Saturday, March 31, 2012

Time was and is

Weekends have turned out quite busy here of late.
It used to be we would be out with the Scouts doing stuff on Saturday and cleaning up after that on Sunday. It used to be we would be spending a fair amount of time cheering on the teams in tournaments and then knocking off the errands.

Now, I find Saturdays are spent teaching or demonstrating tatting and Sunday is spent creating music.

Life is good. I’m not bored. I’m busy. <smile>

Friday, March 30, 2012

Jelly Bean doily

I’ve been knocking around an idea in my brain and getting nowhere. So, I decided to try a test of some parts using a fun variegated: Jelly Bean. Well, I  didn’t have success at first, so I decided to try out the thread in a fun doily:
Once in a Lifetime Doily by Jane Eborall
The pattern had a few surprises in it for me. And this was just the first few rounds. It’s easy enough to tat, just an unexpected twist here and there. Thank you for the challenge, Jane!

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Chicks with Beads

I started another Chicks With Beads sample today. I like working it. Gives me practice on rings, bead joins, bead picots and just generally fun. Besides, with a name like Tropical Punch, the thread puts you in a good mood with the fun colors. The gold beads add bling; just the ticket for a dull dreary day.
Chicks With Beads in Tropical Punch size 20

Monday, March 26, 2012

Practice, practice, practice….

I’ve been practicing my chains and lock joins. I’m not sure how this will turn out…..

progress on chains and lock joins
I’ve also been practicing my hymns…sort of. Need to get back at the keyboard today.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

in search of....a name???

It was great fun at the demo time yesterday. My dragon was well received. Lots of petting, new students inspired, but no name……..

Perhaps a name will be presented soon. Any ideas out there?

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Dragon tales

I had a surprise visit yesterday….a minor dragon came to roost:

Flying Minor Norwegian Dragon by Anne Bruvold
It was fun tatting him up. I hope he enjoys the demo time tomorrow. I think he will like all the cooing and petting. Perhaps he will inspire another student.

Friday, March 23, 2012

I’ve completed another simple motif. I’m guessing again at the colors that will compliment what the other teachers will be working with.
just a fun looking motif

and in Carribean Lizbeth thread
If the design works well for the class, I’ll adapt it for a snowflake look. As always, if someone else claims this as their design that I haven’t come across, please let me know and I’ll be happy to credit their work and ask permission to use it etc, etc.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

current Bookmark

Well, the pollen count is up….and it’s grey but not rainy. Sniff, snuffle, ahhhchoooo.

And I’m not that much affected by what’s in the air….

The good news about the time change has been I’m awake more often before sunrise again. There have been some spectacular ones with the cloud cover lately. That always starts my day out better.

I’ve been honing my skill at Inkscape and graphic diagrams of tatting patterns the last couple of days. I need a lot more practice….a lot more! I wanted to work up a bookmark design for the class that had rings, chains, maybe beads (but not necessary) and tat samples for the Open House wall in summer colors. So, here’s what I have:
I'm calling this Chicks with Beads

the thread is called Carribean. Very summery!

We’ll see what is chosen and what folks sign up for.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Got shuttle...or needle????

Well, it’s been a busy few days. I got to help demonstrate tatting on Saturday. Then later that day, I was able to help a group host an organ crawl. I’m such a geek about the organ…’s just a way cool technology that’s been around for hundreds of years! More on that when I get the pictures back and the article for the newsletter is published.

First a question:  How did the opinion that tatting is a lost art get started????

It always amazes me how many people will say “oh, that’s a lost art” as I sit and demonstrate tatting. I’ve begun impishly saying “I’m not lost!” or “I found it!” or words that I hope folk hear as good humor. I don't like being grumpy. It’s just that it happens so often. I always figured a skill was lost when no one knew how to preform it and all documentation as to how to perform it was no longer available. That’s not the case here. There is a huge amount of information freely available on the Internet, there’s people teaching all over the world, there’s even a great deal of readily available books published on tatting. So, how is that a lost art???? Is it that people have wished to learn and found it too difficult? It’s not that difficult…..compared to learning to type on a QWERTY keyboard; or learning to make a good omelet. Is it that fewer people tat now than did in olden days? You often hear of Victorian pieces of tatting…..but when you read descriptions of domestic activity during that period of history, tatting isn’t mentioned that often. A lost art???????

Well, someone somewhere decided it was “lost” and I think they just had too many people listening to them for our own good. Not that they were a bully, but I can’t imagine that it’s the only skill we’ve “lost” that this person treasured. Maybe they didn’t smile much and felt smiling was “lost” along with maybe the “proper” way of greeting a good friend? Mmmmm. Well, I’m not lost and I will continue to tat and teach others to tat. Got shuttle or needle?

