Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Done, written, shipped

My original projects pictured are now done, patterns written, teaching application forms filled out, packaged, and shipped off to the jurying committee to be considered for classes at the 2016 Bead&Button Show.

I must admit to being a little bit overwhelmed at being the only tatting teacher there, so I do encourage others who use beads in tatting to submit classes as well. You need to be a resident of the USA or Canada. Teachers from other than these countries may apply to teach, but will need to be sponsored by a United States company due to VISA regulations. More information is on the Bead&Button Show Teaching Application.

I now need to get back to labeling my hand dyed thread skeins ("Celery" green is in my Etsy shop), finish up some orders, and get outside to enjoy some summer sunshine while it's still here. Also, I need to make sure that I have all the supplies needed for the tatting class that I'm teaching at Shake Rag Alley on August 1. Looking forward to that!!!

Monday, July 13, 2015

Hoping this'll do

I like how my new design turned out, but I'm not sure what artistic title to give it. Ideas?
The comments given in my previous post were very helpful - thank you! Actually I had them in mind while continuing to design. This pendant probably doesn't resemble anything suggested! I really don't know how to explain why that happened. But, a special thank you to muskaan and Ninetta for the technique of curled rings!

Since time is running short, I'll just have to write up this pattern and submit it to the selection committee. I may get a few different color combos done, but I'll stay away from teal and gold for a while, because I got thoroughly sick of that color combo during my experimenting :)

Greater Milwaukee Tatting Guild meeting today! More info on the guild blog.

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Possibly something like this

This is what I've come up with so far; I'm trying for an original, intermediate level project that would impress the selection committee for the Bead&Button Show. Thoughts?

It would be worn as a necklace, with the neck cord attaching to the uppermost small ring on either side. Skills taught would include bead picots, core beads, bead inside a ring, curled rings, folded rings, floating rings, reversing chains.

The sample in the photo is only my prototype, in which I did a lot of un-tatting and re-tatting, testing different ideas. I'll tat a new version to send in to the committee. I'm not sure about the colors, so I'll try some different colors, and the design might morph into something totally different! But, at least it's a start. I just received an email from Bead&Button stating the deadline for submissions as August 7th! So, I need to keep at it! Also, I need to come up with a new beginner project or two for the basics class.

Scheduled dye batch for later this week will be "Celery".

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Under construction

View of the road construction work through my front door

Dump trucks and digging machines are the sounds of summer this year. I sure hope the UPS man finds a way to deliver the box of white tatting thread that I ordered from Handy Hands, or I won't be able to continue my hand dyeing business on Etsy! I'm totally out of thread! Yes, I know I should have ordered before the supply got so low, but all of my focus previous to this point was on preparing for the class that I was teaching in Colorado the 3rd week of June.

The class seemed to go pretty well, even though I had a lot of projects to demonstrate and many topics to try to remember. You'll find out more about what I was doing in that class in a few weeks - spoilers! ;-)

Since that's now behind me, I've started experimenting again, to try to come up with a new design. Photo at left shows I haven't done much. The way my brain works, I have to tat a pile of messes before something with possibility appears. Then, I go from there.

I plan to try to submit an intermediate tatting class besides a basic tatting class to Bead&Button Show for next year. The projects, including patterns, are due by mid-August! They expect projects to be astounding, so we'll see if I can come up with anything that would be accepted.

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Remembrance Tatted Ring Video

In response to popular demand, I've made a video of tatting the "Remembrance" ring. Hope this helps to clarify how it goes together. I used size 20 thread, which is a little difficult to see well on camera, but that's the thread size I use for these rings. Oh, and you can download the free PDF pattern HERE.

Monday, June 15, 2015

Vintage pattern reversing chains

 One of my Etsy customers had a question about a vintage pattern from "Old and New Designs in Tatting" by LaCroix, Sophie T., c.1910. The pattern #1143 is very pretty, easy to tat but a little hard to get started and explain. I gave it a try in my "Pansy" hand dyed thread, and had to think for awhile before I figured out how to do it. The picture in the book has the lace turned the opposite way from how it is seen while tatting it, so that made it seem difficult. Also the written pattern has mistakes. So, here is my version:
 R 4 - 4 - 4 - 4. Reverse work.
Ch 4 - 4 - 4 - 4 - 4. Reverse work.
    *R 4 - 4 - 4 - 4. Turn only the ring over. Bring the ball thread up into position to tat the following chain.
Ch 4 + 4 - 4 - 4 - 4 (joining first picot of chain to middle picot of previous ring). Reverse work.

Continue in the same way from * for length desired. End by tying the end of the last chain to the middle picot of the last ring.
The reason I didn't do a "shoelace trick" at the base of the ring is because the thread positions do not need to be crossed or switched there, only the ball thread needs to be brought up so that the chain can proceed in the reversing direction. That was what seemed right to me, at any rate. The reversing point between the chains does not lie perfectly flat when using ball and 1 shuttle, but is sufficient. It could be made perfectly flat by using 2 shuttles, but a description of the 2 shuttle version will have to wait for another time.

Trip coming up! Sunday, June 21, I'll be leaving on a jet plane to travel to Denver, Colorado. I'll be teaching a class there for a few days. So, Friday, June 19 I will de-activate most of my Etsy shop except for the instant download patterns, since I won't be home to do any shipping. I'll re-activate the rest of my shop by June 26.

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Flash sale with coupon code

Rarely do I ever have a sale, so this is the opportunity you've been waiting for! Just enter the Coupon Code:


into the coupon code area of the checkout form when making your purchase from my Etsy shop, to receive 15% off! The coupon expires on June 15, so hurry!

The discount is good on any item from my Etsy shop, including digital patterns, books, hand dyed thread, and tatted jewelry. But you need to enter the code JUNE15 at checkout, and it is only good until June 15, 2015.

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Mixed Media Earrings: Tatting, Beads, and Wire Wrapped Dangle

Both of these pairs of tatted earrings are based on my own "Giddy" design (found in my book, "Tatted Jewelry"), but I embellished with added touches. I wire wrapped the beaded dangle at the bottom, and also made the earwires myself. 

The colorful pair is from my own hand dyed thread (colorway: "Summer Trail", size 20) and the brown solid is Lizbeth #691.

Tatting, of course, is something I've been doing for many years, but wire wrapping is new to me. I'm still in the "wasting lots of wire" stage, but making progress, I think. Classes on Craftsy that I enjoy include "Make Your Own Wirework Findings" and "Wire-Wrapped Stones, Crystals, and Clusters". (Disclosure: as a Craftsy associate, I earn a little bit of money when people sign up for Craftsy classes by following my links.)

The Bead&Button Show in Milwaukee has already started. The class that I'm teaching on June 2 is "Shuttle Tatting Basics" - sold out, but...

...another tatting class that I'll be teaching on August 1 at Shake Rag Alley has 3 seats remaining as of this morning. The formal classes at these prime venues can get pricey, but don't forget, the Greater Milwaukee Tatting Guild meetings are a fun way to learn in person for free! 

Here's a photo of a version of the Bead&Button Show class project using a metal filigree center, in progress from my own hand dyed "Stardate" batch. This thread is currently in stock in my Etsy shop, but going fast!

Bead&Button Show tatted earrings in various colors