Saturday 29 September 2012

Red & Blue Necklace

I wanted to make a gift for a helpful lady.  She told me her favourite colours were red and blue.  So I decided to combine them in a necklace for her.  This is quite a simple design as you can see but I think it's effective.  I used sodalite semi-precious beads to go with the Victorian Red Lizbeth.  I love that shade of red.  It's my perfect red.

I actually started off with a different idea.  I was making little "bows" (inspiration from Edwige Renaudin's book) which I do like the look of but I found they don't behave well as they are independent elements and some of the bows ended up upside down when worn and I thought it looked a little messy.  So I started again and ended up with the design above. 

I still like the little bows and may use them again in another design.

Here's what the necklace looks like when worn:

Yes, I think I'm satisfied with that.
I hope the lady will like it.

Off to make another one!

Best wishes,

Monday 24 September 2012

Simple Heart Bookmark

Inspired by Michelle's post,  I decided it was time I tatted  Vicki Clarke's Simple Heart which I had printed aaaaages ago but never got around to tatting.

I hope Michelle will forgive me but I shamelessly copied the little quatrefoil she had put on her tails as I thought it looked so nice... but they do say "imitation is the sincerest form of flattery", don't they?

I thought Vicki's Simple Heart would be a good pattern to showcase the thread which is called "Early Rising" by Karey Solomon.

Best wishes,

Thursday 20 September 2012

Split Ring Join, Karey Solomon Threads & Bjorn Snowflake

A little note on Square Elegance:  I made it so that you end the last round with a trefoil.  In practice, when I make it, I start with a trefoil and end on a chain so that I can hide ends in the last chain (as many of you know: I HATE sewing ends in!).  I was going to write the pattern like that but I realised that for many people it could be off-putting as you do have to fiddle about to get the last chain done with the last join on a small picot and two stitches after that.   Anyway, I wanted people to know that you can end on a chain with this motif if this is a method you like to use to be able to hide ends in the last chain.

Also, I had put a P.S. at the top of my previous post for those who have the Papillon pattern and needed help on how to do the join on the second half of the split ring at the end - here it is again:  the video on how to do this.

If you click on the YouTube logo in the bottom
right-hand corner, you can go over to YouTube
to watch it with a bigger picture and where
you can adjust the quality for
a better definition as well.

A very kind tatting friend who was going to Palmetto Tat Days generously offered to buy some of Karey Solomon's threads for me.  I've said that before, but I'm going to say it again:  tatting people are the best!  Well,  I just received my little package and I just had to show you a picture because they are soooo beautiful!  I only wish they were easier to get a hold of!

And I can even say the picture doesn't do them justice.
The colours are even prettier IRL.
(For some reason there's too much blue in this picture)

I really like how unique her threads are, the colour changes are different to most other HDTs.... though Jess! of Tat-ilicious has also produced the lovely Messy-Jess!y which appeals to me with its subtler colour changes too.

The problem was, I just couldn't decide what to tat with them or even which one to use first.  So here is a pitiful bit of tatting just to give you an idea of what it tats up like.  Hopefully I'll find the right pattern for these lovely threads and show you something better soon.

Just one "hedgehog" from Mary Konior's book
which is in fact a reproduction of an old Lady Hoare pattern.

I thought that was too disappointing as the only tatting to show you so tonight I set to and tatted a pattern I'd been meaning to do for a looong time.  The first time I saw this on my cybertravels, I went straight off and bought the book.  Then I never made it!  So recently, I saw it again and I got the book back out and finally tatted it.  It's the third snowflake from the book "24 Snowflakes in Tatting" by Lene Bjorn.

But now I find there's too much contrast between the red and the silver.  I would re-do it in different colours.  I do like the shape of the outer petals very much though and the "fluffy" centre is interesting and original.

Best wishes,

Saturday 15 September 2012

Flocon d'Or & Square Elegance

17.09 - Adding a P.S. at the top... not quite ready to make next blogpost 
but wanted to let you know that I've added the video on how to do the join 
on the second half of a split ring (as in the butterfly pattern) for those 
who would like it:  Here is the link.

First of all, I have completed my second 25-motif challenge (Square Elegance was number 25).  I want to thank Sharon very much for all the work she puts into keeping the website up to date with all the inspiring tatting from everyone.

I now realise that I tat so much (without needing any further incentive!) that it's time to leave the space for other participants though I will still be visiting regularly to see what everyone else is up to!

Thank you Sharon!

In the last post, I mentioned that I had found the 12-sided star ornaments from a lady on a local market.  Well, amazingly, just when I was wondering if she was still around, she was there yesterday!  I was delighted to find out she still had some of the ornaments I was after so I bought all that she had left.  This has enabled me to offer the pattern WITH ornaments for those who would like to try it but cannot find said doodads!  Pattern is also available just as a pdf for those who are already equipped.

