Saturday, March 30, 2013

Sophia Jana

Our newest granddaughter was born last night at 7:58. Sophia Jana is 7 lb. 3 oz, and 20", with a full head of hair! We're so excited to have another baby in the family!

I'm making slow progress on the hanky edging. I think I could have finished at least two sides yesterday, but I let myself be distracted with baby updates, shopping for ribbon, lunch with daughter Carol, and a nagging headache.

I do love this edging! It's "Cottage Border" from  A Pattern Book of Tatting by Mary Konior. I'm using size 30 Anchor Mercer thread that I found on clearance from an Etsy shop. I do love this thread! It has a nice crisp feel, and it tats up beautifully!

Have you seen Schacht's new Zoom Loom? It's an updated version of the Weavette pin loom, made out of plastic, with sloping sizes. I do love my Weavette looms, but they are very hard to find. There are several sites offering these little cuties, but the shipping is $9.95... outrageous! I did find them with $3.95 shipping here. All of the web sites have indicated that they will be available for shipment in April. Some say late April, early May. Anyway, I "pre-ordered" mine, and I have already received a shipping confirmation order. I am very excited! I'll be sure to keep you posted with my thoughts about this new loom!

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Pen Pals

When I was a kid, I always wanted a pen pal. Do you remember when you could sign up for a pen pal through Weekly Reader? I know I tried several times, but I never received a pen pal.

Fast forward 50 years, and now I have pen pals! I have wonderful pen pals around the world, and we all have a common love... beautiful lace!

My newest pen pal, Eva, sent me this beautifully embroidered cloth. I can't imagine how many hours it took to make. She also sent some post cards and a lovely letter. Thank you, Eva!

As I was working on my niece's wedding hanky, I realized something was wrong. When I looked carefully, I saw that I left out a 9 ds chain between each motif! I only used it between the first two motifs. I don't think it looks bad, but it's not what I want for my niece. I'll come back to it when I finish her hanky.

I've started the edging again (Cottage Border from A Pattern Book of Tatting by Mary Konior), and this time I'm not joining the edging as I go. Maybe that will keep me from making mistakes! ;-)

I finished the beaded bag after lunch today. It's now washed and on the blocking board. I'll finish the tasseled drawstring when the bag is dry.

I guess I'd better get back to the hank edging... time's a-wastin'!

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Queen-sized Clover vs. SewMate

Melissa asked about the new Clover compared to the SewMate. So...

As you can see, they are basically the same size.

They hold about the same amount of thread, although I think I may be able to wind a few more yards on the Clover.

Do you think there's a difference between plastics? I do, and I prefer the feel of the Clover shuttle. Why is the pick tip on the SewMate so much more lethal than the Clover? I think it may be that the plastic is harder, but I'd be interested in reading the views of others.

I'm beginning to think that my collection of shuttles is very worthwhile! ;-)

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Queen-sized Clover ~ a review

 In my last post, Sharren asked about the Queen-sized Clovers. So, here is my review!

From left to right you see my altered Starlit shuttle from La Cossette, the new Queen-sized shuttle from Clover, and the regular sized shuttle from Clover. Although the Queen-sized Clover is 3" long, it does not feel as big in my hand as the Starlit.

You can see that the Starlit has a much deeper space for thread. The Queen-sized Clover holds twice as much thread as the regular Clover. The Starlit shuttle holds twice as much thread as the Queen-sized Clover. I can wind a full skein of hand-dyed thread on a Starlit. The Queen-sized Clover will only hold half a skein. So, if you're looking for a shuttle that will hold more thread, this could be the answer for you.

I have long been a fan of the pick tip on the Clover. No, it's not a hook, but I do pretty well with it. I find the pick tip on the Starlit to be way too long and useless for the way I tat. I do like La Cossette's adaptation with the hook embedded in the end where the pick tip used to reside. I don't mind the size of the Starlit, but I have read that many of you find it to be way to big for your hand. I totally understand. However, the Starlit was a great improvement for me over the Tatsy, which I still use for big projects.

I think the price of the Queen-sized Clovers is ridiculously high. However, I love the color, the feel, and the pick tip, so I didn't mind indulging this time. Will I buy more? Probably... if they come out with more colors! ;-)

Have you seen?

Clover has a new 3" shuttle! When I saw the announcement from Handy Hands, I ordered mine right away. It was a bit pricey, but how could I resist? The package holds two shuttles, a blue and a green. As you can see from the picture, it isn't much larger than the original size, however it does hold twice as much thread. I really like the feel of this shuttle, and I think it could be my new favorite. ;-)

The motif is #2 from Minitats by Patti Duff. the one on the right is a mistake motif. I didn't make my center picot large enough to join a sixth ring, so I settled for 5. It works, but I do prefer the motif with six rings.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Half way around

I've just reached the halfway point on round VI of Doily VI from Tatted Treasures by Jan Stawasz. As I was tatting the last ring, I realized that I made a mistake on one small part. I don't think anyone will notice, so I'm just going to leave it. However, if you choose to look closely and figure out my mistake, I will gladly admit it to you!

