Sunday, December 26, 2010

Enjoying the Holidays

When finals were over I got busy decorating for the holidays and shopping for presents. I have thoroughly enjoyed spending time with my family and getting things done here at home. I'm afraid that, in my haste to get presents wrapped and delivered, I forgot to take some pictures of the bookmarks I made for my great-niece and great-nephews. I tatted Mark Myers football for the boys, adding tassels in their individual team colors. Their sister received Heather Johnson's Tatted Lady 2 in variegated pinks.

I'm catching up on my blog reading and I look forward to spending some time at the forums before I get back into the swing of another college semester. See you around!

Saturday, December 4, 2010

tatting and school

On the tatting front, I've almost completed a crinoline lady. I'll put up a picture as soon as she's finished. At the moment I'm bogged down with finishing papers and presentations and studying. I've got a test Monday, presentation Tuesday, and then the push is on to get ready for finals. It will all be over, for this year anyway, soon. I can hardly wait to tat my way through the Christmas holidays! There is so much I want to do.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Finishing touches done on my only completed project

It is a good thing I was making this one for myself because it is full of flaws. It is a lovely pattern, though, and available for free at

Many thanks to those of you who sent birthday wishes. I'm enjoying a lazy day.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Thanksgiving Day

Many of us are celebrating Thanksgiving Day here in the United States. I have a day of fun and family planned. There will be more than 20 of us gathered in one place. I expect lots of good food and laughter. Obviously, I have lots for which to be thankful today.

Tomorrow is my birthday. While many are out taking advantage of the frantic 'Black Friday' sales, I plan to spend the day updating my blog with a few pictures and tatting with some raspberry tea by my side and my feet on a cushion. Sounds great, doesn't it?

I hope all of you are enjoying time with family and friends this weekend, holiday or no holiday.

Happy tatting!

Saturday, November 13, 2010


I've spent a lot of time today reading the many tatting blogs that I follow. I can report that I've managed to get a little tatting done since my last post (sorry, no pictures at the moment). One bookmark is ready for the finishing touches. I also started and abandoned a few projects as well, so there are a few additions to my UFO collection. I've been playing around with a few design ideas in my head, but I have not picked up shuttle and thread for any of them. I'm getting a nice collection of projects I want to work on when I'm less busy with school work.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

No tatting to post

The last few weeks have been very busy ones. One of my courses this semester was an 8-week course instead of the usual 16. It ended last week, so I have a little breathing room in the remainder of the semester now that I'm down to only 4.

My Zoo Flakes Challenge project hit a snag. My goal for the design was a one-round, beginner-level flake. While it can be tatted in one round with rings and chains, it is more complicated to tat than I had envisioned. I'm going to have to put it aside until I can give it a large block of my undivided attention. That might be Christmas break.

I'm thinking what I need for the remainder of this semester is some easy tatting and I probably need a challenge to keep me focused. I joined the bookmark-a-month challenge at The Tatting Forums back in August. I've got a week to complete one for this month and that sounds like the perfect project. There is a challenge at InTatters to tat the same bookmark pattern in a variety of thread combinations using both solids and variegated threads. That one appeals to me as well. So I'm going to sign off and go review my pattern stash. Maybe I'll have something to show you by next weekend.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

New Threads & Snowman Progress

Hello, my friends. I found lots of wonderful goodies in the mail this week thanks to the Thread Exchange. The first is from crazymomtats; the second image is from Paige Marie. Both ladies were very generous. Crazymomtats sent me some extra thread (the last of her favorite Anchor size 40), and Paige sent me some lovely beads and buttons to play with and a 'spool' to load thread on. I've tatted with those, Paige. They make great emergency shuttles.
I forgot to tell you about the exchange I received last week from umintsuru. All of the threads are on little flower shapes. I would love to show you how they unfold, but I just couldn't get a decent picture.
Lastly, here is my progress on Jane Eborall's Snowman. Let me say that all of the problems I've had with this pattern are entirely of my own making and have nothing to do with Jane's design or pattern-writing skills. My tatting has been done when I'm tired and in very short spurts. You might be able to see that I missed a couple of joins under the head. I failed to read Jane's instructions and just glanced at the diagram before surging forward. I think it will still work out fine though.

