14 June 2011

More pendants!!

While I'm still 'in the mood' here are another two pendants!!!

I'm now cheating like crazy!!!  I've got them made onto ring findings which allow the necklace clasp to be threaded through.  This means ONE necklace will hold all of them according to the colour of the (inevitable) tshirt that I'm wearing that day!!! HOWSAT for a stroke of genius, eh?

I've also made a 'cord' type 'carrier' for the pendants too (you can just see that on the red one below) so they can either look 'formal' (on a chain) or 'casual' (on a cord).

As I generally class myself as a slob I really don't know why I bother except that I'm having fun 'bothering' - If you can understand!!!

Actually I enjoy wearing these - almost as much as earrings!!!!

13 June 2011

More of the same!!!

I do like to do a few of the same things when I get started so here are two more!!!

The top one is made in my favourite colour (at the moment) which is the Lizbeth Rainbow Taffy.  I just LOVE this thread.

The other is a thread which I pulled out of my HDT stash.  This purply colour was truly lovely and is a soft silky texture which I thought wouldn't be really suitable for a pendant as it was working out to be a bit 'bendy'!!!!  

I've given this away now in a dangle (which, of course, I forgot to scan). 

Yesterday was great - I listed all the shuttles, it rained all day and all of them sold.  Kept me delightfully busy and I didn't go 'stir crazy' being kept in the house.  I didn't want to get wet!!!!!

12 June 2011

Quick reminder!!!

I know that it's unusual for me to post on a Sunday but I thought I'd just put up a quick reminder about the shuttles going live later this morning in my Etsy shop.

They'll be ready for sale at midday - that's British Summer Time.

Right, off to search for breakfast!!!

11 June 2011

Off on another track!

Before I start - don't forget that tomorrow has been designated 'shuttle day'!!!  They will go 'live' in my Etsy store at roughly 12 mid day. 

Oh, it's also Ridgewoman's birthday too so Happy Birthday, Ridgewoman.

Yesterday I mentioned the pendants - well, here's the first 'batch'.  

Remember the magnetic brooches which are still (for another week or so) for sale in my Etsy shop?  Well I suddenly thought they'd make lovely pendants too so off I went on another track!!!
Here they are - both made using blended threads.  I think two were Sulky and one was a quilting thread all of which came from the USA.

10 June 2011

And after the bracelets?

Before I start - did anybody else wake up to the 'new look blogger' the other morning?  It's taken me a couple of days to re-train brain cell 3 where to find things but now I LOVE the modern look.  Well done blogger.

After the bracelets?  The inevitable necklace, of course!!!!
Again I'm back on the Winsome drop earring pattern idea again.  I'm just SOOOO boring!!!

I made this so it would go with the earrings and bracelets - well everything except the red earwigs!!!  Now, of course, I'll have to come up with something to go with the red earrings - watch this space!!!

Actually I'll let you into a secret - DON'T TELL ANYBODY but I'm making pendants too!!!!!  All will be shown in due course as I don't want you fainting with too much eye candy!!!!  

9 June 2011

More Pop-A-Bobbin Shuttles!!

My little sister was in town on Tuesday and she brought more of the Pop-A-Bobbin shuttles with her.

I will be adding them to my Etsy shop on Sunday 12th June at 12.00 (midday) BST.  I have

2 Cherry (with hooks)
2 Walnut (with hooks)
4 Yew (with hooks)
1 Yew - without a hook
4 Cocobolo Rosewood (with hooks)
1 Cocobolo Rosewood - without a hook
4 Purple Heart (with hooks)
1 Purple Heart - without a hook
1 Ebony (with a hook)
Prices and pictures can be found here.

Here are two to tempt you!!!!!

8 June 2011

Playing with threads

At the weekend I've been promised an 'invasion' of two little grandkids!!! 
Now I usually put my test tatting rejected pieces on a corner of my table for them to 'raid'!!  Of course they do get 'specially commissioned' pieces too.

This time I intend to leave these (must add some phone tag thingies to them) in amongst the other bits so they can find them!!!  Oh, if you want the pattern (beads could be put in instead of letters) then it's here.

The Abbi one is made with three strands of something like sewing thread and has beads.  I love blending threads.  Nathan's has no picots or beads - more suitable for 'big boys' of eight!!!

7 June 2011

The Fandango strikes again!!!

Before I start the daily ramble - do visit Sarka's site which is here.

Now this is NOT - I repeat NOT my idea really.  Credit where credit is due - this really came from Valerie who 'discovered' it within the Fandango bookmark.

She actually did a blog post about it a few days ago but I don't think anybody was awake out there in 'tat land'!!!  Here it is.

I have written out the pattern and it's now on the pattern site.  Here's the link.

Can you just imagine this with beads on and with 1 large one in the middle?  I can see it being useful for so many things from making mats to pendants to dangles to ........

