Some of my patterns

29 February 2012

Dog doodle


SHEEEEESH - can't believe I'm keeping this up!!!!

Introducing what I believe is a dog doodle.  Least I think that's what it originally started out to be some 30 years ago when it was one of my 'teaching aids'!!!  

I was known to appear in school with all sorts of things hanging from my ears - the tatting doodles were quite tame!!  Least the kids were happy to come to school to see what 'teacher' was wearing - anything to amuse the four/five year olds (and their parents).

I wore tea bags, dog biscuits, wrapped sweets, numerous Christmas decorations, adio tapes and anything that would hang from a pair of ear wires.  I think my best ever was turning up to a VERY posh party with a pair of bath plugs (marbled red) hanging from my ear lobes.  1 1/2" diameter ones - I've still got them somewhere too.

28 February 2012

Another doodle


I'm following (so far!!) my new blog policy of 'a doodle a day keeps the doctor away'!!!  Well, that's until I run out of doodles and/or steam!! Here's today's doodle.

Again it's another that's been floating around forever on my web page but I've now tidied it up and (hopefully!) made it easier to follow.

27 February 2012

Snickerdoodle!

So in the end after some suggestions I thought the best name for this design would be the Snickerdoodle Earring.  Thanks, Sue Anna.  That name really grabbed my imagination. 

So, I present you with the Snickerdoodle Earring!!!

I'm hoping that unless I get distracted I'll get the other doodles sorted out in the doodle section.  What's that saying?  Ah, I remember - 'a doodle a day keeps the doctor away'.

If you pop by there you'll see that I've moved a few things over from other places too.  I'm inunndated with doodles!!!

In fact I'll let you into a secret.  No I won't - another day, perhaps!!


25 February 2012

Look what I found

Look what I found yesterday - this is what I've been waiting for.

It's the call for teachers at Palmetto Tat Days in September.  I'm going to apply so wish me luck.

I've actually been working on patterns for just this event over the past few months so I'm almost ready to submit mine.  Well probably not 'almost ready' as you know what I'm like - I keep changing my mind all the time so the ones I've got ready now will probably change before I submit my application!!!!!

Shall I give you a clue as to what I'm submitting?  OK, here you go!!

24 February 2012

Would you buy it?

Would YOU buy a book with a very pretty cover but NO pictures of what is inside?

I've been buying books for more years than I care to remember.  Mostly, I'll admit, craft books and on the whole - tatting books.  I buy because I see a picture of something I'd like to make in it.  That's the way I have always done it.

I saw a very pretty looking Ebook (tatting, of course) recently in an online store and would love to buy it.  BIG problem is that there are absolutely no pictures of what's inside it.  Not one, ziltch, zero.  It says that there are 29 designs for motifs, doilies, bookmarks and jewellery.  It SAYS that it covers from beginners to advanced.  BUT there's nothing to tempt me by showing what sort of things are in it.

So to get more of an idea I contacted the seller asking for a picture or two to help me on my decision on whether to part with nearly £9.50 (almost $15.00) for an EBOOK - yes, an EBOOK so there's no postage involved.

The only help I've had from the vendor is that if I want to see what's in the book then I'll have to buy it!!!!  NO WAY, JOSE!!!  Would you buy it?

22 February 2012

One of the doodles.

Hey, all you TIAS'ers.  We've done it.  Thanks to Joanie in Tennessee we've now got 100 goats!!!  I'll keep quiet now about goats from now on BUT any that are still out there are VERY welcome to join the rest!!!  This has given me huge encouragement to do another next year.  Thank you everybody.

So this doodle will not go back into the doodle section!!  Why it ever got put there in the first place is beyond my comprehension!!

It's one of my favourite earrings and I've made literally dozens of them over the years.  I'm going to have to give it a name but I'm hopeless at naming stuff so wonder if anybody's got any suggestions?  Once it's 'named and shamed' it can go into the 'jewellery' section.

Why is it a favourite?  Well because of the many beads (only 8 on the shuttle thread, though) it holds it's shape.  I do stiffen them slightly as the diluted PVA that I use also protects them from dust and dirt.

This is a one shuttle and four rings design and so very easy to make too.



21 February 2012

Standardisation


First of all - we're nearly there.  98 goats in the field!!!!

Something that is impossible but would be WONDERFUL is a standardisation of the way we all write down patterns.  

When I started out on my adventure of 'writing stuff down' I did it the way I was reading it in pattern books 50+ years ago - as a kid I didn't question the way things were written.  Actually I found the old notebook with my orignal patterns in the other day (written, I guess, about 30 years ago) and here's one of the originals below.

