Monday, March 31, 2014

Now Number Nine

It now feels as if it will take forever to finish this Spring Doily...
I might not post again till it is finished.

The red Lizbeth is making me crazy: can you see the knot and the fuzz above it? In the second shot you can see how the thickness varies, which makes having good tension, particularly in chains, almost impossible to attain. Grrrr.....

One more thing:  the red thread has broken twice. No pass! I will NOT buy more Lizbeth - any size. 

The horse has bolted the gate, I realize, but at least I have not purchased a huge amount - just enough to keep me in tatting thread this next year! 

However, in the future I will try other brands, as I am now totally done with this thread.


Dreaming about the nearly-here Canadian Spring, and a border pattern I have not yet tatted that will look good around Elena’s Russian hankie.

I have the perfect shade of Purple in #40 Lizbeth.

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Slow Spring and Sparkles

Spring, the season, seems nowhere nearby in Toronto, and the Spring Doily is making progress at a snail’s pace. That last fact is a good thing.

Here it is today in the new threads using 
Perfect Quilter for the green this time...
and BEADS!

I was cautious to add beads that blend in so well that you can hardly see them, but they catch the light a bit and sparkle modestly. : )

The last row is the second go-around. 

Sticking to my new promise to tat with more attention, I had to cut off the first attempt at the 8th row, as the picots were the old sloppy large ones...

In the first version of Spring Doily, I used DMC green in the 8th row, which I had to discontinue as I am using it to tat the Lucky Clover and was afraid I would run out if I used it for both.

I have not touched that green piece since beginning the latest Spring Doily.

The switch to Perfect Quilter, I must say, I quite like!

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Travelling and Tatting

These activities did not fare well together! I have been busy and also paying attention to my new “do not rush” promise, resulting in not much to post.

So, little to talk about today, but thought I’d show you where I am in the Spring Doily: Row 7.

Lizbeth thread, #80 has been a miserable repeat of all my previous usages. Thick and thin inconsistency, knots, slubs and the red is a horror.

Now, I know red dye is problematic, but I have had absolutely NO problems with reds of DMC or Altin Basak. Or Cèbèlia, for that matter. This thread is awful.

The beginning of the ball is fine and consistent thickness, and then about a quarter of a ball in it gets fine, slubby and inconsistent. I am into the second ball of it and it was a repeat of the first.

This is upsetting because I have whittled my stash right down and ordered several balls of #80 Lizbeth, since the #80 threads are now my threads of choice. Thought I ‘d start amassing a stash of colours... What now? Lizbeth palette is great. Too bad the product does not hold up.

The colours I picked for this second try of the Renulek pattern are also disappointing. I am not sure why I have a green and red thread in my thread box, as these are not colours I like at all! I do not remember ordering this mix, but perhaps I did not see a good representative photo online.

The red in person is a bit more burgundy, but still not a preference. Oh well, it is nearly gone anyway.

Sunday, March 16, 2014


Renukek's Spring Doily once again...

Using the same #80 Lizbeth and another lighter green, I find this so much brighter. The last colour tones I found to be a bit depressing. Reminded me of something but I don’t know what.

Friday, March 14, 2014

Evading Excellence

I made a fatal flaw in my Spring Doily yesterday.

I could not figure out why I could not finish the last repeat... Took me forever to find what was amiss. The count was off somewhere... Good grief!

It was a devastating moment, but passed once I realized, it's my fault for once again rushing along, not paying attention and forgetting that I had promised myself to pay heed to each and every stitch. 

When I get into that rushing mode, I see I lose the enjoyment of being satisfied as I go, because I am tatting the very best that I am able. Then the whole challenge of a piece is gone. Why tat then?

So, here I am, leaving this piece behind, as I have begun it again! The silver lining is that I find the colour set-up way too dark, so am revising it a bit in the next piece.

To think, I had even ordered two balls of thread so as not to run out and then had to begin again anyway.... Ironic.

Thursday, March 13, 2014


... and completed!

