29 May 2013

Ferris Wheel motif mat - AGAIN!

Having finally come to a halt on the mat I now have to decide what sort of edging to put round it!!!  This is HARD!

Below you can see three attempts to make one and two of these failed dismally!!  I knew they were no good and thankfully Sally confirmed that for me when she stayed last weekend.  Here are the three attempts.  

The first one (excuse the colours but I used manky thread) seemed to be OK apart from the stitch count.  The second one was sort of OK but Sally thought it ought to be in just one plain colour which I agree with totally.  It also proved to be too 'wavy' even if I'd put on another round after.

The third one is what I'm working on at the moment - again a thread which is very old and which I'm just 'using up'.  This one MIGHT work but I really want to tat a bit longer on this just to be sure.

I've yet to decide but I will get round to it one day soon!!!

28 May 2013

The bracelet has a name!!

Having made a bracelet for Ros I decided I really, really 'needed' one for myself!!!  

So off I trotted to my thread drawers and as so often happens to me, Rainbow Taffy smiled at me so I smiled back and hoiked him out of the drawer.

I'm (as regular readers will know) hopeless about naming patterns but this simple name has stuck with me throughout so it's going to be called the Starry Button Bracelet.  Least I SHOULD be able to remember that!!!!

I'll soon have the original earring pattern ready and will shortly start on the bracelet one.  Text is done but finding time to do the drawings seems to be the problem!!!

27 May 2013

The end - nearly!!

So, 36 motifs finished of the Ferris Wheel motif.  The outer round motifs have no buttons in the centres - just because I wanted to make sure the pattern worked with and without!!!!  

Now I want/need to work out an outer round as it just doesn't look finished.  In fact it looks disastrously naked!!!  Naked tatting?  YIKES.  Send for the tatting police!

Sally was up here over the weekend - this is her blog.  She brought up a dozen pop a bobbin shuttles - all with hooks.  For those who have never met a pop a bobbin shuttle - please visit the tab at the top of this page for more information.

As there are so few of them I'm just going to list them when I have time.  It'll be a case of whoever sees them and wants them - gets them.  I did that a few weeks ago with the last batch and they went within a few days giving those in other time zones the opportunity to see them and me a lot more exercise trotting up and down to the Post Office.

No, that's wrong - in my case it's down and up to the Post Office as there's a slight incline down into the town!!!

25 May 2013

My Weekly March 2003

I thought I'd finished with these but I was WRONG!!  I found another!!!

Now there's quite a story behind this article!!!!  Are you sitting comfortably?  Then I'll begin!!!

It all started with a phone call from the arts editor at the magazine (My Weekly).  We'd obviously become friends over the previous few years.  Elena asked if I could please do a seahorse pattern.  Well, of course I said 'yes' and asked what the deadline was.  'Tomorrow' she said.  Oh, she might've said next week but I know it was a very, very short time.  This must've been in 2001 that the call was made.  That's (duh, come on out BC3) 12 years ago when my life was megga busy.  So I made a seahorse.  This embarrasses me now as the tail is really the wrong way round!!!!  Neither I nor Elena noticed at the time!!!!  

So the pattern was completed against all the odds in just a few days, submitted and accepted.  I was as ever, dead chuffed.

Roll on a couple of YEARS and it was finally published!!!  

This seahorse  (although one of my favourites of all time) has caused me a lot of upset as a few years after publication somebody 'stole' it.  They changed it (NOT for the better) by putting in some picots and missing out a nose ring!!!  In fact I've put a picture of the 'damaged' seahorse below.  This was published in a tatting newsletter under another lady's name and the editor of the newsletter said it was 'fine to do that as it had been changed by more than 10% so the copyright now belonged to her'!!!  That's a myth as we all know!!!  I queried the amount of changes anyway!

I finally spoke to the 'designer' who was a very, very old lady who'd seen a picture of the seahorse and copied it from that.  She'd no concept of copyright issues.  I couldn't be cross with her but I was with the tatting newsletter people as, if they considered themselves 'experts in tatting', they should've checked and double checked the pattern.  By the time it was published it was already on my web site.  

