Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Busy, Busy, Busy!!!

You might remember the beaded half-butterfly I made for Diane last month? Well, Rosemarie has posted the pattern on her website! Just in time for Spring tatting of flowers and bunnies and flutters.

I also got word today of someone's book that is in the printing process and will soon be available. I'll leave that special announcement to the author but be watching!

Crocheted beads! I wonder if you can do this with tatting? I blogged this from the site - not exactly how I would place it on my blog but I don't want to mess with it too much. I think you can click on it and go to the pattern.

I was looking for bead photos under creative commons to add a little color to today's entry. This one is not CC but I can "blog" it. Anyway, I'm leaving for lunch now - enjoy!

Monday, March 30, 2009

Finally, a few minutes free.

Lace Day went well. I'm glad we only do this every other year. I was so busy last year that I wasn't in on the planning much until the last minute almost and then I was limited on what I could physically do. I still overdid it. I went home and crashed for nearly 2 hours on Saturday. Some heavy duty Tylenol helped. I really wish I'd had more money but I ended up spending more than I planned after all.

ZigZag Corner had nearly all, if not ALL, of the Lizbeth threads. I won a gift certificate in the drawing so I used it for thread. I don't have a scan or photo with me but I'm hoping to tat something with it SOON! The only vendor I didn't buy from was John Aebi but I did talk to him about my hickory tree and making a shuttle. He normally only does bobbins so it will be an experiment for him. I was SURE I'd seen shuttles there before. Maybe I should seek out a seasoned shuttlemaker? I also have a fallen sycamore tree that I'd love a lace tool from.

I bought one Italian magazine. I don't know what I was thinking of...there are NO diagrams. I experimented for a short while Saturday night using altavista translator and I can probably work it out but it will be a pain as I have to type in what is there to begin with, use the translator, and then figure out what it really means. LOL! Seriously - WHAT was I thinking of? ~ About half a dozen things in it that I just adored and am inspired to make if I can figure it out?

One thing that was brought up at our last meeting before Lace Day was the possibility of asking the local bead vendor to join in. Maybe next time - that was one thing I missed seeing.

I looked for some books on drawn thread work and needlelace but I didn't see any that I really wanted. Most are black and white and not very exciting or clear. I want something with color photos and very clear step by step instructions.

Oh, Debbie Beever had tons of Finca size 16 thread so I got a few balls of that to add to what I already have and I also got a spool each of silver and gold thread in a brand that I think I've gotten before and really liked. Must have since it's gone!

I forgot to take my camera on Lace Day but already I've seen some good photos on Carol Amich's blog and Diane's blog. Diane is so sweet - she donated a navy blue woven bag along with the apple green bookmark and coaster AND a hanky for our drawing and she isn't even a member of our group!

It was great visiting with everyone in the Social Cafe, tatting and catching up and comparing goodies. Laura from Columbia City, IN brought Hector, the Gourd Hedgehog. Carol brought her gingerbread house and few other of her 3D tatted goodies, including Conor. Dorcas and several ladies from her group were there. Stephen Bowman from Bloomington (bluetattingman). Some local visitors who are not part of the guild but may be later!

Sunday we met at the Tippecanoe Arts Federation building where we usually have our meetings and participated in a workshop on Viking Knit or Viking metal weaving taught by Tracy Jackson, owner of The Lacemaker.

These aren't my hands since I was walking around with my camera. I think it is Cathy Kozlowski but it might be Dagmar too. Both had nice even mesh - not like mine at all!

This, however, IS mine! This is how it looks once it's pulled through the drawing plate. The silver will be a bracelet as soon as I get the endcaps glued on with the fastener. The gold/copper piece was the spiral stitch and I only had time to make a sample of how it will look. I have a few photos of the samples too but didn't get them put on here before I had to leave this morning.

