Thursday, October 30, 2008

I have to tell you that I am NOT a Halloween person. Never have been. But I'm not much for costumes unless it's the Renaissance period and then only if a fair is involved. Even so, all of my family loves Halloween and some even have quite elaborate settings or parties. This is Layla, the puppy of my son and new daughter-in-law, dressed up in a ladybug costume, enticed into hugging the pumpkin with the help of peanut butter. LOL! You might also note the big "P" on the pumpkin - only Purdue grads mark everything with their alma mater.

In case you think I haven't been tatting, I have. Most will have to wait for another time to show but this is the beaded choker by Judith Connors in Contemporary Tatting. As a choker, this is probably the longest in history but I'm using it for something else. Can't show just now. Judith is an Australian tatter that I had the pleasure of meeting a few years ago when I visited Brisbane. She is also the author of An Illustrated Dictionary of Tatting, which I highly recommend. It cross-references different terms as well as explains what they are, what the technique or stitch is. She updated the original a few years ago, but either one is a welcome addition to the tatter's library. In case you happen to be making out your Christmas list.....

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

There is a six minute needle tatting video online for a Loops & Lace bracelet designed by Lesley Weiss in the October issue of Beads&Button Magazine. It's not as close up as it could be and goes pretty fast but it's the first needle tatting tutorial online that I've seen.

I still prefer shuttle tatting to needle tatting but it's a good introduction to tatting. I've seen some excellent needle tatting that you could barely tell from shuttle tatting but like any kind of tatting, it takes practice to develop that skill. I think needle tatting got a bad rap initially because it was so obviously NOT shuttle tatting - loose stitches and usually big thread, often mismatched thread to the needle size. As the technique has evolved and stitchers learned the tips and tricks to make it look good, it's every bit as beautiful as shuttle tatting.

I've seen some pretty bad shuttle tatting - all I have to do is go back and look at all my early tatting mistakes that are kept in a tin. LOL! This is some of it. I forgot I even used some size 5 perle cotton at times. I used whatever I could get my hands on back then. There were no thread vendors close and I didn't know about the one place in town that carried DMC cordonnet at the time. I still have about 20 spools of guttermann top stitch thread that I would buy on sale because it came in lots of colors and was heavy enough to handle the twisting and pulling without breaking. Then I started ordering Cebelia through Herrschners. It was so much easier to work with than the top stitch thread. Then I found The Heirloom Corner in Pendleton, Indiana with Kaye Judt as owner. She had tons of thread and a dozen or so tatting books. I was in heaven! Kaye has since sold the business to Jennifer at ZigZag Corner Quilt Shop in Greenfield, Indiana and I still buy thread and books through them occasionally. We have an informal tatting guild there that I have only been to twice or three times in the past year. November is looking pretty good unless they cancel it due to the holidays!

CQ MagOnline has a new issue! Check out the wooden bangle bracelet and the wooden bead Bohemian pendant by Pat Winter. There are lots of projects in every issue and while they are crazy quilt focused, remember that you can use lots of tatting in these too. You can view any of the archived issues at any time. Also keep in mind that you can click on the photos and get a close-up view. I didn't know that for the longest time - really made me feel dumb when I figured it out. LOL!

Yesterday wasn't as productive as I hoped but it wasn't a total waste either. It's the first day I didn't have to get up and shower to go eat breakfast elsewhere. I got to sleep as long as I wanted - but got up at 7:30. I took a nap in the afternoon and I'm not sure how long - that's how tired I still was. I did do laundry - still have one load to fold, and I changed the litter box, went to the grocery store, and checked the mail. I tatted late last night. It's taking me awhile to find things and to remember what was in progress. Today I will unpack the rest of my luggage and put it away and do some other cleaning that is long overdue. I have a gift I need to make RIGHT NOW and need to sort out what else I want to get done in the remainder of the week. I ended up sleeping until 10:00 a.m. this morning but I was up until 1:00 a.m. last night. I am so glad I took this week off too. I wouldn't mind having a month off if I got paid for it. LOL!