6 June 2011

A month old tatter.

So you are going to be SOOO impressed.  Sarka's email popped into my inbox a week or so ago and I couldn't believe that she's only been tatting a month or so.  Just look what she tackled off my site!  Woweeee.  This is what she said:-

"My name is Sarka a and I have found your web with many wonderful tatting patterns. I tried tatting about three years ago but was completely unsuccessful and was not able to make a stitch. I gave it away and tried again a month ago and now I was successful and made some small flakes according to free patterns of Jon Yussof and Jan Stawasz. How I was happy. I am begginer (tatter for only one month) and self-taugt, so I am really happy for all improvement.

When I saw you Flowery SCMR bookmark, I was glamoured because it is so beautiful. And I said to myself - I must try it! Now I would like to show you what I have done and many thank you for this wonderful pattern!!! :-)) It was quite difficult for me, I did not know some methods what I need to do this bookmark. But I have found it on You tube, and learn how to do it and I am very happy I achieved.
Many thanks for this beautiful pattern again and I wish you many other pretty tatting!!!
Sarka (Czech rep.)"

4 June 2011

Now for something new?

Well, not really!!!  Not really, really new but new to me.

Having got all those earrings made I then decided I 'needed' new bracelets to go with them!!!!  So off I went again.

First of all I had to 'work out' how much thread I'd need to make one.  I used an earring and measured that and started.  Now maths ain't my forte.  In fact I HATE it and to do that working out is a REAL BIG effort.  Well, I did it.  Here are two bracelets 'a la Winsome Drop' mode!!!!

As you've probably gathered - I DOOO love pink.  I've got a bright pink tshirt but I went and bought another yesterday - 'just in case'!!!!

3 June 2011

Last lot of earwigs!!!!

Here we go with the last two pairs!!

The top pair are like the last ones but with a couple of Swarovski crystals at the bottom.  Sally gave me several packets of these beads last year and I've been keeping them for something special.

Now, below this pair is another using some lovely beads that Teri Dusenbury sent me a year or two ago.  Where DO the years go?  I've been waiting for an opportunity to show these off to their best advantage and I think the earrings are the very best place for these.

Just because - here they are all in one place!!!  Don't those colours zing?

2 June 2011

So, while I'm on a roll!!!

Don't go away - I know it's more of the same but things will change round here towards the end of the week.  I promise!!!

Here are more pairs I've made.  I change earrings like other people change their underwear!!!!  I can't go out of the house without a pair of earrings on or I feel drop dead naked!!!

Again I've used the metal heart beads on the pink version but I found these red 'teardrop' beads in my stash which must've been living in the tatting cupboard for donkey's years. 

Two more pairs tomorrow - I think!!!!

1 June 2011

More earrings talk

So, over the years I've tried many, many things and the only earrings I really like are the Winsome Drop ones which I did a year or two ago.

For me, personally, they have everything I need in an earwig!!!  They're lacy enough with the tatting and they hang beautifully with the beads.  Also they give countless opportunities to play with all sorts of beads and I now have them to match most of my 'outfits' (by that I mean umpteen tshirts and scruffy jeans!!!).

Here are two naked (before the wires were added) pairs I made with the shell beads!!

Can you see the tiny hearts with beads in the centre on the blue pair?  Those are the same as the ones I used in the dead bracelet (the ones from Kelly).  So easy to add a bead to the centre.

The orange pair have a small crystal at the bottom.

31 May 2011

Making earwigs

So after the dismal failure of the bracelet (see the photo at the bottom for my reasons!) I decided to play again.   

Over the years I've made hundreds (and I DOOO mean hundreds) of pairs of earrings for myself and a few for selling too.  I'm going to share some of the things I've learnt about these.

First of all DON'T make them too 'lacy'.  Too lacy tends to bend and go out of shape.  Well, mine do in spite of being stiffened.  Where am I going wrong if other people's don't?

Secondly - load the earrings with beads for better 'hangability' and less (bendability!).  A bit of weight really does help.

Thirdly - be aware of how the earrings hang in relation do the head.  Either like this - facing front.
Or like this - facing sideways.
Having decided that then the method that you use to attach the findings will need to be resolved so they hang whichever way you prefer!!!

OK, lecture over for the day!!!!!!  Do you want more tomorrow?

30 May 2011

I announce a death

Well, not quite yet but soon to happen.  Sadly this is going to go under the scissors.

Yes it did look pretty. 

Yes it is a wonderful idea.

BUT it started to look 'scruffy' after being worn for a week so it's GOT to go.  I cannot be 'doing' with things that aren't right and this just isn't going to be right.  I'll take a photo of it looking scruffy later and show you tomorrow.

Obviously the tiny hearts and shell beads will be re-cycled and probably the seed beads too - IF I can catch the little stinkers!!!