I want to thank all of you who blog or participate at InTatters or The Tatting Forums. I've really enjoyed keeping up with what the rest of you are doing when I'm just too tired to work on my own projects. Keep them coming!

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Zoo Flakes Challenge Progress

I took another step today in Isdihara's Zoo Flakes Challenge. I have a design drawn up, with stitch counts, ready to be tested. You must wait to see the design when it is finished. Anyone else joining the challenge? The ideas in the back of the book for creating a paper snowflake can be a great way to get your design started.

Friday, September 3, 2010

The Weekend Check-In

The first full week of fall classes has ended and I survived! I'm taking the evening for family time and then tomorrow it is back to the books. I'd at least like to start class Tuesday feeling organized.

I did a little tatting therapy this week. It's just a good thing that I'm more process oriented than product oriented! I decided to tat Jane Eborall's Snowman in size 3 perle cotton. Effort #1 is on the right side. I was almost half done with his body when I realized I had no place to join the next row! I had started the body in the wrong place! I could have salvaged his head, but family opinion was that I had used beads which were too small for this thread. So I cut out the beads to save for another project, dug out some bigger beads and started again. As I was completing this 2nd head with fingertatting (running out of thread on the shuttle), I suddenly realized I had omitted a picot from the last ring. While this would not normally be a big issue, I don't think I have enough thread to go back, add those double stitches, and still finish without having to add in some additional thread. And I'm soooo close to the end! Ah well. I will do what needs to be done, but probably not today.

The other picture is my gift to self which finally arrived in the mail. The 'finally' is more an indication of my impatience for its arrival than a comment on slow delivery. I've thoroughly enjoyed browsing its pages and look forward to tatting up some of Lyn's patterns. It is a beautiful book. I'm thrilled with the quality of the publication as well as the many lovely patterns.

Well, gotta run. My daughters will be showing up any minute for our little party.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Threads Arrived

The first of my thread exchanges has arrived at my door. Thanks, crazymomtats! Here is a picture of the goodies I'm going to get to play with later.

I'm supposed to be doing homework instead of playing with my threads so I guess I'd better get with it.

Checking In

It has been a busy few days. College classes have started and I already have homework! I logged approximately 10,000 steps my first day of class. I was so tired by the end of the day.

The tatting result of all of this is that I didn't manage to get my shuttles loaded for my next project until about 2 a.m. this morning when I was up with some annoying pain that wouldn't let me sleep. By the time I had my shuttle loaded, I felt calm enough to give the bed another try. It worked.

Now this morning, I've taken pictures of more of my threads for the thread exchange. I've got several new samples coming my way already and I'm so excited about trying some new threads. Sample sizes are a minimum of 12 yards (11 meters) which is enough to actually make something. The smaller the thread, the more you can make with it. If you haven't visited the website yet, you really should go see what is being offered. The selection is huge is this tatter's opinion! So, if you want to see any tatting pictures from me today, you are going to have the visit the thread exchange and look at my lovely threads. ;)

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Tatting Tea Tuesday

I didn't manage to tat a single stitch today, but I found some time to enjoy your blogs and to check in at InTatters. The day got off to a good start with the arrangement of two thread exchanges. I'm excited about trying some new threads and sharing some of my favorites with other tatters. The mail service also brought me goodies today--24 Snowflakes in Tatting by Lene Bjorn! I've been admiring some of these flakes on other blogs and got an opportunity to add it to my library. AND Zoo Flakes ABC by Will C. Howell! Isdihara issued a design challenge at InTatters inspired by this book. The book shows you how to make a cut-paper snowflake using animal shapes. Isdihara has challenged us to design some tatted snowflakes based on animal shapes. I found a used library copy of the book being sold by a literacy program. It is a nice picture book that I will enjoy having as part of our family library. I have an idea for a design, but you don't get any hints.

One more day before I start college classes again, and I have a great deal to do. My Tat Do list is organized, and my blog is set up to follow what the rest of you are doing. My goal is to check in with you all at least once a week. I'll try to have some pictures of what I've managed to get done. Don't be surprised if a few are works in progress.

See you in a few days!