Before I end up here, I wanted to mention that TattingChic (who has an anniversary giveaway going on right now) pointed out after my last blog entry that I was a Button Floozy! LOL! Well, after seeing what they do over at http://buttonfloozies.blogspot.com/ I was tempted to join but I'm too selfish. I couldn't possibly give away any of my stash in an exchange. Nope, better to just look and covet what others have and let myself off the hook.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

It's been a long time since I brought it up but ever since I saw the title somewhere, I've wanted this book. It was a very small run of a chapbook and no where to be found. I finally was able to contact someone who handled the author's sales but there were no copies available. When I last emailed, I was told the author, Wilma Elizabeth McDaniel, was recovering from serious illness after suffering a stroke. They had hoped to republish but everything was up in the air at that time. So I kind of forgot about it but today as I looked at my wishlists on a couple of online booksites, I decided to try to find a used copy again. What I found was this webpage, http://back40publishing.com/wemeditions.html, which is a tribute to the author who did pass away in 2007. I also saw the book I wanted, Tatted Lace & Other Handmade Poems, is expected to be republished sometime midyear. It's a small book of poetry and I don't think it even is about lace except maybe just one, but I have always loved that title and even have my google ID as poemsoflace. I emailed and asked them to let me know when it is published.

Now, that leaves one more author that I'm still trying to contact or learn about. Kate Plummer who designed and published Kate's Kritters. The alligator I've tatted from time to time is from Kate. If she is living, I would love to talk to her about republishing an updated version of her book. And if she is not, perhaps her family would allow me to tackle the project. The only copy I've seen is in the library of I.O.L.I. Books sometimes do not return to the library - either the borrower disappears or the mail goes awry. I'd hate to think that might happen with this one.

Just in time for Easter, I stumbled (again) on this site. She has a few tutorials but you can't print them out so you have to stay glued to your computer to follow them. LOL! In this one, she shows how you can take an insertion, or what appears to be 2 edgings joined together, and use them to trim an Easter Egg. I think it's really clever. I probably won't get to try it this year, but maybe next year. On this one, she shows how to take two circle motifs and string them together over the egg. You could do this with Christmas ornaments too. Your own design.

I would love to show you what I've been tatting and it is something that will go on the exhibit table for Lace Day but it will go to Marie after that so ......you'll have to wait. I'm excited though! It's the first I've made like this.

Okay, so what can I show you?

I may have mentioned that I LIKE buttons in passing. I have to confess that I am a Buttonholic. A few weeks ago when I was in JoAnn Fabrics looking for some fabric for a project for my daughter's birthday, JoAnn's had buttons 40% off - maybe it was even 50%. I don't know....I was in a trance by the time I walked out the door. If anyone ever gets my name in an exchange, get me buttons. I never think to put it on my preference list. I do use buttons in tatting. Well....I plan to....and sometimes I even remember to. I love unusual shapes, glitter and sparkle, metal and wood, glass - yep, just about anything in buttons.

I wanted to use these somehow for the birthday theme but didn't get to it. I think I was going to put them on a hat. Maybe someone can give me some ideas. I also brought back some handmade buttons from Australia when I was there. I bought as many different elephant buttons as I could find since my daughter loves elephants. I was going to put them all on ........ something...yet to be determined. LOL! I'm currently thinking of a pieced bag, with some bits in neutral ecru which will also show off the buttons. I don't want them to get lost in a busy print but plain canvas or cotton would be TOO plain. It will probably be a Christmas present so I have plenty of time. (yea...right!) I've probably got 10-15 buttons. It wouldn't have to be a bag but she is very practical. She does crochet so it could also be a crochet bag or tote. I think she is too busy to read this so I'm not concerned.

Here are some I bought at JoAnn's that day. Some may look a bit ordinary but I specifically picked them to go with other buttons, stacked, on my little pouches. I like to tat behind them and make brooches or earrings too. I also like to just pick them up and look at them, fondle them, fantasize where I will use them. See those flower ones? They are real dried flower bits. There were about 8 others I could have gotten but I did show some restraint. Til they are on sale again!

Walmart has a lot of colorful unusual buttons too. I love the square shape on these and I love the dimensional floral design on the black ones. I have buttons from years back, some from my mother's button box, some that I've simply saved from clothing when I was super frugal and used them for my children's clothing.

