Sunday, July 30, 2006

I got 'er done! Washed and dried too - in fact, they are wrapped and ready to slip on the expectant mother's desk sometime this week. My first thought was they were a bit big....but they aren't for a newborn. Preemie was the first size and then small and large. I made the small because I figured it won't be cold enough to wear them until November or December and it will be a few months old by then. I'm anxious to start the frog one now!

I've been wondering when the next issue of Tatting Times would be out and whaddaya know? It came Saturday! There are some summer beaded earrings, a split ring bookmark, a round motif by Mary Maynard, a funky wild-haired lady bookmark, and Bev Dillon's split ring lucky penny pattern. Karey also enclosed a skein of DMC craft thread to inspire us. It's too big for me to feel comfortable tatting with but I'll find a good home for it.

While I was in Michael's at the weekend, I found these Linea kits on clearance for $1 and $2 each! Originally up to $14.99. The thread that is used for the thread stenciling technique was only $.50 for the package. I couldn't resist! The kits were door hangers ( little fabric bags ), a drawstring bag, scarves, and some other kinds of bags. At that price, I got more than a few and when we meet up at my sister's next winter, it will be a fun project. I'm also considering how I can add tatting to them, of course. The pattern is already on the fabric so I may have to use the thread to embroider it anyway, but in some cases, I may be able to applique a tatted motif.

I started working on my TAT phase 2 project tonight. Messed up immediately which tells me not to start something so late at night. The first project involves all the different kinds of picots. I was doing fine until the 3rd one when I realized I wasn't following directions. There are points for following directions! I was making the chain part too long, matching the ring in pattern when that wasn't the pattern. It was easy enough to pick out but I'm glad I hadn't done the whole 30+ motifs yet.

Well, off to bed.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Cameron Lee - my daughter (his Grandma) is holding him and talking to him. Isn't that the most precious grin?
One of my tatting friends emailed me a few months ago with the link to an ebay item - lampworked teapot beads. I think it was Sue. I was going to bid and then I saw the seller had more in her store so I decided instead to put it on my wish list for my kids since my birthday was coming up. And then I forgot about them! My youngest son, Jesse, didn't. He contacted the seller and ended up buying 2 of case I want to make earrings out of them...or something...he said. LOL! I'm not sure what I will do with them. I was thinking of a scissors fob for the scissors in my kitchen. I could still do that and have a necklace too! Oh wow - here are all kinds of teapot beads!

Boy, I've been artsy craftsy this year. Teneriffe, bobbin lace, Romanian Point Lace, crocheting and now....knitting! I still have the hat to do but aren't these duck feet socks adorable? And what a challenge. It's been awhile....a long while, since I've knitted anything that wasn't straightforward. I was working with 4 needles, turning heels, doing increases and decreases and picking up stitches and doing fancy "new Improved" SSKs. LOL! The first one took me, oh.....4 or 5 days. The second one took 2 evenings! This one is a gift for our secretary. heheheheh....I've been leaving small gifts on her desk anonymously. Everyone thinks it's me even though I'm loudly denying it! That's okay even if they think it's me, they aren't sure until I confess and I'm having fun. I hope to have the hat and socks both done for a Monday morning surprise. I plan to make another set for my great grandson too. There is one larger size - he's only 3 months old right now but I think these would barely fit him so it's definitely going to take a bigger size for him. I've tried 3 times to upload his picture and blogger won't take it so I guess it will be the next entry.

Saturday, July 22, 2006

I really hate DST. It feels like it's only 6:00 p.m. and I'm exhausted and frustrated and feeling guilty because it feels so early in the day. In reality, it's 8:30 p.m. But it's like broad daylight out there. sigh....

Anyway...I found links to these precious baby hats and socks. Our Russian secretary is due next month and she still has next to nothing. Patti Pierce Stone has made dozens of these patterns available, primarily for charity use, but also personal use. What a lovely gift to give! knitting is rusty. Specifically, knitting with multiple double pointed needles. After several beginnings, I finally got the hang of it - got to the point to add the other color and realized the colors were backwards. I thought MC was the white and CC was contrasting color - and so it is, but on the socks, they are turned around in the directions. It is correct on the hat, but not the socks. out...thankfully knitting is easy to rip out. I decided to take a break before I begin again.

In tatting guild this morning, Kaye has a pattern for a watermelon bookmark. She only had 3 repeats but I thought I would add a few more. Normally I don't like beads on bookmarks but I thought this would work for a cookbook. I'd probably put it in a plastic sleeve too. I think this will be in book #2. Eventually. LOL!

