Saturday, August 29, 2009

Wow! I haven't posted since Tuesday! Where to begin????? Hmmmm...right after Tuesday would be good, right?

Wednesday afternoon I left a little early from work and got my oil changed. It was the first oil change since I leased my car and it HAD to be done before I embarked on a trip. I then went home and hurriedly finished packing, hoping I had everything I needed. Then I took off towards Ohio to meet up with two of my favorite tatting friends!

This photo barely begins to show you the fun we had!

My partner in crime ~*~*~*~ Gail Owens

The "Target" ~ Jane Eborall

Serious Talk

Spotting something!

Although Jane claims to be kidnapped, she was clearly a willing victim! Gail and I headed over to pick her up in hopes of arriving at 10:00 a.m. I have a GPS that I have come to rely on heavily and it's been a trustworthy guide for the two years I've used it. I plugged in the address and off we went. The address kept reverting to another house number but we figured it would be close enough.

HA! Famous last words! ....close enough.....

We did arrive on the street with the right name. Unfortunately, we could not find the right house number. Back and forth, around and around the block....oh, there's one street that was mentioned on Gail's directions..we'll just follow it til we find the right intersection....round and round, back and forth.

Okay...there must be a jog we hadn't jigged but we decided to call and beg for mercy. I'm hearing a lot of one-sided conversation that doesn't sound too promising. Finally, Gail says,"we're in the wrong town." Huh? LOL!

Well...we weren't in the wrong town, but we were on the wrong side of town and on the wrong street. Right street NAME but wrong street. Turns out there are three streets with that name. No wonder my TomTom was confused!

We finally arrived at 11:00 a.m. with Jane standing outside flagging us down! What a way to begin an adventure!

We started off at a bead store. I think we were there a very long time. Very long. And we all bought something but I think we talked about what could be made from every bead we saw first! Then we went to a thread store. The shop focused on needlepoint but that didn't mean we couldn't use something there for tatting. I did buy one spool of thread that I'll show in another post, since this one is going to be long anyway.

After that we decided to check out a bakery across the street and then realized we were too hungry for all that rich sweetness so we walked across the street again and ate at a cute little deli. That little photos at the bottom of the collage showing Gail and Jane in front of some columns ( from a wall mural) is from the deli.

Bellies where?

Well, there was a big craft outlet store that Jane wanted to go to so we went there. Huge - and not air conditioned. Jane picked up the stuff she had planned to get there and then we looked around for a short while. Gail spied some tatting from China. Cute little hearts and some larger doilies - cheap as dirt. We didn't buy any. It's not a very good feeling when you know how long it takes to tat something like that, even in big thread and with a simple design.

At this point we were on our way to Gail's house and she took us to a little craft place near her home. Let me tell you - this place was packed from floor to ceiling in every room. It was originally a tiny house. I think they must have had as much in there as was in the warehouse we were in earlier! We had fun rooting around in it though. I ended up putting back about half of what I was carrying around.

By this time, we were ready to settle in for a bit and arrived at Gail's house. Gail has a lovely and very friendly Shelty collie named Shelby, and two huge cats, whose names I've forgotten already other than they are also known as the "Blues Brothers."

Gail fixed a scrumptious dinner and then we talked, and talked, and talked. Can you believe we barely tatted at all? In fact, I'm not sure we did. We all showed our tatting stuff - books, shuttles, thread, patterns. We got to see what Jane is teaching at Palmetto. If you haven't signed up for her classes, you'll wish you did, trust me!

We ended up giving each other some gifts too and I'll show those along with my purchases in another post but I did want to show these for now:

I was totally surprised to find this bag from Jane with my NAME on it! LOL! Some of you may remember her mentioning another bag like this back in June! Now, I've got my very own to decorate with tatting!

Here's the tag. Does it not say "Gina B"?

And look at what was in a little bag from Gail! Aren't these just adorable? Shuttle Socks! They'll keep my shuttles warm this winter when they're idle. Gail knit them from sock yarn so they are definitely socks!

Well, you'll just have to imagine how great the day was. We took Jane back home LATE that night. I wish I had this kind of fun day every month!

