Friday, July 3, 2020

Hand Dyed and Good News

"Garden Afternoon" hand dyed thread
If you have purchased classes from Bluprint/Craftsy or had a subscription there, the good news is that the classes will live on! Bluprint has been acquired by TN Marketing, more information here:

It is quite a relief to me that this amazing video library of knowledge will not simply disappear. TN Marketing will be launching a new website (with a new name to be announced later) for the Bluprint classes in September 2020. Existing subscribers to Bluprint, and past buyers of individual "own forever" classes will continue to have access to their content on the Bluprint site through August 2020, after that they'll be hosted on the new website.

So far, the communications I've received from the new owners have been friendly and encouraging.

In other news, fresh batch of hand dyed "Garden Afternoon" has been added to my Etsy shop!

Friday, June 26, 2020

Free Pattern! "Flat Carnation"

 This happy little flower showed itself when I was experimenting with daisy picots and folded rings. The downloadable pattern is here: 
 My video demonstration is posted on YouTube: 
Have fun!

Thursday, June 18, 2020

Been Doing Macrame and Walking at the Beach

Macrame Flat Rose
 If you're interested in macrame, there are a great many excellent instructional videos on YouTube. I made these projects following the directions by Macrame Tita.
Macrame Rhomboid Pendant

Macrame Seahorse

Lake Michigan
 Away from the city on a weekday, the shoreline is not crowded and offers tranquil views and cool breezes. 
Fun fact: I've moved several times in my life, yet I've always lived less than 20 miles from the shore of Lake Michigan.
Rawley Point Lighthouse
A vacation outing, even for just a few hours, refreshes one's outlook. We surely all need it!

Monday, June 1, 2020

Tulip Jimmy

 The pink and orange colors of this tulip inspired a new dye batch. Since the name of the tulip cultivar is "Jimmy" I'm calling this batch "Tulip Jimmy". Look for it in my Etsy Shop.

Friday, May 15, 2020

In the Sand

"In the Sand" hand dyed size 5

"Footprints in the Sand" Daylily inspired the "In the Sand" dye batch
Since the new "Elisa" thread became available I bought a few balls to try for hand dyeing. I like it! Substantial, yet not as chunky as size 3. I'll buy more size 5.

I have been reassured that there is no way coronavirus could travel through the mail, so hand dyed thread is again available in my Etsy shop - BUT - a word of caution: always wash your hands after handling the mail. If your mail carrier happened to be infected (people can be carriers of the virus and contaminate others even if they don't have any symptoms yet) the coronavirus might be passed on to you. 

Of course tatters don't need to be reminded to wash their hands!

"Lilac Sea" size 20

"Nectarine" size 40

Tuesday, April 28, 2020

Macrame Nylon Loop Zipper Pull

How to add a zipper pull loop to a motif using macrame cord:

Cut a piece of nylon or polyester macrame cord about 12 inches (30 cm) long. 
Fold it in half. Put the cut ends down through the motif where it will be attached.

Pull the ends through until the loop is at the desired size.
It is easier to keep the cord in place by pinning it down.

Now begin a square knot sinnet. The 2 cut ends are the working cords. The loop is the filler.

Bring the right working cord over the filler to the left. 
Place the left working cord over it, under the filler, and through the loop formed by the right cord. 
Tighten, and you have the first half of a square knot.

Bring the left cord over and to the right of the filler.
Place the right cord over it, under the filler, and through the loop formed by the left cord.
Tighten, and you have a finished square knot.

Repeat square knots for desired length of sinnet. If you forget which half comes next, look to see which side has a completed knot "bump". That's the side to pick up the working cord from.

Trim the tails to about 1/4 inch (6mm).
Carefully melt them with a safety lighter, observing all safety precautions. Press the melted drops into the knot with the edge of the lighter. Or, press with your thumb, but take care to not get burnt.

Attach to anything!

Thursday, April 23, 2020

Left handed Tatting a Simple Motif

This simple motif is good for beginners to practice double stitches, picots, rings, chains, and the join.

The right handed version has also been uploaded to my YouTube channel. Actually, the left handed video is simply my right handed original flipped mirror image using an app! Works great...except silly me, I forgot that "counterclockwise" would become "clockwise" in the lefty version. Oh well!

I used "Elisa" size 5 thread for the demo. I love the size and the thread is perfect! Oh, of course, I hand dyed it :-)

Wednesday, April 22, 2020

Star Capella Pendant Left Handed

Trying to show the left handed folks some love, I've flopped my "Star Capella Pendant" video to be left handed. It mirror imaged the package labels, but everything else works. I hope this helps.

Monday, April 13, 2020

Just Popping In

Just popping in for a minute to say blessed Easter and happy spring to you.

I'm still doing hand dyeing of thread, but will wait to list them all until I have a good sized collection.

These Lupines emerging in the garden surprised me by collecting dew and making it glisten like diamonds. I wish you happy surprises!

Wednesday, April 1, 2020

New Pattern: "Petal Portal"

 Just finished! 