I popped into the fairgrounds today. It was my tatted sampler that got reserve sweepstakes, not the angel. I have to admit I was disturbed when I looked at the lace display. There were 10 entries. I had 5. Bette had 1 (and the sweepstakes!!!) and there were 3 other entrants, one who had 2 entries. That means I had half the entries. Everything was on the top shelf of a 2 shelf glass display and 1/3 of that was an afghan. My tatted sampler was in a different case full of afghans because it was too tall for the lace one and had nothing to hang on the wall with. What if I don't enter? Will they end up dropping lace altogether as a category if there aren't a minimum number of entries? Maybe it was just a bad year, but I'm concerned. I'm not stretching myself any further. I've already concluded I have too many pots brewing as it is.

hmmmm....well, I guess handmade lace will just become even more valuable. I dare try the duck sock again?

Friday, July 21, 2006

I wanted to post an adorable photo by Iris Cabin but I couldn't find a link to email her and get permission - not any time soon anyway. So go to her blog and scroll down to see the kitty napping in the thyme! If you click on the photo, it will take you to her Flickr photo spot and you can see some tatting on crazy quilt pieces.

I had a phone message about my fair entries. I got reserve sweepstakes for my shawl and reserve sweepstakes in lace, but I don't know which lace piece. I'm not sure I'll have time to stop in there tomorrow before I come home, but I'll try. Otherwise, I won't know until Saturday afternoon. Greenfield tatting guild is in the morning.

The I.O.L.I. Bulletin arrived a few days ago. There is a beaded hatband by Nina Libin in Bobbie Demmer's column, Thoughts on Tatting. I've been organizing my beads so I've been thinking about new ways to use them.

I was in a second-hand store today and saw a plastic box under the counter. I couldn't see exactly what was in it but I was hoping there was a small hairpin lace fork. There wasn't, but there was a size 16 crochet hook! Also some yarn bobbins, stitch holders,stitch markers, a cable needle, a J hook knitting needle that I've never seen before, and some yarn needles and a size 4 crochet hook. Both hooks had metal caps too. hmmm....I better start using my reading glasses. The size 16 hook now says size 13. LOL! Oh well...for $2, I still got a deal.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

I've been busy lately. Did I mention my sofa arrived on Saturday? I still have a big mess everywhere. Last night I mowed when I got home and then started couching down the gold lame cord RPL angel. It was already getting late so I didn't do too much of that. This evening I got home and decided to try a nap on that brand-spanking-new couch. It works. LOL! When I woke up, I remembered I had meant to get some scrapbook paper to back one of the projects for my fair entry so I went into town and found some light green vellum AND some white patterned sparkly vellum. I love the effect of layering the two. Since I've been home, that's what I've been working on - layering the paper and arranging the tatting on it.

This wasn't what I was originally going to do. I pre-registered and you have to list what the items are. Everything was something I already had but I also wanted another item so I wrote down "tatted sampler", thinking I would take several pieces and put them in one frame. I was thinking of pieces I had started tatting to hang in my living room. The problem was that I only had 3 pieces in that thread and nothing else I've made worked well with them. As I was going through my little sample books, I noticed I had a lot of Christmas pieces so I started pulling them out and playing with them. I had a couple of different frames and settled on this one. Since last night, I've removed some pieces and added others to come up with this arrangement. I had to do something that will make everyone cringe, I know. The pieces were sliding....I made one attempt to sew a piece on and abandoned that idea quickly. I tried some, tacky! So I did the unthinkable....glue....yep, school gel washable glue. I don't think it washes out once it dries but I really don't plan to remove these pieces anyway. After I thought about it....this can be a permanent display. Much better than sticking them in a little photo album and never knowing where they are...and they fall out and get lost.

When I do get around to making the sampler that will hang in my living room, I can hang this one in its place during the holiday season.

I take my entries in tomorrow evening or Thursday morning. I can't wait to see what everyone else enters. It's so much fun to see what others dream up. I know Bette is entering a bobbinlace motif and it will be beautiful. Everything she makes is perfect.

I'm thinking when I get my shawl back that I might add a row or two of knotting on the fringe. It's an idea anyway.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Blogger apparently quits downloading after a certain amount so I had to wait on this part. Also in the antique store, the owner was clearing out jewelry and selling it for $1/bag. Most of it is junk costume jewelry but I go for unusual shapes and beads. I will take it apart and use it elsewhere.

It's just fun to look at and imagine what to do with each piece.

Here's a close-up of this one which is my favorite. See the gold filigree encasing the bigger beads? And there were some swirly beads and other different shaped beads all in one piece. I also liked the bars that holds the strands together. What a fascinating necklace!

I'm tempted to go back and get more.
The sun is shining after several days of rain! It's still sweltering hot, but it's bright and sunny outside.

