Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Tatting Diagrams

I am doing the happy dance all over my dining room! Thanks to Sharon Briggs and her wonderful designing course, I'm diagramming with my computer! Here is my first diagram of one of my own patterns. It isn't perfect, but until yesterday I had trouble drawing a ring with my computer. I'm using EazyDraw for the Mac (recommended by Jane Eborall a while back).

As you can see, I've been a bit distracted from my latest tatting project. Today was devoted to GRE (Graduate Requirement Exam) preparation and learning to diagram. The diagram part was the fun part of my day!

I'll go to bed now and dream of more diagramming after tomorrow's GRE practice. Tatting must wait until I master this new skill so I can produce better tatting patterns.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Size Comparisons of Yusoff Challenge Snowflakes

Here is my tatting of frakira's version of the challenge. It is tatted in Finca 16. I reversed the colors from her original and I followed the directions that had you complete the center first and then alternate tatting with two pairs of shuttles. The blue round doesn't show up very well on this background. Can you imagine those outer rounds in red and white--a candy cane snowflake! Perhaps another project for later.

It is displayed next to my version, also tatted in Finca 16, so we can compare sizes of the finished flakes. I'm ready to start carolivy's next.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Tatting the other Yusoff Challenge Snowflakes

I thought it would be fun to tat the other designs that came out of the challenge and do them in the same size thread I used for my own so I can see how the sizes compare. I started with frakira's. She offers instructions for doing the center last and for doing it first. It is a Celtic design in which the chains weave in and out of one another on the outer rounds. As you can see from the string of rings and chains, I started out tatting the outer rounds first, but I had lots of trouble keeping the shuttles for the second set of rings and chains on the correct side of the other set. I also messed up the pattern of overlapping chains when I got the to tip and started around the next side. So that strip is headed for the Totally Useless SAL jar.

As you can also see, I've begun again starting with the center this time. I think it is great that frakira offers instructions for beginning both ways. It's a beautiful flake and I'm hoping my mind and hands will work together to do it right this time. I'll let you know how it comes out.

Thursday, July 22, 2010


I have had a wonderful day of tatting. I finished a couple of tattings of my interpretation of Jon's challenge snowflake and managed to get the pattern finished. I'm trying out keepandshare.com to host the pdf file. Please let me know if you have any problems with the link or find any errors in the pattern. The pattern is presented in visual format as well as short notation. I hope you all enjoy it. Just click on this link: Yusoff & Davis Challenge Snowflake  Here it is in one color with a little variation so the center can be done with ball and shuttle.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

working on pattern

Just wanted to let you know that I'm working on the pattern and testing with a couple of tattings of it. Things are moving slow because I've had an arthritis flare-up in both hands. I could do very little at all for a couple of days. Pain and swelling have decreased so I hope to get back to my shuttles today.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Jon's Snowflake Challenge

Here is the finished first draft of the snowflake. I had thought I would tat it again in a solid color, but I like it so well in two colors that I'm going to do it again in two colors. I'm going to fix the pattern and tat it again from the pattern to make sure there are no mistakes in the pattern, then I'll share it with all of you.

Jon's Snowflake Challenge

It isn't quite finished, but the tatting of the final round is working just I as originally planned it. That's nice. The two different colors let you see the path of the two shuttles. I hope to finish tatting it tonight and then start another all in one color.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

My Progress at Jon's Snowflake Challenge

As I mentioned earlier, Jon Yusoff posted a diagram at InTatters and challenged us to figure out how to make it work with thread. Well, I trashed the Maltese Ring version I showed you in my last post. It just wasn't turning out to be fun to tat. So here is my next effort. It isn't pretty as there are places where I cut things out and started up again. This particular piece will never be pretty as it's just my working piece. Once I work out all of the details, I'll tat it again and do a better job. One more round to go!

Part of the challenge is that the patterns will be shared at InTatters when we complete them. Several others are working on ideas. Three patterns have been posted so far and they are all different. It is amazing that we all started with the same drawing. I encourage you to visit the Challenge part of the forum at InTatters and check them out.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Details for yesterday's post

My first effort at Jon Yusoff's snowflake design challenge (posted at InTatters) is about to be trashed. The proportion of the Maltese rings to the center rings is not right. I'm going to try again by enlarging the Maltese rings and possibly decreasing the size of the center rings. Certainly some of those inner picots have got to go.

