9 November 2013

Trees without buttons

Well that was a busy day yesterday!!!  I managed to get the 'buttonless' tree done and you can find it here.

As it rained nearly ALL day I was stuck in the house and so got back to doing more to the TIAS.  I managed to finish the drawing which has been ongoing for a week or two and then I started the 'big chop'.  Obviously I have to have a clear head for this as it's too darn easy to lose track and delete the 'master copy' of text.  I've got four days done so there's still a lot to do.  

Once the 'big chop' is done it's a matter then of 'pdf ing' the files, uploading them, adding links and re-pdf ing them, checking the links etc etc.  

It's all really a way to keep me busy and out of trouble.  Not that I go looking for trouble - it finds me!!!!

8 November 2013

More button trees!!!!

Once I'd started I couldn't stop back in September/October when I started on this project.  They'll be my little additions to a round robin letter I send out to a few friends in December.  I really don't like Christmas cards as they're so impersonal.  All you do with those is stick a stamp on them and scribble a quick message - I always make life more difficult for myself!!!
Anyway today will be spent finishing off the version without a button in the middle.  You may see more of these over the next few days - or until I get bored!!!!

Before I wander off to get breakfast - here's the link to the pattern.

7 November 2013

Did somebody mention?

Thanks for all the comments on the TIAS - it'll go ahead as a slightly longer one than other years!!!  

So who likes Christmas trees and who likes buttons?  Answers on a postage stamp to:-
The Old Git
Somewhere in England!!!!

New pattern coming shortly - yet another I nearly forgot to add to the pattern pages but I'm working on that part of things NOW!!!!  There'll also be a 'buttonless' version for those who don't like them AND another very small version which are just right for earrings.  Those are made on tiny shirt buttons.  Just give me a few days to get the links etc done, please!!!

6 November 2013

Lots more patterns!!!

Sorry, not mine this time but look what arrived yesterday - the Palmetto Tatters CD of all the patterns from last Tat Days.  Now, where do I start?  

Sadly, nowhere at the moment as I'm having a TIAS crisis.  Well, more than one, it seems.  

First of all I'd got a pattern ready and was about to 'chop it up' when I saw that somebody had done something along the same lines.  Now there wouldn't have been a copyright problem with it as mine was a lot different but it put me off continuing.  

So off I went on another idea.  This one has proved a nightmare.  I like how it's looking and it's not complicated (mainly SR's and 2 SCMR's) but it's a much longer one than I usually do.  Thing is - would you all be prepared to tat a longer TIAS?  If not I'll just finish it and put it on the pattern page.  

It's a design I've been asked to do several times so I know it'll be acceptable.  I suppose I'm sort of in the doldrums with it at the moment!!!  It's also taking a long time to draw and check too.  It'll be another week or so before I can get it ready for the 'big chop'!!!!  Please let me know if you think a longer pattern would be OK.

5 November 2013

Heart for box

Well this is what I decided on for the little boxes.  You can see them here.  

Naturally it needed beads and there's one big one in the middle too.  Next task will be assembling them and also making another heart for the other box.  This is another of my patterns which I remember calling 'heartache' cause it was a pig to design!!!!  Easy and fun to make, though!

Isn't life fun when you've got these sort of things to play with?  

4 November 2013

Makes you want to spit

Must tell you about a shock I had yesterday.  I was trolling around looking for something tatting related on the internet and came across my pattern on a blog.  This blog, actually.  No mention of where the pattern came from or who designed it.  I found something of Jon's on there further down the blog - but that has her name on it.

I've left a comment on one of her other posts about it but cannot find any way to add one to that particular post or any means of contacting the blogger.  I would appreciate it if a few more people would point out to her that the design can be found on my site here and that there are diagrams that go with it too.  if you can find some way of doing that!!  

Something that really annoys me is that it's been copied from the pdf file (not easy to do) and copied BADLY with spaces and repetitious RW's even and no diagrams.  Any help would be appreciated by BC3 and meeeee.  It's not the end of the world but it's mildly annoying and needs stamping on in case further stuff is taken!

Another little gecko today this time made in Lizbeth Ocean Sunset - number 155.

2 November 2013

Just another gecko today

Well I've a bit more than that to say!!!  

On Thursday I met up with another online tatting/lace friend.  Andrea is from Wigan and was in Stratford for a few days with her husband and smashing grandson.  

I usually avoid churches and anything to do with religion but Andrea's grandson wanted to see Shakespeare's grave so that's where we went.  I don't think I've ever sat in a church and tatted before Thursday but that's what we did!!!!  I rarely set foot in a church anyway as I feel very uncomfortable in them!!!!  It was somewhere to sit on our walking tour!

The thread used for this little guy was Lizbeth 172 - Pink Marble.

1 November 2013

Boxes again, YIKES!!!

Remember this?  

Well it's when you get to this stage (below) that you start to say to yourself - 'why DID I do that'?

