Sunday, February 13, 2011


Whoo Hoo! What a fun day this will be! Are you ready???

Eight little bags waiting for a name to go with them.

Winner #1: (40) Diane at Crafty Diane Bag #7

Winner #2: (14) Dale Marie atShuttle & Thread Bag #4

Winner #3: (17) Kimberly, Bag #7, substitute bag #2

Winner #4: (34) Teresa of Stitching & Knitting Bag #5

Winner #5: (19) Kathy of Kathy's Victorian Lace Bag #4, substitute bag #3 (no email found - please email me with your mailing address!)

Winner #6: (62)To Tat or Knot to Tat Bag #6

Winner #7: (30) Bonnie of Bonnie's Tatting Blog Bag #1

Winner #8: (40) Robert of Iowa Bag #5, substitute bag #8

Congratulations everyone and I'm emailing you each privately for your mailing address. Now...the contents of the above bags are identical, BUT...I have more to go with each one and you'll just have to wait and be surprised! That part will be different in each case.

I wish I could give every single visitor to my blog a momento. I loved reading how my blog was the first tatting blog many of you read when you first discovered tatting. I loved knowing I have contributed to your interest and understanding about this beautiful art. A HUGE inspiration for my blogging is the desire to share what I've learned or am in the process of learning. I love watching newcomers develop their skills and expand to the point where they are helping the next wave of new tatters. I love seeing tatters taking old patterns and old basics in a new direction and to a new level.

While there are a few unique people who pick up on tatting immediately and learn every new technique quickly, for the majority of us, tatting was a skill that was learned slowly. It meant practice, practice, practice. Lots of knots and fraying of thread and pride dashed in a mistake discovered too late for an easy fix. It meant the saving of money to buy a special book or shuttle or thread. Waiting on the postman. Slow deciphering of techniques by email or phone calls. Frustration. Triumph. Even tears sometimes.

When I first started blogging, it was just for fun, for myself, a place to set down my thoughts about tatting. It came at a time when the tatting lists were dealing with spam and flaming and trying to figure out what to do. While order was being restored, it was often intimidating to offer thoughts that were perceived differently, sometimes completely out of context. I guess, for me, it felt safer to have a place of my own to speak.

I had fun developing this new medium and it has changed significantly through the years. The best part for me is having a record of what I've done. Sometimes I'll get an email about a post from years ago and the writer asks about it like it was yesterday. I have to go look it up and refresh my memory. And yeah, there are times I'm amazed at my own work but I think this is true for everyone. I initially promoted blogging for that very reason. I felt too many people under estimated what they accomplished. So much of what we make ends up given away, sometimes as an intended gift and other times as a serendipitous moment. It's easy to forget something you no longer have. I am often reminded by others of gifts I knitted or crocheted or quilted decades ago. My camera photos from back then are not nearly as nice as today's digital or scanned versions. It's also a great record of techniques you've learned and a visual record of how your tatting improves.

I remember the scarcity of patterns when I began tatting. I had a large collection of Workbaskets even then and that was my main source. Tatting publications, books or magazines, were hard to come by. Even now, I only see a few books in the bookstores and libraries. The Internet fixed that. I have binders and binders full of tatting patterns. I have books and publications from all over the world. I feel sorry for people who put together pattern books of tatting because the demand now is not as acute as it used to be. Not that we ever have enough patterns but I think you really have to work at it now to sell your product. Word gets around fast if there are any shortcomings and it's hard not to duplicate what others have done. Even so, I think the patterns and designs just keep getting better and better! I like that diagramming and well thought out illustrations are more common these days. I'm proud to be part of the generation that has advanced the renaissance of tatting.

Since I had 8 winners coming up, I was looking for quick little tats. I still haven't found exactly what I'm looking for but I did have fun trying and I wanted to show you what I tatted last night and today.

I wasn't sure I would even finish it. I was emptying some size 80 thread from shuttles as well as playing with some of Mary Maynard's flowers from Rings of Flowers. I tatted a lot from this book when I first got it but never did ALL of the flowers. Using it now, I realize how dependent I've gotten on diagrams since there are no diagrams in this book. Near the back, she has some fans and I don't think I got to those before. I really liked this one so I gave it a try. I didn't finish it exactly the way she did but this is the basic pattern. The teacup is a notepad of paper.

Here it is on its own. I started off with the wrong color for the first ring but now that I know how it goes, I can tat it in the right sequence. It's so tiny, just the right size for a notecard or as a scrapbook element or embellishment for a very small child's clothing. I had a LOT of threads to hide, 6 of them I think, and it certainly was not a quick tat but still....I am as enthused and excited about tatting something new as I ever was.

Truly, tatting is my passion.


  1. WOW! I can't believe I won! Thank you so much! I am so excited! I can't wait to receive my prize!

  2. Nice post, Gina! Thanks.

  3. Congratulations to the winners. Thank you Gina.

  4. I am SO EXCITED to have won! I cannot wait to see what it is...I do LOVE suprises!!! Thank you for including us in your celebration of eight wonderful years blogging...I know we are all looking forward to many, MANY more:-)

  5. Bravo! What a terrific contest and thoughtful piece of writing.

    Thank you, Gina, for being such a bright light in Tat-land. Many of us count on you again and again for answers to find our way in the world of tatting.

    You deserve the prize!
    ♥ Fox : )

  6. Sulk, sulk, sulk! Well I'm going to have a MAJOR sulk now I haven't won. Fantastic post as ever. Thanks.

  7. Congratulations to all the winners! I'm sure they'll enjoy the goodies you send them!

  8. Congratulations to all the winners!

    I enjoyed reading this post. Sometimes you wonder if people know what a difference they have made - I'm glad that you do. You're projects are always inspiring!

    I'm so happy that there are so many tatters who blog. Connecting with them has helped me in ways I can't begin to measure, not to mention the added benefit of getting to know nice people like yourself!

    The fan is SO pretty! I am finding that as I ditch my aversion to hiding threads (I've realized that for someone who LIKES to sew, sewing the ends in should be no hardship), the patterns I have to choose from has EXPLODED! I'm more and more drawn to the antique patterns. I believe you may be to "blame" for that! :)))

    :) Ann

  9. Anonymous12:07 PM

    Such a poetic piece of writing!

    I for one, am looking forward to another 8 great years of your blog ;-) *wink

  10. Hi Gina!

    I just got home from visiting a Knitting and Crochet Festival (where, of course, I mentioned tatting to several people!), and read your blog as soon as I got in!

    I couldn't believe that I am a winner! SO HAPPY!!!

    I hope my e-mail message got to you. I sent it around 8:00 pm EST.

    I quickly scanned your post, and realized not only are you talented in all the crafts you do, but you're also an excellent writer! You explained beautifully the frustrations of those of us who had to struggle to learn to tat, and our finally learning was truly an emotional experience!

    Thanks again for this fun give-away!

  11. Your fan is so cute! Love the colors! :)

  12. congratulations to all the winners :) and ty Gina for all your thoughtfulness to everyone.:)Always love your work, and always love reading your blog :D, thanks again for the change to play in the give away :)

  13. Congratulations to all the lucky winners. Such a lot of work organising 8 bags to give away, so will it be 9 next year?!!! Hint hint!!


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