I'm pretty much caught up on everyone's blogs but haven't read any of the list groups other than my own yet. I found I lost 2 pounds overnight which confirms my suspicion that some of the weight I gained during the cruise was water. Although it was nice to have so much food at hand, I have to admit that for the most part, I prefer my regular diet. The only thing I might miss was the lovely dinners. I missed my iced tea - it was terrible on the ship. I bought a soda card but that involved going to the bar for a small 12 ounce glass that was mostly ice. That got old but the water didn't taste all that great either except at the evening table. So now I'm drinking tons of my decaf self-brewed iced tea. LOL!

Monday, October 27, 2008

The cruise was fun - there were 17 of us altogether - but not something I would do alone. You really need someone with you. And I guess it's not my greatest thrill but, yes, it was fun and relaxing.

At the first port, Nassau, I got off the ship in the afternoon and my son and I took a quick walk around. It's very touristy and overpriced. I found a shop, The Linen Store, and spent some time in there as my son made a walk around the block. He decided to come in and be bored with me instead after being repeatedly approached by characters wanting to sell him drugs. They never approached him when he was with me.

I bought one small shell that I particularly liked and 2 hankies, which I'm pretty sure I could get anywhere, but they were affordable and something I appreciate and will enjoy calling a souvenir. I found a rack of girl's pinafores and zeroed right in on this one with the tatting on the hem. I thought the camera focused better than it did and I'm disappointed that they are blurry.

There was only one with tatting but all had some kind of lacework - crochet, bobbinlace, drawn-thread work, needlelace, and battenburg lace. I think this one was priced at $65.00. Maybe less - I can't really remember now. The price $35.00 comes to mind too. I think you can tell it is a larger thread and crochet connecting the long picots - a feature I see in a lot of tatting that originates in China. It was really a very pretty pinafore but I couldn't justify buying it since I have no one to give it to and I really didn't have a lot of money to burn. I was hoping to find beads or something along that line but never did. Lots of diamonds for sale but I wasn't in the market for that either.

I did tat a little. I finished the spinning wheel coaster but I only had a copy of the diagram with me, not the book, so ended up making a mistake somehow at the end. I didn't start in the right place and maybe that was where I messed up. I didn't even know how many repeats to make!

I also tatted a teapot and another unusual motif but need to hide ends and block them so they'll show up later.

I felt pretty sick Thursday night which I think was a combination of the sweltering heat on Grand Turk island and some seasickness. It really didn't bother me before but that day we'd only been anchored for 6-7 hours out of 24 and the ocean was choppy. About mid-morning on Friday though, I was much better. Anyway, I did most of my tatting on Thursday night and Friday, since we were at sea all day and I wasn't interested in anything else going on onboard.

Sunday, October 26, 2008


I'm on my way home!!!!!!

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Rainbow Warriors

The message is a little extreme for my tastes but it's a good reminder, nonetheless, to appreciate the beauty of our world. I do not believe in scarcity or the fear it is founded upon, but I do believe in balance.

This is probably my least favorite of the video clips I picked, but I liked most of it and for many, it is exactly the right one. I love it that we are all different.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Creativity - Change is the Prelude to Growth

I've been watching some very creative people change direction lately. That's not a bad thing, but initially I felt some sadness as a venture that I enjoyed came to an end. Just Be Connected is ending its run. It will be up indefinitely, but I'll miss the postings and connections to other creative people. I also read recently that Sharon Briggs won't be publishing a newsletter anymore. I haven't subscribed to the newsletter for a long time but not because it wasn't worth it. It was - I've just been limiting new purchases. It looks like there may be some changes in blogs and websites that need to find a new host unexpectedly too. I know the first two are moving on to ventures that will be every bit as creative and gratifying as what they've left behind. Change is good. I'm sure the others that were unexpectedly prompted to change will come up with something even better too.