Anyway it's all 'water under the bridge' now but it's worth a mention that by taking other people's work you can damage their health and temper!!!!!

24 May 2013

A new bracelet for Ros

So, after the earrings that I showed you here I can now present the bracelet to match.  Well, not quite a match as I didn't have enough of the beads that I used on the earrings!!!!  

My stash of beads is quite considerable but finding the 'right' ones each time means I tend to use the same favourites!  This eventually leads to a dearth of the favourite colours - time for another look in Ebay, I think!!!

I'm going to start doing the drawings for this soon and once I've made a few of these bracelets (with adjustable clasps) I'll put some in my Etsy shop.  They'll have to be a tad more expensive than my usual 'stuff' as they take ages to make (nearly two evenings which is about 6 hours) and are (as you can see) 'bead hungry'!!!!

Question is - how much do you think I should price them at?  I find it SSSOOOOOO difficult as I rarely sell stuff - it gets given away or thrown in a box!!!!

22 May 2013

Curtain at 22 inches

First of all - number 117 pram has arrived here on the TIAS blog.  Thank you, Ray.

I thought it was about time you all suffered an update on the filet crochet curtains.  Well, that should be curtain at the moment.  

This is still an interesting afternoon project and one which is still slowly progressing in spite of the 'grand tidy up' that is ongoing in the house.  Don't you just HATE having to do that?  The tidying up, I mean.  

21 May 2013

Red Winsomes

So another look at my vast collection of tatted earrings and a thought about the only red pair I've got.  

Now this red pair are based on this pattern and when I made them I extended the long beaded picots on the side and bottom rings.  I thought they looked fine until people started commenting and calling them my 'cross' earrings.  That stopped me wearing them as I didn't want anybody to think I was in any way 'into' any religion!!!!  So this weekend I decided to make a new pair of red earrings.  This is the pattern - the ever useful Winsome Drop earrings.

I bought these lovely glass beads while I was in America last September.  I really love them.

20 May 2013

Earrings Ros and compare

Having made the one pair of these earwigs for myself as an experiment I then decided that my friend Ros would probably like a pair too.  Now Ros is even shorter than me and a lot, lot slimmer so she doesn't like big earrings.  

I made her the pair that you can see at the top using the same pattern - which I WILL get onto my site once the manic tidying up has been completed here in the house!!!

The picture below shows the comparison between my pair and 'hers'.  Dying to give them to her now and hope to see her later today.  I've also made her a bracelet which I'll show you soon.

18 May 2013


I'm pretty sure that it was Joanie who gave me the earrings you can see in the top picture here when Sally and I were staying with her.  My apologies if it wasn't.  

Anyway I've looked and looked at them and finally the aged brain sort of decided what to do with them.  The bead is REALLY sparkly so I didn't want to hide it inside the tatting like my first thought would've done.  I was originally going to use this pattern.  It would've been fairly simple to construct this round the bead in situ.  

After some thought and a dash to the tatting cupboard to find my pliers I took it apart instead.  The bottom picture shows the finished pair.  

As you can see the beads in the chain are moved into position on the core thread.  BUT me, being me, I decided that this earring needed to be finished with no ends to sew in.  Thus the final chain is a split chain.  I had to work out how to do this with the beads still on the core thread - it's not hard but took me a few minutes to work out.  The pattern itself is really quite a generic one which has been 'designed' many times by many people so I don't really think I can call it my own.  Beads are added over the small shirt button in the centre.  Now the question is - do you think it's worth me putting a page together or not?

17 May 2013

My Weekly February 2003

This is the last of the magazines - I think!!!  Bet you're glad about that!!!  

You'll see that this one was one of my first 'experiments' with buttons.  Well, buttons AND beads, of course!!!  The pattern is now on this link if you should want it.

Since this foray into buttons I've done several other button patterns too and am playing with them again at the moment.    

15 May 2013

Curtain progress

I haven't given up the day job (crochet) and this is just a quick update on the first curtain.  The curtain is what I'm going to do while sitting in the garden this summer.  Main problem is that summer came and went.  It lasted two days which happened last week.  In fact we're now back to winter so I'm doing it inside on spare minutes in the afternoons.

