Saturday, April 28, 2012

Photos from class

Here's me (standing) with 2 eager tatting students.

Here I'm demonstrating a new technique to Margo (advanced student).

Margo modeling the tatted necklace that she finished in class.

More of Margo's tatting: friendship bracelets, pendant necklaces, and her new necklace is at the top.

Having fun!

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Tatted earrings in springtime colors

 Of the many colors offered in Lizbeth brand cordonnet cotton thread, # 115 "Springtime" is one of my personal favorites. These earrings were tatted from my own "Carnival" pattern, found in the Tatted Jewelry book.

I was too eager to take the photo before blocking the earrings, but that's next. My favorite method for blocking tatting is to steam it with a hand held steamer with a plastic sole-plate that doesn't get hot. Mine is a vintage "Steamstress II", but a search may turn up something similar.

Monday, April 16, 2012

New earrings, vintage handkerchief

 New tatted earrings to go with a hot pink and deep navy striped shirt that I acquired recently. I choose Lizbeth #620 for the hot pink, and added my own hand dyed "Blackbird" for the dark color. The earring pattern is "Quadrille", for sale in my Etsy shop and also on Craftsy. I modified the pattern just slightly by using 2 colors, adding a few extra seed beads, and substituting a 4mm round crystal pearl for the teardrop.

The vintage handkerchief is something that I recently purchased from another Etsy seller, and I am very happy to have it, since it appears to be a very old piece of tatting. It has the picots sewn together, not joined. According to tatting history, this would place the time it was made before 1851, or possibly later by someone still using the sewn picot method. The reason for guessing it is prior to 1851, is because that's when a book called "Tatting Made Easy" was published, giving directions for joining picots by pulling up a loop of the working thread through the picot and putting the shuttle through, the way we do today. The author of that book was listed only as "a lady".

I haven't been able to find the book in any of the Online Public Domain archives that I've seen so far, but there are many other vintage tatting books available as free downloads. A good article about tatting history by Virginia Mescher is on Georgia Seitz' website.

I admire the skill and patience of tatters of times past, but I'm so very grateful to be living in the 21st century with all the exciting options available to us now.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Pansy hair clip

 The vintage pansy pattern from page 20 of  the Dover "Tatting Patterns" book by Sanders, which is a reprint of "The Priscilla Tatting Book #2" first published in 1915. I finished this as a hair clip for myself.

While deciphering the old pattern I wasn't sure what to do with the center, since it said to "carry threads to next picot in ring", so I opted to do a lock join with the shuttle thread at the next picot and then brought the ball thread under and started the next chain. This left some bare thread showing, but that can't be seen at all now that the petals are all finished.

I added some beads over picots in the round before the yellow outline. To determine how big the picot needed to be in order for the bead to fit on it with room to join, I tested one picot with the bead, took the bead off, and then observed how big that picot was. So all the other picots that I intended to place a bead over later, I tried to make about that size. I didn't measure or use paper clips or anything, that would have been way too much trouble for the number of picots needed.

The yellow center beads were sewn on afterward using some thread ends left from tatting the flower. The leaves and nylon net were also sewn on with thread ends. No process to share about that, I just sort of  kept sewing until it all seemed like it would hold together. The clip is the sort that will stay in my hair, larger clips are too heavy for me.

The threads used were all size 20, and the finished pansy flower measures about 2 and 1/2 inches (6.4cm).