24 June 2017

Mrs Beeton's Book of Needlework

Mrs Beeton as you've probably never seen her before!!!

This is the original Mrs Beeton Book of Needlework that I inherited from my gran many, many years ago. I treasure it immensely. 

First of all the cover which is still amazingly in good condition. To the side of it is a view of the gold edged pages. Gorgeous.

I must admit I rarely get the book out as it's in a bit of a fragile condition.  About thirty years ago a friend who was a book binder at a local university offered to mend a couple of pages which were damaged.  There is one loose page now which I really would love repairs but I've lost touch with him.  If I had to rescue anything in a fire this is the one book I'd take along with my signed Elgiva Nichols book.

The start of the tatting section.

Coloured plates.

A certificate which helps date the book and is a treasure in itself.  

The final two pictures are of pages which unfold from the book.

23 June 2017

Have you guessed?

Have you guessed which Dora pattern this is?  Perhaps not if you haven't got the book!!!

I think it's the prettiest and, in my opinion, the hardest pattern in the publication. The first time I did it I was severely challenged but I'm very glad I made notes on the laptop as I went along!!! You can't beat a few notes!!!!

Even on my third attempt I still have to count, count and re-count!!!!

22 June 2017

A letter to Dora

Dear Dora 

I received the reprint of your book (thank you, Heidi) yesterday in the post. How DID I miss it the first time round? Ah, probably because in those days I had difficulty finding tatting sources in America (I'm still here in the UK)!!!

When you were avidly tatting in the 1970's I'd also been tatting for many years too. If ONLY the internet had been around then we'd have probably been Facebook friends (or something) and enjoyed each other's tatting company via cyberspace. 

I can't thank you enough for 'birthing' the split chain and split ring which gave me such freedom for my own design work.

Since stumbling across your book via a friend in South Carolina last September I've been totally addicted to your patterns. 

Your friend in tatting and in awe of your talents


To my other tatting friends - I want to say what an interesting addition of Dora's background Heidi has added to the reprint.  I LOVE finding out about this iconic tatter.

I have notes I've made which I have added to this blog (see the pages at the top) or which you can email me for which may help with some of the patterns. 

Also orders are now being taken from Heidi NakayamaTatting CornerHandy Hands in America and anybody in the UK who wants to avoid postage costs from the States can email me and I will bring you back a copy from Canada later this year and mail it at UK rates when I return.

21 June 2017

Does anybody?

Does anybody recognise this pattern yet? 

I did say who's it was in my last post about it but I bet you've forgotten!!! 

I hear people agonising about their 'blips' of colour when doing lock joins but don't you see how they can enhance a design? Mostly I don't care about them but in this case I embrace them.

20 June 2017

Thank you Andrea

This is a thank you message to Andrea who left a comment on yesterday's post which included this link to a slide show.  This is what she said in her comment.

"I found it to be a very inspiring display of both traditional and contemporary approaches to tatting. I really learned a lot from seeing the work of so many stars of the tatting world, whose work I had only ever seen in books or on the Internet."

I loved watching the slideshow and I'm also intrigued to read what was said on other people's bio's too. Particularly the spelling in some cases!!

Just to pretty up today's post here are pictures of a few of those pieces which travelled to America and back.

19 June 2017


About two years ago several UK tatters were asked to submit some of their work for an exhibition in the USA.  I was very flattered to be asked.  I duly sent my work off and had an acknowledgement when it arrived.  Although I asked several times for pictures of the exhibition I never saw any which was a great disappointment.  

I was lucky enough to get my work back safely a month or so ago but one  poor lady didn't because hers was seized by customs and they wanted around £70 import duty. This was MOST upsetting and it really made her life miserable for weeks until she finally paid the money and got her work back.  The good news is that she did get reimbursed eventually by the customs and excise people.

Now I'm showing you this label (below) because I don't think it's an appropriate thing to put on an exhibition piece. I know and admit I have a bit of a wacky sense of humour but this has quite upset me.  The pictures below the label are of the piece it's referring to.  

First of all I don't 'typically use one shuttle' (quite the opposite, in fact).  I've never done a one shuttle design either.  This doesn't make sense as in the same sentence it also mentions split rings which we ALL know needs two shuttles!!!  

I know I don't like needle tatting and am not backward in coming forwards with saying so but to use this as a description of ME on a piece of exhibition work is rather odd. Also there's no mention of my pattern site either and the blog url is wrong!

All comments (whether you agree or not) are welcome as usual.  Normal service  will be resumed tomorrow.

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Happy Beaks

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