Then when I started sort of seriously wanting to get rid of my ideas and inflict them on others I really looked at the various ways of writing down patterns.  I did a lot of research into how they were written down over the years too - must look it out sometime!!  I found that our 'modern way' isn't so modern after all.  Anyway, again I digress.

A few years ago when the Palmetto Tatters kindly allowed me to run rampant at Tat Days they decided to ask us teachers to use the standardisation that they'd come up with.  Mainly I think this was (I'm guessing here!!) to save on printing out everybody's notation - one sheet now covers all patterns taught.  GR8 idea - save our planet.  So I've taken to following their very welcome lead - here's a link should you wish to see it.

I am always tickled with the vsp (very small picot) being written in BIG CAPITAL letters (VSP) as it makes me smile.  I like my vsp to be written in very small letters because it is just a very small picot!!!


20 February 2012

What's next?

Before I start rambling - I've now got 94 goats in my herd!!  WHOOOPPPEEEEEEE.

While the TIAS was going on I've been quietly (yes, for those who know me - I can 'do' quiet) getting on with sorting out some of the 'stuff' on my web site.  Nope, I haven't changed anything yet but things are about to change!!

It's the 'doodle' section that's been 'bugging' me.  I did those doodles more years ago than I care to admit to!!!  So, I've taken on the enormous task of re-vamping it.

At the moment there are 13 doodles on there and not very well written at all - well, some of them.  So I started to look at them in depth.

Remember the doodles I was doing for Erin's shuttles here?  Well some of those were off the doodle page.  Having sort of 'jiggled around' with those I set off to get the drawings done.  

Then, DARN IT, that wretched brain cell popped up with more ideas!!!  Currently the roll call stands at just over 30.

My next big problem is how to put them on the pattern page and for that I need help!  Do I put one per page or put several.  How do I sort them?  I mean, does a gecko go with the angel or the turtle with the tiny man?  Come on all those other brains out there - what does an old goat do?!!?



18 February 2012

I'm a dozy mooooooo

I'm going to admit this publicly.  I'm a DOZY moo.  It's the solid truth too!!!

I work away at designing stuff and then forget what I've done!!! I have stuff on this computer that just has never got onto the web.  The joy for me is simply in getting things to look like a crazy idea that brain cell 3 has had - oh and in getting them 'just right'.  Once that's done I FORGET THEM!!!

I was contacted a few days ago by somebody who wanted a sheep pattern.  They'd seen one on my blog and when I looked through the blog I found it!!!  Completely forgotten I'd done it too!!!  How STUPID is that?

Well looking at the sheep (which I'm now finishing off - it only needed one final test tat) I remembered the 'no onion' ring smallies I was working on a few weeks ago.  So, here they are (now unforgotten!!).  First the owl, then the elephant and finally the pig!!


These three got 'converted' into bookmarks and are in the Etsy shop now.  Well, what do you do with a surplus of rampant, neglected and cross animals?


We now have 87 goats on the TIAS blog - thank you, Sunset and Carol for sending yours in.



16 February 2012

A tip

Without Gina I'm sorta lost and didn't know whether to hold back on posting for a few days or not. Then I thought 'what would Gina say' and she'd be all for going on.  We never discussed the 'what if's' of her illness but only her desire to go job hunting as soon as she got back to work (that's partly why she got her wig).  So, for this reason I think I'll carry on today - still with a very heavy lump of lead inside me where my heart should be.  So, here we go.

I'm always amazed at why little holes are always put through the middles of post shuttles and are also on bobbins too - at the top.  

Now you're going to think I'm bonkers (well, I guess you know that already) but they're pretty darn pointless I think.  Those holes, I mean.

If you look at the picture below you'll see what I mean.  I've seen people struggling to poke their thread through the hole to then tie a knot.  What an annoying thing to have to do.

Me?  I'm WAAAAYYY too lazy to do that!!! I simply make a loop in my thread with a slip knot.  Like this.
Put the shuttle (post) or bobbin into the loop and pull the slip knot closed.  Like this.
Then all you have to do is wind your shuttle/bobbin AGAINST the knot and it will stay tight and not slip.  When you've finished you pull the small tail that's left to open it again and you can slip the shuttle out.  There - Bob's your uncle!!!  Well, not my uncle and probably not yours either!!!  Actually I don't think I even know a Bob either.

15 February 2012

Gina

I had the saddest news yesterday.  My dear friend Gina (tattinggoddess) died on Monday.

Gina and I met online many years ago and I enjoyed her wonderful friendship.  We gossiped and exchanged ideas and eventually met at one of the early Palmetto Tat Days.  We didn't always agree on everything and she was always a calming influence when I got my knickers in a twist about things.

One year she and I met in Tennessee and she took me down to Tat Days and gave me a lift back to Cincinnati afterwards.  What a wonderful time I spent with her that weekend.  We met again a few years ago when she and Gale 'kidnapped' me for a day in Cincinnati.

