Tuesday, July 23, 2013

And the winner is ... Anza!

Congratulations, Anza! You're the lucky winner of Iris Niebach's new book Tatting Fantasia 4, and 2 skeins of my hand dyed thread! You'll be getting an email from me soon.

Thank you to everyone who entered the giveaway contest, I've enjoyed reading the comments. You're all the nicest people! If you didn't win this time, there's always another chance in another giveaway in the future.

Friday, July 19, 2013

Giveaway! Book and Hand Dyed Thread

Comment on this blog post for a chance to win Iris Niebach's new book Tatting Fantasia 4, plus 2 skeins of my own hand dyed thread! The thread is size 20, from my "Sugar Maple" and "Summer Trail" batches.

If you have a blog, that's okay for contact info, otherwise I'll need your email address or some other way for me to contact you if you win.

Will leave this post open for commenting until Tuesday, July 23, then I'll use a random number generator to choose the lucky winner! Please only comment once - duplicates will be removed.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Double Flower Using Celtic Shuttle

 A simple flower idea, tatted with a bead in the center., with an extra row of petals, interlocking Celtic style.

This green Celtic shuttle was acquired from Handy Hands Tatting.

Continue tatting, bringing each chain under and through before each lock join.

YouTube video demo https://youtu.be/gn5G3aeHesg 

Monday, July 8, 2013

Photos from Greater Milwaukee Tatting Guild

 Always a good time getting together with tatting friends and making new friends!

Our newest arrival showed up saying she'd never tatted, then showed me a chain of correctly made double stitches already done! So, I told her she'd already figured out the hard part by herself - wow! I then demonstrated how to tat rings and join them.

Sue Anna was wearing a pendant made from the "Rotation" pattern and had started another one in blue.

Barbara G. had finished a motif from Jon Yusoff's book, "Elegant Tatting Gems" and was working on another. She said the variegated thread helped with figuring out the patterns better. Later she'll try them in solid colors.

 Khomi arrived with a doily in progress, in a pretty purple and green variegated thread.

We all took a break to watch one of Karen Cabrera's tatting videos, the one on Hyperbolic Tatting. Interesting ideas to try someday!

Ana explained about how 2 pairs of glasses help her with close work. Normally, she only wears reading glasses, but when doing handwork she puts on another pair with a stronger magnification, and where the 2 lenses intersect it's like a super magnifying glass. So, 3 stages of magnification to choose from depending on what the project requires at any particular stage, sort of like triple bifocals but even better.

Monday, July 1, 2013

How it went at Shake Rag Alley

That's me in the orange shirt, teaching the intermediate class. Lovely view through the window!

Historic Potter's House where I taught classes
My weekend was a lot of fun! I taught 2 tatting classes, surrounded by beautiful natural scenery at Shake Rag Alley in historic Mineral Point, Wisconsin.

There were 5 eager learners in the beginner's class. None of them had tatted before, but after the 3 hour class, all of them were able to get their double stitches to flip - some of the time, at least!
Me carrying supplies, with the Coach House (originally a stagecoach inn) in the background

Normally, beginning shuttle tatting does NOT make for an ideal class in the time restrictions of a workshop setting, and I'll explain why:
Workshop attendees tend to fit into one of the following 3 categories:
  • Those who actually want to learn the technique
  • Those who just want to socialize
  • Those who want to finish a project in class, and don't intend to pursue the craft any further
The Blacksmith Shop is near the Potter's House
Obviously, when promoting a beginning shuttle tatting class, it must be made clear in the advertising that students will NOT complete a project in class! Unlike crafts such as felting or basket making, shuttle tatting isn't something where the basics can be learned quickly and produce a cute enough project for a beginner to take home to impress family and friends. My beginners went home with a string of messy knots! A few got as far as rings.

The students said they wished my class had been all day, or even 2 days, but developing a physical skill takes a bit of practice each day. It can't be rushed, and if you work at it too hard and too long all at once, you'll just wear yourself out and get frustrated. I figure if I show them the "flip" of tatting, and they leave understanding how that works even if they can't quite do it in class, they've learned what they need to know in order to practice at home. Even if they then decide tatting isn't for them, they'll have a better understanding and appreciation of it when they see it.
A pretty creek!

 Besides the scenery and relaxed atmosphere, the other thing I like about Shake Rag Alley is they don't set outrageously high fees for their classes, unlike some other workshop locations. (For those who don't know, the teacher receives only a percentage of the workshop fee, the rest goes to the organization that runs the location.) 

Hopefully, my students felt like they got their "money's worth" out of my classes!

Bridge on nearby trail

Close-up of a day lily in the gardens

Ellery House at Shake Rag Alley