, doodle, doodle!

The top piece isn't a doodle. It's Mary Konior's Leaf Braid from Tatting with Visual Patterns. I used size 20 Lizbeth for all of my tatting today. The green is #167, Jungle Greens. The pink on the left is #621, Dusty Rose Lt. The pink on the right is #628, Salmon Med. The doodads in the center are from Hobby Lobby.

Maybe I had a little too much fun today!

Friday, January 18, 2013

Daughter Joanne called... let me know that I hadn't posted on my blog since Tuesday! I told her that I just didn't think anyone would be interested in seeing how much of my Spinning Wheel glass mat was completed each day. However, I do think my readers will be interested in the finished product!

Those of you who have been reading my blog for a while know that this is my all-time favorite pattern from Tatting with Visual Patterns by Mary Konior.

You may also recall that I am totally addicted to hand-dyed thread! This thread is from my good friend Marilee Rockley aka Yarnplayer. It's size 20 Hydrangea Dark. I don't know what it is about the hand-dyed process, but it makes the thread absolutely fabulous to work with.

Have you been participating in Jane's TIAS? Today is Day 3, and I am totally convinced that I am tatting a flower pot! If you haven't started yet, it's not too late!

On Day 2 I had a little trouble with the split ring, but the split chain was just fine. Today was just the opposite. Thank goodness for YouTube videos! Some day I'll get it down pat.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Call me intrepid!

I finished Day 2 of Jane's TIAS using a split chain and a split ring! It's my first split chain ever! Don't look too closely, because it's not very good, but I did it!

My split ring technique leaves a lot to be desired, and it's not good enough to take the next step in the Jan Stawasz doily that intrigues me. Still, I feel like I'm making progress!

I was so excited about tatting a split chain, I forgot to tell you that Frivole's YouTube video is what got me through. Thank you, Frivole!

Monday, January 14, 2013


I really like Doily XVIII in Jan Stawasz's new book, Tatted Treasures.

The first round looks okay. I'm not quite sure what I did at the top, but I figure the funky look will disappear in the next round.

I'm not really good at looking at directions. If I had looked at the schema, I probably would have skipped trying this doily... it has split rings! However, I decided to be brave and forge on. After all, Carol aka Lelia showed me how to do split rings easily. Now, if I could only remember what she taught me!

Now, I'm stuck. Not only does this pattern have split rings, it has split rings with picots. I managed to do the first half of the split ring just fine, but I couldn't get the second half. I tried three times, watched four videos, and then I took out what I had of a split ring.

I think I'm going to practice split rings all by themselves, and then I'll come back to this doily. I don't have the brain power to practice split rings tonight, so...

I'm returning to my comfort tat... Spinning Wheel glass mat from Tatting with Visual Patterns by Mary Konior.

Silly me! I must have saved Sunday's post instead of publishing it! So, now it's Monday's post! :-)

Saturday, January 12, 2013

I went to Hobby Lobby...

and look at what I found!

I really, really, really needed some more shuttles and thread winders. ;-)

I was so surprised to see these, I snapped them up right away. There were two of each, so I stopped by Denise's and gave her a set. She really, really, really need some more shuttles and thread winders, too!

Have you started tatting from Jan Stawasz's new book, Tatted Treasures, yet? What was the first design that caught your eye? I fell in love with this beautiful cross. I started it last night, and finished it this afternoon.

The thread is size 20 HDT, Spring Grass from Marilee Rockley aka Yarnplayer. This is the same thread I used for Aidan's Seahorse Dragon. I love the blend of greens!

Friday, January 11, 2013

2013 TIAS

I loaded my shuttles for this year's TIAS from Jane Eborall the day I received the notification of it! I tend to get bogged down in details, so I was very pleased when Jane suggested a variegated thread for the first part. I grabbed the ball of thread to my right and went hunting for shuttles to match! I'm using size 20 Lizbeth #165, Grape Splash. I have now idea what this will be, but I'm going to try and keep up this year.