Last July we met once more when she drove all the way from Lafayette to Cincinnati to spend a day with me again.  We hunkered down in her motel room after lunch and just talked and talked tatting!!!  She gave me the sweetest little RPL bell which you can see below.  She showed me lots of her work too which she kept in very well organised folders.  A wonderful afternoon.  This is the only photo either of us took where she has the backdrop of sunflowers.  That to me sums her up.  

Last September she hadn't appeared in my inbox for a few days so I sent her a message to say she was 'too quiet'.  She replied with the news about her fall at work and the subsequent finding of the cancer in her lung.  I went through that dreadful journey with her.  The down days and the good days.  The days when sleep was all she wanted and the days when she moved stuff round the house in her ongoing attempt to 'tidy things up'.  Sadly her new curtains will never be made now.

Sometimes she'd be up in the middle of 'her' night and would release comments on her blog which would land up in my inbox.  I'd hit reply to tell her to go back to bed.  That always amused her.  She was SO brave and SO positive and finally a few weeks ago came the good news - she was in remission.

Things were looking good a few weeks ago and Gina offered to test tat the goat for me.  I thought everything was going really well - and then ..........

Gina, I'll miss you SO, SO much.  My time in tat land will never be the same without you to gossip and giggle with.





14 February 2012

Now for public consumption!!

Suddenly remembered yesterday that I'd got two patterns which I did for Donna to use at Palmetto Tat Days last year and which hadn't yet got put on my web site!!!

I finally got a cooperative few moments out of brain cell # 3 and got them up there!!!

Here's here's the Star Motif and the OctoStarFlake 


13 February 2012

Back to normal?

Well, hopefully NOT!!!  I do hate 'normal'.  Mind, I'm not really sure what 'normal' is!!!  Just a quick additional note here before this scheduled post goes 'live'.  I have 80 goats and this old goat is dancing, dancing, dancing.  I don't think we'll get to the 100 but it doesn't matter as it was such fun and that's the main reason for doing it.

Today I have two links to give you.  First of all I'm pleased to announce that there's a new supplier of Lizbeth here in the UK.  Drum roll, please.  There.  You didn't want the link, did you?  SHEEEESH, do you expect me to do everything for you guys?!?!?  OK, here it is!!!  Now, the best part of this site is that the postage is FREEEEE.  How's that?  I do like free post and packing.  

I also finally got round to listing some more bookmarks in my Etsy shop.  I also put that lovely pendant in that I made a few weeks ago.  This one.


11 February 2012

Last of the I hate onion rings!!

Here he is - the last of the 'I HATE onion rings' revamps!!!  

Again I think I may 'convert' him into a bookmark although I'm not sure you can fit an elephant into a book!!!  Perhaps a BIG book!!!!

I finally made myself one of the Wrap It, Flip It and Mark It bookmarks for Christmas and must admit it's my favourite of all because it doesn't get lost and nor does the place in my book either!!!

So, that's my project for the next day or so - converting my six little critters into bookmarks.  I did put the price down on them just after Christmas but that didn't generate any sales.  Not to worry - it's not the end of the world!!!!

9 February 2012

A sad day

Yes today will be a sad day as it's the last of my TIAS 2012.  Please, pretty please with sugar on the top will you send in your country and any blog urls with the final day 12?  I'll 'harvest' the blog addresses and then eventually add them to my own main blog here and to my web site links too.  I'm intrigued (as so many of you are) to see where everybody lives too.  I'll number each entry so we can easily keep count too!!

I'm sure it'll keep me busy collecting goats (does that make me a goatherd?) over the next few days but after that there'll be a big gap in my life.  What will I do with it?  
First of all I must add the goat pattern to my web pages - in fact, I'll do it now.  Do you like his name?  I wonder who it's named after?  Any guesses?


8 February 2012

Something else I don't like

Am I becoming the 'grump of the year'?  I seem to be doing a lot of moaning lately!!!

Somebody suggested that the newly re-vamped onion ring owl, pig and elephant would benefit by using the Catherine Wheel Join.
Being the sort who always takes all suggestions seriously I set off to see if it was better.  Now I DON'T LIKE the CWJ.  It's time consuming and fiddly but I gave it my best shot (as my American friends say)!!! 

Well I wished I hadn't as it was dreadful.  I mean it sort of looks OK (picture on the left) but it really threw the pattern into a state.  You'll see I gave up on the one on the left with the CWJ - cut off in it's prime, even!!!!  The part that I did seemed to 'cup' even though I was SO careful to keep it lying flat by adjusting the chains all the time.  In fact it was just as bad as working the original onion ring!!!!  Grrrrrr.