I probably should save this part for another post but it was the first pic I uploaded so I'll just go ahead. It was in my mail today! I found it on last week and ordered it. I have another book by this author which is basically just a baby outfit - booties, bonnet, and trim. This one has lots more in it though.

And the best part (almost) is that it is autographed! This is actually a lesson book with 6 lessons, tatting history, and 15 projects. She uses short notation, two shuttles, and mentions tatting in color. It's really very interesting. The student made some notes in the back page - underlining the word "relax" when it came time to flip the knot. LOL! Same as today and the point I emphasize with students.

Hopefully the next post will show some of the beads and thread I bought as well as other odds and ends.

Thanks to Gail and Jane for such a memorable Thursday!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Tatting Tea Tuesday 8/25/09

I was blog surfing last weekend and found this
Felt Tea Bag Softies Tutorial
. You can click on the steps of the directions and they expand.

Well, naturally, I just had to try one ...or two...for Tatting Tea Tuesday! I couldn't find my white felt so I turned to the red felt and immediately thought of peppermint tea. It just so happens I have a huge peppermint cup to put them in! I think it's actually a soup bowl, but you don't know that from the photo, do you?

I couldn't stop at just one. And now I'm thinking...hmmm, I have gold and brown and black felt...nice Autumn colors. Maybe I should tat an acorn, or a mum or a tiny squirrel or Autumn leaves?

The space isn't really too large so you have to find small motifs. I decided to make an easy candy cane by tatting two short strips of the ricrac stitch (also known as Victorian set stitch and node stitch), joining the second color at the base of the first one before I tatted it. Then I twisted the two together and stitched it to the felt in a candy cane shape. The problem is, red on red is hard to see. If I were to do it again, I would stitch the candy cane on an oval of a different color and then stitch both to the "bag".

For the second bag, I attached a little motif I'd already made and tatted the "string" between bag and label. I used a blend of white and silver thread to blanket stitch around the outside. I really suck at letter embroidery but maybe if I practiced more, I would do better. I'd like to think so anyway.

If you have the motifs already tatted, the longest time is taken up stitching everything together. I think they would make nice sachets too. Embroider on little muslin bags and embellish with tatting.

Part of my surfing also took me to this intriguing blog named Embloggery. The stitcher committed to posting entries that were entirely hand-stitched. Many of the words are symbolic so you really have to think about them. See if you can figure this one out before you go to her blog. She's moved on to other things, but I thought it was creative and clever. If you click on the photo on her blog, it will take you to her Flickr site where you can see all of them with notes. You know what else is cool? She's in Indiana! Bloomington, to be exact.

Monday, August 24, 2009

design class lesson 4

It's going to be a busy week. I had an unplanned day off today for personal business. I'm visiting some of my favorite tatting friends on Thursday and need Friday for travel, so that leaves 2 days to do over a week's work. Won't happen. But I'll hit the high points and schedule the remainder for the following week.

I worked on our lesson 4 assignment for the design class at the weekend. We were to design the next round of a center motif. The only rule was to join at the 4 picots on the original center motif. This was my first attempt and I wasn't happy at all with it, even after I blocked it. It was going okay until I made the last join and then it didn't lay flat. I got it to lay flat by blocking but I didn't like the pointy clovers making it look like a square when a square was not what I intended. I managed to round it out, but I still didn't like it.

So the next day I examined it more objectively. I decided to turn the clovers into twin rings instead and add a whole lot more stitches. I even made the chains in the center motif with more stitches which helped it lay better. I like this version much better. If I had time to tweak it more, I would add a few more decorative picots in some strategic spots and possibly make a change where the outer rings are right above a picot on the chain. Might join there or just eliminate the picot altogether. Or not. It's still squarish - which I finally accepted was going to happen if I made the same design all around, but there are enough curves to soften it. I doubt if this is anything new. I imagine just about all the variations on a simple center have been done. It's what you do after that or the changes you make within the basic design that may be different. At any rate, I'm good for now.