I've been planning some changes too but they won't take place until the beginning of the year. They're just ideas for now, but they've been there for a long time and I knew during the summer that it was time. The one that I will tell you about is that I'm going to create a new blog. I'll leave this one archived but I want a new look and a new format. I'm currently going through old entries and labeling them, although I believe the search feature is as good as it gets to find something. It also gives me the opportunity to replace photos that show as an error now since I no longer use those photo hosts.

Just keep in mind.....CHANGE IS GOOD!!!!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Long, but with beautiful music.

Teacup fabric and sock monkey quilts! Gotta see them at My Sewing Serenity!

Friday, October 17, 2008

I Believe....

I'm taking a cue from Lady Shuttlemaker and I'm preposting and publishing with a programmed future date. It's been on my mind...but so little time.

And with so little time, there's so little tatting - but I wanted to offer a little upliftment now and then, as well as a few other goodies. I will be back October 27th.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

NATA #67

Yes, this is why I have #67 in the Nuts About Tatting Association. I dropped in at a new Goodwill in our area this evening and found these tins, a set of 6 though I only scanned 4, because they are shuttle-shaped. Won't they make the cutest little tarts or cakes? They are stamped "Nutbrown, Made in England" Google has only provided me the information that Nutbrown is the name of the company that manufactured kitchen tins and gadgets in the 1900's. I don't know if they are still around and I don't really know what these tins are for, but maybe one of our tatting friends from the UK can fill me in?

Just wanted to show the size in comparison to a Clover shuttle. It's about the size of a Tatsy shuttle.

And what kind of shuttle shapes do you find when you go shopping????

Monday, October 13, 2008

October Anniversary Winner!

I didn't forget but I just got home about a half hour ago and had to wait for an update to download.

Congratulations to the newest blog anniversary winner!!!!!

Jon in Malaysia!!!!

Sunday, October 12, 2008

I have always believed in the inherent goodness of mankind. There is strong concern right now with economic issues and the presidential election coming up in our country. I prefer soothing messages such as this rather than the doom and gloom that sensationalizes the media.


I'm tatting thread off of shuttles but have nothing to show for it. I'm still finishing up some needlelace and crocheting and working on Connie's package. Tomorrow I draw a new monthly winner. Sounds like I'm behind, huh? Yep, but as I fumed last night over something that didn't turn out, I decided to relax and let go of it. I have a lot of last minute details to take care of before the cruise. I'll be coming back earlier than I thought and I will still be off work so I'll take my time and do it right. I just have too many ideas in my head at once!

Saturday, October 11, 2008

I've been reading the online newsletter from CraftStylish and found this link to reclaiming yarn from a thrift sweater. LOL! Let me tell you how many years ago I used to do that....ummm....1969 or 1970. I have a photo somewhere of the sweater I knitted. I loved it. It was a burgundy color, sort of nubby and mohairish, which was unusual then and I wore it with a pair of burgundy wool-blend slacks. I don't remember where I got the original sweater - either from some hand-me-downs given to me or the second-hand store in the little town I lived in. I painstakingly unraveled the sweater and washed it, rolled it into balls (didn't know how to make a pull skein ball then) and then knitted it up.

We really take a lot for granted these days. I could not afford yarn back then. The baby sweater I made for my first baby (back when you didn't know the sex of your baby) was from yarn I purchased with a Christmas gift certificate to J. C. Penney's. Yep, they had yarn back then.

Anyway, I loved that sweater. It had short sleeves - probably because there wasn't enough yarn for long sleeves. LOL! I wore it for 5 or 6 years before giving it up. What strikes me now is that I did that out of necessity and creative drive. The writer of the article seems to be doing it as a fun challenge and to recycle.

I still buy a lot of stuff from the thrift stores and garage sales. It's less out of need and more for the fun of it. I love it when I find things that go together or that I can remake into something cool. Part of it is the creative drive and part of it is the satisfaction I feel from "recycling". I have nothing against new purchases, but this is probably MY best way of going "green" and doing my part in keeping the environment healthy. I don't get nearly the same pleasure from going into a store and shopping for something new. It just doesn't do anything for me, but take me into a Goodwill or Second-Hand store or a real flea market (not the commercialized cheap stuff kind), I am in HEAVEN!

