23 August 2018

A 'not so new' new pattern

Well here it is!!! It is new to you but old to me!!! 

Remember I told you on Monday that I'd found two patterns on my computer? Here's one of them. The one with the ridiculous name!!! Ipsy Dipsy. 

I'm not sure why this hasn't seen daylight until now. I certainly haven't 'sold my soul' and the pattern which would then mean I lose my copyright. I just can't think why I didn't post this on the website before.

I'm easily led astray by another idea long before the previous one has been properly dealt with. I wonder if that's what happened - although I did have a few family issues to deal with around that time. 

Well, doesn't matter now as the pattern is done, dusted and flying round in cyberspace - whatever that is!!!  Here's the link to the pattern - before I inevitably wander off again and forget!

22 August 2018

Thank you earrings

Remember all the findings and 'things' I was given? Here they are.  Well the person who handed them to me told me that the lady who'd donated them loved purple. 

Amongst the earring bits and bobs were purple shepherd's crook findings so they had to be pulled out to make the following.

Of course that took hours and hours as it's not easy to do such fiddly designs when you've nothing to start from. Not sure I'll do another pair just yet but if I do I've written down the pattern!!! I doubt anybody else would be foolish enough to want to do a pair like this!!

21 August 2018

Thinking caps on, please

The working name for this snowflake is 'Snowflake 2018'. How VERY boring is that?

I'm wondering if anybody can come up with a better idea as I always struggle with naming things. Even BC3 is hopeless too so it's no good asking him!

I'm now looking at this and wondering if I could join the outer rings to make an ongoing mat? I really, really REALLY ought to finish the diamond project first but ...............

Names for this snowflake would be very welcome - the sillier the better as those names seem to stick with my brain!!! 

Which reminds me - I found a couple of interesting patterns in my computer the other day and one has the silliest name ever. I'm sure I must've thought it up as it's beyond stupid. More about that as I slowly get it (and the other rogue) 'fit to fly' on the internet.

20 August 2018

Meet somebody new!

Two of the ladies were knitting hedgehogs at the Tuesday morning group a week ago and it was so, so tempting.

I asked for the pattern and they shared it with me but I've no idea of the source as it was handwritten. It's a pretty simple one so I'm pretty sure it would be easy to find somewhere on the internet but I though I'd just go with what I was given. 

The finished hedgehogs will go to a couple of teenagers who are doing a lot of very good work round Stratford with saving hedgehogs and they want knitted ones to give away. 

Here's an article that I found from the local newspaper.  They can happily have my little chap tomorrow via my knitting friends.

17 August 2018

A bit of bling a ding ding

Just because. 

Honestly - that's all. Just because I spotted some ring 'things' in my cupboard the other day I decided I had to have a new finger ring! I don't wear an engagement or wedding ring but do have another two rings on my right hand so thought that a ring on my left hand might be fun. 

I used the Lizbeth gold metallic thread which I think worked out a bit bigger than I really wanted but it is very much a 'statement' ring. It says 'this woman's bonkers'.

Oh, this is the pattern I used. I think I'm going to make another with (probably) a finer thread - perhaps a size 40?

16 August 2018

Refurbished seahorse

Hopefully I've had time and/or have remembered. OR both and the refurbished seahorse pattern is now on my site - here!!!.  I'm recovering from a grandkid invasion but I've put it in my calendar to upload this morning.  I hope to be out of bed and have it done before the blog post goes out but who knows if that will actually happen!!  If not I'll get it done as soon as I surface from my slumbers.

You can see below that I've had to make more of these little critters.  My excuse was that I was testing the pattern - again and again.  BUT who needs excuses really!

One could say that BC3's going through a 'seahorse phase'!

15 August 2018

Never say never!

I bet you all thought I'd given up on my diamond project? Well I never give up (well, very rarely) and thought I'd bring you an update on progress.  This is where I was back in May.

As you can probably guess - I'm beginning to feel that this project is now big enough. So on this final set of diamonds I'm trying to start an edging. 

I will eventually do an edging (probably two or three rows in depth) round the whole caboodle. But I felt that it wouldn't really work unless I'd levelled things off a bit first.

So, when the last few diamonds have been done I'll fathom a way of making an edging which will go 'all round' but leaving the triangular 'hole' as a sort of 'match' to the diamond 'holes'. If you understand.

