Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Inverted Tatting Practice

The Online Tatting Class starts its fall series next week. The first session is going to use inverted tatting. I first learned about this technique in To de Haan-van Beek's book, New Dimensions in Tatting. My husband has requested a design for a Christmas ornament that I think needs this technique. As you can see, I've been practicing. It is really quite fun and easy. I hope I'll see some of you in class next week. I hope to make the evening session.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Custom Tatting

I'm working on a few orders this week - all bracelets at the moment. The first of these are some Sport Your Colors Bracelets for a small wrist. All of her favorite colors will be paired with black which is the staple in her wardrobe. Nice idea! Red and black is finished. Now to get the others done.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Another bracelet - Wanda

I finished the design, the test-tatting and got my first one ready for delivery. The customer loves it--says it is just what she had in mind, which is always great to hear. I already have orders for two more which is also nice. The thread in the one pictured here is Lizbeth Harvest Orange Medium and the beads are in shades of brown.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Sorry, no pictures today.

I spent a few hours yesterday trying to put things in order in my new work area and spent the rest of the day working on drawings for a new bracelet. My customer selected the thread and the beads and gave me a general idea of what she wants. I finally settled on something this morning. I'm about to begin the tatting and, if it works up as I hope, I'll send off some pictures to get the design approved. Maybe I'll have a bracelet to show you tomorrow.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

All healed & River Dancers bracelet in Purple

It was hard to keep my hands off my threads for a week, but I knew my fingers would heal faster if I did so. So I played foreman to my family crew as they moved furniture around to get my workroom set up for me. I managed to get a work area established so I can get right to work on the four orders I've received for the multi-colored earring jackets. It will take me weeks to get everything organized like I want it in the two rooms I wrecked in order to make my space, but I'm already loving it.

Here is the purple River Dancers bracelet I finished just before I hurt my hand. The color of the coordinating earring in the picture is closer to the color of the purple (Flora 215). The flash makes the bracelet look a bit too red. Flora calls the color Dark Purple.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Injured Fingers

I have another bracelet finished with the River Dancers pattern, but no pictures yet. I'm taking a break from tatting for a few days to let my fingers heal. There is a routine to how I bring the dog in from the dog pen at night. He just unexpectedly veered from the routine when my back was turned. He lunged after something (I never saw what) and I didn't get my fingers out of the leash quick enough to prevent a bad rope burn across 4 fingertips. It was every bit as painful as the microwave steam burn I received a few years ago. I paced the floor with my fingers in a bowl of cold water waiting for the pain relievers to kick in. I am amazed, though, at how quickly it is healing. I may be able to tat tomorrow or Saturday.

Meanwhile, I've been working on plans for some major rearrangement of furniture. My sewing and tatting supplies have been gradually spreading out over two rooms this summer as my work area is central to the two-room area. All other users have agreed to let me have the smaller of the two rooms as my own. So I've been measuring the spaces and pieces and sorting things for storage, trash, give-away, etc. DH is off Monday so I hope to get it all set up like I want it then.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Amazing Discovery!

Okay, well it is amazing to me and I stumbled upon it by accident. If you've read the listings at my Etsy shop, you know that when my cuff bracelets get a little stretched, I pour hot water over them to tighten them up again, then lay them out to dry. Well, being a bit impatient with the drying process and determined to wear my bracelet, I put it on while still damp. It was like having an air conditioner on my wrist! Why didn't I discover this earlier in the summer?! However, since the heat wave continues, I plan to wear matching cuff bracelets spritzed with water, maybe even scented water, for the duration of this weather. Here is the latest one I listed at Etsy today. Oh, and I got the beaded one listed, too, calling it River Dancers. Thanks for your help in naming it.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Sporting your colors in tatting

School begins again here in Arkansas in the next few weeks, and arms and ankles need some tatting. My latest tatted bracelets are made with DMC cotton embroidery floss using finger tatting and 2 shuttles. I chose to try a design in embroidery thread because of the wonderful selection of colors available in DMCs colorfast floss.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

More Bracelet Designs

Well, I got the next snowflake in the Crystal Collection listed in the shop. If you've tatted my Celtic Snowflakes, you will recognize this pattern. (The next in the series will be a new one.) I need to finish the counterpart for the Peppermint Collection and get it listed as well, but I've been distracted by more bracelet ideas.

Here are my latest bracelets. Several months ago, I made a bracelet using Carolyn Groves Two-fer Bookmark. It just didn't work as well as a bracelet as it did as a bookmark, but my youngest daughter still liked the basic idea of it. We've been playing around with some variations and settled on these two. Finding it difficult to decide which I like best and having my daughters each choose a different favorite, I'll probably use them both. The one with the button is mine. The one with the toggle will go in the shop. I've got a request for another like the one with the toggle, but for a smaller wrist and with a lobster clasp. I personally prefer the button clasp and I had this beautiful button (see the closeup).

The beaded braid bracelet never made it into the shop. It is off to a new home, still without a name. I need to get another done. Many thanks for the name suggestions. You've given me some nice ones to consider, but I haven't made a decision yet. I guess I have at least until I get another tatted to list.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Bracelet needs a name

My daughter and I found some braided beads at Hobby Lobby a few weeks ago that we felt would combine well with tatting to form a bracelet. That turned out to be much easier to envision than to do. After numerous trials and errors, this is the result. I'm thrilled to have completed it, but brain dead at the moment. The design needs a name. Got any suggestions?

Saturday, August 6, 2011

What a week!

While I had big plans to show you my latest efforts in tatting last weekend, everything seemed to go wrong. Then I got one of those migraine headaches that lasts for days. Thankfully, they are very rare. While I managed to cope with life pretty much as usual in spite of it, I wasn't up to anything requiring intense concentration like tatting or image manipulation. Then I spent two days at the hospital with my dad, who is home and doing great now. So I hope the reveal is better late than never.

I mentioned some time back that I'm revamping many of my designs. My latests listings at Etsy begin with some changes to the Celtic Snowflake patterns that I shared through the Online Classes several years ago. I've been working with size 80 thread, tweaking the designs, adding beads, and expanding the number of designs. Each design will be offered in two collections. The Crystal Collection is white with iridescent clear glass beads to provide sparkle. The Peppermint Collection contrasts white thread with sparkling red glass beads.

My goal with all of the patterns in these collections is to produce designs that are stable enough to hang without stiffening. This will make them lower maintenance for their owners and will reduce the chemicals in the lace.

If you want a preview of a couple of the other flakes that will be listed in the collection, check out the photos I listed at Etsy.