I had to place an order for more thread today. I wound my shuttles with the last of my Latte Foam this morning, and I know there isn't enough to finish this doily. After all, I still have 2 1/2 rounds to go! Denise and I made a trip to Hobby Lobby. Unfortunately, they did not have this color. That didn't stop either one of us from shopping! Denise found several threads that she "needed" to add to her stash. We both bought wooden eggs to decorate. We found some findings in the clearance section, and we each found some fabric we just had to have! When we got back to Denise's, her husband Warren had gone to the bakery and bought pastries for us... coffee and pastry... yum!

Sunday, March 24, 2013

She's at it again!

Daughter Joanne has been bugging me about posting on my blog. She reminded me again that I haven't posted since Tuesday. Since her baby is due any day, I guess I should do my best to keep her happy!

I needed something simple to take in the car yesterday, so I decided to once again set a goal of tatting all 69 motifs from Minitats by Patti Duff.

This is #1 in size 20 Lizbeth #149, Peacock Blues. It measures 1 1/2" across.

I'm making progress on the second side of the beaded bag. For those of you who are interested, the pattern can be found in Donna Kooler's Encyclopedia of Crochet, a fantastic crochet reference!

I have started the next round of Doily VI from Tatted Treasures by Jan Stawasz. I hope that with having the week off for spring break I'll be able to make more progress with this beautiful doily!

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Beaded bag, side 1

I just finished the first side of the beaded bag. I know it looks a little funky on the right side, but all will be well once the two sides are joined and the bag is blocked.

Wouldn't it be cool to design a tatted bag similar to this? I keep thinking about all the beautiful tatting I see on the Internet, and I'm sure someone could come up with a beautiful design. Are there any brave souls out there? I'm not sure I have the skills to design such a piece.

Our yearbook sponsor asked for copies of our senior pictures for a project the kids are doing. I don't think I have a copy of my senior picture, so I scanned the yearbook photo. Who is that skinny kid with the shoulder length hair? I remember being very proud of the fact that my hair flipped on both sides that day!

Do you have your high school senior picture handy? I sure would like to see what you looked like way back then! ;-)

Monday, March 18, 2013

Round V... done!

This round was so simple, yet it seemed to take me forever! Maybe I should have spent less time shopping for eggs. ;-)

Pattern: Doily VI from Tatted Treasures by Jan Stawasz
Thread: size 20 Lizbeth #168, Latte Foam
Size: 10 1/4"

Three rounds to go!

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Easter egg hunt

Last year I looked and looked and could find nothing but plastic eggs. Yesterday I had the urge to go shopping (that doesn't happen often, as it's a 40 minute drive to get to more than the grocery or hardware store). You'll never guess what I found... lots and lots of eggs!

At WalMart, I found plastic eggs... brights, pastels, and metallics. Not exactly what I wanted, but they were inexpensive, so I went ahead and bought them.

Next, I headed to Michaels...

Bingo! I found speckled, colored eggs in varying sizes, some with hanging ribbons attached.

Feeling very good about my purchases, I headed to Hobby Lobby...

I found yellow eggs,

more yellow eggs,

and more yellow eggs!

I found pink eggs. My biggest problem was finding a place to put all the eggs!

I filled every little dish and tea cup I had on display.

I have dozens of eggs everywhere!

Why? I want to put tatting on eggs!

Silly me... I thought I could easily design tatting for eggs. Here are my first two attempts, neither of which will wrap around an egg.

I think I'll take a break from this and get back to my Jan Stawasz doily!


Follow my blog with Bloglovin

I depend on Google Reader to keep up with all the blogs I love. However, Google Reader is going away on July 1. Boo hoo!

I signed up with Bloglovin a few months ago, but I only had one blog listed to follow. With the announcement regarding Google Reader this month, I decided to learn more about this service. I'm sure it will take a while to learn all the ins and outs. Sigh... more to learn! ;-)

Because you asked...

Google Reader, Bloglovin, and Feedly manage RSS feeds. Basically, I do not have to visit every blog I'm interested in every day. When a blogger posts, the new post appears in part on the reader. I can quickly browse through posts and then go to the blog to read the entire post when I have the time. Using a reader saves me loads of time, which in turn leaves me more time for tatting!

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Beads for the Bride

My niece Phoebe is getting married! Phoebe and I share a special relationship. When she was born, Dave and I were among the first to see and hold her. My nephew Eric was born three months to the day after Phoebe. My daughter Carol was born three months later, although she missed the special date by two weeks! Phoebe grew up in Virginia and now lives in Washington D.C., so I've only seen her a handful of times through the years. When Eric asked her to marry him, she called me to share the good news. Phoebe is a bright and beautiful young lady, and I wish the two of them all the best!