I take this project with me when I'm 'out and about' at crafty meetings as I can make progress without too many boo boo's. I do make mistakes (I blame it on the talking around me) but that's tatting for you!!!

14 August 2018

Still busy

I'm still busy trying to get things ready for the October fair in the library.

I've made a dozen bookmarks using several different patterns but won't be making anymore as I'm not sure many people still read paper books. 

Personally I only read digital nowadays. A lot of the reason is because I can adjust the font size and also it's easier to carry around a phone/tablet/ereader than a paper book.

Shame really as I love making bookmarks and there are so many out there to choose from too.

13 August 2018

More gifts!

Well, well, well. I was given further gifts by Ali who said that they'd come from the same source. 

They came from the same lady who sent these.

I'm going to share these out eventually but all my findings need sorting so once the grandkids have gone I'll settle down to that job.

Interestingly I looked at the bag of gold rings (under and on the right of the blue bag) and initially thought they were jump rings. I never ever use those as things jump off! I always use the split rings that look like the ordinary key rings. 

I got one or two out of the bag and they didn't appear to have a space where the two 'ends' of the metal meet. I've brought them home (will return them if it doesn't work) to test them with thread. If the thread doesn't wriggle it's way between the join then it'll be a 'win, win' situation. If they don't work I'll pass them onto somebody who can make use of them.

10 August 2018

A gift

Now I belong to several drop in craft groups where everybody exchanges ideas and help with all sorts of projects. I go to one of the groups on a Thursday afternoon and last week I went after a two week absence.

Ali, the person who's 'in charge' asked me if I used earring findings. Well of course I do as I always go out with a pair of earrings on. I'd feel naked without!! I never wear makeup (or muckup as I like to think of it) but always wear things hanging from my ears!!! 

She'd been given these and asked me if I could use them. What a lovely question to ask and of course they came home with me!!!

I feel another earring session (perhaps some more seahorses - see yesterday's post) coming on but I will HAVE to make myself throw away some of the older ones!

9 August 2018

Seahorse earrings

I had an accident last Sunday evening. A BIG accident too. I knocked over the stand that my earrings hang on. There's a picture below of the rescued and restored stand.

The result of this was that they all fell behind and below a VERY large heavy oak table. I scrambled around underneath and behind and rescued them all except one of a pair which was my very favourite design.  So on Monday morning  and armed with a torch I managed to find and restore the favourite earring. 

Whilst doing that I decided to 'get rid of' my unfavourite ones so the yellow/orange seahorses below HAD to go. I just didn't like their colour or much about them, really. 

I decided a re-think needed to happen. First of all I wasn't happy with the tail. The whole seahorse didn't really 'dangle' well so a bit more weight needed to be added to the tail. More beads, I thought!  Then there were a few more 'tweaks' required too.  Finally I came up with the ones you see at the bottom of this post.  I now have to re-draw, and play with the layout before replacing the link on the pattern site.  I'll be back when I've done that and after I've made another pair or two or three or four etc!!

8 August 2018

Playing around

Before I start the daily (well five days a week) ramblings of an OG (old git - me) I must say a HUGE thank you to those who commented either on my blog post t'other day or on Facebook.  You've restored my faith in blogging as I was sort of beginning to flag.  

Little did I know when I scheduled the post that the same day I'd be offered a flight in a microlight which is why I was a bit late responding to comments and didn't get to say this on yesterday's post!!!  I'm not sure my feet are on the ground, yet!!!  

Well hopefully down to earth and down to 'business'!!!

I've been playing around!!! 

I made a bookmark using this bookmark (or bracelet!) pattern a week or two ago and after I'd done it I had a 'what's if' moment!!!

'What if' I did just six SCMR's and could I turn it into a snowflake? Well it took a bit of working out as the stitch count had to be 'jiggled' to make it lie well but this is the prototype. All done in one round too so no ends to hide until you get to the end. 

I must admit that's always an aim in my designs - to make something that avoids sewing in ends. Trouble is it does sometimes restrict the way BC3 works but he usually gets round the problem!!!!

I need to make at least one more 'decent' one to check everything over and then I'll draw it up and eventually (well, you know me!) I'll get it onto my pattern site!!!

7 August 2018

Coasters or small doilies?

I'm not quite sure what to call these!!! I know I've made lots of them and have now packaged them ready for the October craft fair that I'm taking part in.

The pattern is in Rosemarie Peel's book and I've shown these many times before!!! Here's a link to more information on where to find the pattern.