Here's my biggest button jar. Most of them are in here, I think. I have some small bags in other places and maybe if I gathered them all up together they would fill another container like this but I don't have another container. I just love buttons.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Monday Musings!

Here's an amulet bag from Dianna Stevens book, It's in the Bag!. Plain white thread and multicolored beads. This will go on the raffle table where prizes for the drawing will be. (some kind of legal glitch about the word "raffle")

I'm emptying shuttles too. I made up the little white motif as I went. The butterfly is Mary McCarthy's pattern in the August 1990 issue of Workbasket. I'm going to make another Spring Basket and embellish it with these butterflies (more being made) and some kind of tatted spring blossom. Maybe the antique daisy motif from Little Grey Bungalow. This one will go on the exhibit table.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Lace Day Reminder

sigh...here it is, nearly 2:00 p.m. and I have nothing to show for my time. I did do something...I was sewing one of the business card holders for Lace Day. I tweaked it. I was so excited - it looked like it was turning out perfectly! But in turning it inside out...well, lets just say that while I did get it turned inside out, I was disappointed, so disappointed. The velcro did not match up. I don't know why. I thought they were in the exact same place. I even moved one TWICE to get it placed right. Somehow they ended up a different distance from the side instead. I left the opening to turn in a different place. Bad move. Everything else lined up, which was what I was tweaking in the first place, but ...it's just not right. It was supposed to match a pouch. I wasn't that fond of the fabric to begin with and just can't face the prospect of doing it over right now. I had trouble matching the lining to the main color and then I had to go get thread. I got a little too hot with the iron in one spot of the interfacing. I think it's just not meant to be.

I may be able to fix it, now that I've given up. LOL! Something came to me, but I'll wait til I'm fresher in mood before I tackle it. I have to make more than one. Maybe I'll just go clean something instead. I do have some tatting done but it's for Marie so I wouldn't want to spoil the surprise, now would I?


Later, after a nap that I didn't think I needed but obviously did since I was out shortly after laying down, I decided to tackle a different project. I found this Spring Basket earlier in the week at http://mayamade.blogspot.com/. I loved the simplicity of it and I already had everything I needed to make it. So I did. Well, even for something as simple as this, I had to change something. The instructions call for stitching the bottom corners 3 1/2" in from each side to miter them but that made it very small so I only brought it in about half of that. I think it probably made it more oval than the original but that's okay. I pinked the edge that folded over - not nearly as straight as I thought but, that's okay too, because this is just my test one.....I keep muttering to myself...LOL! I'm not making the handle for this one either. It will go on the entry table at Lace Day and hold lace buttons for the first 50 attendees.

I had a hard time getting a clear image of the whole basket but got a macro of the lace edging (still in progress). The rings are layered picots purposely made out of big thread and now I'm adding beads along the top. I'll probably make a few more of these for the display table and the drawing. At least then I will have something to contribute and if my previous sewing project does not turn out, I won't feel so bad.

Here's a sampling of the buttons that will be available. They come from Emblazon Yourself! and I've been very happy with them. This is the second time I've interacted with them and I recommend them for buttons or magnets, whether to promote something or just for fun.

Remember, if you're near Lafayette, Indiana anytime next Saturday, March 28th, you might want to drop in and see us!

Lafayette Lace Day
March 28, 2009
9:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Free Admission
Christ United Methodist Church
3610 S. 18th Street
Lafayette, IN 47909

The Lafayette Lacers invite you to a Lace Day on March 28, 2009, 9:00 AM-4:00 PM at Christ United Methodist Church, 3610 S. 18th Street, Lafayette, Indiana. There will be vendors, two mini classes and two drawings. There will be an exhibit of “Things to Put Things In”.

Vendors include John Aebi, Kaye Judt, Kathy Kirchner, Tracy Jackson of The Lacemaker and Debbie Beever of Lace and Such.

