27 February 2019

Two more pouches

There should've been three here but one got 'stolen' off me on Friday. 

I'd made another almost exactly the same as this one and took the three of them to Crafternoon to finish off. I took these photos before I went. 

The original one had already gone to a friend who saw me finishing it off last Tuesday!!! I've never made anything that's been as popular as this and neither of the purchasers is a tatter so they obviously will have many uses and not just for carrying round small tatting projects 'on the go'!!!

Well I finished the three off at Crafternoon (sewed on the shank buttons) and immediately one of the ladies got hold of the second rose one and insisted that she was going to pay me for it and keep it!!! 

Now was I going to argue? NO WA Y!!! 

The fabric for these two below was sent to me by Sandra (Crazy Mom Tats) and I absolutely ADORE them. I think the cat one may well be on it's way to Atlanta at some point!!! Cats on the inside and cats on the outside too!! I've got some left of these two fabrics so hope I can squeeze two more out of it. We'll see!!! 

26 February 2019

Motif number four

Another version of the multi motif has been 'dealt' with!!! Another five pointed one. 

This is number four of the five. Nearly there!!! 

I'm hoping to get the project finished by the end of this week as another is 'lurking' in the background!!! I need to tat a few small things for a present so I'll do those at some point too.

What a busy time!!!

25 February 2019

Meet Shadow

Now this is a project that came about because a lady mentioned my name on Facebook and that came into my inbox (I don't 'do' Facebook unless I see something interesting in my inbox). She kindly admitted that she'd used parts of two of my patterns to make a cat. I was intrigued so toddled over to see what she'd used. Well all I could see was the one seahorse pattern used as a tail.

I got in touch with her to ask if she needed help with drawings as she'd not written it up. Thereby started a couple of months of discussions etc. She'd given the cat she'd made away so had to work mainly from memory. In the end and despite computer and camera problems at her end we've managed to finish Shadow. 

I'm very happy to give you the link directly to Shadow but you can also find him/her in the Guest Designers section of my site. 

Here is my final test tat.

22 February 2019

Another round done.

Yes, another round of the Coriolis mat is done. 

I'm really surprised at how quickly this motif can be done!!! Also the fact that I am still enjoying it too!! I reckon I'm going to 'have' to do another round so I can start to get fed up with it!!! I really, really have to get fed up with it as if I don't I can see me starting another new doily or whatever you want to call it.

Yes, sadly that's how BC3 works. 

I take this and the Fandango coaster projects with me to craft groups and I can do the two of them while talking. Last Thursday I took my 'teaching kit' with me to the Stratford library group as Shirley wanted to learn to tat. I'm pleased to say she caught on pretty quickly so I'm hoping to make more progress with her this week.

21 February 2019

Time to sew

We've had a few warmer days recently so I've been able to make a prototype of this little pouch. Isn't it cute?  Perfect for carrying round a small tatting project.

I am going to slightly 'improve' on it when I make more as I think the flap could be a little longer. 

The inside pocket is stiffened with iron on interfacing and the outer has iron on batting/wadding. This prototype will have a press stud to hold the flap down (when I get roundtoit) but in future I think I may sew a small piece of elastic into the flap and use a shank button on the outside. 

This improvement (hopefully!) comes from the fact that I know me too well. I tend to try and stuff too much into everything (including life itself) so it may need a little 'give'. 

If these prove successful then I'll make some to sell. I still have my Etsy shop. 

20 February 2019

Yet another

This is version three. Don't worry - only two more to go and then your boredom will be over and done with!!! 

One of the things I've done this time round is to omit some of the beads. I must've been going through a mega bead obsession back in 2006! 

As you'll see (or not!) this version has five 'points' instead of the usual six. 

I'm also going to work on the alternative centres to this whole series - that's for those who haven't any cabone rings or just don't want to use them. These versions will not need cutting and tying when progressing from the centre outwards either.

19 February 2019

Fandango coaster and more progress

Another few squares on and this is what I have now. I'm still determined to carry on until the whole ball of thread has been used.

A friend in Canada (and Maureen in Australia) sent me the yardages for Cebelia and so I thought I'd share on here as (although I've made a note of it for myself) I tend to use the blog regularly to find things that I've written in the past. That little search bar at the top left of the blog page is just SOOOO useful. I don't use 'tags' in the post as I've found they're not necessary. Well, that's my opinion for what it's worth!!!

Anyway, before I forget I'd better paste the yardages before I forget!!!

Size 10- 284 yd/ 260 m
Size 20- 414 yd/ 379 m
Size 30- 567 yd/ 518 m
Size 40- 711 yd/ 650 m

18 February 2019

Another version

This is the second version of the multi motif which I'm working on. Again please don't use the pattern as I'm still working on it.

BC3 has now decided that the only way to deal with this whole set of variations is to re-write the whole lot. So, out with the old and in with the new!!!! 

That's the theory, anyway!!!

15 February 2019

Another choker

Well the same lady wrote and ordered a pink and green one too as I mentioned in that last post about the black one. Want to see it?

Not my choice in colours but the customer is always right and actually I got to really like the combination after a short while. 

14 February 2019

Today it's

Valentine's day!!! 

OR should we say - Hallmark day? I know - I'm being a grumpy old git here!!! Still I thought I'd share my love (of tatting and Nick) with you guys.

13 February 2019

Remembering Gina

A talented tatter taken far too soon. 

Seven years now without your cheerful 'voice' in my inbox.  Gina's blog is still 'live' and full of interesting posts.  Here's the link to it.

I cherish the times I spent with her but they were far too short.

12 February 2019

First tree finished

Something a little different to show you today. 

