Friday, October 25, 2013

Some ways of stringing beads onto thread for tatting projects

Some tatting projects call for beads to be strung onto the thread before starting to tat. There are various ways of getting the beads on, here are three methods that I use. 
To download a free PDF file of this tutorial, CLICK HERE.

Crochet hook:
Put the beads onto the shaft of a small steel crochet hook, and “hook” them onto the thread.
A crochet hook up to size 12/1.00mm can accommodate size 8° seed beads.
A crochet hook size 14/0.75mm usually works for size 11° seed beads.
For beads with very small holes, try a tiny size 15/0.5mm or 16/0.4mm crochet hook.  (Note: beads with very small holes might not fit on size 10 crochet cotton. Size 20 crochet cotton usually can accommodate most beads.)

Wide eye beading needle:

A wide eye beading needle has a flexible large eye that flattens as the beads pass over it. A plastic “floss threader” (a tool made for dental care) works in the same way. With any of these needles, insert the thread for your project through the wide eye, pick up the beads onto the shaft of the needle, and slide the beads onto the thread.


Standard needle and sewing thread:
A hand sewing or standard beading needle, in combination with a small piece of sewing thread, will also work to get beads onto your project thread. The needle has to be thin enough for the beads to pass over it. Thread the needle with the sewing thread, catch the project thread by passing the sewing thread around it, and thread the sewing thread through the needle again. Pick up the beads onto the shaft of the needle; slide them down the sewing thread, and onto the project thread. When all of the beads needed are strung onto the project thread, remove the needle and sewing thread.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Next round

Thanks to all who voted for my blog in the first round of the Craftsy blog awards, I'm happy to announce that my blog has made it into the next round of the Craftsy Blogger Awards in the Best Craftsy Instructor Blog category! 

So, to get entered to win a free Craftsy class of your choice, click on this link and scroll down a bit until you see the "Knitting - Best Craftsy Instructor's Blog" (yeah, I know, knitting...but it's okay :) and you'll recognize my blog's banner as one of the choices. Click on the "Vote" button under my blog's banner and provide your email address on the form. You'll be entered for a chance to win a free Craftsy class of your choice.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Progress on the book: the days fly by

The days fly by at an alarming rate of speed, but the book of my original beaded tatting patterns is coming along. So far I have the basic how-to section of the book done, 3 patterns fully completed, and 2 more partially completed. I expect to put a total of about 15 of my original designs into the book. This will probably make it a little thicker than my previous books.

Photo at left shows a bead being added to the project thread via a wide-eye beading needle and a bit of sewing thread. Occasionally that's a method needed for slipping a bead over a doubled size 10 thread. I prefer to just hook the beads on using a small crochet hook, but it doesn't always work with size 10. From my experience with both Czech beads and Swarovski crystal pearls, I've discovered that the Czech beads have slightly larger holes, so I'm going to use those when I can.

If I don't stay focused on the book, the rest of life may take over, and the book wouldn't get done for a long time. So, don't be concerned if my Etsy shop is sort of "left fallow" for a short while.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Progress on the book so far

It's going slowly, but now the tatting basics refresher section of the book is done, and I'm working on adding the patterns. The photo shown above is one that went "viral" on my Facebook Page, - it's not Ankars technique, but yes, the pattern will be in the book.

So now October is here, and for me that means no more royalties from my Tatted Jewelry book. My contract with the publisher provided royalties for 2 years, and it has been 2 years already. The publishers are very nice folks and did a lovely job on that book, but since I can actually make more money by self-publishing, that's why I plan on self-publishing this next book that I'm working on. It's because tatting is a niche market (aka underground movement, lol :) that a designer can make more money self-publishing, I'm sure that with more well-known crafts such as knitting or quilting, they are better off with a publisher.

By the way, I just read  Diane's article! It's a terrific review of the different types of tatting shuttles.

Well, I guess that is all I have to report for now, so I'll get back to work on the book.