I rarely find good yarn or thread though. I find that kind of odd, so when I do find it, I'm dancing all over the place. LOL!

Oh Look! Cupcakes on a stick!

Yeah...I'm surfing for Christmas gift ideas. I'll never make the cupcakes on a stick but I would love to see someone else make them. OR .... how about some TATTED cupcakes on a stick????

And where are YOU looking for inspiration today?

Friday, October 10, 2008

If you like to bake and decorate your baking, you'll love this blog: I found it in a roundabout way, while looking for the original price of this copper tin and cookie cutters that I found in Goodwill last week. I remember hearing about a tatting challenge years ago that used cookie cutters for inspiration. I've seen a tatted train engine wouldn't this train set make a cute bookmark? Especially if you are a Purdue Boilermaker.

I'm still working on the Spinning Wheel glass mat but I've also been doing some other stitching so I'm not much further on it and didn't think it was worth scanning for an update right now.

A week from now I'll be doing last minute packing for the cruise in the Eastern Carribbean. As much as I would love to do a seasonal switchout with my clothing this weekend, I can't put the warm weather things away until after the cruise so I might as well wait. I have so much other stuff I need to get done anyway...the last mowing of grass, take out the window AC, make curtains for that window since the blinds broke when we put the AC in. I live back off the road so it's not like there are hoards of people driving or walking by and the AC covered the lower half of the window but now that cool weather is approaching, I need to take care of it. I've got the material and a curtain rod so it shouldn't take me that long to whip something up. Umm...well, if I don't let myself think about it too much, that is. Everytime I really start thinking about it, I want to put tatted motif insertions in it and a tatted edging....

I've been entertaining myself by looking through old blog entries. I forget what all I have written about and I feel like the toddler, whose toys were put away when they got boring and then brought out again a month or two later and it's like a brand new toy! I've also been exploring some other links I've found and whoo-whee...inspiration has stricken multiple times! I don't really want to point them out yet since some will be made into surprises for the monthly drawing winners.

Monday, October 06, 2008

Dainty Vintage Edgings & Irish Crochet Pincushion

The Daintiest of Tatted Trims by Bessie M. Barker
Needlecraft, September, 1925
Rewritten by Regina A. Brummett, 2008

I used 2 shuttles for each edging. If you use two colors, you will need to switch shuttles to get the rings and chains facing the right way. If you use a ball and shuttle, you may need to do the shoelace trick. I've put the rw & slt in #1 but not the others. Let me know if you have any problems.

R 2, ( - 2 ) 3x, clr, rw
Ch 7, rw
R 2, ( - 2 ) 3x, clr, slt
* Ch 5, slt
R 2, ( -1 ) 10x, - 2, clr, slt
Ch 5, slt
R 2, ( - 2 ) 3x, clr, slt
Ch 7, rw
R 2 – 2, + middle p of 1st r, 2 -2, clr, slt
Ch 7, slt
R 2, ( - 2 ) 3x, clr, rw
Ch 7, slt
R 2 – 2 + middle p of 3rd small r, 2 – 2, clr, slt
Continue pattern from * for length desired.

R 2 (- 2) 3x, clr
*Ch 7
[R 2 (- 2) 3x, clr, Ch 7] twice
R 2 – 2, + middle p of 3rd r prev, 2 -2, clr
Ch 7
R 2 (- 2) 3x, clr
Repeat from * for length desired.

R 2 (- 2) 3x, clr
Ch 7
*R 7, + last p of prev r, (4 - ) twice, 7, clr
R 2 (- 2) 3x, clr
Ch 7
R 4, + lst p of large r, 4, clr
R 2, p, (1 - ) 14x, 2, clr
Ch 7
R 7, + last p of 1st large r (same to which prev small r joined) 4, + middle p of same large r, 4 – 7, clr
R 2 (- 2) 3x, clr
Ch 7
R 2 (- 2) 3x, clr
Ch 7
Repeat from * for length, joining small r following by middle p to middle p of 3rd small r back.