I also realise that I actually like the definition that I get with the lock joins too.  Using the Lj gives a much firmer result to the finished piece too and I like that.

I love new techniques - well the ones that aren't 'restricted' by 'ownership' and I'm always happy to try things out but in this case the CWJ doesn't 'do' anything for this design - unless you know better - I'm always ready to take up a challenge!!

7 February 2012

More I HATE onion rings!!

Today is Day 11 of the Tat It And See and the link is here.

During the 'refurbishment' of these three small critters I've taken the liberty of changing the stitch counts and other odds and ends.  Well, actually, it's only really been the stitch count, I think!!!

I seem to gather lots and lots of things around tat corner and never quite know what to do with them after.  So I think this little guy will shortly be converted to a bookmark (one of the Wrap It, Flip It and Mark It ones) - just to give him something to do!!!  I'm going to make another just to check him out again!!!!

6 February 2012

More about the boxes

So after many starts and changes of mind I finally decided (as I was still in 'heart mode') to add hearts to the lids.  

Then came the 'thread hunt'.  I searched high and low for the 'right one' and in the end I used a number 40 variegated Lizbeth that somehow came home with me from America a few years ago!!!  Thank goodness it did as it's 'just right'.  I added a Madeira thread as a filament and to give it a bit of sparkle too.  I sewed the hearts onto a piece of fabric and then the inner part of the edging.  Then I used the same thread (invisible thread) to sew the outer part of the edging onto the edge of the box lids.  This has made the top sort of 'blend' into the original fabric.  I'm really pleased with them although they were VERY time consuming on the sewing front!!!

Next decision is what on this planet am I going to do with them?  I don't want them - they're of no interest now they're finished so I'm going to give this some thought. 

Anyway, enough rambling - here they are 'transformed' hopefully for the better!



4 February 2012

I HATE onion rings!

Before I start - tomorrow will be day 10 and because so many of you (I think ALL) of you now know what the piece is I'm going to speed up the last two parts. Day 11 will be on Tuesday and the last part will be on Thursday. 

I sort of keep a list of things to do.  Sometimes they're suggestions or requests from other people and sometimes they're a direct idea from brain cell#3.  Sometimes, like this time, they're a nudge from somebody!!!

A week or so ago another tatter wrote saying she was having problems with the flying pig pattern which is an onion ring design.  Now, personally and publicly I will tell you this 

I HATE ONION RINGS

There - I've said it!!!!  I've been meaning to sort out the three patterns which use this horrid technique so this was the nudge I needed.

I quite like the three patterns that I did using them but must admit I struggle with getting those darn onions to look right.  (They make my eyes water too!!).

So I'm gradually converting the stinkers into chains round instead of those wretched rings.  Here's the pig done in the 'no onion' style and now I'm working on t'others!!!  I'll upload the three patterns when they're sorted!!!!

3 February 2012

Little boxes


Today it's Day 9 of the Tat It And See and the link can be found here.

While I was wandering through a shop in town just before Christmas I saw these little boxes.  

I'm a sucker for bright colours and especially this sort of pink.  

When I spotted them I thought - 'ah, tatting' (as you do) and scurried home with two of them.  By the way - I do a very good scurry!!!  Well, I guess it's more of a waddle really!

Time passed (as it does) and the festivities came and went  (so I'm told) and these little Pandora boxes lurked quietly in my tatting cupboard until a week or so ago when they shouted to me to be released.

I decided first of all to strip them of their 'decoration'.  Yes, I'm talking NAKED here.  Naked boxes.

I guessed that it wouldn't be easy or look very good when I finished and you can see the result in the bottom picture.  Pretty naff, eh?

So, time to restore them to something like their former glory (or even better) - but how?

Story to be continued..............



2 February 2012

Hearts doily

Day 9 of the TIAS will be tomorrow!!!

I've done it!!!  This is almost a record for me to get something finished but then there wasn't much to do, I guess!!

1 February 2012

Another thank you

My final thank you must go to Jess (here's her blog) who offered some of her HDT in a giveaway too.  I've been really lucky recently so I'm sure I'll not win anything now for ages!!!  Feast to famine!!!

Now as Sue Anna will tell you I didn't used to be a hand dyed thread addict until she started giving me threads.  Now she's just made me SOOOO naughty that I cannot resist them.  When I saw this on Jess's site here I just HAD to put in my comment.

When HDT arrives I am pretty dreadful.  I cannot wait to wind it off onto Ezybobs.  In fact this hadn't been in the house for half an hour before it was wound up as you can see below.  I do that so that I can 'see' better how it will look when it's tatted up.  This will be delicious - I can tell.

Thank you, Jess for doing your giveaway.


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