Here is one of the boxes after the scissors!!!  This takes me an hour or two per box as sometimes the twiddly fancy bits are sewn down very, very tightly and the metallic cord is hard to unpick too.  I take great care not to 'nick' the fabric.  

Still, here they are ready for the next stage which is the 'what on earth do I replace those fancy bits with'!!!!!  Deciding on which pattern will fit the lid is quite a hassle but once started the OG just HAS to proceed!!!!!

I've tried tweezers to get the little thread ends out but they don't work so I've decided to mount the tatting onto another piece of fabric first.  That's the second picture which you can see below the YIKES picture.

31 October 2013

Gecko number two!

Another gecko!!!  They're breeding like crazy over here in my part of Tat Land!!!  Isn't it strange how sometimes the silliest things can take over your life?  

I blame Tatskool for this little rampage.   After meeting her and her husband a few weeks ago I remembered that he is a gecko expert.  I named this pattern for Tatskool as I've a feeling she asked if I could do one for her and her husband many moons ago!  

I found time yesterday to update the page here so you now have a plethora of diagrams!!!  The trick, when drawing diagrams is, to draw the whole thing out first.  Sometimes I use layers and 'trace' over the original.  

Next step is to copy and paste and repeat that as many times as needed.  Each picture is then chopped up to make the diagrams needed!!!  Great satisfaction in chopping - now where's my ex husband's head?!?!?!

This little guy is made using Lizbeth Butterfly Breeze number 127.  I'm experimenting at the moment with another piece of scanning software after doing the Mavericks update on the computer.  The reason is for that is that the Epson drivers aren't yet available for the new update so I'm finding another way to scan.

30 October 2013

Gecko improvements!

Now this is the reason for doing the new easy block tatting page.  I decided it was about time I re-visited this little gecko guy and try and improve the pattern.  I'll try and get it finished and on the pattern page as soon as possible - just need to check links and get it 'up there'.  

It was while working this first little guy that I decided to fiddle with the joins in the block tatting so here he is - gecko number 1 and he is made using Rainbow Taffy number 153 with beads in the centres of the body SR's.  

This is one of my favourite threads and I'm going to play with others so sit back and expect a glut of geckos!!!

29 October 2013

Last 4 of the season!

I'm going to list the last four Tatting Tidy pots today here in my Etsy shop.  These are the last of this season and I'll see how they go before I make anymore!!  The sewing machine has been put away for the winter so it'll only be 'emergency' stuff made over the next few months!!!

I'll still be making the Wrap It, Flip It, and Mark It bookmarks as I still think they're a stonking GREAT idea.  In fact Nick's still using his and mine's been in constant use since BC3 invented them.

For those who haven't seen them before.  The tape wraps round the back of the book and the marker is 'flipped' in so it marks your place.  The beauty of these bookmarks is that they can't get lost and it's also very difficult to lose your place as the motif stays in place.  

I like (personally) the snowflake types myself but I can do smaller critters if asked.  Always very difficult to 'guess' at what people might like!!

28 October 2013

'New' (?) Technique

Well, not sure if it's new but it's an answer to a problem that's annoyed me for ages.  
I'm currently testing and improving an old pattern of mine which has a lot of block tatting in it.  I'm bone, bone idle and hated the way block tatting used to be done 'in days gone by' by switching shuttles and turning the work round.  That's why the new way appealed to me greatly and it's the way I always use now.

BUT I didn't like the regular lock join on the return chain as it always seemed ugly to me.  So, fiddling around the other evening I found a better way to do it.

The ordinary lock join works fine on the 'odd numbered' rows but NOT on the even ones.  So off went BC3 with me tagging along behind to see if a better way could be found.  It worked - BC3 found the answer!!!  This new idea is SOOOOO easy and doesn't interrupt the flow of work at all.

I decided after a few false starts that the best thing to do was just start again from scratch with a whole new set of drawings and text too instead of trying to update the block tatting page.  So here's the link to the easy block tatting page with the new join.  I've no idea if this is going to be useful or not or if anybody's worked this out before but that's of no concern to me.  

All I know is that it kept me out of trouble for several hours and that's the best medicine that Nick could ask for - a quiet OG!!!

26 October 2013

Boxes, little boxes!

Now these little boxes are as rare as hen's teeth to find - well, for me!!!  They're OK just as they are but of course I can never, ever leave things alone and always 'see' tatting involved!!!!  They're sturdy little things so worth some effort to 'tat them up'!!!!!

Here are two I had two years ago and what I finally did with them.

More on what happens to these over the next week or so!!!!

25 October 2013

Sadness is ........

The cardboard middle of a ball of thread!!!  Specially when it's one of your favourites - RIP dear Lizbeth Rainbow Taffy.  

Good job I've got another one, isn't it?  As the song goes 'Always look on the bright side of life'!!!!

24 October 2013

Another celtic snowflake

Here's another of the Celtic type of snowflakes I've made for presents - just like the one I did yesterday.

Threads used are Lizbeth 664 (Ocean Teal) and 125 (Sea Scape).