The top picture is the original 'picture' one that's up there at the moment.  

The next picture is a 'long distance' one to show you progress.  At the moment I've done 11" of the 30" (ish) required so that's just over a third of the way - IF that's how it turns out.

Of course I have to keep reminding myself that there's another to do and MAYBE another pair (slightly smaller) for the bedroom but I'm not planning on that (the bedroom) at the moment!!!  Time and inclination comes into that equation!!!

The final picture is a closeup so you can see the pattern that's repeated.  Here's a link to find the pattern.  It's interesting enough to not get boring but not complicated like the picture one.  No rows and rows of 'just open filet' to work either.

14 May 2013

26 motifs - HOW many?

A further update on the Ferris Wheel motif and the mat I'm still working on.  Least I call it a mat although it's not going to be useful for wiping feet on!!!  I mean, who ever would imagine a doormat with huge holes and gaps in it?

Anyway, it's now up to 26 motifs.  The ones in the middle have all been done round a button but the surrounding ones are 'naked' and have no buttons.  I'm quite pleased with it so far.  Time will tell if I'll still like it or not!!!

13 May 2013

Giveaway again!

Hope the title has caught your attention!!!!

Dear Elizabeth who won the Irene Waller book puzzled about it and then realised it was in a box of books she'd still got packed away.  She's kindly offered it up for 'giveaway' again.  

So, back to the iPhone app and this is the random number it generated this time.  Number 51.  This is Rukodelka who lives somewhere where the language is Czech!!!  How do I know that?  Because this is her blog and when I visit it my browser translates it into English and that's what it says at the top - 'translated from Czech to English'!!!!  

If you go down her page you will see some stunning tatting.  I'm so pleased that this time the book is on it's way to another country too.  The reason?  Because the friendly Post Office staff are always interested in the places I post to!!!!

Congratulations to Rokodelka - please send me your address so I can get this into the post as soon as possible.

11 May 2013

Winner of giveaway.

Well after last week and the random generator online giving me a suspicious number almost in the middle I decided to try another one that I've got on my iPhone in a very useful app.  This gave me the number 23 out of the 87 who commented on the blog and on Facebook.  Trouble is - I've no idea who this is apart from her name which you can see below.  Oh, she's a clogger too.

So, I'll wait until Sunday for Elizabeth to get in touch and then I'll run the numbers again if I don't hear from her!!!  Congratulations, Elizabeth - hope to hear from you soon.

Oh, for those who live in the UK and who love Lizbeth thread and all sorts of crafty things - get into this shop fast before I buy the rest of her stock!!!!  Note that over £19 it's free delivery too.  WOW.  Well worth a visit - AND she takes Paypal too.  I've shopped here before now and the delivery is FAST.

10 May 2013

For the man who has everything.

Namely MEEEEEE.  Joking apart - this is for Nick.

He already had a magnetic bookmark with a badger head - he has a lot to do with badgers and their welfare.  Anyway, that bookmark got lost and probably ended up in the library.  

He asked me to make another for him and as these Wrap It, Flip It and Mark It bookmarks don't get lost very easily I thought I would make him a 'whole' badger instead.  He was drop dead chuffed with it. 

Oh, I do have more of these bookmarks for sale here in my Etsy shop - along with bags too.  Bottom picture is the badger playing in the grass.

Before I leave  you today and start on the dreaded H work I must tell you that I have 84 names in the pot at the moment for yesterday's giveaway.  I'll draw it later today and let you know in tomorrow's blog post.

9 May 2013

Second giveaway

Before I start - number 116 of the TIAS has arrived.  Well, two prams from one person!!!  Here's the link.

Today I'm 'in the mood' for another giveaway.  This time (as you can see) it's Tatting by Irene Waller.

This is an inspirational book which really was 'before it's time' when first published in 1974.  In fact I'm pretty sure I went to a lecture by Irene around that time held in an old school somewhere here in the Midlands.