This is the snowflake I will be sending to 
my family and friends in their Christmas cards this year

And here is "Square Elegance", take two.  This is more the look I was after, with a bolder outline.  When I wrote the first post title about this motif, I wasn't thinking of the name for the design itself but as Diane called it that on her blog, "Square Elegance" it will be!  For those who preferred the look of the first version, you can easily leave out the 4th round and put the trefoils on the third round instead.

My thanks to Neeneral and Miranda for test-tatting the pattern.

What's interesting with this design is that I quite like the look after every round.  So you could choose how big or how small you want the tatting to be around the centre ornament.

Here are photos of Square Elegance after each round.

Round 1

Round 2

Round 3

Same round as a diamond

Round 4
The completed motif

... and as a diamond

Now I know a few people downloaded this pattern when I had it up for a short while earlier in the week.  I decided I liked it too much and wanted to have it as part of my collection on Etsy.  I am happy for those of you who were quick and downloaded it, I don't want you to give it back or anything!  In fact, I will give it away some more, to the first 10 who say they want it in the comment section of this post.  After that, I will put it in my Etsy shop.  Please make sure, if you want the pattern, that there is an email connected with your account where I can reach you or leave me your address or send it to me using the "Email Frivole" link at the top of this page.

Best wishes,

Wednesday 12 September 2012

I know It's a Bit Early...

but this snowflake just "happened".  After working with Diane's square ornaments (they are SO pretty and I shall be doing more with them), I went ferreting in my bits & bobs and found a few round ornaments I'd never done anything with.

This little one with 12 points caught my attention so I just played around with it and came up with this:

Now, what I'd like to know is:  are these ornaments easy for people to find?  Is it worth publishing patterns that require an added "doodad" or should I stick to patterns with just tatting (maybe the occasional bead)?  Oh wait, I know, I shall adapt it so you can tat it with or without ornament though it's true in this case, the ornament adds a lot to the prettiness of the design.

So far I'm not having much success finding the "doodads" here in the UK but then I'm not even sure what to Google for!  What name should I put in the search box to see if I can find these "components"?  I'm sure they must be available here somewhere!  I'll keep trying.

I got these off a market stall in our village some time ago.  I shall have to check if the lady still comes around next market day.  

Oh, and anyone to test-tat the Square Elegance pattern?  You must have square ornaments 1.5cm wide (5/8").  I'll send the pattern to the first 2-3 who respond.  Thank you!

Best wishes,

Monday 10 September 2012

Square Elegance

Guess what I received in the post yesterday?  From the wonderful Diane (Lace Lovin' Librarian)... yes, some doodads!  Lovely square doodads in fact.  But I decided "doodad" is not a very pretty word for these elegant and intricate little squares.

Thank you Diane! 

Motif 25 of 25-motif challenge

So here is my first attempt at a pattern "with-doodad" (what else can we call them?)

Best wishes,

Friday 7 September 2012


Here is my new pattern.  It's a butterfly I worked on while I was away.  It is available for purchase here.  Many thanks to Suzanne and Leah who test-tatted it for me.

I wanted a fuller wing for my butterfly (hence the rings within the rings) and also wanted a more realistic body so it sticks out a bit at the bottom (like a real butterfly's does).  Another criteria of course was that it should be tatted in one go and lastly, no ends to hide!

Motif 24 of the 25-motif challenge
(hard to write with those exclamation marks, apostrophe and dash!)
Did I get it right?
size 40

This is an earlier version using a rolled, partly-closed ring for the body.
But I just liked the photo on the gorgeous red flower.

A small sample of all the butterflies
I tatted whilst tweaking and testing this pattern.
Maybe I should put them in a frame,
like a real butterfly collection!

I tried it with all sorts of threads,
including with very fine sewing thread,
which makes a tiny butterfly
perfect to use on stationery.

Best wishes,

Thursday 6 September 2012

Slow Start...

I've been back a few days but couldn't figure out what to put in my first post!  I've been messing around with a few things but there was nothing particularly special to show you which seemed disappointing after having been away for some weeks.

I did work on necklaces, earrings and a new pattern while I was away but I don't have good pictures ready and the pattern is still being tested as we speak.

So in the end, I am settling with these two small offerings.  The first is my maple leaf which I had not tatted for a long time (and I can't say I did a great job of this one, some of my chains are a bit wonky).  I had some Tat-ilicious thread called Messy Jessy which I really like the look of, pretty for a leaf, isn't it?

Motif 22 of 25-motif challenge

The second item is also tatted in Messy Jessy in purple shades.  I particularly like the more random and gentle colour changes of those threads and hope Jess will come up with some more (hint, hint).

It's called "Josephine Wreath" and is by Mary Konior from her book "A Pattern Book of Tatting".  

Motif 23 of 25-motif challenge

It looks pretty, frilly, frothy
with all those picots and tiny flowers
in the Messy Jessy thread.

Best wishes,