I got the pig done the other day! I gave up on the onion rings. They went well until the 4th round so I thought I'd do chains instead but I think the onion rings look better. I used pink wings instead of white because all the flying pigs I've seen had pink wings. I suppose if they were meant to be angels, then they should be white.

Then I tried emptying some shuttles and testing some motifs at the same time. The big flower is just using a pencil as a picot gauge. The diamond motif is from Patti Duff's book, Mini-Tats. The other thing is from Tatted Samplers - the beginning of the ribbon sampler. I just wanted to see how well the instructions worked out. They are very precise but one sentence is after the other, making it hard to follow even with a post-it, so I'm going to type them out, line by line.

Sometimes it's dangerous to let me out shopping. LOL! I met my two youngest sons downtown to for dinner to celebrate my middle son's birthday. I was about a half hour early so I walked up to the next block to see what was there because I very seldom shop downtown. I walked into an antique store....found these McCall's Needlecraft magazines. I have several, but these are from some early years that I don't have very many of so I looked through the stack and picked five. Only $2.50 each which is cheaper than what I've found on Ebay.

On top of that, 4 of the 5 had tatting in them, something unheard of in their later issues. This luncheon set is probably very similar to what was in most pattern books at the time. I think this issue is 1950-51.

I had to giggle over this bra ad. See the pointy cups? Now you know why my generation burned bras when we came of age. I refrained from scanning the girdle ads.

These edgings seem to be different from the norm. This issue was 1960. I was 11 years old.

From 1953....when you click on the image and read the enlarged text, you will find they have been trying to make crochet look like tatting for over a half-century now. This piece is very nice.

I'm tempted to try the booties some time. I'm partial to Lenore English's bootie pattern, but I should enlarge my pattern base too.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Barber I had 3 bad haircuts in a row but I didn't say that to the lady who cut my hair tonight. I just said they never cut enough off the back. I decided to get my ears cut out and the back shorter this time.

Bald Is BeautifulWell.....she cut around my ears and she cut in the back and it was looking like things were going well...then she pulled the hair out from the side and cut so close I thought she might as well of had the razor out. Yikes! I knew at that point it would be too short for me. I have a boy cut now. I feel naked and exposed....but the upside is that I won't have to get a haircut for probably 6 months now!

I just keep telling myself that it will grow out fast. In 2 weeks, I'll be okay with it. In another 2 weeks, it will be almost where I wanted it and in 6 weeks, it will be perfect!

The problem is, I gotta get my driver's license renewed within the next 10 days. You know what that means. The picture from hell. Actually, I like my last picture. I'd be happy if they could just use the same one.

Okay, enough of the pity party.

Wellllll...not really. Did I mention I told her I wanted it all the same length except for the cutout ears and shorter back? Did I mention that I told her I didn't want it any shorter in the front because I had already trimmed that part to where I wanted it? Did I mention that she stopped once and asked if that was enough or did I want more cut off and I said NO, this is good....and she still kept on cutting...and trimmed the front even shorter? But it's all even. She did do a good job on keeping it even.

Okay...done now.

I got home and Judith Connors latest book, Contemporary Tatting had arrived! There is a tatted teacup in there, with stated dimensions of approximately 2 1/2 inches each way in size 20 thread. I like this feature - the measurement of the sample and the size thread used. I don't buy that argument about how everyone's tension is different so you can't give measurements. If measurements were given more often, then each tatter would know if they habitually tatted tighter or looser and would be able to adjust accordingly. You have test swatches in knitting and crochet...why not in tatting? There are several advanced techniques which are also explained in text and diagrams at the beginning.

To be honest, I'm not enamored of advanced techniques these days. I like to tat for the pleasure of tatting. It's soothing and relaxing. When I want a challenge, then I go for the unusual techniques but the majority of the time, I want to make something pretty without standing on my head to figure out the directions. I find myself going more and more to the old books that kept it pretty simple. Split rings and split chains have a wonderful functional purpose but many of the techniques now are purely decorative or a new complicated way to achieve an old look. That said, I hope the designers that need that challenge keep at it because that's how the craft evolves. I'm just saying I'm happy with simple tatting for the most part.

Sunday, July 09, 2006

Here's my play for the day. I was experimenting with different patterns of beads in purl tatting. I was considering layering rows of purl tatting for the hatband but I can't say I'm really happy with any of these for that particular purpose.

A big round of applause for Carol Amich who won the top prizes for most of her tatting at the Clinton County Fair! You can see her work here.