Friday, March 16, 2012

another bookmark experiement

I’ve been mulling over a pattern found in an old Workbasket magazine. These publications are always interesting to flip through. I feel a bit like an archeologist as the pages turn. A pattern for a flag caught my eye several years ago. I feel it’s time now to update the pattern. The first puzzle for me is the join between rows; just a bit counterintuitive for this tatter. But, I was able to persevere and figure it out:

tatted American flag sample
Now I need to figure out exactly how many rings and chains to do in each row to make the proportions correct. And then there's the stars to dream about.
I think this sample will go to my chaplain friend for her stash of bookmarks to give out.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Old Glory

Well, this is what I’ve been working on. It’s Old Glory Heart by Nancy “Nell” Corns.
Tatted Old Glory Heart
I’m not real crazy about the pattern. The concept is good, it looks OK, it was just really fiddly to execute. I’d like to see if I can adapt it to using different techniques. I really didn’t like hiding 22 ends and didn't like all the blips in the joins between the red and white rings. I know, picky, picky……..

I’m going to work through another older pattern that creates a true American flag. More later on that.

Monday, March 12, 2012

to read.....

The weeding is done for a week or so. Whew!

I haven’t much to show for tatting. I’ve been distracted by a good book:

The Mapping of Love and Death by Jacqueline Winspear

It’s the latest in her Maisie Dobbs series. Her detective is an engaging character. If you like mysteries, English period dramas, and strong female characters, I recommend it. I’ve another 100 pages to go. So, you may not see much for tatting. Unless I decide to pick up an easy bookmark to work on and I can prop the book open.

Friday, March 9, 2012

of weeds and the garden

I may have the teaching bug….but I DO NOT have the garden bug. Don’t get me wrong, I love plants and flowers and gardens. I just don’t get much satisfaction out of gardening.

Perhaps it’s because out current garden has areas that get overrun with weeds. Since it rarely gets cold enough to stop plants from growing, something is blooming constantly in our yard…..even the dandelions. I don’t shovel snow, but I dig in the dirt year round….to pull up weeds. And before you ask, Roundup doesn’t take care of the mustard plant the kids call sour grass. They’re pretty, they’re native, and they’re invasive.


I have about 20 more man hours to go before I can even start thinking of planting vegetables or flowers. I’ve missed pea planting time for yet another year. Ah well. It won’t get done sitting here…..

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

To teach

I confess I have the teaching bug. I consider myself a lifelong learner, so it’s not a surprise that I am so curious and expect everyone else to love learning. It’s very true that the best teacher is a student. You really learn your stuff when you teach a skill to someone else. So, a big thank you to all those who encourage teachers. I plan to continue to find venues to teach for a long, long time.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Pictures of bookmark in progress

I’m using this space to make class easier. If I were presenting in person, I would make this into a poster packet to display or pass around. As the session will be online, I need a place to post. No website yet (I know, I know….I’ll get it up soon.), so here is my pictures of how the bookmark looks in progress:
This is where you want to end up. Completed Split Ring T.
This is a photo of Split Ring A

This is a photo of Ring B

This is after Ring I

After Ring Q

After completing Ring S
Now with just one more Split Ring, you'll end up with a wonderful bookmark looking like the first picture up top.
Thanks for your patience and tat on!

Friday, March 2, 2012

progress quieting the noise

I’m not an artist!
Well, Ok, I don’t draw/paint/sketch well!
I can use a mouse and a computer program. This is what I created:
stitch count section of Ovals bookmark

There’s a lot that can be improved, but I’m making progress and not spending so much time trying to get onto the screen something that can be recognized.
So, why am I subjecting myself and the world to these visual gymnastics? Because it’s the best way to quiet the noise in my head: all those ideas for all those tatted pieces based on all those musical pieces. Tatting, and digital files, comes down to skill and creativity. I am compelled to work on both.
Maybe some will consider that worthy if not art.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

the blogging experience

The good part about how busy I’ve been lately is that I’m busy and earning money. The bad part about how busy I’ve been lately is that I’m busy and not able to keep up some things…like picking up after the kitties, keeping up with the blog posting, and folding laundry. I am keeping up with work and such, so I’ll make progress on the rest soon.

I have wanted to put up a website on the internet for quite some time. I’m drawn to getting information out there. Must be on account of all the happy hours I spent at the library as a young child. I was raised to be a lifelong learner too. But…..this internet and computer programming stuff turned out to be just a bit daunting. I’ve found I can handle the blog stuff though. Just the right amount of structure and just the right amount of blank canvas. I’ll get to the website later.
So, on with the organ music and the tatting.
Thank you for visiting and please let me know with a comment what you like best.