We got the east side of the basement washed yesterday. My son got sick afterwards - apparently stomach flu since we ate the same thing and I didn't get sick. He's better today but stayed home and took care of himself. It will probably be next weekend before that side is painted. I sometimes miss the days when I decided I wanted to do something to the house and dove in and kept at it until it was done or I was exhausted. There is much to be said for being a SAHM. I loved it. Would love to stay home now even though I have no children to take care of. I have plenty of other things I want to do!

Friday, August 21, 2009

I saw this on Steph's Blog and wanted to see what it said about me!

Your rainbow is strongly shaded violet and white.


What is says about you: You are a contemplative person. You appreciate beauty and craftsmanship. People depend on you to make them feel secure. You are patient and will keep trying to understand something until you've mastered it.

Find the colors of your rainbow at

It seems like it has taken me forever to tat this and it's only the first half! This is the next project in Sharon's book, a little tatting bag. It's not blocked either since I still have to tat and attach the other half. My first three attempts were horribly frustrating. I think I just had too much on my mind and it was late and I was tired. I could not seem to remember where I was in the pattern and never got to the 3rd motif without seeing that I forgot to join somewhere or joined in the wrong place. So I gave it up that night and began again the next night - which I guess was only last night but it seems eons ago! I am using a different thread, Regina size 16, which I ordered online several years ago for the simple fact that it carries my given name. LOL! This size 16 is between size 10 and size 20, not like the size 16 in Finca perle cotton. This thread is actually a little soft and prone to fuzziness but it's a pretty color.

Sharon indicates to do it in two colors but I stuck with one. It has enough split rings and split chains to drive me crazy already without having to figure out how to keep the center of each motif one color. I know I could do the SSSR but I didn't want to.

I've been off the past two days - catching up on cleaning at home and hopefully the basement will be done this weekend. My son will be doing the bulk of the work this time but I do want to help him.

It cooled off considerably today and has been beautiful. I hope it stays this way for awhile.

I took some books and movies back to the library today but I still have some I'm looking at. I went through a few tonight that I will return tomorrow. I was doing some bead research but every time I get in a library, I bring home way more books than I can ever actually read. I have two that I think I will renew - actually four now that I think about it.

In cleaning off my table today and finding a few folders with printouts, I remembered more projects I want to try.


I hope not.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Every so often someone emails me and asks a question or comments on a link I've posted or ....shows me something they were inspired to do from my blog! Such is the case with Chris from France. She found my post about vintage patterns using ric rac braid with tatting.

You can see her motif here!

See what she has done with a pattern from the Beeton Book of Needlework? She simply added picots to the original design. Makes it look very sweet, doesn't it?

BTW, you can get the pattern for the Rose Ric Rac Motif by going to my Esnips account (link is in the upper right of my blog) and then clicking on the 5 Rose Motif link for the pattern. The number "5" meant it was the 5th pattern in that series. The others are there also.

I have a free webpage to put my patterns on but haven't had the time to do anything with it yet.

I haven't gotten any further with the bag from Sharon's book. It is still laying on the arm of the chair where I left it Monday night. Tomorrow I am off and will be working on my lesson plan for September in Canada. Right now I'll bet there are a bunch of people getting geared up for the Palmetto Tat Day. I think there is still time to register! You really should go to South Carolina or Cambridge Ontario this year! Doesn't matter which one - or better yet, go to BOTH!

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Tatting Tea Tuesday Again

Tea Time ~ Originally uploaded by nikilynn

The photographer who manipulated this photo is only 15 years old. She is magnificently talented. Go see her other work! And she has a BLOG!

I emptied my phone of photos last night. Here is something I completely forgot about. Do you know what it is?

I am pretty sure I took it at Ding-A-Ling, a downtown craft supplies store. I'm also pretty sure it is macrame. But WHAT is it? LOL! I wish I'd taken a photo of the whole thing. i know I took this part because I was mentally translating it into tatting and wanted it for reference. See the woven picots? Angel wings or butterfly wings may be what I had in mind. I know I've wanted to use woven picots in both but haven't managed to get around to it yet. Maybe when I complete the design program I'll feel motivated to do so.
(Afterthought- it was not at Ding-A-Ling. They do not have hardly any open floor space with all the craft supplies taking up so much room. This must have been a shop in Noblesville when I walked around with my son & DIL at an open air mall there.)

