Friday 25 December 2020

Holiday Wishes

Joyeux Noël!

My very best wishes to everyone for
a peaceful and healthy Christmas
and for a better New Year 2021...
when we can finally get together again.

Take care everyone.


Wednesday 23 December 2020

And the number is...

The winner of the shuttle is the person who wrote comment no. 33


Please contact me with your details so that I can send you the shuttle!

It's 23:59...
so I'm posting this now.

Thank you to all those who entered
and for leaving the nice comments.

Best wishes,

Wednesday 16 December 2020

Holiday Draw

I think it's time for a little holiday cheer, especially with the difficult circumstances we're all living under.  So I decided to have a draw!  This shuttle was slightly "imperfect" and I didn't want to sell it in my shop so I'm offering it for a draw instead. 

I'm afraid I can't remember where this little doily is from...
I need to do a bit of research.

Update 16.12.20 
Thank you for the replies!
Yes, the design is from
Tatting Patterns and Designs" by Günter Blomqvist and Elwy Persson

I hope you'll like these two little winter fox cubs.

All you need to do to be entered for the draw is to leave a comment.  I'll ship to anywhere in the world.  To make it easier to count, I won't answer your comments to this post but I thank you all in advance for taking part and for writing a few words.  As it's already Wednesday,  I'll hold the draw next Tuesday - it's getting a bit close to Christmas, so it may end up being a New Year present for whoever wins, but I want to give you all time to enter.

Best wishes,

Wednesday 9 December 2020

Small JS Doily Completed

I finished the "lost & found" little doily designed by Jan Stawasz.  I did run out of thread... but managed to find which one I had used which was Anchor Freccia in size 16, a thread I have not used much in the past. I knew it definitely wasn't my usual Lizbeth and couldn't remember which one but luckily I found it!

Now I really need to tat a few more snowflakes to include in my Christmas cards, time is getting on.   I hope you're all enjoying some cheer in your holiday preparations in spite of the difficult circumstances.

It will no doubt be an unusual Christmas for most of us but I hope you'll still be able to find joy and happiness with your families and friends.

Best wishes,

Monday 7 December 2020

Baby Blanket

My sister just had her first baby!  We're all so excited.  Except that she ended up having her baby early and I'm not ready with my gift.  I started work on a crochet blanket for her but I thought I still had a couple of weeks at least to work on it.  Never mind.  I'll have to be a bit late with my present.

I'm making a Victorian Lattice Square blanket for my new niece.  I really like this pattern which I made once before in green and fuchsia.  I went with a colour I know my sister likes and chose a duck egg blue shade (it looks a bit like baby blue in the photos but it is more duck egg in real life).

So I'm now crocheting furiously to try to get this in the mail this week!  Will I make it?  I'm being further thwarted because I bought all the balls of this colour that my local wool shop had thinking that would be enough... but no.  Luckily I found some online and am waiting for a delivery... hope it comes soon!  I managed to make 14 squares so far.

The little doily from the previous post is now finished.  I will block it and show it to you in the next post.  

I can't believe we're in December already! 

Best wishes,

Friday 20 November 2020

WIP - Jan Stawasz

I just found this at the bottom of a bag!  I'd forgotten it to be honest, and never finished it.  I love this small doily by Jan Stawasz from his book:  Tatted Treasures.  I made it once in dark green several years ago (click here if you'd like to see the green version).

It's a bit of shame that Jan Stawasz didn't name most of his projects.  This one is just called "Doily XIV".  It makes it more difficult to refer to his designs; it would be more memorable to say it's his "Daisy Doily" or something similar.

Anyway, I'm well on the way to finishing it now.  I hope I don't run out of thread on my shuttles... because I can't remember which thread I used!  It's definitely not my usual Lizbeth 20 as it is finer... but which one is it?

Best wishes,

Monday 16 November 2020

Hen & Chicks Corner

From the previous post, there was the most votes for the fuller version number 3 with the extra ring in the centre so that's the one I'll share with you in this post.

Just for clarity, let me state that this pattern is not my invention:  it is a well-known and traditional edging which appears in lots of vintage and out of copyright publications.  I only designed the corner for it.