Schedule of events:
Doors open at 9:00 AM (vending throughout the day) There are numerous restaurants and fast food places in the area for lunch or you may bring your own.

Classes from 1:30 to 3:30 PM:
Beginning Bobbin Lace (limit 8 students)
Paper Boxes (limit 10 students)
Sign up in advance or in the Social Cafe when you arrive for Lace Day.

Drawings at 1:15 PM and 3:30 PM.

A 3-4 hour workshop will be held on Sunday, March 29, 2009, 9-1 with Tracy Jackson at the Tippecanoe Arts Federation Center. Participants will learn Viking Knit (which uses wire). Up to twenty individuals may signup for this workshop. Pre-registration is recommended. Cost is $30 and includes a kit fee.

For more information, directions and reservations contact Bette Carson at
bcarson33@comcast.net or 765-494-3959 (day), 765-463-1122 (eve).

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

I was in the basement looking for a specific color of fabric, which I never did find, but I came across these metal shuttles. I knew I had them but had forgotten they were in the basement. Can you imagine a Boye shuttle for 29¢? And I remember when I bought the Diana shuttles (I have 2) that I'd never heard of them before. The Zephyr shuttle is also an unknown but the store, Danner's, is one I often went to as a child while mom got groceries. It was the five & dime right next to the grocery store and the drug store was right next to it. I'd browse around in Danner's and occasionally buy something but most of my allowance was spent in the drug store on comic books and candy bars! Believe it or not, I was big on the Superman (and other superheroes) comics and my favorite candy bar was Butternut. Comics were a dime and candy bars were a nickel - but the prices had tripled and quadrupled by the time I was 16 or so, about the time I switched to cigarettes, which were only a quarter a pack. LOL! I gave up the cigarettes a long time ago and I can't remember the last time I had a Butternut and I'm certainly not willing to pay several dollars for something I once bought for a dime!

I'd sure like to have some Katy Keene comics though. I loved looking at the fashions. I think I could easily have become a clothing designer if things had gone just a bit differently in my youth. Oh look! You can see them here! Ah well....I'm still creative! Can you imagine some tatted lace in Katy's beautiful dresses?

This is a bookmark from Rosemarie Peel's latest book. It's a very simple pattern and the book is targeted for beginners. I added the tail on my own. She demonstrates how to bring different components together to create a design so you might say she gives some design instruction along the way.

She describes the center part as two edgings face to face and then a third edging goes around the outside pulling it together. I didn't want to cut and hide my ends that many times so I used a split ring to move to the opposite side of the inner part and also to bridge to the outer round.

J.B. won the Pay-it-Forward segment on my giveaway and is hosting her own PIF on her blog so be sure to go visit!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

I don't know how other people got their random generator to show up when they were done but this is what I used. The limit is 23 because that is how many comments I had as of 6:37 PM and when I clicked on it to generate a random number, it came up with 3. If you try it here, it will probably show something different but I couldn't get it to copy and paste so you'll just have to take my word for it. LOL!

Congratulations to the #3 commenter which is Christine! Christine, I will email you for your mailing address.

J.B.Locke won the PIF by being the very first person to comment! I sent her prize out Monday.

If you like quilted bags, go stop by Jane's Five Minutes of Fame blog to get in on her giveaway following her 600th post.

Lady Shuttlemaker is hosting a giveway following having 50,000 unique visitors to her blog.

And today is the last day to enter in Totus Mel's one year blog anniversary! So HURRY! Because I know this post won't get out until the last minute!

Saturday, March 14, 2009

One Thousandth Post!!!

(ps ~ comments do not show up until I approve them but they are all time-stamped according to when you post it, so the time is valid when it does appear on the blog)

I wanted to do something special for my 1,000th post but I was already doing a monthly drawing to celebrate five (now six) years of blogging and I wasn't sure how to jazz that up a bit. I wanted it to be different. So one day while surfing links from the blogs I visit, I happened upon a blog with this PIF graphic. Ka-Ching! Pay it Forward!! So I "stole" the graphic for myself.

pay it forward, Image Hosting
The first commenter will receive a handmade gift from me. The only glitch is that they must also display this PIF graphic and do the same. The handmade gift you make is of your choice. You can state it at the time of your post or not; it's up to you. I'm just saying handmade so that those who follow me don't feel locked in to something specific. I'm not sure yet what it will be but it will go to the first person who makes a comment on THIS post. Please make sure I can get in touch with you!