In my Tuesday morning group we're making another quilt and this time the subject is 'trees'. I must admit to being less than enthusiastic at the start but I now seem to have the wind up my tail and after this desultory start I decided the tree needed a bit of 'bling'!!!

So into one of our containers I dived and now the tree is 'blinged'. Off to start the next one but no idea what it'll turn out like!!!

11 February 2019

Another old pattern

Part of my ongoing tidying up of old patterns has forced me to look once again at this one.

I got rather 'carried away' on the multi looks I could get with this design which was originally done on cabone (curtain) rings. In the end I finished up with five versions. By that time my brain was frazzled but still more ideas kept coming!!!

Please don't use the pattern just yet as I need to replace it with the new version which (I HOPE) will be much easier to understand. 

After much scratching of BC3's brain I've also introduced a new abbreviation to the list too - MBBH. Far easier than writing 'bead at back of hand before starting', I think. Anyway we'll see how it goes.

8 February 2019

Houston - I have a problem!

So off on the next 'phase' of this adventure!!!! 

As you know I like to do a set of middles then work on the 'outers' which is an easier (for BC3) pattern to remember when I'm out and about. 

It occurred to me that I'd stated back here that I was going to attempt to use the whole ball to make this. A rash statement perhaps!!!! So my next task is to work out how much each motif takes to make so on the final 'inner' here I jotted down how many yards are on the shuttles - both the shuttle 1 and shuttle 2. When I work the ‘outer’ then I’ll be able to find out how much each whole square takes.

In theory this should help - BUT when I looked on the DMC Cebelia label it doesn't say how much is on there - well not in yardage!! Now I have two conundrums - (a) my maths is diabolical and (b) how do I find out how much is on the ball.

So I asked Mr Google!!!  No luck on the DMC page as no yardage given but snooping around Ebay the sellers are saying it’s 416 yards.  A further snoop on Amazon and the sellers there say 405 yards.  I reckon if I ‘go’ with 400 yards I’ll be able to work out how many squares I can make.  Well if BC3 is behaving, that is!!!

7 February 2019

Black choker

Just before Christmas I sold a fair bit of tatting to a really lovely lady. She's just been back in touch and wanted a choker.

One of the items I'd sold her was a bookmark made using the Ring of Roses pattern and she now wanted a choker in that design. Not a problem at all.

A day or two later she came back to ask for a second choker in two colours (which I've now started). She then asked if I could do a discount if she ordered a third. I explained that I was only 'paying' myself £1.50 an hour as it was and that didn't include materials. Thankfully she's thought about it and has stuck to the two only!! 

Why do I say thankfully? Well other projects have entered the BC3 environment and need 'dealing with'!!!!

6 February 2019

Do you remember?

The navy top I added just simple split rings to?  Here it is.  

Well I didn't tell you at the time but I bought two tops as they were in the sale!!! I just couldn’t resist this mustard colour which will brighten up a winter’s day.

I do have a few variegated Lizbeth threads that I really like and this is Autumn Spice (number 136) which is one of them.  I like the gradual colour changes on this thread.

The pictures don't really do the colours justice - these dark winter days are not good for photographs specially when the camera belongs to a lazy old git like me!!!!

5 February 2019

Playing around

Now this is one of the ideas I had a while back for an edging. Well, it could be an edging, a bookmark, bracelet or choker. 

I've submitted a similar as one of the ideas for Palmetto Tat Days.  I say similar as the original had a small difference which was just too hard to explain however hard I tried.  Comes of having a twisted brain!!!

It's really easy, actually. The problem stems from living with BC3!!!  He tends to read other things into what's asked for!!!!

4 February 2019

I've been out and about

Now one may ask if I ever get to stay at home!!!! Yes I do but I like being with other crafty friends too. 

Below is the Fandango coaster with four repeats and I'm beginning to love the little 'new' designs which are cropping up in it.

1 February 2019

Coriolis repaired

Sorry about the poor pictures but it IS winter and it's hard to get motivated to go into the conservatory for better light just to take a quick photo!!!!

This was quite a scary task to repair but I did it as I'm a stubborn OG (old git) and also I won't leave something with a mistake like that. I could've left it and finished the round I'm working on but that would've been the end of the adventure.

Now I've repaired it I may venture into another round!!!! 

I'm keeping the aged fingers crossed that this may be chosen by the Palmetto Tatters as a teaching project at Tat Days in September but I've yet to be chosen so please keep your fingers crossed that I get through the selection process. I desperately NEED to go to America to catch up with all my lovely friends over there.  I've submitted my application!!!!

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.

31 December 2018

New hat

I'm back!!! Wonder what next year will bring, eh?

I was wandering round one of the Christmas markets the other week and I spotted some hats. I have problems with hats as I have a small head. Yes I know that I don't need a bigger one as there isn't a lot inside the one I've got!!! BC3 rattles around inside that boney space without any other company.

I decided I needed a hat. I went round and round the markets looking and looking.  Really, really needed one that covers my ears in case it gets cold this winter. So what did I do? Came home without buying one.

As I was walking around I remembered I'd got some yarn left from a huge ball I bought from a store in Canada. So when I got back I started looking online for a pattern. Got bored with that after half an hour and found a crochet hook, the yarn and sat down to make a 'hat from thin air'.

I made a crochet chain and a few rows, tried it on and it was too big so I pulled it out, made a shorter chain and started again. This was fun to make and I didn't have any further problems til it came to decreasing. How many and at what 'rate' should that happen. Actually it wasn't a problem as I had a very convenient head to try it on as I was working!!! Least that's something I can't lose easily - my head!!! So, after an afternoon and evening's work I had a new hat which is warm and I like too!!!

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Happy Beaks

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