Wednesday, July 31, 2013

JK Picot

I found the little button, added a picot to the JKs
 and suddenly had a pretty motif.  : )

I am considering adding a chain in the white with different blue beads around the existing chains, but I quite like the motif as it is. Tatted with #8 DMC Perle.

Another motif I have been working on is a Jan Stawasz pattern. I have now finished the first round and have begun the second. Tatted with #40 Lizbeth. So far:

No directional problems if I do not tat fs/bs and it does not seem to matter with the end result, which actually looks better than most of my previous tatting! Such a surprise...

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Planes, Trains and Automobiles

I have been travelling and had little time to tat, but I have managed to border a lovely vintage hankie that I received from Kelly last year. ( Or was it the year before?!)

I was saving this little beauty for the right inspiration and I just loved Frivole’s Viola pattern for it. I picked an unlikely thread, that I have also been saving for just the right project:  HDT thread from Jess.

Of course, I ran out of thread - TWICE! So I had to improvise....TWICE!

Shopping in a funny, old-fashioned shop that sold everything from tatting shuttles to fishing supplies, I found two little mother-of pearl buttons and some #8 DMC Perle cotton. Of course I could not resist. (Plus three crochet hooks - #12, #14 and #13) Success in my favourite kind of store! I love surprises. ; )

The buttons have inspired me and this is as far s I have got on my own creation:

Imagine! Those are JK’s, with a picot at the top for the next row to join. Ah, sometimes I surprise myself!

Monday, July 22, 2013

Vibrant Viola

Viola Posy

Frivole’s patterns keep the shuttles flying... 
This pattern is very versatile... This is the motif part of the 4 pages. : )

Saturday, July 20, 2013

More Mille-Fleurs

Frivole’s new pattern is marvellous, n’est-ce pas?

Front and Back

And a Viola Posy too! (also Frivole’s)

Jan Stawasz motif

I think this will look a lot better in one colour. But for the first go-around I am thrilled that I got through it with only one really bad error - a missed picot, which is all too obvious once you see it. Not a lot of un-tatting either in this... amazing!

Friday, July 19, 2013

Fun With Frivole

I love this new pattern that Frivole has designed. So pretty.

She is having a draw for the pattern, so go have a look!

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Encouragement Enables

This is the comment I left yesterday for all readers of tat-ology:

"Thanks again, Tatters! Without your encouragement - no border!  Fox : )) “

So true. I would never have finished without being able to play with tat-ology and the comments. So important to feel someone out there cares if a silly little bit of string is successfully transformed into a beautiful gossamer of lace. Given today’s world, it seems so inconsequential, and yet, paradoxically so important at the same time!

WIthout further ado, I give you Connie’s gifted heraldic hankie, plus Valdani border!

It looks okay till I really inspect the sewing! Because of the tight rolled edge it was impossible to sew on without seeing the thread, and I did not want to crochet a row forst as it would be too obvious, cover the yellow part and be too heavy all around.

I did the best I could - hurriedly however and saw I had places a corner about an eighth of an inch off centre.... But I am not going to rip off the whole thing. I can live with it.


Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Vanquishing Valdani

It is done! 
Phew. Never again. 
Now for another yucky chore. 

p.s. This took 104 repeats of Jon’s A Row of Thorns Crowns!! pattern.
(Thanks, Ladytats! You have done it again! Good editing!)

Monday, July 15, 2013

The Unsung Hero...

To whom I pay homage,
for the border would have gone here, 
but for the blades:

WHAT was I thinking? The Valdani is much too fine for me and it is just that stubborn streak a mile wide plus the ability to bite like a Pit Bull that keep me going. I WILL finish this and I will NEVER tat with this thread again.

#80 Lizbeth or DMC is small, but a 6-ply can be very enjoyable to tat with, in my opinion. But polyester, silk and this, this - I don’t know what to call it - is beyond frustrating.

I must say Valdani #35 cotton is very strong. Though it fluffs and shreds when grappled with over a knot, it seldom breaks entirely. I have had to break it (a multitude of times) because it had become too fine to work with, yet it held together better than anything I have used in the past - there’s something going for it - and the colour - at any rate!

My pointer finger is raw from un-picking and I can’t get the rings to close very well, or entirely in some cases. As I have lost most of my mind during this misadventure, I have also become careless rushing along, trying to finish as soon as I can, and the quality of the tatting is rapidly deteriorating..