I met the other 'crafters' on Sunday as we had a planning meeting.  They're all really lovely people so I'm sure we'll all have fun even if we don't sell a lot of things!

6 August 2018

The third top and some questions

Interesting thoughts have occurred to me. Yes, BC3 and I do think from time to time!!!

On Friday I spoke about the Christmas tree earrings that I finally decided to put on my pattern site. Now I don't want or desire fame or glory as you know but it did make me wonder how many people read my blog posts nowadays as there were very few (4 only) comments on that post. So I decided to look back through the past weeks and I think the comments are falling off. 

Now I'll be honest as that doesn't particularly bother me because the reason for the blog is about me keeping track of me and what I'm doing.  I'm wondering if blogs are dying a death or if people just aren't interested in mine? OR could it be to do with the settings I've got on the comments section? OR to do with Facebook taking over?  I'd love to know.  Comments welcome and particularly if you're finding me boring.  I'd understand and then be able to do something about it whatever the cause is - I hope.

Below is the final top I've made. If you look closely you'll see that the print is scissors!!! I also used another neckline on this one as well. Just right for the hot weather we've been having.

3 August 2018

Christmas tree pattern

Not new by any means BUT a new way of working it.  This method means no ends until you get to the end - if you see what I mean.  

In the original it meant ends to sew in on every row but you know I'm lazy and  I worked out a way of doing this little earring with only the ends at the end to sew in.

I've agonised over this pattern for ages wondering if I should or shouldn't share it but in the end I've decided to go ahead and hope it doesn't cause any worries  or upsets to anybody.

This was done in 1993 in it's original form and then I found at least one other person had come up with the same idea. Anyway I've gone ahead and rewritten and redrawn the pattern and you can find it here.

2 August 2018

An anniversary card

A lovely couple who live almost opposite us celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary last Friday. 

The people in this road are amazing as if anybody is in trouble we all pitch in to help. I was one of a team who was privileged to being allowed to help them over the past year or so while they both recovered from operations. 

I was invited to help them celebrate their anniversary so set out to find a suitable card. A diamond wedding card was what I was looking for. There were a few in town but they were far too 'soppy' for me so I was stuck.  I'm hopeless at making cards and have no imagination for them.  

Then I spotted this card which I thought was cute - specially as the manufacturer had left a space at the bottom for a '60' and a diamond!!!!

1 August 2018

Simply a cute hedgehog

Teresa has sent in this bauble hedgehog. He's now living in the Exclusive Club which you can find here.

I'm wondering if anybody doesn't know where to find the patterns for these wonderful critters? If you don't know then here's the link to the book by the fabulous Houtz brothers. You can also order from your favourite tatting supply sellers. 

I'm going to tease you now by not telling you what Teresa said. You'll have to go to the Exclusive page to find out!!! I'm a rotten person, I know. You can tell me how horrid I am in the comments.

31 July 2018

Problem solved

Well the origami boxes turned out pretty well, I think. 

I always make my own stickers/labels for things as I have a trusty label print software program. Well I thought I did until I went to use it the other day. It crashed, crashed and crashed again.

So I consulted my guru (aka Nick) who said no wonder it did as it was so old it couldn't cope with the latest IOS. 

Off I went to the App Store and found one for the total price of - wait for it. Ninety nine PENCE. Well it was worth the risk so I bought it. A bit of a learning curve but once I'd 'got it' it works well. It's the Orion one (red arrow) below.

So I've begun to make labels for my sales items. First the Christmas trees in the new boxes.

30 July 2018

Next problem!

Having started on the Christmas tree earrings the next problem that occurred to me was again - how do I package and present them. 

I was wandering round the town the other day trying to find ideas for this conundrum when I had one of those 'not quite so senior' moments. I suddenly thought 'I can make some boxes'. 

Great idea but how. When I was little I was given a book of Origami by Robert Harbin which I loved and spent many, many happy hours studying and making origami animals etc. When the light bulb when on I thought I'd be able to make some folded boxes. 

So, I came home and then went to visit Mr Google and researched making little boxes. It didn't look too hard but getting the right size proved a little challenging. I tried several ideas out using printer paper and then went shopping for pretty origami paper. 

Where did I find EXACTLY the right stuff? Why, in The Works where I got the boxes for the other brooches. These are some of the colours below and you can see what a big book of papers it turned out to be.  You can also see a practice box I made with printer paper!!!  Not a good effort but I hope to improve!