Hen & Chicks Edging:
R4-4 rw
leave 4mm bare thread (and between each subsequent element)
R3-3-3-3 rw
*R3+2-2-2-2-2-2-3 rw
R3+3-3-3 rw
R4+4 rw
R3+3-3-3 rw
R4-4 rw
R3+3-3-3 rw
Repeat from *

To Turn the Corner:
After a large ring,
R3+3-3-3 rw
R4+2-2, rw 
(there are no bare threads after this ring and between the following 5 elements)
R2-2-2-2-2 rw
R3+2-2-2-3 dnrw, lock join to last picot of previous ring
R3+2-2-2-2-2-2-3 dnrw, lock join to 3rd picot of previous ring
R3+2-2-2-3 dnrw, lock join to 2nd picot of previous ring
R2+2-4 rw
start leaving a 4mm bare thread again from here
and continue from * above

I hope some of you will enjoy making this lovely vintage edging and corner.  Oh, nearly forgot, I made a video that shows how to make the corner too if you're interested.  You can view it here.

Best wishes,

Saturday 14 November 2020

Designing a Corner for Hen & Chicks

I recently shared a video on how to make the traditional edging often called "Hen & Chicks".  This made me think that it would be nice to have a corner for this edging.

The simplest way would be just to remove one lower ring on the corner and that will make it "bend" around the corner.  But I don't like the "empty" corner that this creates.  I prefer to have more on the corner rather than less.

So I made a little corner doodle to test the idea...

Yes, that might work.
Let's tat it and see.

I quite like the size of it but not sure about the empty space in the middle...

What if I remove the tiny rings...
would that be better?
Hmmm, the corner gets more rounded.

Maybe I want to keep the bigger corner
but fill the space?
Then it looks like this:

Here the three corners together:

I unintentionally made one too many picots in the centre ring...
but now I wonder, should I remove it or keep it?

This is often how I design.  As you can see, I don't have a perfect foolproof method!  I'll do some sketches of ideas, then make several testing samples, sometimes cut the samples and re-arrange them until I'm happy with the design.

In this case I think I prefer the last option, the bolder corner with the empty space filled in with the extra ring in the centre.

I'll now tat a longer length of Hen & Chicks with the corner to get a better idea of the overall look.

I'm sure other people have come up with their own version of a corner for this vintage edging and it would be nice to see other solutions as I'm sure there are many!

I'll write up this version of Hen & Chicks in the next blogpost if anyone is interested.  I made the rings smaller than the version I had in one of my vintage books as I thought it would look better for a handkerchief edging.

Best wishes,

Thursday 5 November 2020

Two More!

I wasn't done.  Two more pairs of earrings made their way off my beading needle...

Another pair of Lisette in olive green colours:

And a pair of SuperDuo Stars

Hmmmm, those might look nice in blue-icy colours
with silver seed beads...

Maybe I need to make yet another pair?

Best wishes,

Tuesday 27 October 2020

Another Pair

I was tempted by another beaded earring pattern.  This one is called Lisette (a click on the word will take you to the pattern if you're interested).

The mini tassels were a little fiddly to make... perhaps I need a better technique for them but I do like the design by Nela Kábelová.

And I decided to draw a new number for my snowflake giveaway as one was not claimed and it's number 16 that came up this time and that comment belongs to Stephanie.  I have your contact details Stephanie so I'll send the pattern along!

Best wishes,

Wednesday 21 October 2020

Beaded Earrings

I do like a bit of beading every once in a while and I often see things on my "cyber travels" which inspire me.  This time it was a pair of "Piazza" earrings by Deb Roberti which I saw on Linda's Crafty Inspirations.  They didn't look overly complicated and I thought it wouldn't take too long to whip up a pair.

The only thing when you start beading is that there are soooooo many types and colours of beads!  It's difficult to restrain yourself.  I have a small selection of beads and when I see a pattern I like, it's a matter of searching through my box to see if I have all or any of the beads required.  This time I struck lucky and was able to make the earrings with what I had in my box.