Monday, August 23, 2010

Baby Booties

I should have stuck with my favorite baby bootie pattern, designed by Lenore English. Instead I decided to try a pattern from one of my favorite beginner books. There are no zoomed in photos to help. This pattern has been a challenge to interpret from the beginning. I'm now within one round of finishing the first bootie, but I've decided that I can stop right now, insert a sock full of fiberfil, and call it a lovely pin cushion. It looks pretty good in the picture, but, believe me, it has some major shaping problems and the fit would be terrible. It will make a much better pin cushion, and I won't need to tat the other one! :D
Thread is Lizbeth size 20, color #686 Seagreen Light

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Joined the Thread Exchange

I finally got around to posting some pictures of some of my threads on the Thread Exchange. I started with some threads I did not show you in my previous post about my stash.

I posted pictures of my collection of Mettler 100% cotton machine-quilting thread. I have used it mostly for earrings and bookmarks. It tats smaller than a size 80 (probably about size 100?), but is really easy to tat--slides like a dream. I first tried it about 8 or 10 years ago because it came in a beautiful selection of colors. Before you ask me how I can possibly see those tiny knots, I'll admit that, these days, I can't! I count them as I make them. One of the wonderful things about working with tiny thread is that a dropped or additional double stitch doesn't matter. Who is going to get out a magnifying glass to look? LOL It is far less noticeable than in the larger threads.

The other collection I posted is made up of some of my larger threads. The Nazligelin threads are a Turkish thread, 100% cotton, which I discovered this summer. I needed some heavier threads in colors my daughters would enjoy made up in bracelets. You've seen some of the bracelets here in my blog in previous posts. It is a 3 cord thread and does not slide as well as my favorite 6 cord threads, but it is the perfect size  for the bracelets. My daughters are thrilled with them. I think I'm going to make myself a few (the purple is for me) before I make them anymore. ;)

Many of you will recognize the DMC Cebelia, a 3 cord thread. I have several balls of these two colors so I have plenty to share.

The last picture is of 3 of my Manuela size 20 variegated threads. Manuela is probably my favorite 6 cord thread. (I admit I haven't tried them all.) All three of these are variegated threads. The center one is very subtle pastel shades.

So if you would like to trade some thread, head over to the Thread Exchange. The labels to the right will help you find specific threads being offered by other tatters as well. Leave a comment on the post that offers the thread you are interested in. Include your email address and the owner of the thread will contact you by email to arrange the trade. More details are available at the blog.

Sorry about the lack of pictures today. I've been doing a lot of end-of-summer cleaning and very little tatting. The crosses are the only pieces I've finished this past week. I guess I should go tat so I'll have something to show you later, huh?

Friday, August 20, 2010

Giuntini Crosses are Finished

I offered to tat some animal bookmarks for my niece's children, but they all wanted crosses. They want animal bookmarks, too, but they want crosses first. LOL Here they are in their favorite colors. All threads are size 20, but I mixed and matched Flora, Lizbeth, and Manuela to get the combinations I wanted. Finished size is approximately 8 cm by 11 cm. These aren't part of the fair entries I planned, but I was so close to finishing them that I decided to do so. As I mentioned earlier when I showed you the black and orange one, the pattern, Double Chained Cross, is by Jackie Giuntini and was published in the August 1998 issue of Tatter Tales.

Design Course Starting in September

Do you ever wonder how one designs a tatting pattern? Do you have an idea that you really wish someone would work into a pattern? If you can tat rings and chains, you have the skills to take Sharon's Designing Class. She takes you from the very basics, through designing a piece of your own, and then teaches you how to write up the pattern and diagram it! All of that sounds much harder than it really is, because Sharon takes you through it step by step. Sharon will give you a list of software suggestions for diagramming. Some are free or nearly free. You may even have software on your computer already that will work just fine. If you think you might be interested, contact Sharon through her blog here.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Planning for the Fair

Some of you may remember that my oldest daughter (who just finished grad school) has picked up her tatting shuttles again. She decided we need to enter tatting in the county fair this year. We spent our Tatting Tea Tuesday looking through the exhibits handbook for places where we might enter some tatting. (There are no tatting categories.) Then we looked at what we have available to enter and what we would like to still tat to enter. The results--we are both busily tatting away on our respective projects. I'm sorry that I have nothing to show you right now, but that should change in a few days.