But that's only the first part of my 1,000 post celebration. The second part is this giveaway. The following items will go to someone who comments on THIS post over the next few days. A random number generator will pick the number on March 17th - St. Patrick's Day. The #1 commenter, who is winning the PIF gift, will also be eligible for this drawing.

First there is this generous sized canvas totebag with the Tatting Goddess logo! I've been using mine for a few years now. It would be nice if it had pockets but it's big and generally holds whatever I need when I go someplace to tat. I carry it back and forth to work every day. Mine has been washed a few times but this is a brand new one.

Next item is this ball of vintage cortecelli thread, size 70. I won 3 or 4 balls on ebay a few years ago. I believe the box that accompanied it had a receipt in it for the early 1900's. I can't guarantee its suitability for tatting as I haven't tried this ball but it's fun to wonder about the original owner. Just think ~ it's nearly 100 years old!

More vintage thread! The yellow/lavender ball doesn't have a price on it so it might not be all that old, but the solid says 15¢ and the varigated purple says 39¢.

And last but not necessarily least, is this purple (notice there's a color theme going on here?) Lacis shuttle and a package of India Glass beads from the local bead heaven, Von's.

I wish every single one of you could be the winner, but since that isn't the case, I'll just wish each and every one of you GOOD LUCK!!!


And here's the icing on the cake (or should I say the crown for my head?) for my 1,000th post - the Blog Queen award from Sherry Pence aka LadyShuttleMaker! Yes, I'm award free and tag free so I'm not doing any more with it other than to thank Sherry for being so thoughtful. As I become busier and busier and there are more and more blogs to follow, I know how easy it is to get behind and skip over reading blogs, so I am all the more appreciative of this award, because I know that Sherry is also overwhelmingly busy at times.

Sunday, March 08, 2009

Another tree frog! I did join this one right but I made a few other teensy mistakes in its place. Somehow I got an extra toe bead on one toe. I switched to 3 seed beads as I didn't have any red beads between tiny seed and big eye bead. I didn't even catch it when I went to make the ring but one segment had 4 seed beads instead of 3. I can crush that one off although I've just let it go. I also somehow got one of the bottom feet going in the wrong direction (turned correctly for the scan) and I'm not sure how I did that. I do like the red eyes and red toes better. The other one had orange bugle beads and yellow eyes.

We finished up the filet crochet segment in my crochet class. This was actually a free session - they could catch up or clarify something we had done previously. Next week is the last one and I think I will do the rose for the sachet so that everyone has an idea of how it works and will be able to help others in the program when we have it. Several are interested in Irish Crochet so my next series will be on that. I only know the bare basics so will have to practice myself.

In this particular pattern for the initial coaster, it starts about 3 rows to the left of the letter and then when work has progressed all the way to the end, you come back and pick up at that row and go in the opposite direction. You do avoid making increases that way but in the scan, I can see the line distinctly. If I teach it again, we'll start at one end and finish at the other. I just wasn't able to prepare in the way I wanted.

And the reason I've been so busy and almost frantic at times is because we planned a surprise party for my daughter's 40th birthday. Her birthday is not until Tuesday but we celebrated last night. For a variety of reasons, we were not able to figure out what we were doing until barely 2 weeks before. That's not really enough time to plan a good party but I think we did okay. I especially wanted to do this for her as she has taken part in so many surprise parties for other people (including me) but had never had one herself. I thought it was time.

We really did pull it off. I thought she would figure it out ahead of time. The tree frog is missing - I know I put it in the card but it wasn't there. I hope it just fell into the other gifts or something because she was opening a whole bunch and had two little helpers, her grandson and step-granddaughter who are both toddlers. It turned into a very balmy evening and rained outside but we were nice and dry and comfy. Plenty of food and fun. After everything was cleaned up and put away, I met up with my daughter and her husband along with two of my sons and their spouses at a local restaurant/bar and had a well-appreciated glass of wine!