I meant to get Jane's flying pig done this weekend but forgot! It never fails...just as the weekend ends, I'm ready to do all kinds of stuff.
I've been sorting beads. I got these wonderful containers from Walmart. There are a dozen individual containers with pop up lids so you can pour the beads out if you want, or pull off the top and empty it completely. You can see the colors clearly as well as the size. It's taken me a few weeks to remember where I got the container. It wasn't at the Walmart I normally go to although I think that is where I originally bought it. I got 2 more at the WL Walmart and I'm thinking I should go back and get 3 more so I will have one for each primary color group. I've already filled up these 3 and have enough to fill yet another one. A 10 gram tube fills the little container up with room to spare. The 18 gram tubes are a little too much. I really don't need any more beads. I need to use the ones I have!

Today is the bobbinlace workshop for my lace guild with Holly VanSciver. While Holly likes newbies, I didn't want to part with the money for this one and there were enough already committed. I did pop out to Cathy's during the lunch break to see how everyone was doing and see if there was anything I wanted to buy. I could have spent some money there, but decided not to. There were some pretty silk threads that were tempting though.

I went to my granddaughter Katie's game this evening. She got a couple of hits and runs but they still lost. After that, I dropped her off at her dad's football team's game. I'm not into football so I came on home!

I got these mother-of-pearl heart buttons on clearance at Walmart. I'm thinking I might have to paint some flowers on the bigger hearts. They would certainly make some beautiful jewelry.

I think I'm going to try to finish the hatband I started while developing the class I taught at Hector. The flowers are made. I just need to do the band part, but because there were 3 flowers and a bigger hat, I wanted to make the band bigger or wider. I've also been considering beads in the hatband but I haven't quite thought it out.

There was a multicolored crochet pineapple runner on the free pattern of the day at Annie's Attic. I've seen a few people have been trying to use up threads lately in multicolored projects and it occurred to me that this might be a good one for me...only a tatted pineapple. We'll see if I still like the idea later.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

I finished the bird last night. I considered entering it into the fair but I've already got enough tatting to enter. I emailed Leah and said it's ready so I'll probably pop it over there tomorrow if she isn't on vacation. There's quite a bit of cut & tie with this and I can't really figure out how to consolidate that. Part of it, a large part of it, is due to changing threads.

In the meantime, I've had this gold lamé thread on my computer desk for weeks now. I finally decided to start a macrame cord with it. It's been in the back of my mind to make an angel with it although I'm not sure what I'll use for filling. I do have some thread with a gold thread in it so that might work well. This gold is kind of crusty to work with.

The finished and fringed shawl on my new recliner! The sofa will come soon. It's a sage green although it looks grayish in the photo. I need to send in the money and registration for my fair entries....just gotta finalize in my head what I'm entering. BTW, the yarn in this shawl is some I bought on clearance at Hobby Lobby once. It makes me feel good to actually use up one of those "bargains" I'm such a sucker for!

Then back to tatting eagles and pigs.

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

If you want so see a stunning heart in tatting, check out this one in Martha Ess's new website. The heart is on page 65 of Elgiva Nicholls Tatting Technique and History. ISBN 0-486-24612-4. This is a Dover publication with a price of $5.95 on the back when I got it in the late 90's. The Queen Anne's Lace and Dragonfly in the back are what prompted me to buy the book, though I have yet to make it! There are several copies available here.

hmmmmmm.....wonder if I could drum up a little study group to work through books like this over a period of several weeks? That might motivate me to do something with these treasures instead of just thumbing through the pages!

I've been working madly on this shawl. Last night I was done except for the fringe and I decided to wash it before I added that part. The long edge, which isn't seen here, had a tendency to curve. When I finished the last row of "crab stitch" there, it seemed to lay flat and looked ...okay. Now freshly laundered, it is folded over and I'm not happy with it so I will take those last 2 rows out and do something different. I followed the pattern everywhere else, but this part isn't working out. Once I'm happy with the edge, I'll fringe this part. I love the rest of it! The pattern came from Magic Crochet, number 29, February 1984.

I've had this eagle done for over a week but forgot to post it. This one is done with grays and black. I intend to do one in browns also. I'm considering doing the body in solid brown and the wings in a brown/gold variegated. Maybe do one set of inner rings in gold to appear as talons.

Last night I remembered that I had promised to make a bluebird for a woman who had seen the robin I'd tatted from Ring of Tatters 2005. This one will be all blue. She has a friend who collects bluebirds. (I'll bet you thought I forgot!)

When I downloaded the photos from my camera, I found this one of my grandson Bailey when we went to Hunter's Pub a few weeks ago for his dad's birthday. Bailey is 10 going on 16. Need I say more?

Happy Fourth of July!!!!

Eagle Liberty Flags

Fireworks Flags Smiley Fireworks