Please feel free to enter wherever you live.  I will use the usual random generator on Friday sometime and will let you all know via the blog on Saturday morning.  Good luck to all.

7 May 2013


Sixteen Ferris Wheels now done.  What shall I do now?  I'm asking because I could take it further as I'm still enjoying it.  I think I'll make another round to this.

Actually I think that I'll do the other version now - the pattern without buttons.  It'll be interesting to see if it'll work out OK.  No reason why it shouldn't but .....

6 May 2013

New project

Now in the summer (IF we get one) I like to have something to do when and IF I sit in the garden.  Something that doesn't need beads or is too fiddly to do.  I HATE the sun so always sit in the shade.  Sometimes I just sew in the conservatory but at the moment (having made 20 roly poly sets) I'm 'off' sewing bags.  

A week or two ago I had to take some 'stuff' up to the tip.  Next to the huge skips is a shop where you can take items that are too good to throw away and which somebody else might like to have.  The profits from this shop go to the local day hospice in Stratford.  

Of course when taking things up there an old git just HAS to go and look around the shop and look what I found.  Yarn.  4ply acrylic   I bought this HUGE cone which is brand new for just two pounds.  I'd already got an idea of what I intend to do with it so grabbed it and came away.  I'm going to make curtains.  There was only the one cone so if I run out I'll have to resort to ebay or Amazon for more.  

I will use filet crochet to make them so once I've decided on the pattern I'll start.  I made curtains for the windows (which are still fine, by the way) some years ago and they're 'picture' ones.  I'm bored with them and this time I'll make slightly 'fuller' ones with a repeating pattern.  

More in the future.  Meantime I'm still working on the Ferris wheel motif and thoroughly enjoying it although I'll be putting it aside while I do some test tatting and also make a bookmark which has been requested - a Wrap It, Flip It and Mark It one.

4 May 2013

My Weekly November 2001

Well, well, well.  Look what I found!!!  Has anybody ever made this pattern, I wonder?  I know I did but I've no idea where the pieces are now.  Probably squashed in the box where I chuck everything when it's finished - unless I give the thing away, of course!!!!

The pattern is here if anybody wants it in digital form.  It seems like another lifetime since I did this.  Strange coming across these magazines again after all these years.

3 May 2013

8 motifs of the Ferris Wheel

Are you still with me or have you got bored and left the planet?  

Sometimes I need to do something repetitious but while I'm doing it I'm also thinking about other projects.  

I'm looking forward to test tatting a pattern for Martha sometime soon.  Well, it's no hardship as her patterns are always so darn good when I get them that I really don't have to do lots except concentrate.  She's working on a new book which I've seen glimpses of (here's one of the patterns) and can't wait to see completed.

1 May 2013


The comments stopped coming in yesterday afternoon so just before our evening meal I decided it was time to run the random generator.

I've found that I could quickly make copies of people's names and plonk them in 'notes' which then bulleted each name - made life really easy.  There were 56 comments that 'counted' - some people accidently posted twice and one or two just commented and didn't want to be taken into consideration.  Oh, to the lady in Sweden who thought I wouldn't post a packet to her country - of course I would and I'm sorry I couldn't surprise you this time.

The winner was number 28 which you can see below.  That belongs to Marie Smith so I'll be sending that out as soon as I get her snail address.  

Thank you everybody for taking part - there's another book to be given away next week so don't forget to keep an eye open for it!!

30 April 2013

Now We Are Six

Now We Are Six.  Six motifs.  Why the title?  Well have you heard of A.A. Milne of Winnie the Pooh fame?  He wrote a book of poems titled 'Now We Are Six'.  

I loved his books when I was a kid.  Here are six of the motifs together.  All with buttons in the centres.

29 April 2013

A Giveaway

A few weeks ago I was very kindly gifted two tatting books as a thank you for something I'd done.  This was very, very kind of the person who sent them but sadly I'd already got both of them. 