Here's something else I forgot about. This is a new water feature at Purdue University. It's over by the Burton Center and Child Development & Family Services building. I was early for an appointment one day and sat in front of this and meditated for awhile. There are also benches and landscaping to make it such a nice place to be, listening to the water trickle down. I guess it is lit up at night but I have not seen it yet. You can't really see the glass panel that well but it is etched in Purdue icons - a tractor for its agricultural beginning, numerous engineering symbols, mathematical equations, the PU logo, etc.

And this is just a happy label I found in some 2nd hand clothing I bought made out of flax linen. Isn't that a wonderful thought to be wearing?

Monday, August 17, 2009

I came across this site after finding a pop-top crochet flower tutorial. There are still books available on Amazon about this 70's popular craft. I never made any of the items on this site, but I do remember seeing them in the media. I also remember cans before pop tops and pull tabs. You used a "church key", a pointed metal device that was leveraged on the side of the can and pulled up which then pushed a triangular piece of metal down, thus opening the can enough to drink its contents or pour them out. You had to punch a triangle on opposite sides to allow the contents to flow freely. Otherwise you just got a tiny trickle.

LOL! I'll betcha some of you reading this have NO IDEA what I'm talking about. You just always figured cans had something to pull or push, right? Or came with screw on lids?

I worked a lot in the basement over the weekend. We (son & I) hauled everything out and I scrubbed the walls down. Sunday I painted. It's only two walls because the other two walls need some special preparation and will have to wait. This area is where the storage will go ....or went. Later we moved all my storage tubs and boxes over to the newly painted side. I have so many bins to go through! There is just no sane reason for a person to have so much....stuff!

I finished up the bunny face from Sharon's book today. I buggered up the top where the ears are because I ran out of thread and tried to fudge a bit - ended up adding new thread but it dips where it should not because I switched threads. I also tatted rings opposite each other for the nose and just tatted one chain down to the jawline. I made it the way the instructions said the first time but mine looked BAD. I almost gave up on him but I'm glad I didn't. I had so many threads to hide that I just cut them long and then sewed the motif on a piece of felt. I'm literally too tired to piddle with hiding ends today.

I skipped the turtle and choker which are the next two projects and moved on to the tatting wrist bag. I've barely started it. I'm really not a turtle person nor am I a choker person so to keep my momentum going, I just skipped over them. I may feel more patient and willing to tat them later.

I washed two loads of canning jars in the dishwasher today. They were filthy from sitting in the basement. I will be giving the bulk of them away. Other than the occasional batch of apple butter or some kind of jar bread/cake, I don't can these days. As I took the first batch out and put them in a box, I accidently clanked two together and broke both of them. I thought I got all the glass picked up but later in the evening, I managed to find a bit of glass with my big toe.

Hope it cools off during the night!

Saturday, August 15, 2009

It's been another busy week. Most of my evenings were free for a change, but I tried to focus my energy on getting the basement cleaned and ready for painting. I learned that I'm pretty much done, energy-wise, by 7:30 or 8:00 p.m. so if I haven't started before then, I might as well wait for another day. We did get most of the stuff OUT of the room I'm working on. I just have the rest of one wall to wash down and then paint (hopefully today) and then move storage from the east side to the west side and begin over there tomorrow.

But I'm sitting here blogging.....

LOL! I do have to run into town and drop off a package to the phone company. We switched out the modem to a wireless one which allows both of us to be online at the same time on our own computers. I have a new printer/scanner too but will not hook that up until I have the basement project done. Why? Because it will involve another major cleanout, in my craft room. I don't have to, but I need to, and installing new equipment gives me a reason to get at it.

I also have to pick up paint and some other supplies so I'll be on my way soon.

I haven't been posting my homework for the design class but this is lesson three. Not real exciting yet, is it? LOL! That's why I haven't been posting it - but first basic steps are necessary and get us to thinking about what we're doing and why and where we're going with it.

I was playing with some thread this week too and tatted Heather's Blue Jay pattern again. It was called blue jay because she tatted it in that colorway of her HDT thread, but it looks nothing like a bluejay! I think of it as a spinning star or a whirligig but if I call it that and you go to look for the pattern, you won't find it under that name. This is from the book of patterns I won from her, Motifs-A-Many.