As usual, I have begun another pattern that is now waiting in the wings,  rather like having a treat or a prize at the end. Keeps me going.

I started the pattern a few days ago and now will not touch it till this border is finished and sewn on.

Is it too early to identify this? : ))

Friday, July 12, 2013

F/S - B/S Debate Rages On... my own head!

Front and Back side of motifs
 using ONLY F/S tatting

Using F/S - B/S, this is the Front
of the same motifs

So, here you have it. A direct comparison, though some are photos and others scans, which does confuse the issue a bit. Honestly, I think my tatting is more even and consistent with this f/s only method, which could prove to be addictive... Frivole, you might just be on to something here! : ))

I would have compared them to each other without photos, in the flesh, so to speak, but I have already sent the first two abroad! So I have to resort to this method.

Afterthought, due to CrazyMom’s comment:
I am curious... why does f/s seem to have a bad rap? Is it more tatfully-correct these days to be tatting f/s-b/s? Is it a phase? Do folks think it is better? More modern? Is it really more aesthetically pleasing? Who says? What do you think?

I am going to try a Jan Stawasz piece tatting only f/s, and see what happens.( IF I can see all the tiny little numbers. His diagrams are so difficult to read...)  I have the pattern printed out and am nervous to begin as I always have trouble with deciding which numbers to use.

Suzanne, if you are out there somewhere in Tat-Land reading this, I have thought of our discussions about this. Wondering what you would say or if you are tatting at all anymore. After all, it was you who introduced me to f/s/-b/s tatting in the first place; seems so long ago.

While tatting the border - which is definitely not brown at all, by the way, but golds and a light beige. The colour is called Ancient Gold, and it lives up to its moniker, and I think ‘burnished’ when I look at it - I am so glad I am tatting straight front side as I would have quit by now if I had done it my regular old way. Seems much easier and you cannot even see the stitches from more than a few inches from the work!

The third corner is fast approaching - I seem to have taken no time at all getting there! Wow! Size 100, someone said it was and it really is very, very fine. Never would I have believed I would be able to use a thread like this.

The two motifs above were done as a little rest, as my eyes do take a beating if I tat for too long with Valdani. My hat’s off to you tatters who use this stuff all the time.

Even as I wrote that last sentence, I was thinking that I am glad ai have no more #20, as it does not appeal to me anymore. But, tatting with this is limited. I think I will be happy for a long while using my stash of mainly #40, with a small amount of 50, 60 and 80.

Oh, yes... As to mistakes - there are a number and I have had to break the thread a few times to correct somthing. I have totally abandoned perfection-stiving because it is laughable to even think about not making a mistake. I will be happy to just be able to complete the border and have it looking half-way decent on the hankie.

There is a point in tatting something like this that I notice a point where I sort of give up the intensity and my tatting gets sloppier as I begin to tat for quantity rather than quality. I suspect this tendency is something I grapple with in life as well as with tatting. Might be linked to impatience and to an inability to not get bored easily... I am not going to dwell on that... too boring!

Whatever shall I do with this hankie anyway???

p.s. Snowy, I am happy to report that I DO sew in the ends! Yes, my needle goes through, as I am trying (your advice) not to be to tight with the stitches, so as a result, I can get that needle through. : ))

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Congratulations to #3 and #8! (sorry it is late!)

That would be to... 
Maureen and Sue (GK)!

Please send me your mailing address and 
I shall post your goodies right away.

Thank you, Tatters, for participating.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

The Consideration of Cats

I hope she likes her new t-shirt. She has this top already, but it was the best one I could find on which to sew a pink motif. (She is not fond of white.)  Looks very different decorated, anyway.

The tatted motif is not the one I intended to use, but because of the gathering at the neck, the only one that will  hang correctly when worn.

Duplicated the Middia motif and I like it very much without the beads as well. It is a very enjoyable pattern. Thanks to Middia and Frivole!

You will surely suffer boredom with a
constant updating of the border progress, 
but I just have to  show you!

"I do like Valdani," she admitted sheepishly... : ))

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Bullish Benefits

Looks as if I have overcome some difficulties...

I am  now in love with the colour of this thread. (See how fickle I am!)