Now, on to test-tatting, Marie's package, and a project I was commissioned to tat, as well as 3 other lace-related projects that will have to wait until the following week!

And btw, the time changed to DST overnight. I was so enjoying it being light out when I went to work and now I'll be in the dark again for awhile.

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

I found this pattern here on Своими руками which I can't identify in language. The diagram shows the sequence of tatting and I was able to figure which rings and chains to match to the directions. I didn't tat the antennae - I just left them as threads. It looks very similar to others I have tatted but I couldn't tell you exactly where from right now.

The white thread is some that was on a shuttle from this woman. The yellow varigated is some I dyed a several years ago. Since I didn't follow the exact sequence by tatting the antennae first and last, I had a little glitch there in the center. It laid flat when I tied it off and I haven't blocked it because I know the yellow will run when I wet it and I didn't want to get the iron out. LOL! It was just a quick project to relax me and I didn't want to go to a lot of trouble. I have plenty of other tatting I will get to at the weekend which is a bit more serious.

That's my little bit of getting-ready-for-Spring!

Monday, March 02, 2009

It's been awhile since I've done a "newsy" post. Did you know that any post you have in "drafts" counts as a published post? My 1,000th is in drafts plus I found a few others that I'd started at some point but never finished or copied what I had onto another post so I deleted those. I still have 3 posts to go after this one before I hit ONE THOUSAND.

That means I can be chatty. I googled "tatted purse" this morning on a whim and realized it had been a LONG time since I've googled tatted images. There were so many new ones! I ended up buying some thread. I won't say anymore about it until I get it. Oh, in my last post, I had spelled Lizbeth wrong, putting an "s" in place of the "z", but I corrected it later.

Lavendar bag This is for sale at the Embroidery Center and just a little different from what I have seen before. I think I started one lavendar plant last year and I hope it comes back up this year since I didn't get any lavendar from it then. You might notice if you look at this heart closely that it has the crocheted picots which is often a sign of mass production by cheap labor. There is more than one way to look at that - it's exploitation any way you look at it, but not buying it isn't likely to change things. So do you help provide at least a meager living to someone or do you boycott it and have faith that your actions will lead to more equitable trade? I don't believe there is a right/wrong answer and I hope I didn't word that in a way that implies one or the other, other than stating it is exploitation. What I mean is how you respond to buying it or not is the choice that is not right/wrong in my opinion. You just choose according to what feels best to you.

All right...onward!

For all the tatters and tatting groups we do hear about - how many do we NOT hear about? As I was surfing google images, I came across the Needle Nerds in Georgia. There is a photo from one of their 2005 meetings showing a huge tatted tablecloth. Can you imagine? It took the tatter 8-10 years to complete.

Gosh, it's been so long since I've tatted and posted what I tatted on a regular basis that I nearly forgot! This is Jane Eborall's Red-Eyed Tree Frog ..umm, well, yellow-eyed in this case. LOL! I'm tatting him for someone special and I was so proud of being able to work all the way through with only a few small glitches. And then I went to block him, ends neatly tucked and nipped, only to suddenly discover I had made the very last join in the wrong place! The ends are cut. If I try to pull it out, join a new thread and retat that last chain, I think it will be visibly bulkier. Or I might try hiding one set of ends in the eyeball. Or I could just do the whole thing over. I won't know until the end of the week because I'm already weighted down with other things I have to get done by then, so we'll just see then if I have enough time to make a whole new frog or if I'll just repair this one. My other concern is that the toe beads between the bugle beads are too small to show up. A whole new frog would be a good excuse to correct that.

I've noticed everyone is busily tatting Iris's TIAS. I don't have the time to do it right now but I also find I'm not very patient in these and want to get on to the next step NOW when I do play. If you want to get in on it, you start here!