Thursday, December 27, 2007

Another use for tatting...

...a sturdy button loop!
I used 2 strands of size 10 together here for a strong, decorative loop on a handwoven tapestry bag.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Progress on holly snowflake...and some frogs

Some progress on the holly snowflake idea. Something I found out is that the Josephine chains will flop around till they are secured. So I'm trying to turn the rings to face the way I want them before joining. It was a bit tedious to tat each spoke separately, but by the time I got to the 4th one I started to feel that I was almost done...hurray! For the outer round I'm using my own hand dyed "Fern" color. I can see that I'm going to need more double stitches for that long curve, in order make all the spokes even. So the outer round I'm probably going to start over.

Frog closures...I just got the notion to make some! I think these are cute and I put them into my shop to market to people who sew. These are my own simple designs, but there is a pattern for a really elaborate one in the "Priscilla 2" book reprint, otherwise known as "Tatting Patterns" by Julia Sanders.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Snow day, and how the idea's coming...

There is a bit of the holly idea in this, which is the start of a snowflake. In theory, I should be able to put spokes like the one finished all around the center, and do chains around that which should look something like a holly leaf snowflake. At least I'm trying! It's going to have a lot of ends to hide -- but I'm not going to let that stop me!
Here is a view of our snow outside!

Monday, December 10, 2007

Holly, possibly...

Started working on an idea for a holly leaf. A challenging little thing! This will need more work...

Friday, December 7, 2007

"Tigereye" and "Fern"

Got these added to the shop today!

The "Tigereye" is slightly different from the batch I made a few months ago with the same name. Not quite as much distance between color changes, and the colors are slightly lighter, but still very similar.

The "Fern" thread has more variations of greens than did the "Leafy" batch of a while back. It seems different enough to deserve its own name.

Whenever the skeins appear "striped" like this, it means that there is longer distance between color changes than my more "solid looking" skeins.

Notice the real Tigereye gemstone in the top photo? No fern frond available for the "Fern" photo, though - I didn't feel like trudging out in the snow to get to the flower shop to buy one!

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Brown + gold

Talk about "natural variation"! (Not matching, are they?!) I still like 'em, though of course I would. Hey, they do go together - and are obviously handmade!

Monday, December 3, 2007

Half-baked Idea

Somehow...these polymer clay teardrop and tatting earrings showed up in my imagination and in my hands.
I thought they were sort of pretty! Then I thought that some other tatters might think this would be a fun thing to do, so I added a few of the polyclay shapes to my Etsy shop.

The green ones were done with a chain on top. However, I prefer not to have to hide the ends in chains. So I modified the pattern to end with a ring.

Hope this half-baked idea leads to other ones!

Friday, November 23, 2007

"Golden Glow" batch is finished

So I just had to try one of Lady Shuttlemaker's butterfly patterns with it!
The next dye batch will be a repeat of "Tigereye". It will have darker golds with browns, and long distances between color changes.

When your shuttle runs out of thread... way to deal with it is to refill your shuttle at the time you are ready to start the next ring. You can leave the chain thread intact if you have more thread available for filling your shuttle.

In this case, I did not think it was necessary to tie any sort of knot to connect the new thread to the old. I simply started a new ring, and put the old end through in the same direction as the core of the new ring. The photo above shows the first half of the first double stitch.

This photo shows the first half of the first double stitch, after it has been tightened.

Continuing in the same way, always putting the old end through the same way as the core of the new ring.

I decided to continue hiding the end through the join. Same principle, just put the old end though in the same direction as the core thread of the ring.

In the photo above, you can see the old end sticking out of the ring. It's best to just leave it while you tat some more past that area, before trimming the end.

The new end that was left by adding the new shuttle thread, is now being worked under the chain.

Here you can see both of the thread ends sticking out of the new ring and chain. When more tatting has been done past that area, give the old ends a firm tug before trimming them off, to make sure the all the tatting is firmly in place.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

"Forest" dye batch and "Vision" necklace in burnt ochre

Dark greens with some lighter highlights. This dye batch turned out closer to what I was actually shooting for than my last attempt! I just had time to start a simple edging pattern to show how the thread works up. Maybe I'll turn it into a bookmark.

This photo is a close-up view of my latest working of my "Vision" pattern. I used size 20 instead of the size 10 called for in the pattern. It works, but using a different size causes some minor adjustments to be made.

Nothing ever is perfect, but hey, if I waited till I got it perfect - it would never get done at all!

With total disregard for hiding ends, I just let them stick out at the end of the neckcord, added beads, and frayed out the ends. Shabby chic, funky, or whatever the fashion people call it - I'd wear it! But I decided to put it up for sale instead.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007


The row of split rings with beads between is simple IF you have mastered the split ring! Definitely a technique worth learning, since it opens many possibilities.
Sharon has a couple of great videos on her website demonstrating it.
There are also some good photos showing how it is done on Jen's Tat-ra Sutra.
More good photos and description at Tattered.
Many other places as well - these are just a few I know about.

The snowflake earrings are from my own pattern available here. I did these in quilting thread. They seem stiff enough without adding any kind of extra coating.

One of these days I should figure out a snowflake for earrings that holds up well on its own without needing a special thread or coating to help it hold its shape! I don't use any type of stiffening on my other earring designs, and they seem firm enough.

Sometime I will need to do more of the "Weathered Stone" colorway, the one that is in the top photo. I made 2 sets of earrings in that last week, and each of them sold in just one day!

Apparently dull greens are a popular color! Well, this week, however, I am going to be shooting for dark greens! We will see how it turns out!

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Not really what I was shooting for, but hey...

...I like it! I decided to name it "Pizzazz"!

Actually, according to my schedule in a previous post, I was supposed to be coming up with dark reds. Er, um, well... I didn't get there --
-- yet.