I felt awful as the books arrived here and I thought the lady concerned had just asked for them to be sent here so I could send them on over the pond.  Often sellers won't post directly to the USA or other countries so I assumed this is why they came here.  So I got in touch with her once I'd traced the buyer through the company and asked what she wanted me to do with them. I was SO embarrassed when she said they were for me.  Anyway I discussed this with her and it was decided that I could give them to somebody who hadn't already got copies.

So, here's the first one.   I'll put the second one up next week - I don't want to confuse BC3, do I?

Please leave a comment and make sure I have some way of contacting you.  Often people don't have their emails easily available in their profiles on the blogs.  I'll announce the winner in a few days when people have stopped commenting.  I'll do the usual - use a random number generator!!!

27 April 2013

Popular Crafts April 1994

Another of the magazines which used my patterns.  This time in 1994 - back in the last century!!!

There were so few coloured threads around in those days that I can't believe that I even found some.  

Nowadays Tat Land is covered in beautiful colours made by so many talented people from commercial producers to people dying in their own homes.  Wonder if I should take up dying?  I guess not - I'd probably dye everything in sight and I don't think the cat would appreciate turning purple or pink or some other colour!!

26 April 2013

More of the Ferris Wheel motifs

All bags now finished and listed in the Etsy shop.  The really, really good news is that the sewing machine and assorted mess in the area I work in is also cleared away too.  Aren't I good, eh?

Well these are fun.  I'm enjoying the playing with colours again.  Wonder how long I'll keep it up, though?  So relaxing after a stint of designing.  Mind, the itch to start something new is there in the background of BC3's brain!!!

25 April 2013

Just a quickie!

I've been tatting but I really wanted to show you these bags that I've put in the shop.  Well, just two sorts - roly poly bags and poke proof pouches.  
There are quite a few more in there and I have three more sets to finish.  That will make a total of 20 in this sewing session.  I'm really, really done with sewing for a while after this.  

Why can't I regulate myself?  Why do I start a thing and then HAVE to finish it?  Why can't I leave a project like that and walk away from it for a few days?

Answer - because I'm bonkers!!!  Totally and utterly BONKERS!!!

24 April 2013

The Ferris Wheel

Named, shamed and up on my web site!!!!  

I loved the suggestions for this motif but it simply had to be the Ferris Wheel as several people suggested that name!!!!   I liked the one suggested by Pigmini of Octocurlygon but thought the cleverness of it might be lost on those who don't read English.  Twiddly (by Jane) was another great suggestion but I think I can use that another time!!  Same thing with Mad Tatter's suggestion of kaleidoscope too.  

In fact with some of the suggestions I'm not using I'm beginning to feel another design based on names creeping into BC3's area of the aged brain!!!!

23 April 2013

Not about tatting - not really!

I just wanted to apologise to those who thought I'd stopped easy commenting on the blog.  I took the Captcha thingy off some time ago to make it easier and then found that the comments dropped off AGAIN recently.  I've now realised what caused this.  

What happened is that I linked blog comments to google+ and that made it impossible for those who aren't using google+ to be able to comment - it's now back to what it was before.  Hope this will help you - Maureen and Fox!!!.  

You know what I'm like - I love to try all and everything out.  Do many people use google+?  I rarely if ever go to it.  Now I've taken off the link between the blog and google+ we should be back to 'normal' which is actually almost impossible in my corner of Tat Land!!!

Oh, I'm also roly poly bag making again too and slowly listing them (and poke proof pouches) in my Etsy shop.  Only another 7 sets to make and I'll retire again!!!

Another of the new motifs but without a button in the middle!!!  Today I will choose one of the suggestions for a name and (with a bit of luck) get the pattern up on my site.  Keep your fingers crossed.

22 April 2013

Just when you think it's safe!!!

Just when you think you've heard the last of this pattern - here it is again!!!

BUT this time it's got 8 sides and has a button in the middle!!!  I've done two to see how it looks when they're joined so I think I'm going to stick with this idea for a while.

Of course there had to be some alterations to the pattern from the original - quite a bit, actually as you can probably see.  Not sure WHAT I'm going to call this one so any suggestions would be VERY welcome, pretty please with sugar on the top!!!!!  

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Happy Beaks

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