My original pattern "Petal Portal" for tatted pendant and earrings is listed for sale as an instant download in my Etsy shop

The tatting techniques used in the pendant are: ring, floating ring, curled ring, chain, picot, bead picot, join, lock join, Celtic weaving, and encapsulation.

The tatting techniques used in the earrings are: ring, floating ring, split ring, chain, picot, bead picot, Daisy picot, join, lock join, encapsulation. 

So, it's a challenging pattern using a lot of techniques. The instructions are written in English from the shuttle tatting perspective. This pattern also has diagrams with stitch counts and some in-progress photos. 

The thread used for the pendant and earrings is size 20, along with size 15/0 seed beads and 4mm beads.

"Petal Portal" green set

The actual colors that I used in the green set are Lizbeth #604, #684, #676, and my own hand dyed "Nectarine".

The actual colors I used in the purple set are Lizbeth #612, #632, and my own hand dyed "Crocus".

"Petal Portal" purple set
I came up with the title "Petal Portal" because the Josephine rings at the bottom looked to me like little flower buds or petals growing, and the open center of the motif seemed to be a gateway or portal leading to somewhere nice.

The tools and supplies that I used for the green set

Monday, March 23, 2020

Just Working Quietly

Staying in, doing a little handweaving from time to time. Also, I'm in the process of writing up a new tatting pattern for a pendant and earring set. Not showing the picture here yet! Keeping it a surprise.

Speaking of surprises, I was very much surprised to receive this lovely dishtowel machine embroidered with tatting shuttle designs! A friend in the community orchestra (that I play cello in) gave it to me. This was about 2 weeks ago. Since then, orchestra has been cancelled until next fall, to comply with "social distancing" so as to help us avoid the coronavirus.

Spring is still coming along, very slowly as is usual here in Wisconsin. I'm very happy that the Snow Crocus is blooming. A glimmer of hope!

Sunday, March 8, 2020

Hand Dyed Thread "Blue Skies"

In this batch I tried to represent the shades of blue in the sky on a sunny day: light warm blue near the horizon to darker cool blue farther up. It's a new colorway, different from the other blue batches I've done before. Available in my Etsy shop.
Speaking of Etsy, 2020 will be my 13th year on Etsy. 

I remember the days before Internet, when I was living in a town much smaller than the one I'm currently in, where the only option for selling handmade items was consignment shops which usually charged a fee of 40% to 50% of the selling price of the item. So, from my perspective, Etsy works beautifully. 

Friday, February 28, 2020

Flutterby Heart

Free tatting pattern for you! 

Instant download: 

This is a design that I actually came up with in 2017. For some reason I set my experimental sample aside and forgot about it. While looking through some pictures I ran across a photo and thought, "Hey, this is cute, who designed this?" Uh...well...I then noticed my own name on it! 

To make sure that it was really not someone else's design, I asked in an online tatting group if anybody had seen it before. They hadn't! Except the sharp eyes of Sue H. had noticed it on my own Facebook page

Well, I guess I have to admit to a "senior moment". \(^_^)/
But, for you, a new pattern!

Tuesday, February 18, 2020


There's been a warp on my 24 inch wide, 8 shaft table loom since 2017, mostly ignored! I think what may have turned me off of it at the start was that I noticed a threading error, tried to correct it, but just couldn't fix it. 

Well, I've finally come to accept the flaw as a "design element" and to have fun with the patterns and colors that are emerging! The result will be beautiful towels.

I'm using a mix of 8/2 unmercerized cotton and 10/2 mercerized cotton in the towels. I wonder why the weaving yarn companies don't make the matte cotton and the shiny cotton to match in size exactly, but oh well, I'm using them together anyway. 

Currently, I have 3 towels almost done, and there may be enough warp to weave a fourth towel.

Wednesday, February 5, 2020

The Winner!

The winner is Gloria Nelson! Congratulations, Gloria! I've sent you an email.

To everyone who commented, thank you so very much for your wonderful words. Each of you is a inspiration and I wish I could give everyone a prize - but all I can offer as consolation is my free digital patterns here. Tat on!!!

Saturday, February 1, 2020

Extremely Very Early Spring Giveaway

For a chance to win the book Tatting Innovations by Helma Siepmann, plus the hand dyed thread and tatted Boomerang earrings shown in the photo, leave one comment on this post.

I'll choose one winner on Wednesday, February 5. Be sure there's a way for me to contact you if you win, either a blog I.D., or an email address, otherwise I'll just draw another name.

Readers of this blog from outside of the U.S.A. are welcome to enter this giveaway - but - be aware that even though I'll mark the package as gift, sometimes customs fees may still be charged.

Friday, January 17, 2020

Hand Dyed Thread "Roses"

Painting dye on thread
 New batch of hand dyed thread "Roses" is now listed in my Etsy shop

As always, preparing and dyeing the thread by hand is a fair amount of work, so each batch is small and unique!

After the dye has set (cured) I wash the excess dye from the thread in the rinse bath. This is followed by clear water rinses, then the skeins are laid out to dry.
In this project I used Karey Solomon's hand dyed thread (Map of the World) along with Lizbeth thread in Spring Green and Mocha Brown Medium. The pattern is my original, still in progress.