Though it is not shiny when tatted, in the right light it is golden and glistens in parts as I tat. Feels like alchemy at work. ; ))

I am actually contemplating an order of a certain red/burgundy variegate that I can envision alongside this colour. It never stops -  the planning and plotting!

Here is what I have done compared to the first run. You can really see the progress and the occasional pay-off for a lifetime of living with my wretched stubborn streak. Today the glass must be half-full!

When I took a break on the border I was keen to try a Middia pattern that Frivole posted about. To me the pattern begged for beads.

My spatial comprehension is nil, so I had a bit of a time figuring out the pattern but in the end am pleased with how it looks.  I also thought I might like to try it using a two colour lock-join braid for the chains.

I am also wondering if I should go for another 5 motifs to increase the size of this as I really like the pattern. This is what it looked like after I blocked it a bit as I realized the previous photo of it looked rather lopsided.

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Kristen Comments...

I was nearly fine with leaving mistakes in the border till I read Kristen’s comments:

KristenSaturday, July 6, 2013 at 8:34:00 AM EDT
I think it looks great, and good for you for being able to leave your mistakes! So far I can't do that, crazy perfectionist that I am!

Now, true to form, I do not think I can keep going knowing all the mistakes that are in the border!

Before I read the comment just a few minutes ago, I was going to post and ask tatters what I should do -  treat this as an exercise OR start again now that I have had some practice, after I had perused Snowy’s blog and pondered...

There are a lot of errors and the picot sizes are all over the place. Really, I think I must start again and not rush,  but rather keep it as a long-term project and see if I can get this #100-ish size thread looking better than it does now. At least I got around one corner and know I can do that again...

Oh, yes, I forgot to mention that I am not tatting fs/bs as it is too confusing and to return to that old debate, I am finding it easier to tat this way, once i got over battling muscle memory!

I ventured over to Frivole’s blog, to check out the posts she had about it and I am rethinking if I actually might now prefer the look, as well as the ease of tatting this way! There is definitely a different appearance to it that initially I had considered to be not as attractive, but now I am not so sure.

At any rate, for this tiny stuff there is no option.

Ah, Kristen, you are the voice of my own conscience! Thanks. : ))


Surprises in the mail from Suneeti!

Thank you very much, my dear friend, 
for remembering the Boys,

and for sending all this deliciously amazing thread to me! 


Another wonderful gift arrived yesterday from my son, on his birthday, back from Peru. Thinking of my tatting, the lad found this!

It is even lined with a waterproof, anti-poke-through material. Delightful!

The shuttle that I sent with him was given to a woman in the small village where he purchased the case. An interpreter helped Adam explain about tatting, ( THAT must have been interesting!!!) and also left her with a couple of tatted pretties. He said she was very pleased; I saw the photos and would agree. This of course thrilled my little tatter’s heart immensely!

I sent other motifs so that Adam could give them to his guide. Apparently the man said his wife would be very interested in the tatting. All good! Mission accomplished.

Mr G is not sure at all 
what the fuss was all about...
Definitely not impressed.

Friday, July 5, 2013

Outfoxing Valdani!

I am succeeding with this thread!
 I cannot believe it. 

- several inches ago! - 

Yes, inspired by comments left here by Maureen and Snowy, I have persevered and I am actually enjoying the Valdani - not just enjoying it, but also creating a lovely border. Thank you, Jon, for the PERFECT pattern for this endeavour.

The thread is the perfect colour for the hankie, just as I imagined it would be - twice!

There are some mistakes, like a missed picot joining and uneven picots, but following Snowy’s lead, I have left mistakes intact, concentrating mainly on getting through it.

The results seem to improve the more I tat and I am constantly trying to achieve some consistency in tension.

Seems there is a lot to think about at the same time, rather like learning to tat anew. Good. I am NOT bored!
Giveaway Update
Each of the two winners will also receive 
one of these SCMR books by the Gr-8 brothers


Mr. G

Several tatters have wondered what is going on with Gian, as he has been absent from tat-ology lately. Well, he has been preoccupied.

You see, he has a brand new blue plastic toy that has little holes in it. You put cat treats inside (I put in his favourite dry food which is limited in his diet and he loves it) and the cat is supposed to figure out how to roll the ball around till the goodies come out.

G figured it out in about 3 minutes - he is sooooo smart! So, he has either been playing with the ball or begging me to give it to him to play with! Happy kitty! : ))

Thanks for asking.