The earrings in the top picture are the same pattern as the ones in the previous post, done in "Pizzazz" with red beads.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Already better

This morning the fever was gone, though the mid-section still feels a bit "queasy". But I felt strong enough to sit at the table and finish these earrings.
The batch of red thread was dyed before the sick spell hit, and is currently still "curing". It will have sat for well over 24 hours, so hopefully the colors will turn out nice and rich, but we will see!

Friday, October 26, 2007

Four week color forecast

Several people have expressed an interest in knowing what colors I am going to dye next -- I wonder, myself! But here is a plan that I am going to try to stick to for the next few weeks:

Coming this weekend - "Deep Ocean" blues, black, gray, white.

Next week - "Deep Reds"

Following week - "Deep Greens"

Week after - "Golden Glow" Golds, ochers, yellows. If possible I will try to do a repeat of "Tigereye" (with the browns added) at this time, or maybe the following week.

Hope this helps. I am so grateful to have found a "niche market" that enables me to make some money to help pay bills, while using a God-given talent. Tatters are wonderful patrons!

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Winter Blend

Well, I finally got more hand dyed skeins into the shop.
Shelves empty?! No need to panic, I'll make more!
Color not quite right? There's always next time!
I'm dyeing as fast as I can...(don't say that in the doctor's office!)

"Winter Blend" drying

This combo turned out more "wild" than this photo shows.I really like some of the lighter areas. I am thinking I could do a batch with just the palest blues and white and call it "Icicle"! One idea leads to another, and fortunately I have started writing down my dye "recipes" so that individual colors will be repeatable - at least in theory!

Monday, October 22, 2007

I've been tagged!

I have been tagged by Sapna

Here are the rules which you must abide by if you are tagged.
1. Link to your tagger and post these rules.
2. Share 7 facts about yourself: some random, some weird.
3. Tag 3 people at the end of your post and list their names (linking to them).
4. Let them know they’ve been tagged by leaving a comment at their blogs.

7 facts about myself:

1. I grew up on a dairy farm.
2. I like chocolate chip cookies! Homemade are best.
3. I learned to play the cello as an adult.
4. I enjoy going to the zoo.
5. One of my favorite flowers is the Morning Glory.
6. I like pretty tissue boxes. I pick the prettiest ones they have at the store.
7. I don't eat red beets. Yuk!

I'm going to tag: Sharon , Elizabeth , and Celtic Dream Weaver

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Earrings in brown and gold

These are a new design I came up with this week. There is only one split ring at the top, to climb out to the 2nd round. The center beads are added over picots while joining. The other beads are strung onto the thread. They are on the second shuttle, but since that shuttle is only used once, it's basically just like having them on the ball thread.

I like ending earrings with a tatted ring joined to the finding -- it gives me somewhere to hide the ends!

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Tigereye batch

The "Tigereye" batch of hand dyed thread is now in my etsy shop. I named it after a gemstone with similar coloring...browns to gold.

The earring I am working on here is another new design I thought of this past weekend. It was inspired by some large square earrings I saw a friend wearing.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Submissions for the museum display

These things are not part of the challenge!

These are just some photos of things I have made in past years that I am submitting to a lace exhibit. As you can see, I did tat a lot of white! That would help explain my madness for color...been there, done that, you know.

The heart with the calligraphy (yes, I did the calligraphy!) is from one of Elgiva Nicholls' books.

Tatting appliqued onto net. I sewed it on with invisible nylon thread. I had a lot of patience in those days! (20 or so years ago?) Probably now I would use fabric adhesive.

The collars are from patterns appearing in the Priscilla Tatting Book No. 2 or books of similar vintage.

The weaving here is incorporating tatting that was tatted onto the yarn leaving long tails that were woven in as part of the fabric. The edging was added after the piece was hemmed.

This teal and white is another example of tatting appliqued onto net. My own design. Not quite a collar, not quite a necklace, so I call it a "neckpiece". This was the forerunner to my necklace designing.

This doily is from the pattern "Noel" in the book "Floriade" by Ben Fikkert. It is only the center part of the pattern, and I added the beads.

I'll be taking these to the Lighthouse Lacers meeting on Saturday, Oct. 14 where examples of all sorts of lace will be brought to prepare a presentation for the exhibit committee. It'll be a while before I find out if any of my pieces are accepted for the exhibit, but I'll keep you posted.

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Inspired by Mary Konior

"Briar fragment" from "Tatting with Visual Patterns" by Mary Konior.

Actually, my attempt has more picots in some of the petals. I inadvertently added an extra picot in the first of the larger petals, so I just decided to be consistent!

This motif is something I'm going to use on a note card.

Thursday, September 27, 2007


Talk about intense!

Hey, if you'd like to vote on what you think of my pattern website, it can be done here:
click on "yarnplayer" and let them know what you think!

Friday, September 14, 2007

Doodling with new threads

The black doodle is "Candlelight" metallic yarn. Its size is comparable to a size 20 in crochet cotton. What I like is the sparkle; what I don't really care for is how the strands separate in the picots, but that's just my personal reaction.

Then for the earring, I tried a pink quilting thread used together with a fine sparkly metallic blending filament. I like the stiffness of the quilting thread, and I like the sparkle of the metallic filament used with it. I found the rings a bit difficult to close, however, and of course working with 2 threads used as one is tricky!

I started with a mock ring, leaving a big loop at the start. Then halfway around, I slipped a glass pearl over the loop, put the shuttle through, and tightened around the bead.

Then I finished the mock ring and joined to the beginning.

The other beads were added over picots, with the exception of the drop bead -- that one was
strung on the ball thread.

The resulting earring has a good stiffness.
I just hope there is enough of those threads left for the other earring!