That was quick! I am glad to put away the crochet hook. It got pretty tedious the last few nights. I am pleased with it and so thankful Friviole mentioned the random generator for granny squares.

There are only a couple of squares, not counting the four corners that are the sam; something interesting for an infant to look at instead of baby blue or pale pink. My cousin just may be on to something here!

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Vladivostok Variety and a Tartan Treat

From Kristen in Russia, 
a virtual cornucopia arrived yesterday in my mailbox:

And then, another package from a good friend:


That Russian book is one my Grandfather could have translated for me. Luckily, there are loads of diagrams, so I shall thoroughly enjoy it though I cannot read a word. Plus I have the perfect purple for a border for the hanky. I shall pick a border from the book.

The shuttle is a covered with the tartan of my son-in-law’s family. Unfortunately in the photo you cannot see the slight pinkish cast. It is so pretty.

Ah, I am lucky indeed to have such wonderful tatting friends.  Thank you both very much.

Remaining on topic here, I‘ll use the opportunity to post a photo of a tatted gift I received ages ago from Umintsuru, a case for a shuttle that she tatted with a billion beads.

Every so often I take this out and just look at it. Wendy is an amazing tatter. See for yourself:

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Pay Off

It has taken me days to finish the centre of this Lucky Clover piece. Maybe it will be finished by St. Patrick’s Day. Maybe.

Thanks, Stephanie, for the tip about the dds. It is a good trick to pull out when there are long chains.

I am really happy with the look of it and taking time has definitely made a difference in the quality of my tatting.

Now, if I can keep the pace slow, perhaps my work will continue to reflect the added attention. That is the goal.

Monday, March 10, 2014

Loping Along

...  with Renulek's Spring Napkin:

I have added solid green DMC,  
to give some lightness to a very dark piece.

This eighth row is slow going with two threads, as there are so many slts.

... and with the crocheted blanket which has been sewn into 10 strips of 8 squares each. 
It is big enough for an infant, pram and crib and I have had quite enough! 

Give me tatting any day!

Those orange sticky circles?

My method for putting it all together in a pleasing way, 
so that the squares worked together.

The Boss and Her Brother were very helpful 
with their definitive directions. 

Thanks Kids! ; )

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Quest For Quality

Here is what happened, starting at the end:

I liked Stephanie' idea of using a dds instead of a regular ds for the loooong chains. It works. This is Tally Tatty's vintage DMC #80 thread and it is great to work with. So smooth and consistent after the Lizbeth. 

I thought I'd try the dds method with the Lizbeth, but decided the chains looked choppy with the variegated thread, though I like the colours, so I ditched the thread for the green.

Here's how the first go-around worked out with the mistakes in the chain count:

So, here I am with litte done after a lot of work, but I have realized, I am tatting as if I'm in a race! Crazy fast. Why? No idea.

This time, with the green thread,  I am tatting super slow and really, really paying attention. I believe you can see the difference in the quality of the stitches. Clap if you agree!

It is time to slow it down and concentrate more, appreciating ever little ds. Otherwise, what’s the point? And Bob’s your uncle.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Instructions Ignored

I saw "Lucky Clover" on Stephanie's blog here and had to try it. The chains are extremely challenging and I messed up the count in the beginning, but didn't realize till I was finished round one.

I think I will continue; it looks okay with my alteration, and I don't feel like beginning again! I will post the finished row tomorrow when it is dry. It is now being blocked with many pins following massive manipulation.

Here it is when I had just begin and was enthralled with how well I was getting on with the long chains! Ha! Never get complacent! : )) 

See those inner picots? They are gate-crashers, never invited to the party! They created too long a chain which caused a lot of grief an hour ago!

Ah, NO. Just had another look at Stephanie’s. I cannot go on... Must re-try.

Will show you the first row tomorrow and start another round one... Perfectionism wins out... drats....

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Renulek Review

Up to the end of the 7th row

Then, the blanket at 67 squares:

Sunday, March 2, 2014


Not as clunky...

; )

On to Renulek's Spring 20014 Napkin.