Ch 1 – 5 – 3 – 5
R 8, + to 1st p of ch, (2 - ) 2x, 8, clr
[R 8, + to last p of prev r, 2 – 2 – 8, clr] 4x
*Ch 5 – 3 – 5 + last p of prev r, 5 – 3 – 5
R 8, + to last p of last r (where ch joined), (2 - ) 2x, 8, clr
[R 8, + to last p of prev r, 2 – 2 – 8, clr] 4x
Repeat from * for desired length

And here is the Irish Crochet pincushion finished up. The thread is all the same color but the part that was farther away in the scan appears darker. I was kind of mooshing down on the lid which really flattened out the center and contributed to it looking lighter, I think.

Sunday, October 05, 2008

I don't have a lot of photos yet. My ex took this one with my camera with me and my three sons before everyone got there. The groom is on the left.

My middle son (the one still available!) ushering me to my seat.

Aren't the flowers girls precious?

Libby and her father, John, starting the final walk down the aisle. My sister was sitting in the back row and graciously took the last 3 photos.

I have a few photos from the reception but I think those are probably boring to anyone who doesn't know the people. Anyway, it was an absolutely gorgeous wedding, with perfect weather,and everything went according to plan.

And now...back to my regular life.....

Clunies - Inspiration to get you going!

I was looking at the cluny daisy on Iris Niebach's blog, The Tatting Player, and followed the link for her inspiration to Fils et dentelles, a blog by Elisa Dusud. She's been using these clunies for well over a year and the designs are exquisite. I looked at 14 blog pages - each more enchanting than the one before. I can't read French and the online translator was only somewhat helpful, but you should go and let yourself be inspired to learn clunies if you have not already.

From there, I found a fun site where you can create your own flowers and use those and the creations of others to make a flower garden. I sent it to myself, expecting to find the same thing I created but it simply takes you to the site where you can create your own. Even so, it's a fun timewaster!

Yes, I did take some tatting with me to the wedding! I had started this Spinning Wheel glass mat that Diane has been tatting so many of lately in hand-dyed thread. I started it Thursday night to help me wind down from wedding preparations and then took it with me yesterday. I did tat a bit early when I was waiting for everyone to get dressed and prepped for photos. Once I started tatting it, I knew I had started it before but I don't think I have ever finished it. I keep getting sidetracked and then can't remember what it was when I find it again. I don't think I've even gotten this far in the past. I would bravely say I'd finish it tonight but I want to work up the instructions for the vintage edgings I've been tatting instead and get those posted soon, so it's unlikely I will get it done. I also have to remember what I was doing for Connie as the monthly anniversary blog winner.

Saturday, October 04, 2008

Wedding Today!!!!

I'm taking my ex and my oldest son to the church early so everyone else can come later. While I'm waiting, I thought I would update.

Last night's rehearsal dinner went well at Sahm's in Fishers, Indiana. I had the favor boxes done a couple of nights before. Just had to setup the centerpieces of heartshaped bowls filled with clear marbles and Autumn flower blossoms plus the "love" candles. It looked very nice. The meal was good. Everyone seemed to be in fairly calm spirits when we left.

Embarrassing moment? I forgot to pay! One of the waitresses caught me as I was getting in the car....guess it happens all the time as people get so caught up in everything. LOL!

The boxes were easy - fold on the lines and fill. Then I tied 2 ribbons together and glued.

Do I look stressed? I wasn't really but it was a long day. Today will be even longer.

Ready and waiting on the crowd.

Thursday, October 02, 2008 image image image image

teeheehee...playing with text generated here:

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

No Tatting!
But it's on my mind
and I've been reading about
everyone else's beautiful work
Vintage edgings coming soon!