Tuesday, September 30, 2003

Today, two co-workers and myself went up north to do some farm inspections. I took some tatting with me to do while riding. I decided to try the Sunflower doily in Tatting Patterns and Designs by Gun Blomqvist and Elwy Persson. I'm using a Sulky variegated, #932-2245, in Autumn colors. It's a slick feeling thread and quite small. The thing I don't like about this book is that it never tells you when to reverse your work. Sometimes you do and sometimes you don't. It can take me a while to figure it out from the photograph and I really wish they had gone to the bother to note it.

I've spent all evening cleaning out 3 bedrooms so the guy who is coming to measure for carpet tomorrow can get around. That means much of my tatting is now scattered in bins and down in the basement.

Hmmmmm, I'll bet that variegated thread would make a great cat from Becky's book! Sort of a tortoise colored cat.

sigh......................I'll be busy much of the next 2 evenings so very little tatting will get done.

Saturday, September 27, 2003


Finally, I got the little bugger done!

I almost gave up on the metallic thread because it would break and be nearly impossible to attach a new thread to without a big knot. I did have to attach a new thread once, in the wing picots. I learned to go very very slowly. So there it is, attached to a cord with flower at the end, to make a bookmark. I have it in the envelope and after a short note, it will go to a friend whose hummingbirds enchanted me.

This is an adaptation of Sherry Matthews' hummer, which I linked to before. The thread is Sulky metallic #142-7027. I also used it as a blending filament with the black (DMC size 80 tatting thread) to make the flower and cord. It behaved very nicely while it was with the black. The changes I made in Sherry's design were where the chains began in the wings. I made the first chain as the directions say but after that I completed the row with 4 ds, p, 4 ds, j below. Then coming back, I ch 5 ds, p, 5 ds, j below. The last ch was something like ch 7 and attached to the last p. The next row of chains was something like ch 1, long p, ch 1 for a total of 4 long p, then attach to the row below. I used a picot gauge to graduate the size of the picots, going from largest at the tip of the wing to smallest near the body. I ended up just making chains to go from ring to ring in the lower body after the wings. In some birds, I made some big picots at the tail end and some I didn't It does give the impression of tail feathers a bit though.

Now what am I going to do with all these practice hummers?????

Friday, September 26, 2003

I've been spending Thursday evenings at my sister's house, scrapbooking. She creates superb memory books, while I approach it with good intentions - that means I never get around to it. So we've started working on them together so I can work through the tons of photos I have and put them in some kind of order. Right now I'm working on a book about my east coast trip, but I'm hoping it will motivate me enough to get the four kids' books done. By Christmas.

So that's where I went right after work last night and my outside light wasn't on so I barely saw Jan's mail (in a tin!) sitting on the porch floor. It wasn't until this morning, as I fed the cats that I saw a package on the ledge. Bugs & Beasts by Becky Dempsey! Click on her name if you want to know how to order your own. I admired Becky's cat a long time ago when I saw it in a Birthday card RR hosted by Maus. Besides the cat, I also particularly like the bunny rabbit and the squirrel.

This has just been the greatest week! I made plans this week to visit Hope Green in November!!! Hope has been such an inspiration to me. She once sent me her samples of the split chain to help me see how it would look. Once I mastered split chains, there was nothing I couldn't do in the world of tatting! I love comparing notes with her and this visit will be a real treat. I may wear the same clothes for days to save room in my luggage for all the tatting stuff I'll bring. LOL!

On top of all that, I've been visually entertained by yet another friend's awesome photos of the landscape, sunrises, and nature around his home in Vermont.

I also got to spend an hour or so with another friend I seldom hear from on IM the other night. I swear, I'm just blissin' out here! How much better will the coming days get???

OH, not meaning to forget the surprise package from another friend with CD's and pressed flowers and a cool wire lizard.........and other little goodies. And of course, the shuttle from Jan. And the fellow who hand delivered my ebay win (an MP3 player for my son).

Thursday, September 25, 2003

My friend Jan, a non-tatter who lives in Washington, sent me her Grandmother Bellknap's shuttle. It even had a bit of old thread on it that I tatted into a blossom. This is the only French Ivory shuttle I have that I know the history of. Thank you so much Jan!