28 May 2011


The first picture is the practice run for a bracelet with the shell beads. 

Can you see the wee heart shaped beads in between?  They were in the packet that Kelly sent me and I DID say here that she would lead me off the straight and narrow - well, she did!!!  Now I've allowed myself to be led astray I'm really enjoying it!!!!

They have a hole in the middle and you can put a tiny bead in that if you want to.
Well, after the practice piece came the 'real deal'.  Sadly the colours don't show up as well as the 'real thing'.  Perhaps I ought to have taken a photo instead of being really lazy and using the scanner!!!

27 May 2011

Last cross

Now this is a 'just because' cross!!!!  I've called it a flowery cross cause it starts with a flower in the centre!! 

No excuse or reason for this one at all!!!  The pattern is here and is now added to the web page. Just a bit extra here - can't believe that people are already making the Iona cross - thanks, Sandy for your pictures.  

Just had a thought as I was putting together an Etsy order.  I'm going to put the shop on vacation in a few week's time so if anybody has got their eye on anything then please take the plunge before I do!!!  I hope to be in the right 'frame of mind' when I get back to start making some more roly poly bags - but who knows!!!!!   I certainly don't!!!

26 May 2011

Second of the crosses!

Now this one is an Iona cross.

To me it looks very similar to the celtic one but with arms which are 'fatter' at the ends!!!  Here is a picture of a 'real' one.

Again this pattern is worked in one 'hit' with instructions for beads and how to make it into a bookmark.  It starts in a different way and I did later wonder if the celtic cross could've been done this way too but I was too lazy to try!!!!!  

Here's the link to the pattern on my page.

25 May 2011

First of the new crosses!

I'm spending time over the next few days making sure these crosses are OK to go on the pattern site here!!!  The main check had to be made on the quantity of thread needed for them!!!  Just hope that they're right!!!

The first one today is the Celtic cross.  Now here in tat land the word 'celtic' has become used for certain types of tatting techniques.  Originally the term was used by Rosemarie Peel back in the 1990's when she devised several patterns which each consisted of three parts.  Two of these were made and then interwoven.  The third element then 'locked' them in place.  This interweaving was why she termed it Celtic tatting.

Later on the term has been used for what I refer to as celtic KNOT tatting where a long chain is made and then this is tied to make a knot.  

My work goes back to the very simple basics of looking at 'celtic crosses' like this one here.  Anyway, in this pattern there are no 'startings and stoppings' and no knots to tie (well, except at the end)!!!  It is worked in one piece too with an unusual 'start'!!!  I've added instructions for beads too and also how to make it into a bookmark.  Here's the link to the pattern on my site.

24 May 2011

Crosses make me CROSS!!!

No, not really - just thought that made a good title and would make you all sit up and take notice - heeee, heeee.

I've seen this pattern over and over again during the years and in fact found a slight variation of it in a 1982 Ring of Tatters newsletter whilst scanning them the other day.  Oh, does anybody want them (the newsletters) or shall I burn them?  No, Trayna, I haven't forgotten you!!!  I think I've seen the pattern in another of my books too.

I made this set of coloured ones in an 80 thread and it would've been when my kids were little as, over several years during that time, I did a lot of talks and demonstrations around the area and these were some of my 'highlights'.  My kids are now into their forties (hope they're not reading this!!) so that's a loooong time ago.  

The white one is from - goodness knows where but certainly isn't my invention.  
Which reminds me - I do have 3 crosses of my own which aren't yet on the web site.  I'll be adding them to my pattern pages over the next few days.  Quick and easy to make and all in one 'hit'!!!!  

23 May 2011

Joining to clasps and 'things'

OK, as promised a week or so ago.  Sorry it took so long but other things in my life suddenly got in the way.

I must first of all issue a disclaimer on this as it's only the way I do it and it's not written in any tatting 'bible' as THE ONLY way!!!  I do it this way for three reasons.  
Firstly it gives a very secure join and the chance of it falling apart is extremely rare.  If a single join is made there is always the risk that the metal on some findings (particularly clasps) will eventually 'eat' and 'gnaw' it's way through the threads.  
The second reason is that it keeps the piece being worked on the same 'plane' as the finding.  The earring or whatever doesn't then swing around at right angles to the finding which is important to me for the final piece to hang as I want.
A third advantage is no sewing (which is again insecure) when the item is finished.
OK, here's the link to the page I've put on my web site and here is the description etc here!!!

When you get to the joining place just do a normal picot join. Pull the thread up through the finding.

Next take the shuttle thread through the loop.
Now make one half double stitch – first half.
Repeat the join as before.

Finally follow that with one half double stitch – second half. This join does not affect the pattern count.

Continue the pattern.

Almost too easy, isn't it?

21 May 2011

I'm NEVER happy!!!