I only had a couple of colours of superduo beads (or 4mm beads for that matter) but I'm still happy with the way they turned out.  I'm now thinking I'll make another pair for a friend as a gift.

They measure 3.5cm across.

And I've not heard back yet from one of the winners of the Aeris pattern (from the last post), I'll give them until Sunday and if not, then I'll draw another name.

Best wishes,

Sunday 18 October 2020

And the Winners Are...


Number 3 is Marilyn, Number 12 is God's Kid, and number 22 is Pop Lenuta Maria.  Marilyn and Pop Lenuta Maria, can you please contact me with your details so I can send you the pattern!  God's Kid, I have yours already so I'll send the pattern along.

Thank you so much everyone for all your lovely comments and I hope the winners enjoy tatting the pattern.  It's a bit of a challenge with the many techniques used in this design but I hope you'll be happy with the snowflake.

If anyone else would like to make Aeris, I will shortly be listing it in my Etsy shop.  I thank you all for your support, interest in my designs and kind contribution on my blog. I really appreciate it!

Best wishes,

Wednesday 14 October 2020

Aeris Variation

Whilst looking at my new pattern and the snowflake photo, I decided that maybe the "arms" needed to be a  bit fuller with extra picots to look more like the real snowflake.  So I made a new version without the JKs but with more picots instead.  And this is what it looks like:

And here's the photo of the real snowflake again, for comparison:

And then I decided to pin all the picots before pressing to make it look
more pointy and sharp, more like a real snowflake
and this is what it looks like:

... but I think I prefer the softer shape of the first (unpinned picots)

So there you have it:  Aeris and its variation.  I will put both in the pattern and people can choose which one to tat!

As I've done in the past, I'll have a draw for free patterns (three chances to win!) so please leave a comment if you'd like to be entered.  I'll hold the draw on Sunday (18 October).

Best wishes,

P.S.  Thank you very much for your comments, I always love receiving them but I won't answer in this blogpost to make it easier to count them for the draw!

Monday 12 October 2020

Snowflake 2020

It's already October... the weather is turning colder and it's making me think of one of my favourite things ever:  snowflakes!  For a few years now, I have created new designs inspired by Wilson Bentley's photographs of real snowflakes (after being gifted his book by a tatting friend) and I have done so again this year.

Below is the photograph that inspired this design.

Of course it's not exactly the same but I hope you can see some similarities.  Real snowflakes have straight lignes and sharp angles which are difficult to reproduce with tatting... but I enjoy a challenge!  In this case I used lock chains for straight lines as well as my 1SSCMR technique for sharp points.

Below are some of the several samples which I discarded
though there are features in each that appeal to me
and which I may use in future designs.

And the name?

I decided to call it 

Pattern coming up very soon!

Best wishes,

Wednesday 16 September 2020

Handkerchief Edging

I finally finished the green one-shuttle edging I had started a good while ago.  You can find the pattern under the pattern tab above.  I took the opportunity to make a video showing how I sew the edging onto the hanky (a question I had received a few times on my YouTube channel).  

Shade of green keeps changing depending on light and setting...
(the first photo is probably the most accurate)

Best wishes,

Wednesday 9 September 2020

More Baskets

Following on from the previous post, I realised I'd not shown other baskets I made earlier in the summer.  First of all one of my daughters and her boyfriend had collected dogwood some months ago which they dried completely before soaking it in a river for several days before it was ready to weave.  It was a first experience of weaving baskets for all of us and we were all pleased to end up with functional baskets.  The dogwood was not the easiest and bendiest to work with.

Here are a few progress photos...

After completing this first basket, I was keen to make another but we had no more wood.  That's when I discovered you could make baskets with rolled up newspaper!  What a discovery.  I've already made three of those and here is the second one I made.  I tried painting the others but was not happy with the result and in the end, my favourite was this one, left showing the newspaper.  I varnished it and have been using it to do my shopping.  It's surprisingly sturdy to say it's only made of newspaper!

I like baskets a lot... I like using them and I like making them!  

Have any of you had a go at basket weaving?

Best wishes,