22 August 2017

Not quite tatting!!

Many people say to me when they see me tatting - 'oh, isn't that crochet or almost the same'?

Well I gently explain that it isn't like crochet as this is a knotted lace. Anyway, today's post is sort of about crochet. I didn't learn to crochet til I was 32 years old. Almost 20 years after I'd learned to tat. I only tried it because I had an old aunty (my gran's sister, who I learned to tat with) who was, I guess, sort of jealous that I could tat but not do her 'sport' of crochet. So, I got a book from the library and made myself learn to crochet. It's my 'go to' craft when I want to do something different.

While on my walk round the rec (short for recreation grounds) and back through the canal basin on Sunday I spotted a sign on one of the narrow boats advertising crochet items for sale so I took some pictures to show you!!! These show the windows of the boat with the pieces that are for sale. 



21 August 2017

That didn't work, then!!!!

Do you remember this t-shirt? Well it looked lovely on and people complimented me on it.

It went through the wash but, as I expected, it failed dismally and came out all limp and horrid.

Next 'stage' was to cut it off altogether but I really wanted to use it. As I was still not happy about the neckline (felt it was a bit too low for a 'lady' in her later years) as it showed up more of my wonderful wrinkles which I'm proud of but not really happy to 'share' with others in case they embarass them!!! Well, that's my story.

So I found a piece of fabric to match the background of the t-shirt, a sheet of newspaper (the Stratford Herald has it's uses!!!) and a pair of scissors.

I cut a pattern out and got cracking with the sewing machine and this is the result!!! I'm right chuffed with it now and it'll certainly survive the washing machine!!!!

19 August 2017

Another one


I just don't need any excuses to tat this pattern. Not sure why but I just totally love it.  Actually, I'll be honest, I love all Rosemarie Peel's work and particularly her celtic designs.  She was the first person to do celtic tatting.  By that I mean the sort where you make two parts separately, intertwine them and then 'lock' them together with a third round.  Not the later type of celtic where you tat a long chain and 'tie a knot' in it.  OK, it's not that 'simple' but it's just not for me.  I've done one or two celtic designs and am reasonably pleased with them BUT I still think of Rosemarie as the 'Queen of Celtic Tatting'.

This one is made using two size 40 threads. The pale one is a Lizbeth thread and the variegated darker one is an old Coats one.  The beads are a lovely lilac colour.

I really ought to block this one to make the central star show up properly but blocking is something I rarely do!!!!

16 August 2017

The purple bag


Well it's done. Not sure I like the flap and may well take it off in due course!!! 

I've put two short lengths of velcro at the top each side of the flap so if that goes then I'll add a strip more of velcro. That's literally all I had left to make it anyway. 

I made it with a big gusset so that it sits firmly and then tapered the sides in so that it doesn't 'gape' while sitting there.  

The lining is from my stash so that didn't cost me anything either. I SO love the colour and it's going to be a useful bag to put all my tatting 'bits' in for my trip to Canada and the Fringe Element Tat Days.

To say I'm rather pleased with it is an understatement.  

15 August 2017

Another good find!

This time in a charity shop in Alcester.

Louise and I go to Alcester every Friday for Crafternoon in the library. BUT we sneak off early to 'do' the charity shops and also have lunch.

This booklet is what I found in one of my favourite charity shops. I grabbed it but it wasn't until I went to pay for it that I noticed there was a Milward shuttle in the packet. So, it's yours to whoever comments first and wants it!!! 

The price? The same as I paid for it in the shop - plus postage. It cost me £4.00 and I know the postage to America would be £3.15. Any takers?!?!?!?

14 August 2017

A gift

This was given to me by a friend who works part time in a charity shop. Now the charity shop couldn't sell it on for some strange reason. There were quite a few pieces of leather/suede but I chose this one - purely for the colour!!! Well, you know me and colour!!!

I'm not sure this is 'real' suede but it feels lovely and I've never been the type of person who actually cares. Now, what shall I do with it?!?!?!?  Watch this space.  NO, not the one between my two ears - that's where BC3 lives when he's at home!!!

12 August 2017

That took a little longer

First of all - I think I've now got the comments sorted out on the blog.  A few people couldn't leave comments and I was missing my lovely friends who were regulars.  BC3 finally decided to google the problem and lo and behold he found the solution.  Back to the real post, now!!!

That took a little longer.  A little longer than I expected!!!

Here's the next round of the doily - forgot to mention that it's worked in a size 40 thread. I'm not sure the colour is good on this round. In the picture it looks pinker than it actually is. I have chosen another variegated thread for the next round so I'm hoping it'll tame it down a bit!

I'm doing one more round but as I'm pretty bored with it now it'll not be the same!!! I've had a GOOD IDEA!!! Just hope it works, though!!!!

11 August 2017

Another trip

Down memory lane!!!

This was prompted by a visit to our local Hospice secondhand bookshop in town. I pop in there from time to time searching for craft books and occasionally bring in the 'Eborall rescue team' which has a membership of one - me. I found an old Coats tatting book there a few years ago and that got rescued and relocated to Atlanta and Sandra cause she lost everything in her house fire. 

Yesterday I found this little gem. 'Pillow Lace, Book 1' by Margaret Hamer. 

