Some of my patterns

30 December 2006

Back again with thoughts on making tatted earrings

I couldn't get into my blog yesterday so the seahorses are what should've been added then!!!
The earrings are some I made yesterday and I'm VERY pleased with them. They look even prettier in 'real life'. I've listed all four pieces on ebay!!! The pattern is here http://tinyurl.com/yco7pv
Some of my thoughts on making tatted earrings.
Having made earrings for about twenty to thirty years I've found out by many, many mistakes that the design has to be simple and strong. By strong I mean that it has to withstand being worn!!! Obvious, I know, BUT not always easy to achieve. The really pretty lacy looking earrings don't often work for me. After a few 'outings' I find that they bend even when well stiffened. To combat this the addition of as many beads as possible can help! (See my other earrrings which are based on the 3D snowflake). http://tinyurl.com/ylrmef
Using a very tight tension and a strong six core thread helps too. A thread like Flora, Manuela etc. Earrings can be made using a fine 60, 70 or 80 but I find that these work better with an added filament - again plenty of beads. Design is the main part of making earrings. Keep them simple and with clean lines. Slim earrings no more than and inch or so wide work well - length doesn't matter. Adding a split ring (like those you find on a key ring) to hang the finished piece to the findings is also an good idea and this is best worked into the tatting itself. The earrings below have them added into the long beaded picot but with the Christmas tree earrings I actually tat over the ring.
Another suggestion and one which I've used on the white pair below, is to Scotch Guard them to prevent them getting dirty.
The above are only my thoughts on making earrings and I would be very happy to add other people's suggestions to these.
Additional ideas from the comments section and email lists.
Also, as Wally suggests - you can squidge in some PVA to make the earrings not only a bit stiffer but to also keep off the dirt!!
From Sylvia in Penarth (that's in Wales!!). I have also tatted around a four hole tiny button, these make very pretty ear-rings, I used flora and a tight tension, they ended up stiff enough as they were. So keeping clean wasn't a problem, I washed them!!
Gina has reminded me that another thing I do is use PVA glue to 'blob' the piece of tatting onto the finding if a split ring isn't used. I used to do this in the past but nowadays try to 'build in' a split ring as it makes for a safer finished item.

28 December 2006

More Seahorses!

Still making seahorses with a plan to do the last two today - life permitting!!! These two are really prettier than they look with the colours being really bright. No idea why they don't look as bright as usual - perhaps the scanner's not quite awake like me!! Just listed these two on ebay. Two more planned for later today and then I'm definitely going to make new earrings!!!!




27 December 2006

Seahorses and Tatting Shuttles for Ebay!

I'm so pleased with my latest little projects. These are the first two and I've just listed them on ebay. I'm going to make four more and then I may make some earrings that I've been thinking about! I've also listed the Aero shuttles on ebay too.

26 December 2006

Shopping Bag Finished - probably!

I made myself finish the shopping bag off on Christmas Eve. I sewed the pieces on and this part is finished. I may add more pieces around the sides but that will have to wait for further inspiration!!! I made the bag back in August but it's taken all this time to find the time to finish it!!!!


Below is the wonderful parcel I had from my Secret Santa who was Omar Bentley in Oz. Such a lot of fun - especially opening the canned Koala.


23 December 2006

T T & A

This is the final part of my bag project apart from any further 'decorations' which I will add as and when I like. To achieve this effect I've used a 'sort of' block tatting. I was playing the other day and 'discovered' another way of doing block tatting which was a progression of a suggetion of Sue Hansons. Now I'm really a lazy tatter and look for the easy way out of everything. Sue's idea of doing a SLT and turn at the end of each row to save the traditional way of changing shuttles etc really appealed to me!!! I then had a 'brainwave' which was quite a surprise as my brain doesn't often work that way and thought I'd try doing it without the SLT and turn but try going back on the second row without flipping the knots. This works a treat. Woweee, I thought. Jane's invented something. So I wrote to the tat guru - Georgia Seitz - and asked if I had come up with something new. Duh, no!!!! Georgia told me that Julie Patterson had done this in her book 2. So I wrote to Julie to tell her how funny it was that I'd come up with this too. What tickled me even more was that Julie wrote back and said that when she used block tatting in her book she thought that this was the only and right way!!!! I really would suggest getting a copy of Julie's book as the way she has illustrated and explained it is in one word - EXCELLENT. I will try and do it at some point in my own way for my pattern site.
Now the idea/technique that I've used below isn't a 'true' block tat and this will be explained too in due course.





20 December 2006

2 Finished

Here is a picture of the number 2. I've used the braid that's shown below.



19 December 2006

Making a braid

I've been playing recently and found a simple way of making a braid. As you can see in the picture below this can be shaped easily as you go along. I'm going to use it to make my 2 and T A T for my shopping bag.