Meanwhile, I am enjoying reading your blogs in my breaks. I'm going to take a quick look at what you've been doing and then I need to get back to my entries.

Saturday, August 14, 2010


I finally took the time this evening to retat the last chain of Jeff's Sine Wave Bookmark. My mother loves the colors and style so I'm going to give it to her.

An opportunity to ride rather than drive for several hours today gave me time to tat a bookmark for my great-nephew. He asked for a cross bookmark and this one is tatted in his favorite colors. The orange thread is Altin Basak size 50 and the black is Flora size 20. The two threads are actually very similar in size. The pattern is the Double Chained Cross by Jackie Giuntini of New South Wales, Australia. It was published in Volume 3, Issue 3 of Tatter Tales (August 1998).

Friday, August 13, 2010

Tatting On the Go

I tried to pack some tatting to do on the go today and found myself with the thread and no pattern for one project, pattern and no thread for another. What I did have were the instructions for the single shuttle split ring printed off from Bina's website (Matthew Takeda method), Anne Bruvold's pattern Ringtrim - a microdragon and some shuttles I wanted to empty of their leftover thread. I had the Sine Bookmark with me so that I managed to untat the messed up chain segment, but I had forgotten the thread so that I could not repair my mistake.

Anne uses the SSSR (single shuttle split ring) in her Minor Dragon pattern as well, but I got around them there by using regular split rings. Since I was doing a two color variation, I relied primarily on her diagram. For some reason, I've put off learning the SSSR--looked at it a time or two, but it just seemed confusing. When I pulled it out today, I thought, that looks remarkably easy! And it was! My thanks to Miranda at The Tatting Fool blog for the inspiration to finally give this a try.

Here is Ringtrim. Isn't he cute? I love the 3d effect of his wing sticking up like this. Color selection could have been better, but I was practicing and I was emptying shuttles. Beside him is the bookmark I came up with to use up more of the thread left on this shuttle. I call it The Line because it reminds me of that geometric structure which is always drawn with an arrow on each end. It measures 12 cm. I'm not sure if this thread is a size 20 or 30 since I have this particular Manuela thread in both sizes.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Cleaning & Sorting

I've spent the last 24 hours (the awake ones) sorting, arranging, and clearing things out. I began with my tatting threads last night. You see my nicely arranged threads with a separate drawer for sizes 10, 20, and 30. There were some real tangles in some of them, and I had thread scattered across two rooms and in several bags, purses, etc. Then today I tackled my chest of drawers and closet. One of my daughters is having a yard sale this weekend, and it was a great opportunity to clear out things I'm not using. I even found a shuttle I didn't know was missing when I cleaned out purses that haven't been used in a while! So while I have no tatting to show, it has been a very productive day.

I hope to get the Sine bookmark finished tomorrow. I'm soooo close! Thanks, btw, for all the kind comments about my effort at this bookmark and my Tatting Tea Tuesday.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Tatting Tea Tuesday

I had an enjoyable Tatting Tea Tuesday! My youngest daughter has been reading Ivanhoe by Sir Walter Scott. She would really like me to read it now as well, but there are other things that I want to get done before school starts in two weeks. She found the perfect solution. She reads to me while I do other things. She read while I tatted--a treat for both of us!

Two of the three bracelets I made over the past weekend, for this same daughter, needed adjustments in length so I began my tatting time by adding another shamrock to the green one and another partial repeat to the red one. I tried to get a start on Rachael's Yusoff Challenge Snowflake, but it just wasn't coming together for me. I'm going to have to make some picot gauges or find the ones I made years ago. So I finished my tatting time with a project, and a thread, I've been longing to try. I tatted Jeff Hamilton's Sine Bookmark in Lizbeth Jelly Bean, size 20. As you can see, it isn't quite finished. I lost concentration as I was making the final join and didn't realize it until I had dampened the piece and was laying it out to dry. I tried to remove the wet stitches, but that was disastrous. So that is a project for later today. Many thanks, Jeff, for sharing the pattern with us. It was a pleasure to tat and I plan to start another one in a different thread.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Found a Couple of My Patterns!