27 July 2018

A new member has arrived

I'm very pleased to welcome Ginger to the Exclusive Tatting Club which you can find here.  If you scroll down the page you'll find her mouse.

Ginger and I met up via Facebook and I managed to help her a bit with the problem she was having with her mouse. She was very patient with me for which I was grateful as I really don't like giving advice in a public place. I get very nervous about whether I'm giving good advice or stupid advice. 

Anyway she managed to get her lovely mouse finished. I must say he looks quite cheeky as he's trying to get onto her shuttle. I've noticed that all the mice seem to have different characters. I wonder if they reflect the maker or ???????

26 July 2018

White gold earrings

I'm now working on a few earrings and these are a pair I've just finished. 

They'll be going into the October fair when I've stiffened them and added findings and then packaged them.

I must admit to having made a bit of progress on the preparation for the fair. I'm one of those people who hates last minute rushes so always try to be ahead of the project in hand!!!

25 July 2018

Butterfly top

After the success of my first piece of sewing for many years I decided that I'd make another top. 

The first one (which you can see here) is so, so comfortable and cool in this warm (hot!) weather that I got fed up with washing the other one through so I could wear it again! Also got bored with wearing the same one.

So, I took myself off down town to the shop which is closing down and got this lovely butterfly fabric in their sale. This went together so much easier than the last one - could be down to practice, I guess!!!

Do I feel the need to make another top? Well if this weather carries on then the answer is 'yes'.

24 July 2018

Yesterday I met another tatter

Well it's very, very hot here in town and appropriate weather to meet up with an Australian tatter called Vanessa who was passing through town with her hubby.

Now you'll never believe it. I've lived in this town for almost 75 years and lost  my bearings yesterday!!! 

Vanessa contacted me via Facebook and I gave her my phone number so she could say where she was when she got here. I'd just arrived at the library where I volunteer as a tutor for silver surfers, when she rang. I asked where she was and she said the Riverside Cafe. 

Well I hadn't a CLUE where that was so had to google it!!! It's actually the cafe in the theatre which just doesn't make sense to my wee brain as surely that's the 'Theatre Cafe'. OK, it's by the river as the theatre is built right on the banks of the Avon but to call it something else doesn't make sense - well not to BC3!!!

Anyway, once Mr Google had sorted me out I toddled down there to meet Vanessa. We sat and talked (tatting mainly, of course) for about an hour before it was time for them to go and me to make my way back to the library.

I love meeting up with fellow addicts so if you're ever round my neck of the woods just let me know.

23 July 2018

Christmas is coming!

Well eventually! You can say that even on December 26th can't you as it'll be true even then!!!

Anyway I've decided to make some Christmas tree earrings for the October sale. Mainly as a friend who's organising it asked me to and another friend already wants a pair!! 

There's an interesting story behind this pattern as some years ago I had it published in a weekly magazine here in the UK. I've just had a search and found that I spoke about it here.

Well since then I've found that several other people must've had the same idea and this pattern appears from time to time as somebody else's idea and I think I've even seen it in a book too. 

Great minds and all that. Anyway I decided a few years ago that I could re-visit this pattern and 'do away' with lots of the cuts and ties which is what I did. Well, you know how I love split rings and split chains!!! Then I decided recently that I'd write/draw this up. 

My problem is that this may well be somebody else's copyright which, when mine was published, I wouldn't have known about as it was pre-internet days. Do you remember those? So I'm concerned about putting it on my site. What do you guys think? Would I be committing a heinous crime if I did publish it again? But improved?

20 July 2018

Thinking about packaging

This is the part I hate. Why? Well because to me it shouldn't be that important as it's the product itself that people are buying and that should be the main thing.

BUT I know that everything has to be packaged prettily and attractively. I know this because even when I go to out to shop I'm aware that my eyes stray to a pretty package sometimes instead of the quality of the product in the package.

So, my conundrum. How do I package my tatting?

I'll have a variety of things to take to the craft sale in October so I'll have to address several challenges on this score. The first one was the button brooches I've made.

I was lucky to find some dear little clear boxes in The Works here in town but they provided a challenge in assembling them as there were no written instructions and a very hard to follow diagram. In the end BC3 managed to make them up. Here are a few of the brooches.

19 July 2018


Now why on EARTH did I put them there? I give up on how my brain works (or in this case - doesn't). 