18 December 2006

Last Starcatcher and New Stuff

This is number 36 of the starcatchers and has to be the last unless, of course, I go and buy some more of that sized ring. I'm going to make some seahorses to put in rings to sell on ebay and Pamela Myers in Ireland tells me that the shop called 'Claires' has them on offer at the moment. I'll try and get down town today as we have a branch here. I usually buy them from there as there's so much choice of colours and at least two sizes.

I've also started work on my 2 T A T. Below is a first tryout but I think this will be abandoned for another idea which occurred to me in the night!

17 December 2006

Techniques and Great Minds!!!!

I think I bought the bracelet rings for the starcatchers way back in August. I bought two packets of 18 each. I now have one left! I've kept very few (3) for myself and have managed to give away all the others. Mental note to myself - don't start so early in the year making Christmas giveaways as they rarely stick around until Christmas!!!
Yesterday I finished my final piece for the Palmetto Tatting days application. Mind, there's a lot more to do before I file my application. I came up with a REALLY clever idea for doing block tatting another (and easier IMHO) way. I was just SO proud of myself. I thought I'd better check this out with the tatting guru (Georgia Seitz) as she'd know if it'd been done before. Duh, yes!!! It has!!! Julie Patterson uses it in her book which I must now go and buy. The book is called 'More Crosses Than You Can Bear'. There's a review on it here http://www.georgiaseitz.com/reviews/juliep/juliepbk2.html
Looks like I'll have to keep an eye on Julie - one VERY talented lady.

15 December 2006

I am pleased to announce that a supply of 'England' Aeros have arrived home with me safely. These are the 'Rolls Royces' of the Aero bobbin shuttles and far superior (but I can never see why!) to those made in Germany. All I can think is that they changed the moulding or the quality of the plastic.
I will start listing them on Ebay and/or Etsy just after Christmas. No point now as nobody would get them before the 'festive season'. Just can't believe my luck - a few will be put aside for my 'old age' and my sister wants a few too. The rest can fly round the world to whoever wants them. Only hope they go to good homes where they will be used and loved!!!


13 December 2006

Great Tat News

The lady to whom I spoke on the Friday market two weeks ago rang me this morning to say that she can get me the Aero bobbin shuttles. YIPEEEEEE. They are straight from Redditch where they used to be made many, many moons ago so obviously they are the original ones with 'England' marked on them. My ex husband actually found two in a cupboard when he worked there many years ago and he 'set them free' to tat for me!!! About the only decent thing he ever did for me, come to think about it!!! Anyway, I will be picking them up on Friday and then after Christmas I will start listing them on ebay. I think I'll keep a few just for myself - one needs to look after the 'inner soul' at times. Oh, and my sister will get a couple too. Well, tat's all for now.

12 December 2006

Three more completed yesterday. This time I TRIED to find other colours - avoiding the bright ones. Did it work or not? Hmmmm, not sure but I'm still pleased with them. I think this is one of my favourite of all time patterns. I worked it out yesterday. I bought two packets of the rings (18 in each) and now have two left. 34 starcatchers done and 6 now left to giveaway. That's one for each of the grandsons. Nathan had his on Saturday so just Callum and Oscar to have theirs.
Now I've no excuse not to return to Palmetto work!!! I've enjoyed the autopilot tatting for two days but now want to do something new!!!

11 December 2006

More Star Catchers with a Difference

I made three more of these yesterday late afternoon and evening. It was a long evening as, for once, there was a good film on the telly!!!! If you take a careful look at these you'll see that I've changed the centres slightly. I've done them like the starfish which makes working the whole thing a tad bit easier!!!

10 December 2006

A Very Busy Time

When will it ever stop?!?!? I've been very busy, as I said, preparing my submission for the Palmetto tat days next September. I'm now mostly through it with just two more small ideas which I need to think about and do to finish it off.
I was intending to get back to my shopping bag idea yesterday but when I took my friend her Christmas tat giveaway she asked if she could buy two more off me for her daughter!! This happened the other day too. So, I've run out!! Back to the starcatchers!! I did one yesterday evening and have another 'on the shuttles' at the moment. What a lovely treat - no thinking - just tatting AND with beads too!!!


9 December 2006

I know I've been quiet lately but I have been working on lesson plans which I am going to submit to the Palmetto tatters. A HUGE challenge as it's always difficult to come up with new ideas. The hardest part is thinking of an idea where the point you want to put across to the class is included quite early on in the time allocated. This really has to be done this way as students work at different speeds. SO reminds me of being back in my classroom. Planning lessons for over thirty young children, setting the targets, getting them settled down and then five minutes later little Johnny had finished!!! Duh. Did one strangle the little beggar or find him another challenge?
As the last main pattern for the application is now almost done I'm going to 'treat' myself to a day of tatting something for myself. I really, really want to do the 2 T A T to go on my shopping bag. I've done the eye (see previous posting) and the heart will be straight forward. The 2 is not so bad as I made a start on that some time ago.

1 December 2006

More earrings!

I've got so many different colours I want to make that I've taken a break for a day or so to 'treat' myself and my daughter!!!! Here are a couple of pairs of my Christmas tree earrings too!!!!




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