Monday, September 22, 2003

Here is a bookmark I made a few years ago. I saw it in an exchange or website and was intrigued by the interwoven picots. I finally tracked down the person who made it and she was able to give me the following directions to help me work out my own.

Each chain has 4ds, 1 lpic, 1ds, 1lpic, 1ds, 1lpic, 4ds, 1lpic, 1ds, 1lpic,
1ds, 1lpic, 4ds........ does that help? ;o) ( per Cygnett777 - I still don't know her name).

While visiting Bina's page, I found one done by Riet. I like the form of hers a bit better. It looks like the directions are in Dutch, if that is them behind the photo. Perhaps that was where mine originally came from - I do remember I decided to make the clovers instead of rings, but I'm not sure what else I changed. It found a home elsewhere so I don't have it anymore.

Sunday, September 21, 2003

And here are photos from The Feast of the Hunter's Moon. There are hundreds of individual tents/locations. We have a prime spot not far from the entrance. The spinners were close to us, after the knife maker. I ran out of film before I could get more photos. The Indians and the Voyagers were missed, for instance.

The sign that explains it all.

The Lafayette Lacers tent among others.

A closer view of our spot.

The wind was ready to take my bonnet. Bette is next to me. I'm not sure who the other lady is. She and her husband are both in the photo.

Saturday, September 20, 2003

Tatting Day with Heirloom Corner

Finally, here are the photos from September 6, 2003. For some reason, while I was in NY, the date feature on my camera was activated, but it was the wrong date, showing 1994. LOL! I just now changed it, but I have several rolls of film that have the date with 1994 stamped on the photos.

I don't remember everyone's names, unfortunately. Click on the photo to see a larger version. Thanks to my friend Tim for helping me figure out how to do thumbnails!

Here is Kaye with the group.

Mary Harris and Janet Groves

Mary Ann who entertained us with a wonderful shuttle story she had written at the end.

Ceil and granddaughter - 2 of the 3 generations of that family that come every year.

Some of the shuttles collected by Carol. She brought 3 cases of them!

Thursday, September 18, 2003

I finished another hummer last night but I'm still not happy with it. It's that tail end that I can't figure out exactly how I want it. I'm scrapbooking at my sister's tonight so I may not have time to work it out, but I'm off tomorrow afternoon - going hunting for carpet and running some other errands I've not been able to get to.

Got another fake ebay email yesterday. Two in 2 days. I just forward them on to Ebay's spoof/spam section. Every time they tell me it's fraud. Good thing. If I had thought it was real, I wouldn't have bid on the MP3 player I got for my son's birthday. He found it yesterday so I bid and ended up winning. LOL! The seller just lives in the next town over. Could almost go pick it up.

The last tea-for-one that I bid and won was actually 2 of them..........and I don't want 2, so I'll be listing that extra one before long. If I ever have time to list stuff again. I'm looking for another digital camera too. Mine is outdated for the computer, altho I could probably find a patch or new drivers that adapt, but I want something that does detail better. At the time, it was a decent camera. I'll see what my sister has tonight too.

I'm looking for other tatting blogs. So far, I've only found 4 or 5 true tatting blogs. There are tons of knitting ones, but I want TATTING! I'm going to create links here for your viewing pleasure. I'll also link some tutorials that are good. One of my appointments today for an ergo expressed a desire to learn to tat, so we'll get together one of these days and do that.

I'm also picking up some reliable info for thumbnails so I can put more detailed photos on to link to.

Almost time to go!

Tuesday, September 16, 2003

I thought I messed this up as everything looked way too big at work, but it looks fine at home. I picked up photos from the Tatting Day with Heirloom Corner and some shots of the tent at the Feast, but I meant to be in bed a half hour ago. I'm off now.

Monday, September 15, 2003

I sat down to tat this evening and realized I left my current tatting on top of a file cabinet in my office.

