31 January 2019

As you do!!!

Well January is sale time and I love Lands End clothes but they're expensive and the only time I buy them is in the sale. I love them because they last forever - I'm still wearing t-shirts that I bought well over ten years ago. I'm bored with them but won't part with them as they're still fine.

So this tunic, which I got in this year’s sale, was rather plain so I decided to 'jazz it up' a bit. 

I tried a few ideas but it really did need something very, very simple so I settled for just a row of split rings.

30 January 2019

Back to the

Fandango coaster!!! Now this is (as I've said before) my current relaxing project. I tend to pick it up when I'm feeling tired or run out of other things I want to do. Two joined and the third motif sort of part way there!!!

I’ve started this with a brand new ball of DMC Cebelia (size 20) and am now wondering how big it would get using the whole ball.  Problem is - do I have the staying power to find out?  Time will tell!

29 January 2019


Can you see why this post has earned that title? Well it took me the whole of this round (which is only halfway done) to finally spot the mistake!!!

I was at my Thursday craft group in the library last Thursday and had completed number seven motif of this current round and put it down on the table to show somebody who asked me what I was doing. 

It was then I spotted the mistake. Nobody else could see it and when I pointed it out to them they all thought it would be fine to just leave it and carry on. 

Well, you know me. I couldn’t do that so when I got home I carefully replaced it. Now those who have a few years tatting experience will know this is NOT an easy task. I’ll show you the result next time. The second picture shows the offending motif in case you couldn’t spot it!!!!

28 January 2019

Another re-visit

Thanks to a very good internet friend who pointed it out to me, I have now seen the errors of my ways with this pattern!!

When I first did it back in 2007 the single shuttle split ring wasn't really much known about so I'd used the split CHAIN to progress from the inner part to the outer round. Now this led to quite a wonky and very hard to make neat design element.

So another re-think was needed and Leigh suggested that the SSSR may be the answer. Meanwhile I'd lost the original drawings to those had to be done too. Here's the result of a re-tat!!!

Actually I now really like this so it may become my project for next Silly Season!!!

23 January 2019

Fandango coaster again!

I needed more down time yesterday so pulled out the Fandango coaster to get an outer round on!!! Just saying!!!

21 January 2019

Fandango coaster

Now this is going to be a quiet week on the blog as I get my head down to finalise the patterns I'm going to submit for Palmetto in September.

The deadline is February 20th so I really need to settle down and get things done. As I'm applying for a full-time post that means a lot of patterns to get ready. Some new and some older ones which have been brought out of mothballs, re-vamped and are just needing final formatting etc.

Meantime I do allow myself some 'down time' or my brain would fry!!! I saw this pattern on Facebook a month or so ago that somebody had done in one colour. I was amazed at the new elements that showed up because it was worked in just the one colour. So, of course, I've had to start the experiment myself!!!! Here are four middles ready for their next round - and joining to each other too, of course!!!

18 January 2019

Keeping quiet!

I can do it and I do do it (keep quiet, I mean) - particularly on Facebook which I don't use very much anyway!!! 

A month or so before Christmas I had a notification I'd been mentioned on Facebook so went to have a look. It was a lady I'd not heard of before and she'd stated that she'd used my seahorse pattern (and another one) and made a cat out of it. 

Well I was most impressed with what she'd done and offered to help her draw it up or whatever and then host it on my site. This has kept the two of us quiet for ages as she'd not written it down and her hand drawn pictures didn't 'tally' with the text. It's been interesting voyage of working it all out and we're not there yet but I'm going to show you our 'work in progress'.

As her method of notation is quite different to mine it's causing BC3 lots of problems but I'm determined to stick to what she wants as it may well be better/easier for people than my normal way.

17 January 2019

Storing threads

I've been very lucky over the years to acquire a LOT of thread. I won some off Handy Hands when Barb asked for colour suggestions and she chose a few of mine. 

I have a set of drawers which I keep my 'best' threads in - Lizbeth ones and even though I'm pretty careful they used to still tangle themselves up and come unwound.

Then I went to Canada and in our goody bags were some of these little netting things. Well I came home and tried to find them everywhere. In Canada they're used by florists to protect the blooms of certain flowers while in transit. Over here? Nah, zilch!!!! 

On my second trip to Canada Kelly presented me with a whole bunch of these which you can see in the top picture. I found the best way to use these is to 'seal' one end so the ball of thread doesn't jump out. I did this on the sewing machine - backwards and forwards a few times over each end. Took no time at all. I pop the ball of thread inside and the 'open end' can be tucked into the centre of the ball - gets easier as you use more thread.

16 January 2019

Snail without beads

Well this little guy has been waiting to be blogged since probably November!!! I'm currently working on submissions to apply for a teaching 'job' this year and he's one of the 'probabilities'. 