I found the bookmarks. Where were they? They were in one of my boxes of finished tatting. I've no idea how they got put there but I know I must've put them in the box!!!  There are several quite large boxes around the house which have finished tatting in.  Over the years I've not known what to do with stuff so it's just got put in boxes.  One day somebody is going to have to either throw it away or do something with it.  I'd love to get rid of the stuff now but it's all too much bother as I'd rather be making more!!!

Anyway, here they are in all their glory and waiting to be packaged and logged in my 'selling book'. 

I'll make a few more soon so I've got a 'round dozen'.

18 July 2018

More button earrings

Once I get a bee (or a pattern!) in my head I just love to make several. Again this is for the craft fair and I love working with buttons and beads. 

My next 'problem' is how to package and present the stuff I've been making but I think I may have a solution - or two!!! I'll show you as I get them underway.

I've used that new technique from the other day on this pair and it really does 'lock' the beads more firmly onto the top of the buttons.  This is one of my favourite earring patterns as they hold their shape indefinitely - I do lightly stiffen them with PVA glue, though.  This also adds as a protection against skin oils and muck!!!

17 July 2018

If I had a brain

I'd be dangerous! 

Some weeks ago I made several bookmarks like this one. They're for the craft fair I'm going to do in October. It might seem a bit far ahead but I have a lot of preparation to do for this event so I thought I'd start early. 

I think I made four or five bookmarks and I put them away safely. So darn safely that I can't find them now. This one is another I made while I was trying to remember where the originals had gone but BC3 is still thinking and nothing has come to him yet.

16 July 2018

Well it had to happen!!!!

I'm still making these hanky holders!!! There's something so satisfying in starting and finishing something quickly. 

Normally that never worries me. I love, love, love long term projects and puzzling ones too. I never mind pulling out my work and starting again or putting things right - to me that's what makes the whole thing worthwhile.

If I just picked up a pattern, made it without a hitch then I'd be bored, bored, bored!!! I guess I love a challenge but these little holders are easy and fast to make so bring about another sort of pleasure which I'll admit I've enjoyed for once!!!!

13 July 2018

Starry button snowflakes

Now following on from yesterday's post (I'm too lazy to put a link in here so you're just gonna have to scroll down a little bit) I thought I'd try out this 'new' technique on one of my favourite patterns. 

Why a favourite? Well it includes buttons and beads which sit ON TOP of the button (as well as elsewhere). If I had a pound for every pair of starry button earrings I've made I'd be rich and be able to retire from tatting. Well, tatting is (to me) a full time occupation even if I don't get paid anything for it except through advertising links on this blog which pay for the web site - hint, hint to click, click!!!

Anyway, I'm digressing as usual - old gits tend to do that!!!! What I wanted to try this time is how yesterday's join affected adding the buttons. Well it does and it's a definite improvement as it 'sits' the ring firmly at the side of the button.  Below is a pair of Starry Button Earrings.

12 July 2018

Joining to buttons

Thanks to a misunderstanding whilst test tatting Martha's button patterns I made a technique page to illustrate what I thought she'd come up with.

Obviously I ran it past Martha when I'd done it but she said she didn't do it that way and then realised that she did!!! By the end of our conversation I think we were both confused!!!!

Anyway, I thought it was a great idea so I've added a new technique page to the pattern site. Here's the link to it.

11 July 2018

Anybody for tea?

I've not been drinking tea or anything during this hot weather. Well, only water seems to be drinkable!!!

I did have the pleasure of tatting this teapot for Martha's new book. Isn't it lovely? 

I have been so lucky with this test tatting as I've managed to have the right sized buttons and the thread to match too. 

10 July 2018

All done and dusted

I've done all these sets of coasters and am really pleased with them.

They are for the sale thingie in October and I thought I'd tie them up with some ribbon. They need some labels etc but I'm not doing those until the sewing stint is over!!!

9 July 2018

More ballerinas +

Three more ballerinas also went to my granddaughter on Saturday.

The performance was actually amazing in that it covered ballerinas (and other types of dancers) from three counties. The show was slick and extremely well choreographed with the most amazing costumes. 

A lovely day out with my daughter too as we managed to find some good charity shops. Two new dresses were bought but sadly they were too small for me. They fit Abbi a treat, though!!!! I really should look at labels first as they did say '10 to 11 year old' on them!!!!

Oh, I've treated you to a picture of the real ballerina today too!!!

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Happy Beaks

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