Th motif on the left was tatted from some white DMC, size 30 that I had on a shuttle and the varigated is some I bought online from an unknown maker. Honestly....I don't remember where I got it but the person wasn't known to me at the time anyway and I didn't bookmark it. The motif on the right is from Marilee's Summer Trail.

I should probably post a disclaimer here. I try to give credit where credit is due and if I neglect to mention where I got a pattern or what thread I was using, someone, somewhere, always emails and asks. For instance, even though I've mentioned that I'm going through Sharon Briggs book, Transitions in Tatting, when I stop mentioning it 3 or 4 posts later, and someone just newly reads my blog, they don't know what I'm talking about. Sure, they could try reading a few entries back, or google the designer's name or employ some other form of research but time is often an issue and I do try to remind myself to mention what I'm using and where I got it.

Another reason is that much of what I'm posting about is not something you can go to the store and look at. It's only available online, so not only is the reader interested in what I'm experiencing myself, they want to know where they can get it too. Someone who is new to tatting usually doesn't have that information at their fingertips.

So...I'm not advertising for anyone, but I want you to know where you can find the same things.

So what do you do with your shuttle endings? You know - that last less-than-a-yard that is left when you finish a project. I usually just make a ring with picots and save them up for ebellishment on a card or something.

This was a shuttle ending but I skipped ahead in Sharon's book and was looking at a project - the point of which really intrigued me - so I tried to tat as much of it as I could before I ran out of thread. It made an interesting motif, didn't it?

I also got to playing around with one shuttle ending thread that was long enough for several blossoms. Can you tell what is different? The ring in the middle is tatted differently from the outer ones. It's just a regular ds-picot sequence.

The outer two were inspired by Vickie's ruffled heart and the way we do ricrac/node/Victorian set Stitches. They are rarely done with picots, or at least I don't remember seeing picots. The only time is when I've made layered picots which means I leave the picot space, tat the 1st half ds twice, then leave another space and tat the 2nd half ds two times and continue that sequence. It leaves picots on both sides of the cord if you fold it out flat but when it is a ring, it makes 2 layers of picots, very fluffy looking. So...what if....I tatted a series of picots and only used the 1st half of the ds? Well...the outer rings are exactly that. I started the ring with a regular ds, p, 2 1st half ds, p, 2 1st half ds - repeat for as large as you want the ring to be and then close the ring. I found that the picots sort of lay right up against each other, slightly overlapping, while the center ring lays more flat.

Fun, huh?

Wednesday, August 12, 2009


Every so often I go looking through old photo files. Before starting my blog in 2003, I uploaded my photos and scans to an online photo server. I didn't have a scanner and had to use my sister's. I didn't have a digital camera at first either and even when I did get one, the closeups weren't that good. I actually started tatting in 1997. I took part in my first exchanges somewhere between 1998 and 1999.

This particular photo is at the I.O.L.I. convention held in Indianapolis that year. It was the first time I'd gone and I only went on vendor's day but I'd arranged to meet up with a few tatters while I was there. I don't think these were the people I actually said I'd meet up with, unless Diane was one of them and I do think she was. She is 2nd from the left. Rosemarie Peel is on the far left. She struck up a conversation with me and never once bothered to point out who she was or that she had written one of the few tatting books I had then. I recognized her name on her name tag but she was so friendly I wondered if it really was her. LOL! I had a lot to learn about how friendly tatters were and are. Diane and I had been partners in a few exchanges so it was great to see her in person.

This was my first meeting also with Mark Myers, aka Tatman. He was the one the people I emailed with to arrange the meet up. I think 4 or 5 of us thought we would be there. Somehow only a few of us managed to get in a photo together.

Yes, I had reddish-brown hair then! My youngest son had graduated from high school and I had just returned a few weeks earlier from my first trip to Ireland. One reason I was at the convention was to meet up with Ann Keller again after visiting her in her studio in Dublin. Wow - so many "famous" tatting people at one time! Can you tell I was absolutely thrilled?