I was thrilled to open my mail today... four new shuttles from Randy Houtz! I've been admiring these shuttles for a long time, and I decided to make my purchase now. I really don't need any more shuttles, but I wanted these for my collection. I'll be retiring in a few years, and I know that I'll be on a much more restricted budget. Yes, I am enjoying working with bobbin style shuttles. I wasn't sure that would ever happen. ;-)

There was also a slip of paper saying that I had a package from Poland to pick up at the post office, so I quickly drove back to town. I'm glad I did! There are quite a few patterns that immediately caught my eye. I've already started one. Maybe it will be finished tomorrow!

Thursday, January 10, 2013

for Aidan...

I knew a frilly A wouldn't do for my grandson, so I decided to tat a Seahorse Dragon instead. I love this pattern, but I haven't tatted one for quite a while. The pattern is an adaptation by Anne Bruvold of Debbie Arnold's seahorse. When was the last time you tatted one? ;-)

I used size 20 Spring Grass HDT from Marilee Rockley aka Yarnplayer... the perfect color for a Seahorse Dragon!

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Christmas Decoration Ring

I love this little motif! The pattern is by Barbara Pannell, and can be found in Tatting for 2005: 25 Years of the Ring of Tatters. Doesn't it make a darling snowflake?

The thread is size 20 Flora #64. The shuttle is one of my favorites from La Cossette. There's nothing like tatting with a pretty shuttle!

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Today's letter...


The pink is for Eva, and the purple is for Ella. The pattern is by Gill Fisher and can be found in Tatting 2000: Ring of Tatters. Both are size 20 thread, but as you can see, different brands yield a different size.

The pink is Lizbeth #621. The purple is Flora #64. They were both so much fun to tat! I wonder if Aidan would like a frilly A? Maybe not...

Monday, January 7, 2013

Doodad Snowflake #5 ~ Beaded

I'm not finished with snowflakes yet! Isn't it amazing how far a few beads can go?

Doodad Snowflake #5
Doodad from Fire Mountain Gems
S hook from
blue seed beads from Michelle
size 20 Lizbeth, Snow White

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Today's tatting... brought to you by the letter L!

I wanted a quick tat, so I decided to look through my new books to see what might tempt me. I don't think I've ever tatted a letter of the alphabet before!

L is for Lily, who loves the color purple! This is size 20 Flora , #64.

The pattern is by Gill Fisher and can be found...

here. I'm so glad I re-joined the Ring of Tatters and purchased some new books!

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Slowing down...

I didn't find much time to tat today, but I did manage to finish this Doodad Snowflake #3 in Snow White. I've had a wonderful Christmas vacation, but reality will hit on Monday morning... back to school!

I guess that means tatting time will slow down. I'll be happy if I can spend an hour a day tatting. There always seems to be so much to do!

Friday, January 4, 2013

More with blue

I"m becoming more comfortable working with beads, although I'm still having trouble keeping my stitches even. I'm sure that will come with time!

I'm not sure why Blogger decided to post this Christmas tree picture first, but I'm too lazy to fix it.

This is my Triangular Doodad Snow Crystal done in size 20 Lizbeth, Snow White. The beads are from Michelle and Theresa... love the color! Thanks, girls!

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Pretty but impractical... least the way it is right now!

I got a little carried away with beads, and the "arms" of the snowflake are a little heavy. Not to worry, though...

for now, the branches are holding the snowflake in place, and when I manage to get my sewing room cleaned up, I know I have some bangles that are just the right size to hold this little beauty. The real question is, am I willing to give up tatting time to organize my stuff? ;-)

Doodad Snowflake #2 (see tab at the top of this page)
Doodad from Fire Mountain Gems, stock #H20-9117FY
size 20 Lizbeth, Snow White #601
glass seed beads from Mill Hill #02097 ~ thank you, Michelle!

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Tollway Tatters

Oh, how I wish all of you could have joined us today! The Tollway Tatters always have a lot of fun, and I am so grateful that I have been able to spend time with these wonderful ladies!

Granddaughter Eva finished tatting a friendship bracelet, and she wanted to use some of Marilee's hand-dyed thread for her next project. Luckily, her mom was willing to hold the skein of thread while Eva wound it on to shuttles. Alison didn't get a chance to tat today, but she said she enjoyed the time spent together. Sometimes it's okay to just sit and soak it all in!