He's been on the web site forever but I wanted to see how he looked with new and improved feelers and no beads!!!

Well here he is in all his glory!!!! Well, perhaps 'glory' is the wrong word and the right one should be slime!!!! 

14 January 2019

Ready and waiting

I've not got a lot to show you this week - well, I don't think I have but I do have the Llama finished and teetering around cyberspace!!!

I know - I'm boring but here's the picture I finally decided to use on the web site.

So, I suppose you'd like the link? 

Shall I, shan't I, shall I, shan't I give it to you or will I let you go looking round my web pages?

11 January 2019

Coriolis moving on apace

Introducing you to the next round of this adventure with the Coriolis!!!

I got this far with this design once before and then I fell out with the colours I was using!!! This happens to me all the time - does it happen to you too? I either get bored with the selection I made or I just find they don’t work.

Anyway I carried on as this is a simple project to carry with me to craft gatherings and I've learned the pattern pretty well now!!!

My next problem is going to be what colours do I use next!!! Yes, I'm going to put another round on. 

I think I need to return to something like the central motif but I don't want to/can’t use the same colours as I've no idea which balls of thread I used!!! Yes, I'm that stooooopid!!!!

10 January 2019

Llama finished

Well here's the final version of the llama. I'll get the pattern up on the internet at the weekend and let you all know when it's ready.

Why have I got three pictures here? Well I couldn't decide which one was best to use on the web site so I kept trying different backgrounds. 

In the end I settled with the blue background so all I have to do now is make it a thumbnail and get it ready to waft around in cyberspace looking for somebody to make him!!!!

9 January 2019


Now while I was ill last week I didn't do anything but as I was recovering towards the weekend this crochet project came in VERY useful.  Last time I showed you it was at this stage.  Then a short while later I thought I’d finished as I thought I’d used all the yarn.  Being a ‘little untidy’ I then found more of the yarn in the ‘wrong’ place which threw me back into the project.

I was glad of the extra yarn but why?  Well it kept the old knees nice and warm while I was doing it!!!! I've now used it all up and it measures 33” approx square. 

Obviously it needs pressing but that will have to wait until the weather warms up as it’s still keeping my knees warm as I go back to my shuttles!!!

8 January 2019

Now for some tweaking!

Still strange colours for a llama but heck, what else would you use this colour for?!?!

An improvement on the ears and I don't think the butt looks so bad now but there'll be another test tat in proper llama colours next. 

I'm getting the pattern together slowly too. I think this is one of the fastest designs I've ever done - only a few samples rather than the 12 or so it usually takes. 

Perhaps I'll one day become a proper tatting designer rather than a 'hit and miss' designer. One can always dream.

7 January 2019

Bet you'll guess now!!!

To save myself embarrassment I'm going to tell you that this is a llama!!!

I continued with the start I made the other day and am quite happy with this attempt although the ears aren't quite right yet. I'll work on those as they need to point further forwards. Also it looks as if he’s got a hole in his butt but that maybe down to the wonky colours I’ve used. 

So, I’ll work another in strange colours and we’ll see what happens then!!!

The idea for the llama is down to my youngest daughter and a shopping exhibition with her and 11 year old Abbi. Abbi is obsessed with everything to do (or wear!) with unicorns on and I remarked to her mum that I wondered what the next craze would be. She said llamas!! After that I've seen llamas everywhere!!!

4 January 2019

Just when you thought

Before I start today I’m going to warn you I’ve taken action against the spammers who are plaguing me with up to 25 comments a day.  I’ve put word verification on the settings so please don’t let that put you off commenting - your input and fun are so, so welcome.  

Also just when I thought things were going well it's back to the start again!!! 

I wasn't happy with yesterday's attempt (which actually happened over the weekend before Christmas) so it was another re-start!! I tend to just grab shuttles with any thread available for test tatting which accounts for the strange colours you get when I'm in designing 'mode'!!!

Any more guesses today?!?!?  NO, Maureen - it’s NOT a rabbit!!!!

3 January 2019

A bright idea!!!

OK - I’m back I hope.  I wish I’d had the right flu jab back in October but there you go - can’t win ‘em all!

Here we go - a new idea about to happen!! 

This is the first tat of this 'bright idea' which isn't too bad. In fact, for me, it's pretty good. 

Shall we make this a quiz? 

What is this going to be? No, not a TIAS I'm afraid but it would've been good for doing a TIAS. Anyway, no prizes but a bit of fun guessing!!! What will tomorrow bring?

2 January 2019

I know I said

That things were now back to normal but my aged body says not!! 

I’m hoping tomorrow will be the ‘new normal’ but that depends on whether this cold/flu/sickness thing has gone away.  I’ve got things to show you but not a lot and as I’m not doing anything at the moment I thought I’d keep stuff until I’m able to cope again.

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Happy Beaks

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