You can see again the difference between the ball and the actual tatted piece.  The best place to judge what a thread will look like is by the little butterfly that Barb puts next to the colour on the Handy Hands site OR look in her gallery here.

Having done these two flakes I'm now in the mood to open each of my new Lizbeth balls to try them out!!  I need a pattern, though and I think I know which one I'm going to use!!!  It'll serve as a dual purpose - I need to check out the instructions and maybe even do new drawings as this may have been designed before I took the big step from Microsoft to Apple.

Oh, how I mathered over that step for years but I'm SOOOOO glad I did it.  OK, it cost a lot to make the move but by now I'd have had to replace a PC as I do rather 'over use' them.

The iMac?  Well it's working as well as the day I bought it and I LOVE it.  No, I've NOT been offered a job in an Apple store (don't you just LOVE the atmosphere in those stores - both here in England and in the U.S.A.) but am just a happy old git!!

23 October 2013

Sort of Celtic snowflake

This is the first of a couple I'm making for presents.  Also this post follows on from yesterday as I'm using Lizbeth Rainbow Splash (number 184) for the main colour.  It still doesn't look as good on my photo as it does in 'real life'.  It does really zingadingding.  I've also used Mocha Brown Light (number 690) with 'random' beads!!!

Don't the two parts of this pattern look funny on their own?  Put them together and look what happens down on the third picture.  No sewing, no hassle!!!!   Oh, the pattern is here if you want it.  Rings, chains and a few SR's plus beads thrown in.

It's also easy to extend the 'arms' of the snowflake by an extra ring and chain at each point.  Must try that again some day!!!
Part 1
Part 2
Both together!

22 October 2013

NEVER judge a book by it's cover!!!

Now when my wonderful box of threads arrived from Handy Hands recently I must admit that I was a tad disappointed when I opened it and saw the Rainbow Splash that I'd suggested.  It didn't look half as pretty on the ball.  More to come on Rainbow Splash in a day or two.

I then took myself in hand and reminded my other half (BC3) of something that happened a few months ago.  An online friend who was then running an online craft store here in the UK emailed me to say that she was selling the business and did I want any Lizbeth threads at a reduced price.  Well I had a look and bought £20.00 worth (to get free postage) and was pleased when they arrived - having chosen carefully, of course.

Life moved on for another month or so and she wrote again to tell me that she'd just got a few left and that they were even more reduced.  I looked and thought for a while about the colours left.  None really appealed to me.  Anyway, I thought 'what the heck' and ordered the rest of her stock.  I realised that they'd come in useful for trying out new ideas anyway.  Well, when they arrived they weren't as bad as I thought they'd be - in fact they were delicious.  So I'm now firmly convinced that you can't judge a ball by it's looks!!!

This is Rainbow Splash on the ball.  Wait til you see it made up.  Your eyes will pop!

21 October 2013

Done and dusted.

I just HAD to try the Fandango Coaster again to see what would happen with the centre when four motifs all the same colours were joined together!!!  Now I know.  A pretty flower emerges.  Oh, I love surprises like this.  Now who thought I'd designed this with that in mind?  Wish I was as clever as that but now I can 'see' what's happened it's given me other ideas!!!!

So, finally I took BC3 in hand yesterday and told him this pattern just HAD to be finished and put on the internet.  We both spotted a couple of missing abbreviations and (if you've been following) you'll know how many times I've worked this pattern and I STILL had something not quite right.  These are the times you saw it being worked but believe me - there are at least four trials that went in the bin before that!!

Whooops, before I forget and wander off to start another Monday - here's the link.

19 October 2013

Winding shuttles

It never fails to mildly amuse me when I occasionally watch Youtube tatting videos and I see people poking the end of their thread through the hole in the centre of a post shuttle or a hole in a bobbin to wind them.  This is also suggested in many written instructions too.  

Mind, worst is when the learner is told to to wind the shuttle, cut the thread away from the ball and then TIE the two ends together!!!! Yes, cut and then tie the ends together!!!!!  Anyway, as usual I digress yet again.

Why does it amuse me poking ends through holes?  Well, being a lazy OG I worked out years ago that there's a much easier way!!!  I just do a slip knot and stick that round the  whole shuttle (or bobbin).  Then I wind away from the knot to tighten it and that's how I wind ALL shuttles.  

Well I'd better show you what I'm talking about so here are some pictures.

First the slip knot.
 Then put round the shuttle (post or bobbin).
 Tightened up.
 Wind against the knot.  This way is also easy to take off when you've finished too as you pull the short end and it should open up the slip knot!!

18 October 2013

Four Fandango coasters

Here we are - now I've got four joined together.  I'm still calling this the Fandango Coaster as one is just right for that purpose.  Four together is just me playing really!!!!

What's interesting is the pattern formed in the middle of the four.  This would show up even more if I'd not changed the colours on the different motifs.  Maybe I'll start another set of four!!!

I will definitely get this pattern up over the weekend so you should get notice of it early next week.  I've just got to sort out a few last hiccups!!!!  

Creative Commons Licence

Happy Beaks

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