I like to google myself occasionally to see what information is available about me on the internet. It usually doesn't show me anything I don't expect to see. Today was different. I can't believe the number of people who are using the name Eliz Davis! Most of them weren't me. However, I found that a couple of my patterns that were hosted on sites that no longer exist are now available on the internet again. Small cross and Red Clover Bookmark have been added to my list of patterns on the left. The Red Clover Bookmark was one of my earliest design efforts--a project I did right after learning to make the split ring. I think the clover blossoms could be improved with lots more picots and the pattern was written before there had been much standardization in style. If any of you find it too confusing to follow, let me know and I'll rewrite it.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Bracelet #3

While my oldest daughter was looking for a bookmark pattern to tat the other day, my youngest spotted Carolyn Groves Two-fer Bookmark and exclaimed that it would make a terrific bracelet. So here it is.

Friday, August 6, 2010

Celtic Knots

I tatted a bracelet for youngest daughter today using Rozella Linden's Celtic Knot Tatted Shamrock pattern. The color looks almost black in the picture, but it is a green (Cebelia #699 in size 20).  I did a couple of practice shamrocks--one three leaf and one four leaf to work out any kinks I might run into and to figure out how I wanted to string the motifs together. I turned the practice motifs into a couple of bookmarks by adding little tassels. So I finished THREE projects today while trying to do one! Not bad.

Snowflake size comparisons

I apologize for the poor image, but it works to let us compare the sizes of these 3 snowflakes that came out of Jon Yusoff's design challenge issued at InTatters. All three were tatted with Finca size 16 perle cotton. I've included a 6 inch ruler at the bottom of the picture and a Clover shuttle at the top to aid in comparing sizes. The one on the left was designed by frakira. The one on the right was designed by carolivy. The one in the middle is mine. While these were not the only patterns to come out of the challenge, they are the only ones I'm going to get tatted at the moment. I invite you to visit InTatters to view the other designs and to get all of the patterns. All of them resulted from different tatters' interpretations of the SAME initial diagramed idea! These three are a good example of the variety that came out of the challenge. Isn't it amazing how different they are?

I finished carolivy's snowflake today during a tatting tea party with my daughters--the first we've had together in about 5 years! Now that she has finished grad school, my oldest has picked up her shuttles again. My youngest just hung out with us today, but she has decided she wants to pick up bobbin lace again. I introduced her to it when she was in her early teens, but it was not something she wished to pursue at that time. I've promised to get our bobbin lace supplies back out so she can get started again before I get busy with college classes. I'm very excited about making lace with my girls again.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Latest News

I'm still working on carolivy's Yusoff Challenge snowflake. I managed to get TWO knots (and I don't mean double stitches!) in one split ring. It has taken me several days to get them out. Every time I tried, frustration quickly set in. Determined to win this battle, I refused to cut out the ring. Today, victory is mine! I had the knots loose in moments, and I'm on my way again. I've also managed to play a bit with EazyDraw. Nothing is finished in either of those areas. Instead, I've been very busy preparing for some big events.

Graduation was Saturday. I was SO proud as I watched my daughter receive her Master of Science Degree in Marriage and Family Therapy. We began the day by attending her cowling ceremony. Then there was the graduation ceremony followed by a festive meal with family and friends around a long table at a local restaurant. It was a very special day.

In the midst of preparing for this celebration, my oldest daughter and I have also been studying for tests. Hers was the test to get her counseling license on Monday; mine was the GRE on Tuesday. Both of us did well! We celebrated her scores with pizza. We celebrated mine with the purchase of more tatting thread (lots more!) followed by one of my favorite family dining experiences--frozen yogurt sundaes with lots of laughter on top!

My summer is almost over, but it has been a wonderful one. I've enjoyed getting reacquainted with the internet tatting community. I'll soon be busy with Fall classes and my time for tatting will decline significantly. My shuttles will not gather dust until the Christmas holidays this semester, though. I've got a few projects I want to work on, and friends who will be interested to hear how they are coming.

Time to pull out my shuttles and finish up a few things before the day is over. Maybe there will be pictures tomorrow.