I thought you might enjoy these two pictures from my trip to Silver Dollar City. Not my best picture ever, but prison photos are probably like passport photos--always terrible. On the other hand, my jailor photographed quite well, including the smug grin.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Quick Update

I've been a busy lady: a day at Silver Dollar City with my daughter's youth group, a day spent helping a relative move, and I've been working on a snowflake design challenge issued at InTatters by Jon Yusoff. I need to start the center of the flake again as I see a problem with the design already. It isn't ready to be seen yet for sure. It has been a long two days and I'm longing for my pillow. I'll report more later.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Another pattern website found

I've spent my free time today catching up at InTatters. One of the things I discovered was a link to Anastasia Maltseva's website. She has a number of free patterns available that are very lovely. I've added her website to my list of links. Happy tatting, everyone!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Emptying Shuttles

I spent a couple of hours in a waiting room today and then had a couple more to myself this afternoon. Since I had a small bag full of shuttles with leftover thread, I decided to do some small projects to empty shuttles today. You may recognize the heart balloon as a suggestion from Gina. (Hers looked better.) The flowers next to the balloon and the little bug in the middle were just doodles-of-the-moment. The flake and the teddy bears are from MINITATS by Patti Duff, patterns #3 and #67 respectively. I did drop the second shuttle ring from the center of the flake and wove long picots together instead. The top butterfly in the variegated browns is a salvage job. What can I do with this since I obviously don't have enough thread to make this bear's head? Make him headless and add antennae! The crown-looking piece at the top right was going to be pattern #40, but I saw pretty quickly that I didn't have enough thread for a snowflake. I emptied FIVE shuttles today!

One of my favorite things about tatting in public is the opportunity it provides for getting to know other people who are curious about what I'm doing or who recognize it. One of the people I met in the waiting room today has a relative who tats. I shared my contact information and my blog address. It would be wonderful to get to spend some time face-to-face with another tatter. Another has had a little instruction in the past, but has been unable to find a shuttle of her own. Unfortunately, you can't just pick one up locally. I told her about the closest places to buy shuttles and about all of you and the wonderful resources online.

Add all of this to the fact that my Dad is doing very well and you've got a very pleasant day!

Monday, July 5, 2010

Needle Tatted Bracelet

This bracelet for my daughter was inspired by the work of Totusmel. She has even posted a needle tatting video. The timing was perfect as I haven’t used my needles in a long time. I used the pattern for Edging #59 in Tatting Designs from Victorian Lace Craft, edited by Jules & Kaethe Kliot, page 39. I cleaned up the design by dropping a number of picots so it would be more in the style of Totusmel’s bracelet. Many thanks to Totusmel for both the video and the idea.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Rediscovering size 10 thread and a new use for our discarded projects

I have some projects I want to do for my daughters for which I will need to use size 10 thread. Since I haven't used that size in years and I've got to wait on the mail to get the thread I need for those projects, I decided to pull out what size 10 I have and get reacquainted with it. This Kersti Anear's Stumpy Bookmark is done in an unknown brand of bedspread weight variegated yellow. I didn't like the thickness of the tassel in my book, so I just attached a string with a ring on either end. I had to remember to keep my tension looser than usual and I ran out of thread on my shuttle about 2/3 of the way through. What shuttles do those of you who use size 10 thread usually use?

Charlotte 'Heart' South Carolina responded to my last post with news about a group that collects their snippets of thread and ditched efforts and displays them through their blogs. I'm not describing it very well, but Charlotte gave some links in her comment where you can get more information about TuSAL. It sounds like a fun way to handle those UFO's we don't really want to finish as well as the usual discards. I'm looking for a good jar or vase I can enjoy filling up.

I've found my jar - a Planter's Peanuts jar with a lid to protect the collection from our labs. I've also placed a link in my sidebar in case any of you want to check it out as well.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Have you ever been tempted to post a picture of the contents of your trashcan?

While I know we all have different amounts of time for tatting and tat at different speeds, I sometimes feel so disappointed at how little I have to show you. I know that is my vanity talking. I enjoy designing. I enjoy problem-solving. Both usually mean lots of discards into my trash can. Working out problems is sometimes part of the fun. Nevertheless, I've considered posting a picture of the inside of the trash can! :D