So, I decided to try out the metallic thread I bought over the weekend at JoAnn Fabrics. I wanted something shimmery and with red/green to simulate the hummingbirds colorful shimmery body. So here is my test of 3ds rings and chains. What I don't like about metallic thread is that the metallic part breaks and exposes the white core thread. I have another thread of the right color to use, but it has no shimmer to it and it's a size 12 - a tad bit bigger than I want.

I tatted a snowflake during the winter with a gold metallic and it was a big pain. I'm not sure I really want to tackle 2 hummers with this thread. Yet I'm sure it will be beautiful if I do.

I also bought a nice variegated in autumn colors in the Sulky too. It's a bit heavier thread and not metallic. I need to wrap this hummer up so I can get on to other stuff. Like the reindeer that is half done.

Sunday, September 14, 2003

I bought these two shuttles at The Feast of the Hunter's Moon. The smaller one is brass and the other is a pierced bone shuttle. Same pierced design as the one I got at I.O.L.I., but this one is narrower. I was hoping they were a different design too, but that's okay. Actually, I got this one cheaper. Plus, the dear man took a dollar off each one since I was getting 2 of them. Whoo-whee!

It rained through the night, which did cool things off, but they warmed in the afternoon. I was getting sweaty in all those clothes! After my time slot of demonstrating, I walked around and checked everything out. Only bought the 2 shuttles. I was kind of looking for some yarn to knit a shawl for the next feast, but I didn't find any I considered affordable. $10.00 per skein................probably a fair price for hand-spun and dyed, but I've seen better hand spun and dyed, so I decided to look around for awhile.

Lots of good stuff to eat.......................so I ignored my diet for the day. I've lost 10 pounds, it's okay to have an off day. Before my demo, I had an herbed pork chop, an apple sundae, and a lemon drink. Then after, I got some smelt and a diet coke, then found an apple dumpling, and then a honey butter croissant. If I'd known there were apple dumplings at the other end, I would not have gotten the sundae - it was just apple slices drizzled in caramel with peanuts, but it would have been easy to pass up. Then I had no room for French Onion Soup, or Ham & Beans, or Corn on the cob, or a buffalo burger, or Voyager Stew, or................lots of other stuff. But I definitely wanted an apple dumpling and a french pastry.

If I eat at all tonight, it will be a lettuce salad. I don't want anything else that is heavy.

I wasn't well prepared for the Feast this year. I was so busy getting my outfit done that I didn't look up any background historical stuff to refresh my memory. I almost forgot to bring some extra thread. Maybe next year.

The Iroquois were dancing and socializing again. Same people, I recognized the singer. Then there was a celtic band.......singing bawdy songs and having a great time with the crowd. Watched a bit of the canoe races. It was a lovely day even if it was warm with the clothing.

Well, time to catch up on chores here at home.

Wednesday, September 10, 2003

Check out Get Crafty. Down near the bottom there is an ad for a crocheted skull. The cool part though, is that you can click on the link and it will download (you have to have flash for it to show) and then when you put your cursor over the skull, it spins like crazy!

I finished the chemise and one skirt tonight. I'd like to make another skirt, although they are so bulky with those dingy drawstring waists..................and Cathy is letting me borrow a cap in case I don't get mine made. People are so funny. Cathy mentioned in her email that there was a chance of rain on Saturday but Sunday looked very good. Then Wilma, our dept. secretary, Ms. Doom & Gloom, made a point of telling me thunderstorms were predicted both Saturday and Sunday. I'm counting on the sunny day myself.

Tuesday, September 09, 2003

So far, I've made 4 hummers and I'm not entirely happy with any of them. Close, almost...............but not quite. I couldn't work on it again tonight - had to start my feast clothes. The chemise is almost done, just working on the neck casing. The skirt is pinned together so that will only require seams and a casing. Also want to make an underskirt or overskirt - not sure which it will be. I don't know if I will have time tomorrow night or not.

I can't seem to get the body curve just exactly the way I want. Soon, however, soon.