Thanks for letting me share my joys.

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 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

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Finished projects of the past three weeks

I apologize for the quality of the picture. I took it with my cell phone and posted it directly from the phone.

As you can see, I've completed two on Jon's fold-over bookmarks and one of Nancy Tracy's Fan Stack Bookmark. I think I put as much tatting in the trash in these few weeks as I have to display--maybe more! Ah well, the tatting itself kept hands and mind busy.

I've enjoyed both of these patterns and expect to come back to them. For now, though, I'm ready to move on to something else. The tatting for my girls must wait until I can get in some appropriate supplies.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Busy Week

It has been a very busy week. Mom and Dad are both recovering at home. My hands seem to be doing better. I'm getting my laundry caught up. My daughter's 'stuff' is now packed up and moved into a storage unit until she can move it all into the house she is going to be renting.

You may have noticed a couple of odd posts today (which I've deleted). They occurred as part of setting up my cell phone to make posts to my blog. I'm really excited about this new feature. I won't have to wait for access to my printer's scanner in order to post a picture for you. I can take the picture and send the post from my cell phone!

Right now I'm sitting in Barnes and Noble enjoying a little down time. My daughters and I are out for the night. We've done some shopping. Most of the shops have now closed, and we have a couple of hours until our movie starts. Only in summer could I be planning to attend the midnight opening of a movie on a Tuesday evening! We have tickets for Eclipse. The drive home will be as much fun as the movie. The three of us just love critiquing books and movies. The discussion will be lively enough to keep us awake for the long drive home. Guess who is sleeping in tomorrow. LOL

I've been ordering threads and playing with my new Pop-a-bobbin shuttle. After confirming that some of the threads I need are not available within a 200 mile radius, I'm convinced I need to place another online order or two.

Well, the girls are back. It is hard to listen and type at the same time and B&N is announcing that they are closing in 15 minutes. Time just flies!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Future projects

Between a migraine and hand problems, it's pretty well impossible to tat today. (I tried it!) So I've been exploring websites and my pattern collection dreaming of possible future projects.

One of my daughters has a fairly large collection of tatted items I've done over the years. The other has 2 -- one is the dragon I recently completed. The problem has always been that I wasn't tatting anything she was interested in. Well thanks to the blogs of totusmel and agasunset I now have some ideas for items that she would really enjoy owning. So while I can't do any tatting, I'm going to review my thread and bead stash and my pattern collection with her in mind. I foresee a need to go shopping -- local and online. I declared this Tat for S... month, but since it is so late in the month she may have to have July as well. My other daughter wants a month, too, as she wants MORE tatting. LOL. It is nice to have homes for my projects before I even start them.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Dad is out of hospital

We had a special lunch and celebration at our house so my children could celebrate Father's Day with their dad. Then we loaded up to go out to my folks' house and celebrate with my dad (who has been released from the hospital) before they head out of town to spend a few days with my siblings.

I'm about to pull out my shuttles to finish up some of this week's beginnings while I keep the washer and dryer running to catch up on laundry. I'll try very hard to get some scans up in a day or two.

Many thanks for the thoughts and prayers on our behalf. Dad has a number of followup appointments. He seemed to be feeling much better today.

BTW, my pop-a-bobbin shuttle arrived. It is loaded and ready to go.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Hospital Update

I'm supposed to be resting at home, but I can't sleep so I'll blog instead. Dad had hoped to go home today, but the latest tests show his cancer is no longer in remission. He got a blood transfusion today and will see his oncologist some time this afternoon. Perhaps he can go home tomorrow.

He's been unhappy with the program selection on tv, so last night we watched a John Wayne movie from my laptop's dvd drive. I got a lot of tatting done during "Hellfighters," a movie we've both seen numerous times. That means I have some tatting to report!

After many stops and starts, I finally finished Jon's Foldover Bookmark. I plan to empty my shuttles with the Fan Bookmark and then reload for another of Jon's Foldover one's. I'm practicing tatting over ends and the Magic Thread Trick so I don't have to deal with any ends. Failed to plan for the final ends on my first Foldover model, so I had to take care of those. With all of the times I had to cut out mistakes, that one bookmark gave me plenty of practice!