This is from one of many bookmark exchanges I participated in. I don't remember who it went to but I was really getting into using two colors of thread. I tatted Irene Woo's Heart of the Butterfly that year - loved that pattern and still do. I used a lot of size 12 DMC perle cotton because it was one thread I could get at the Heirloom Corner (also new to me that year) and I loved its sheen.

This was a cross I made in one of my early exchanges. It was from a Workbasket and I loved the "celtic" shape of it. Even then I felt compelled to embellish my tatting. Little brass charms were becoming quite popular and I used this little angel to sit in the center. I made another one out of a soft green and put some green agate-like stones in the center of that one for my then-boyfriend in Ireland. No photos of that one and wish I'd taken one. It was exceptionally nice. This has always been my favorite cross pattern but I have not made another. It was fiddly and I think if I were to make it now, I know enough techniques to make it lay nicer and be easier to tat.

Wow! That last afghan I crocheted! It was also a gift to my Irish boyfriend.

And this is another reminder of Ireland. I started tatting Jane's then-famous bracelet. I used four shuttles AND that many threads because I used 2 colors and then a blending filament on each color. The button was gorgeous. You can't see it in the photo but it all had sparkle and shine. Yeah....I like sparkly things. LOL!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Tatting Tea Tuesday

For all the tea-for-ones that I own, I do not have a single tea cozy. Not one! I have lots of patterns (for regular sized teapots), but have yet to make one. How about you? If you need inspiration, check out these blogs:

I'm doing some research on beads and in the process, I happened on this youtube video about tatting. This one doesn't have sound, which is a detriment, because it's really hard to follow what he is doing.

In the next one, which is the one I saw first, he is adding a bead. Listen to his terminology and watch how his hands move. Apparently, he is doing the wrap, or reverse tatting, that is done for frontside/backside tatting or when you make a split ring for the second half. It seemed like one heckuva lot of trouble to add one little bead, but I do admire his ingenuity and if you go to the 3rd video, which I didn't add, the rings are perfectly formed and the bead is centered. The traffic noise is annoying but he is good about making sure the shot is centered before moving on. I'm also intrigued by the foam or whatever that is wrapped around his finger.

I always say there is no ONE way to tat, but I'm still amazed at the various methods.

Monday, August 10, 2009

I said there were two more hearts but there is only one. I counted the diagram and the photo both. I didn't like this one as much. It is a challenge because of all the split rings and split chains. I did alright but it's not as neat as I would like. I say I did "alright" because I got the spacing right on the split chain and that's the hardest part. There are two of them - right where the flowers meet in the middle. Part of the split chain included joins so it was fiddly. I suspect if I tatted them individually and hid all those extra ends, that it would lay better, but how could I pass up the chance to tat it all in one pass????

I may try it again that way just to see how it looks.

I tatted this awhile back to give away and then saw my mistake when I blocked it. Yep, another oopsie. Both upper wings should have 4 picots. The motif is so small that you DO notice it. LOL! I seem to be making more errors than usual and I think it's just because I'm trying to do too much. Well, I don't really have much choice just now but soon everything will settle down and get back to normal.

I was reading Trayna's blog this morning and followed the link she posted to this Asian site. If you haven't already, you should check it out. THIS is the whole doily. Scroll down here to see what she is doing that is so unique. Not only is she weaving a ribbon through a round, which Trayna mentioned, but she has chain spirals for the center of the outer motifs. I didn't even notice it until I saw the closeup of the spirals. The photos went into my "inspiration" folder.

We only got a portion of the basement cleaned yesterday. We started late and then I needed a wet vac to pick up the water faster so my middle son picked up the one at my oldest son's house while running some other errands he needed to do. I mowed while he was gone and by the time he got back, I wanted to shower and eat. So, the rest will have to wait. I hope to pull out the stuff under the basement stairs tonight at least, and then finish up the washing of the walls and floor over the next few nights. Then I can start organizing the storage on this side.

Saturday, August 08, 2009

This is the first heart pattern in Sharon's book, a "simple heart". It's tatted in Marilee's Summer Trail, size 20. There are two more hearts and you'll notice when I post that it's getting more and more involved. It will take longer than one evening to tat them!