I met Margaret when I was in my late 20''s when she was demonstrating in Stratford (she lived in Bedford and came from a family of bobbin lacers). I approached her as I desperately wanted to learn but there was no time during her visit. We exchanged addresses and she asked if I'd be a guinea pig for this first little book of hers. Obviously there was no such thing as the internet and Youtube in those days!!!  Thus I was in on the birth of book 1 and at least one other little book of hers.  On an aside - her sister (Margaret Waller) was an avid tatter and gave me a lot of encouragement with my work over the years.

Now that was lovely enough but when I opened this book you'll see that it was owned by a Caroline Cramp. That brought back more memories of Caroline who used to belong to Rosemarie Peel's tatting group 'way back when'. Sadly Caroline died way too young. I wonder how this little gem of a book got from Nuneaton (where Caroline lived) to a bookshop in Stratford. We'll never know the answer to that. In the last two pictures you'll see samples worked by Caroline.

Now, if anybody would like this little gem - I paid £1.50 for it and would happily let it go for that plus postage. If you want it and live in Canada and will be attending the Fringe then I can bring it with me.



9 August 2017

Down memory lane!


My dad in his later years (he died at the age of 97) used to constantly talk about 'going down memory lane' and it used to drive me MAD!!!! I suddenly had a 'memory lane' moment myself the other day when I remembered a doily I'd started 'way back when'!!!!

I found it and have secretly been doing bits to it for the past week. This is where I'd got to last October and tomorrow I hope to show you the next round completed.

8 August 2017

Another off my list


Now what list is that? Well I'm sure I don't know cause I've lost it!!!

I suppose I do my best to keep a list from time to time but invariably it doesn't work out. IF I had a list this design would be on it!!!

Here's the link to the finished heart design. I've gone with the name Love Rings True which somebody left on the comments on my blog when I was wondering about what to call it. Ah, just found it - it was Madtatter 80. She said it was corny and I quite agree but I do like to make fun of life so I thought that fitted it really well!!!! 

Before I go there maybe a tatter 'out there' who may want the link. Well, here it is!!

7 August 2017

Rosemarie Peel


As you can see - I'm back to my favourite Rosemarie Peel pattern - Rachel. 

This time I've made it using HWT (Hand Wound Thread). Two strands of fine (60, 70, 80) threads wound onto the shuttle together and another two strands used for the chain thread. 

This is my 'go to' pattern for travelling as it gives sufficient interest without being 'hard'. I think the book is still available but you'd have to 'google' it to find out. Here's what I said about it some years ago and I still stand by what I said.

I can never quite get my head around the fact that such a simple design can produce such a stunning effect - particularly the star in the middle.  I've done what I did to the last Renulek doily (2017) and replaced the longer picots in the centres of the florets with 'jiggling' the stitch count and using very small picots instead.  I've always been hopeless at getting those long picots you have to join back into the right size so this is my 'cheat'.

5 August 2017

Who guessed correctly?

Well it was Batty Tatter!!! 

I was rumbling and mumbling around Debenhams a week or more back (and with a voucher for £11.00 in my handbag) when I spotted this t-shirt. As soon as I saw it I knew I'd got the right thread for it. Seriously. That's exactly what happened. So I tried it on.

It fitted fine but I felt it was a bit low/wide on the neckline so as I knew I'd got some thread of the right size and shade, I bought it. It actually cost me only £5.00.

Of course it took a couple of days to make the edging but I'm really pleased with it. I'm wondering how it'll wash with the tatting 'above' the neckline but I have plans for it if it does 'bend a bit'.

WARNING - there's a photo of the old git ahead so put on your dark glasses!!!!

3 August 2017

A quiz


Just one question but I wonder who knows the answer!!!

What does the picture below remind you of and what happened next. 

Ooooops. That's two questions!!!

And any comments which say anything about me 'losing the plot' will be published in their entirety!   

YES this is tatting related too so I'm not off topic at all!

2 August 2017

The big reveal!!!


Well, sort of a damp squid really!!

Not very well laid out on the scanner but can you see the difference between the two hearts?

The one on the left has 9 beads on each part of the top but the other (which would obviously be the one on the right!!!) has 11. Such a small alteration but what a difference it makes.

I'm currently working on the last 'bits' of the pattern (web page and drawings) so hope to get it up there in cyberspace soon.

1 August 2017

Strawberries and Cream


I'm starting to get ready for the trip in September. I can feel the horror from people when I say that as I know it's a long time to go but I HAVE to start preparations really early for peace of mind. My life seems to get chaotic at times and to avoid being panicky if this happens, I start preparations really early. There is also a lot to prepare too.

When I travel I take something that I can pick up while waiting in airport departure lounges and in other odd moments.  One of my favourite patterns is Rosemarie Peel's Rachel. It's from this book which I blogged about eight (REALLY?) years ago.

This time round I'm using size 40 thread with beads on the chains. I've worked out how much thread I need for one 'Rachel', added the chain thread (with beads on) to an EZ bob and then wound on the shuttle thread to the same EZ bob. I can get two 'Rachels' onto an Ezebob so I'm a happy bunny.

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Happy Beaks

Happy Beaks
I beg your pardon? I didn't quite catch what you said.