When I finish these, I think I'll pull out some of my size 10 thread for a while. It is easier to see in a dimly lit room and easier to untat, too. Good thing I never got around to getting rid of it. Some times it pays to be a pack rat -- and I'm definitely a thread pack rat.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

More Tatting in Hospital

I'm still hanging out with Dad at the hospital. I've been doing some tatting, but even more untatting. I've made some of the dumbest mistakes! I guess I'm just too distracted. I've spent some time today catching up on reading the blogs of fellow tatters. There is an exciting thread exchange going on. I'm so disappointed that I'm not going to be able to participate, but thrilled that Fox has put this together. I'm going to enjoy watching the swapping.

Another thread for tatting has been recommended at the Two Shuttles blog -- it is bamboo! I found it in the Aunt Lydia brand by Coats and Clark. They say it is "naturally anti-bacterial, odor resistant, breathable and cool, 3 times more absorbent than cotton and durable and strong with a silky hand." I'm thinking this could be a good thread for tray mats, coasters, etc. that get wet with use. I'm going to be looking for it locally so I can see it and feel it for myself.

Even though I know it is too early, I'm watching the post for the arrival of my first pop-a-bobbin shuttle. They've already sold out again at Jane's Etsy shop, but I have a cedar one making its way across the ocean just for me!

Well, I think I'll pull out my shuttles and untat the last set of mistakes -- unfortunately the mistatted chain is a few rings and chains back. I may just cut it out. Horrible thought, I know!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Tatting in ER

I spent the evening in the emergency room with my dad and now we are settled comfortably in a regular room. I was too distracted to get much tatting done, but I started Nancy Tracy's Fan Stack Bookmark. This is a great bookmark for emptying your shuttles. It is one of many free patterns available at her Be-Stitched website.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Bookmark from 3 different sizes of thread

Well, here it is. Size 30 Cebellia in the center, followed by size 20 Manuela, and finished with a size 5 or 10 unknown crochet cotton (most likely a 5). My daughter likes it and that is what matters.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Failed Bookmark

I've been working on another of the Flaming Caverns Bookmarks. I chose a solid center and then tried one of the Lizbeth variegated threads for the crochet round. I don't like it at all. Unlike the previous one in which I used Manuela for the crochet, the Lizbeth is producing a little over an inch of crochet in one color before switching to the next. These lengths of color don't look at all well in this pattern. I'm about to strip it off and see if I have a Manuela color that will work to finish this one up.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

No tatting today

I had cleared much of the day for tatting, but our printer/scanner died. I spent the afternoon researching and the evening installing software and getting everybody's computers set up to work with the new printer. Do you ever find yourself reluctant to go to bed at the end of the day because you didn't get your tatting done? LOL

Monday, June 7, 2010

Flaming Caverns 2

I decided to tat another one. This time I started dropping the shuttle through the ring before closing it. It gave the half-closed ring a "squarer" look. I added picots and shortened the corner chains by 3 ds to keep everything close to the crochet round.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Pattern Correction

I just corrected a mistake in my posting of the pattern. If you have already printed it, you may want to print it again. I apologize for the typo. I also made the instructions a little clearer in a couple of places.

Removed pattern links

I hate to do it, but I've been getting virus warnings about the fortune city pages that hosted some of the older patterns I've had on the web. I have pulled those links for the safety of all our computers.

Flaming Caverns Bookmark

(This pattern is the property of Eliz Davis. You may share it with friends as long as you do it free of charge and print it from You can isolate this post for printing by clicking on it's title. To order a shuttle tatted bookmark in your favorite colors, contact Eliz through her Etsy shop called Tatknot.

Since I don’t have any graphics software for this computer yet, you’ll have to settle for an image you can write on and my written directions. It is really pretty simple. (Click on the image to enlarge it.)

I used a Lizbeth size 20 for the center and outer round and a Manuela size 20 which is a little larger for the crocheted round between them. Finished size: 4.75 inches (12 mm).

CENTER (one shuttle):
The center is formed with half-closed rings (hcr).

Make a length of 10 half-closed rings with the first being 3-3-3-3 and the remaining 9 being 3+3-3-3.