Lafayette Lacers met this morning - only five of us. Life gets pretty busy as summer closes in and school is on the horizon. Chris showed us how to make a paper bobbin. There sure are a lot of strips of paper to roll! I have the materials to make a second one to match this one.

Sally showed us how to make the dowel rod bobbins, which you can find on Mark Myers' site. The link is in the sidebar. I haven't decided if I will try to spangle these so I left the little nubbin on for the time being. I could have glued the bead at the bottom but I wasn't sure.

I also showed the pillow I'm still in the process of making. I included a travel pillow base, also incomplete, and found some ethafoam last night, that will make a square pillow, so as soon as I have TIME and SPACE and ENERGY to complete them, I'll post them here.

I'm just relaxing and catching up on "home" stuff today. Tomorrow I will tackle the basement and hopefully, my son will be moved down there by next weekend.

Thursday, August 06, 2009

These are the last three motifs before I start on hearts in Sharon's book, Transitions in Tatting. People keep asking what book it is and I've provided the link before but for some reason, the blog search engine isn't finding it. It's available on Sharon's website.

I mostly use whatever thread is close to me or still on my shuttles. This one is a Flora thread, size 20. The varigated appealed to me when I bought it but I haven't found much I liked with it tatted up so I'm using it for samples quite a bit. The problem here is that I feel like I did something wrong, but I can't find it. Maybe the light/dark of the shading makes it look unbalanced. I don't know.

This one is pretty, a more pointed motif with 8 points but since snowflakes generally have 6 points, I'm hesitant to call it a snowflake.

This is another one that I didn't find the oopsie until I scanned it. There is a chain that should go right about where the oops is at. I really like this design though.

Believe it or not, I also knitted up these leaves last night! This is actually for a lace guild project I have in mind. I wanted to have a sample to take Saturday. The pattern is on Ravelry at: You need to be a member of Ravelry to access it but it is free. I found the pattern last year and thought it would be useful as a project for my lace guild. The original is done in yarn but I used thread. The yellow is size 10 normal crochet cotton. (Yeah, the label is gone!) The red is Flora, size 20. I'm thinking this will be a good intro to lace knitting. Very simple pattern although using size 0 needles with more rounded than pointy tips was a bit awkward. I can't find my smaller needles yet. I still have boxes and boxes blocking many things in my living room.

Tuesday night I came home to a power outage. We had a huge storm earlier that day and part of a tree fell on the power line by my lane and snapped it. The electric company showed up within the hour of my call and had it fixed. Fortunately the line was on both sides of the lane, not IN the lane. Good thing because I didn't really know what that green thing hanging from a tree branch was until I was right next to it. LOL!


Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Tatting Tea Tuesday!

Yesterday I found a reference to Tea Eggs from and I thought it would be a great focal point for Tatting Tea Tuesday! A tea egg, also known as a marbled egg, is a typical Chinese savory snack commonly sold by street vendors or in night markets in most Chinese communities.

I ended up making my own last night, using a conglomeration of the many recipes available. I had most of the ingredients already except for star anise. I ended up buying some extract, but I could have gotten by without it. Next time I will use chai tea and Chinese 5 spice, leaving out the anise altogether. I also learned (too late this time) that I could freeze the sauce they simmered in for another time.

Here are some online recipes. I found a few videos too, but they were more annoying than helpful so I chose not to blog them.

The doily I used in the photos (thanks to Fox for helping me find out how to collage photos!) is one I rescued from somewhere. I soaked and soaked it to get the rust stains out but there are still a few there.

I have managed to tat a bit but they're all on the blocking board at home. I have a few more motifs from Sharon's book plus I finished the lace and edging for a hanky bonnet that I mentioned earlier. I still haven't made the bonnet but I'm getting there!

I got some of Marilee's Summer Trail that I'm itching to try out. Last night I tatted the first part of my homework for the design class but ran out of time before I could do the second half.

I meet with my sister & cousins tonight for dinner and fun so it will be later than usual when I get home. I also have to prepare for my part of the program in lace guild on Saturday. Not only the project for this meeting but I wanted a sample to show for the next meeting's program. Arrggghhhh! I NEED CHOCOLATE!!!!!