I asked Phoebe if she would like a beaded crocheted bag for her wedding, and she replied that she would be thrilled to have one! That warms my heart. When Phoebe was visiting last summer, she told me she was interested in tatting, so she will receive a hanky as well. I started with the beaded bag so that I have plenty of time to consider which hanky edging I want to tat!

I've started on Round V of Doily 6 from Tatted Treasures by Jan Stawasz. This is a very easy round, and now that I'm using my new shuttles from La Cossette, I'm sure I'll have plenty of thread to complete the round!

Sunday, March 10, 2013

West Side Story weekend

One of the fun things about being the mother of the director is going backstage before each performance. Friday night I took pictures of kids getting their make-up on, and once that was finished a little restlessness set in.

The play... West Side Story!

Slowly, cast members made their way onto the stage trying to get comfortable for the first performance.

Some walked through steps, some practiced lines, some just spent time talking with friends.

One more run-through was needed for one of the dances... at the kids' request! It was kind of funny to see them going through their stretches on the gym floor.

The kids went through the dance, singing softly. One run-through was all they needed!

While the kids were going through their vocal warm-ups in the music room, I shot this picture of the empty stage, curtains closed. It's so exciting to hear the sounds of the audience from behind the curtain!

Today was the final performance, and the kids posed on stage so that family and friends could take pictures. It was a fabulous weekend, and the kids did a marvelous job of performing!

I did manage to get a little tatting time in between performances and various duties. I finished Round 4 of Doily VI from Tatted Treasures by Jan Stawasz. It's now 8 1/2" from point to point, and I really love the pattern!

I think I'll be ready for bed early tonight. I don't think the time change will affect me at all!

Friday, March 8, 2013

Just a note... let you know that I probably won't be tatting or posting for a while. This is the weekend of the high school production of West Side Story, and as the mother of the director I am on call for all the running here and there and last minute wishes. It's gonna be fun!

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Switching shuttles

I was almost to the end of Round 3 of Doily VI from Tatted Treasures by Jan Stawasz, when I ran out of thread. Rather than wind thread onto the empty shuttle, I decided to load up my new altered Starlit shuttle from La Cossette. It holds an incredible amount of thread, and it is a joy to use!

As you may know, I've been blinging shuttles for a while now. However, none of my shuttles have the smooth finished look and feel of La Cossette's. I would love to take a workshop with her so that I could refine my technique.

What do you think tatting friends? Should we have a shuttle blinging workshop at my house this summer? ;-)

Pattern: Doily VI from Tatted Treasures by Jan Stawasz
Thread: size 20 Lizbeth #168 Latte Foam
Shuttles: altered Starlit from La Cossette and post shuttle from Grizzly Mountain Arts
Size after Round 3: 7 1/2"

Monday, March 4, 2013

I didn't spend much time tatting this weekend. My newest granddaughter is due the end of this month, and daughter Joanne requested flannel receiving blankets. Her wish is my command!

This is one of my favorite baby gifts. I buy a yard of flannel, trim off the selvedges, and round off the corners. Next, I put a wing needle in my sewing machine, and without thread I go around the blanket using basting stitch length. I like to use size 20 Cebelia for the single crochet, chain one edging. It's time consuming, but it makes a very nice blanket.

I did make a little progress with Doily VI from Tatted Treasures by Jan Stawasz.

I also spent a little time working on my Spinning Wheel in Teenybopper from Yarnplayer.

I recently ordered one of Jane Eborall's Wrap It Flip It Mark It bookmarks. I couldn't pass it up... it's blue! It arrived in the mail today, and I've already put it to use. Even though I love my Kindle, I still read plenty of hard cover and paperback books!

Look at what else was in the envelope...

one of Jane's button snowflakes! Thank you, Jane! I love it!

Last, but certainly not least, I received my two new custom-made shuttles from La Cossette today! I love using Starlit shuttles for hand-dyed thread. I can wind one skein CTM between the two shuttles and not have to cut and tie... very important for my Spinning Wheels!

I was fascinated when I read Frivole's post about her altered Starlits. I got up the nerve to ask her if she would consider making a pair for me, and she said yes! The purple is Florantique, and the green is Lace-lovin'. I especially love the green one... it goes with a shuttle that was sent as a gift from a friend in Pineville, North Carolina this past summer. 

Don't they go well together? I can hardly wait to start another Spinning Wheel!

Friday, March 1, 2013

Peacock Blues Krzyz

Our friends Gus and Irene have a new grandson. His baptism is next week, and I decided to tat a cross to commemorate the occasion.

At first I planned on using Turquoise Twist, but Denise and I got talking about blues, and Denise mentioned Peacock Blues. I just couldn't get it out of my head, so Peacock Blues became the thread of choice!

I think this is my favorite cross so far!

Pattern: Krzyz from Tatted Treasures by Jan Stawasz
Thread: size 20 Lizbeth #149 Peacock Blues
Gold tone doodad from Fire Mountain Gems