Nope, I'm NEVER happy with what I've done!!!  Not sure why but I never am.  Once a thing is finished I can always see a better way to have done it!!!

The same has happened with what I 'lovingly' call the OctoStarFlake pattern which Donna is teaching at Palmetto Tat Days.  Here it is on this page.  Why that name?  Well it's not a star (five sided), nor a snowflake (six sided) so it's an octaganol starry snowflake!!!

Originally this design was 'done' on the sparkly centres of the magnetic brooches/fridge magnets that are on sale in my Etsy shop.  Unfortunately Donna couldn't get the middly diddly things in the USA so I converted it to a naked middle.  Well, not naked as there are a few more beads added!!   Well, here's my amended version!!!!  

I may make these my Christmas giveaway - but there again, I may not!!!  

Here's a teaser for you.  Next week there will be new patterns and the way I join to findings on the blog!!  That'll keep you guessing, eh?!?!?  DARN IT.  Why did I just write that?  Now I'll HAVE to get all those finished off!!

20 May 2011

More playing with beads

See the beads below?  Donna sent me these a few weeks ago.  The round black looking ones are really a very deep blue and faceted AND they have sparkles in them.  Yummy.  The tiny brown hearts are lovely - in fact they're all great.  So this is pure playtime without any end results.
Well, that's not strictly true as a few 'things' settled in brain cell number 3's grey areas - see the second picture.  This is how the bright pink and orange earwigs started off and I'm hoping to develop this idea of tatting round the beads over the next week or two.  BUT as usual I get distracted!!!

19 May 2011

Hearts a gogo!!!

Ages ago I bought these little beads.  They have 'front to back' holes at the top and the bottom.  

Anyway I decided I needed some more earwigs so out they came again for a 'play'.  I actually made two pairs but gave one set to a friend who needed cheering up. 

SO simple - beads with split rings round worked in Zarina's size 80 HDT!!!

18 May 2011

More tidying up!

Books, leaflets and newsletters!!!  Those were targeted over the past few days!!!

It came to the 'crunch' when a whole load of loose leaf files fell off the shelf onto the floor (and my FOOT) one day last week AND while I was also in the depths of tidying the tatting cupboard!!!  Immediately the air turned blue and I then gave further serious thoughts about what to do with them.  

I mentioned a week or two ago that a whole load of newsletters had to go as they were taking up room, so this 'incident' signed their 'death knell'  

Over the space of several days (well, the weather's pretty cold and dull) I scanned all the pages which had patterns on.  Now the paper newsletters are now ready to sell on Ebay (buyer collects),  or become the target of a box of matches (I favour the latter)!!!!   So further decisions have to be made.  Meanwhile - guess where they are?  Back on the flipping shelf.  The patterns are now easily found on my computer without having to 'fight the files'!!! Job DONE!!  I've been meaning to do this for ages and ages - way before they attacked me.

Whilst scanning I came across just three patterns by other people which I'd made from the hundreds in there over this time period (over 30 years) and was surprised at how many re-prints of  designs from Coats/Penelope leaflets there were and how many 'similars' too.  

Times have changed SO much and so has our craft!!!

17 May 2011

Back to beads!

Oh, joy of joys - I'm back to beads again.  

This is the result - a new pair of earrings in my favourite 'shouty' colours - bright pink and bright orange!!!  I scanned these before I put the hooks on and have since worn them.  I hope to make them in other colours too.  By the way - that's a chain around the beads - not a ring.

These are made in one 'hit' with no sewing in of ends or sewing on of findings and beads!!  I love this sort of tatting!!!  I must tell you one day how I join to the findings - that's if you really want to know!!!  I often see people 'adding clasps and findings' after they've made an item and that worries me in case they become 'un added' when they're worn.  I firmly believe in adding as you tat but NOT having the wretched things on the shuttle as they get in the way!!!

Those are Swarovski crystals in between the coloured beads - and at the bottom.  

16 May 2011

Another grand tidy up!

Well it had to happen - another day (or good part thereof) in the tatting cupboard!!!  It had got in quite a state thanks to the diamond mat!!!  

When it came to deciding which thread went with which I'd have ALL my of them out of the cupboard and then (after decisions were made) I'd just chuck them back in again.  Here are two pictures before I started the grand tidy!!!  Can you see all the odd balls just 'chucked' in there?  On the second one you can see the boxes 'bulging' with threads I DID try to put inside them.  No way would the lids go back on!!

Here's one during the process and with me trying to fit/force the balls of threads into their boxes!!!  The bead 'situation' wasn't too bad as I've not touched those while 'diamonding'.
Finally the 'after' picture.  I'm delighted to show this as ALL the threads are now in their appropriate coloured boxes.  Wonder how long I'll stay tidy this time?!?!?!

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Happy Beaks

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