Sue Anna is always so much fun to be around! In addition to tatting, we did a little tech talking today. We have to try and keep up with the times you know. ;-)

Denise almost didn't come, but her husband Warren encouraged her to join us. He even washed floors and vacuumed so that she didn't have to feel guilty about taking the day for herself. He's a gem!

Marilee, our personal thread vendor, brought along some gorgeous threads, including her new Blue Streak. Can you guess what I bought?

Denise worked on a baby bonnet. The pattern is from Workbasket, one that my mom saved for years. Some day I'll try the pattern! Denise is using some Greek crochet cotton that I found on Etsy. It's so soft!

Sue Anna worked on Marilee's snowflake pattern, Marian... so pretty!

Marilee claims that we help her get her creative juices going. Today she was working on Clunys separated by Double Core Single Shuttle Split Rings. Now that's a mouthful! With this technique, Marilee can tat two split rings in a row in two different colors... very cool!

Right before we left for the day, I snapped this picture of Sue Anna's progress with Marian. I love the two shades of peach together!

And what did I accomplish? Well...

I finished this "Christmas Decoration" from page 64 of Tatting theory and patterns by Jan Stawasz. The thread is size 20 Lizbeth, Snow White.

This is Motif #2 from Minitats: 69 Petite Motifs by Patti Duff. Again, the thread is size 20 Lizbeth, Snow White. I think I need to use a larger picot in the center. The rings are too close together and distorted. I didn't have the patience for pinning it neatly, so the chains are distorted as well. Maybe I'll take the time to fix it tomorrow, or maybe I'll just tat another!

I skipped to Motif #6 in Minitats, because I wanted to use up thread on a shuttle. This is size 20 Lizbeth, Wedgewood Dk, one of my favorite colors!

We talked a little bit about scissors today, and I remembered that I had this little pair on my ironing board. These have the thinnest blades of all the scissors I own, and they are great for snipping threads very closely. I wish I could remember where I bought them!

In case I forget to post about it, our next Tollway Tatters meeting will be on President's Day in February. If you'd like to join us, drop me a line and I'll give you the details!

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Tatting with Jan Stawasz

I managed to sneak in a little extra tatting time today, and since I've ordered Jan Stawasz's new book, I figured I should probably tat something from the first book!

I'm not overly fond of front side/back side tatting. I get lost, confused, and frustrated. Still, I decided to give it a go today. Yes, there are mistakes, but at least I tried. Now if I could only figure out how to consistently focus with my camera!

Now for the details...

Pattern ~ sample for Jan's Method
Book ~ Tatting theory and patterns by Jan Stawasz
Thread ~ size 40 Lizbeth, Cranberry Bush #181
Finished size ~ 3" long
Special tools ~
Penguin shuttle from Margaret Wall (purchased on eBay)
Holly shuttle from "'im in the garage" (sold in Jane Eborall's Etsy shop)
crochet hook from Grizzly Mountain Arts
picot gauge from Georgia Seitz

Happy New Year!

I made it all the way to 9:15! I'm such a night owl! ;-)

I did get up at 4:30. I just love the early morning hours. They're so relaxing, and I am able to organize my thoughts to get ready for the day.

So, have you made any new year resolutions? I always fail miserably, so I gave up resolving to accomplish anything years ago. I did have a conversation with daughter Andrea when we were in Minnesota, and I really like her resolution... look for joy every day. Now that's something I think I could get into!

On to my first tatting of the year...

I keep thinking that it would be nice to tat every piece from one book. I wonder how far I'll get before I'm distracted by someone's post, a new book, or a telephone call?

It occurred to me that there could be new tatters who might stumble across my little blog. Wouldn't it be nice to know all the details without having to ask questions? Maybe my resolution should be to provide more information. We'll see how that goes!

Motif #1 from Minitats: 69 Petite Motifs by Patti Duff (out of print)
finished size 1 1/4"
size 20 Lizbeth, Wedgewood Dk #656
Shuttle Brothers bobbin shuttle
Picot gauges from Georgia Seitz