Sunday, September 07, 2003

Well, here are the remnants of Tat Day with Heirloom Corner. It was a joint effort, with Kaye Judt, Mary Harris, and Jennifer Titus sharing preparations. Jennifer held it in her quilt shop, The ZigZag Corner. It was a little challenging to find, but I only went past it once. Last year I had a devil of a time finding the location, which was different from this one. There were many of the same faces, plus a few new ones. I remembered to take photos this year - last year, we all forgot. There was a little mixer to remind ourselves what we had in common. Then we had show and tell. Merie has a beautiful shawl in the works. I love the shuttle collection of Carol's. Too many individual items for me to remember now.

Then we broke for lunch - prepared by Jennifer and delicious!

We had a class by Mary Harris showing us how to do the lockstitch chain, up there in the upper right. I stumbled around a bit at first, but then you can see where I "got it". She also showed us how to make the same size picots on a ring, using a crochet hook or other round cylinder to measure. Then Kaye showed us how to make the motif I have started in pink and blue. She had it done in red and white and it looked candy-striped. I only got 2 of the 4 rings done right. Clearly, I'm going to need to practice this technique. Then we had a tat-off, run by Mary Harris and Mary Ann won that. That's what the white edging is - my practice strip. We all ended up with prizes though. And in between it all, we went in and shopped in Jennifer's shop. I ended up getting 3 balls of size 80 thread.

And we got this incredibly nice tote bag with a pocket!

It really is so much fun getting together with other tatters!

The threads are here!!!! This is machine embroidery thread so it is on spools like sewing thread and about the same thickness. It's quite strong and a little slick but I also got knots easily as it tends to unflip if I went too fast. Unfortunately, the sun was already too far down in the horizon to have time to get the ultraviolet reaction. So here is the butterfly I quickly and loosely tatted. Maybe tomorrow I can show it to you as a purple butterfly!

In the meantime, I'm going to work on the hummer again. I didn't like the second version last night. Something wasn't right.

later................I taped it to the car window while driving so it would be exposed to light. It did get lavendar, but didn't stay. It seems it only changes when exposed to UV light and then goes back to white when the light it gone. bummer!

Wednesday, September 03, 2003

Whoo-Hoo! I just ordered some threads from here. What a cool thread to play tat with! They are white but change color with exposure to sun, or I imagine heat, like body heat. You can also get color threads that morph to another color. And lots of other items, like beads, appliques, nail polish.......

Wish I would have them in time for Tatting Day - - - oh well.

Monday, September 01, 2003

I have an excuse to tat a hummingbird now. Found 4 patterns!!!! First, I thought I might do Kathy Lowe's hummer. It might be too big for my purpose, however. Then I remembered seeing one in my books so I went on a search to compare. I found one in Tatting Online by Elizabeth C. Zipay and another in Tatting With Friends by Jana Nicol-Holley. Both books can be ordered through Georgia Seitz but she's in the middle of a big move so it may be awhile before anyone can order, likely sometime in October. Both of those hummers were outlines though and I want it filled in. I contacted Carol A., remembering she brought one to our Lace Day in April that she made. Gorgeous colors, but hers was in 3D and stuffed. I need a flat one. She led me to here , where I found a hummer by Sherry Matthews, as well as numerous other patterns. A nice MSN Needle Tatting group to join, if anyone is interested. I've decided to use Sherry's as a model, but I wanted different wings, with long and graduated picots, to give that fluttery effect. So far, so good. I'm ready now for the tail and beak, not sure what I'm going to do with the tail as I don't want rings - actually, an idea just came to me. I'm making this into a bookmark so it needs to be tiny - I'm using DMC size 80 tatting thread. I'll put the hummer at both ends of a tatted cord done in ric rac or twist stitch. With this fine thread, it will be about perfect. The body now is about 1 1/4" long and the wings are a bit longer. I may change the wings to make them a bit shorter. With the long picots, it might look better.

I taught myself to tat in 1998. I can't believe how much tatting related stuff I have accumulated in five years! Once upon a time, I could fit everything into a little wicker case, not much bigger than a lunch box. Sure can't say that anymore! I've got the two towers filled and once I have the bookcase where I want it, it will hold everything else. I hope!

I'll show the hummer bookmark when I'm done. I'm still playing with the design for now.