Turn the corner with a hcr of 3+3 and close it so the stitches align at a 90 degree angle.

Make a ring 3+ (joining to picot of corner hcr) 1-3, cl.

Make another hcr of 3+3 and close as before.

You are now ready to complete the remaining side with 10 half-closed rings of 3+ (to last picot of previous hcr) 3+ (to picot of opposite hcr) 3-3.

Repeat the instructions in italics to make a matching end. The second picot of your end ring will actually be a join to the first picot of the first hcr you tatted and the last hcr will join into this same picot.

CROCHETED ROUND (size 8 crochet hook)
Place 3 double crochet in each hcr along the sides, 4 double crochet in each corner hcr, and 2 double crochet into the little rings at either end.

FINAL ROUND (ball and shuttle)
Join between any set of double crochet stitches along the side. Side chains are 6+ (join between the next set of double crochet), repeating until you reach the 4 double crochet at the corner. The corner and end chains are 15+3-1--1-3+15. Return to the 6+ chain to complete the second side. Repeat the corner and end chains. Return to the 6+ chain until you return to where you began.


Thursday, June 3, 2010

New bookmark

After a slow start, I seem to be on a roll. I really wanted to combine the variegated red Lizbeth thread with a bright yellow, but the two size 20s didn't match very well and tatting with both was turning out to be a problem. After trashing two efforts, I decided to try combining crochet and tatting. I did my first project with half-closed rings to make a honeycomb-looking center, added a round of double crochet and then topped it off with a tatted chain for effect. I'm struggling with a name for the design. I'm considering Flaming Caverns, Crowned Fire, or (to accommodate the effect in other colors) Cavern Springs. Suggestions, anyone?

Tuesday, June 1, 2010


My daughter will be thrilled when she gets home today to discover that I FINALLY finished her black and red dragon. It was to be a Christmas present for her. Was that this past Christmas or the one before? It is Anne Bruvold's pattern for her Flying Minor Norwegian Dragon as I mentioned in my earlier post. I realized I had added an extra ring at the shoulder of the first wing when I got to the same place in the second wing so I duplicated my mistake. My daughter loves red and black together so I used the shoe lace trick to position my shuttles to get the effect I desired.


As I finish the final row in the final wing of one of Anne Bruvold's Flying Minor Norwegian Dragons, I find myself pondering the time it takes to untat compared to the time it takes to tat. I've had to untat a chain on both the final round and the previous one. First I forgot to make a ring between chains, then I forgot to join to a ring between chains. I untat because I have too much invested in this darling dragon to start over for such small mistakes, but I'm appalled at how long it takes to undo my knots. Lesson learned: A little extra time to check the diagram and the instructions will save far more time than removing knots. Sounds kind of like "a stitch in time saves nine" doesn't it? Well, back to my dragon.

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Oops results in Crusty

I've done very little tatting, but I've been converting my tatting pattern files to pdfs so I can transfer them from my old PC to my Mac. I should be able to finish it with one more day of labor. When I did decide to sit down to tat for a bit, I started with a simple ring and chain cross in the variegated Lizbeth threads I mentioned previously. I got off to a bad start by making my chains too long so that I didn't get a good 90 degree angle at the first arm. I decided to keep tatting and just see where I ended. Crusty here was born of my efforts. I've seen some more realistic crustaceans by other designers, but I like him anyway.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Lizbeth Threads

Even though I planned to tat from my stash, I couldn't resist a trip to Hobby Lobby after reading about the excitement over the Lizbeth Threads. Of course, I couldn't be content with one new ball of thread. I bought three lovely variegated shades. The black and read combo (Red Burst) will be perfect for finishing a project I started a while back for my youngest daughter and the Island Breeze is ideal for the bookmark I hope to tat tomorrow. I resisted the temptation to buy more shuttles since I have several empty ones available.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Summer - Time to Tat!

Finals are finished and I decided to take some time off to rest and be with my family. This means time to pull out my shuttles again! I'm so excited. I'm spending the evening visiting my favorite tatting websites to catch up on what you've all been doing. While I'm excited about tatting, I just can't decide where to start! I'm sure your websites will provide some inspiration.