Friday, June 25, 2010

Motif #4 and 5, Troubles and Acquisitions

It's been a week! Wow. I meant to post sooner, I just felt like I didn't have much to say.. Lately I have been thread hunting. Between The Thread Exchange and shopping I have acquired more thread than I could use! I've received two of my exchanges and sent out all three, the one is coming from Australia so I am expecting it to take a while to get here. This is a Majestic size 80 color 850 from Miranda and Flora size 20 color 217 from Isdihara. I also bought (from ebay) an Oren Bayan size 30 (Turkish size 50) in my favorite color. It tats up quite wonderfully, I quickly whipped up this little flower. I bought at Wal Mart Coats & Clark Metallic Decorative sewing thread. It tats up smaller than a size 80, so I tatted with three strands. Learning very quickly that it was a pain to tat with alone and to pair it with other thread.

While shopping on ebay I placed a bid on two lots of vintage thread, and I won! Granted, at the time I did not realize they were size 80 thread... So, I'll be working with tiny thread on and off now. The thread smells old.. If that makes sense. I'll probably have them sit out in a room with a fan on and spray a little Febreze in the room. As you can see, there are some duplicates so I'll be posting it on the thread exchange and sharing my newly acquired stash of size 80 threads.

I've been working on tatting around rings again, this one turned out okay..  But I'm not a fan of black, and tatting with it was much harder than I had thought it would be. So I tried another ring with my new Oren Bayan thread, but disaster struck! The thread tore! I'm assuming there was too much stress put on it from the bead. But I'm not sure how else to attach those beads.

These were tatted up and just recently finished. I will count these as motif #4. The beads I bought a while back and no longer have the label for. The thread in the top (soon to be) pendant is Flower Child by LadyShuttleMaker I believe. And the lower thread is a combination of three pieces of embroidery floss. The pattern is from Kersti.

Also while in my uncreative rut made up this piece. I saw many other people doing it, so thought why not! The thread is another new purchase from hajdesigns31.

And finally my pride and joy of this post was this item I made that has inspired me. As you will see it has my two exchange threads in it, my new Oren Bayan thread and DMC embroidery floss color 471 (two strands) and one strand of my metallic thread. This is motif #5 for the 25 motif challenge. I just need to figure out a slightly more attractive chain.. 

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Work in Progress, Thread Exchange

Feels like it has been days since my last post... Oh! It has been. I've been catching up on reading blogs and forums I belong to. Being away for 24 hours can really leave a lot to catch up on! So Time to catch everyone here up too!

The two bookmarks I had on the blocking board are done.
I had some mess up on the second one and it is on my to do list to tat again and clean up my mistakes.

My current work in progress is is a piece out of Tatting with Visual Patterns, Masquerade. This is tatted in Lizbeth size 20 Spring Garden. I'm unsure of how many of the small motifs I'm actually going to make for this one piece. 
Speaking of thread... Fox came up with the idea of The Thread Exchange.  On the page, Tatskool mentioned maybe using flat pieces of cardboard to wind the threads on, so we could use a normal envelope and keep the cost of postage down to a minimum. So that's exactly what I did! I recently posted my exchange items on the blog, so please go take a look.

In the mean time, I have been trying to figure out how to obtain more thread... And not just Lizbeth thread.. Besides Handy Hands where do you purchase your thread (excluding HDT's from Etsy)? Last night I was severely side tracked and tatted up this quick little flower. Cool right? I thought so. I don't have the floss numbers anymore, but there are two strands of each color (three colors). This got me thinking, my mom used to do a lot of cross stitch, so with her permission I raided her stash of floss and got some more pretty colors. I guess I will be playing around with this for awhile. Just a close up image of the flower.. 
Some other things that have been going through my head is storage. My storage for my completed pieces is lacking.. Let me show you. This is where the bulk of it goes. Whereas the current pieces, if the are done go on the suede pillow next to me on my chair. Okay, unfinished pieces and mess ups go there too.
So tell me, how do you store your completed pieces? And with that, how do I know when I am ready to open up an Etsy shop?! Now that is truly intimidating! But I have all these finished items with no where to go...

That should be it for today. So until next time, happy tatting!

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Health and Motif #3

I haven't been feeling 100% since my last post. Constant headaches and sensitivity to light and sound. This all began one evening when we had an encounter with a rather gross large spider in our window over the sink. This spider caused the spider spray to come out and all the windows to get sprayed. So 15 minutes of that putrid spray inhaled (I wasn't the one doing the spraying, but oh did it reek!) and that angered my allergies and they began a revolt!

Feeling as I did, made it very difficult to focus on tatting for too long. I did manage to get some work done. I blocked Motif #1 and now it lays flat (decided to not stiffen it), an old bookmark, and a few odd and ends. I came to the conclusion that storing my HDT's and other bits of thread and my plastic thingys in a notecard holder was not working out well. And the the notecard holder would better serve as a current project holder, as I can fit 2 ball of lizbeth thread in along with the other necessities.

I also began yesterday and blocked today Jon Yusoff's Folded Bookmark. Which I will be submitting as motif #3. Which you see here being blocked. It was quite a joy to tat, never having to go look up a technique. However, I did lose my place many times and made quite a few mistakes. But I will be tatting it again, especially in this thread! The colors are just lovely. The thread is Lizbeth size 20 Tropical Punch and I used a size #8 needle, thinking it would give a thinner look to the chains and rings. It also proved to be a pain with the picots and chains wanting to flip on me.

Oh? The bookmark next to it looks familiar? Yes yes, I quite love the pattern found here, by none other than Carolivy. In my first post I show a photo of three of these bookmarks tatted up with only one clover in the center. I like it with three clovers as the pattern calls for much better. Although, there is some scheming going on, to turn the single clover ones into hair clips of sorts! Here is an image of the purple bookmark after being blocked. This is in Lizbeth size 40 Purple Splendor and the blue one is Lizbeth size 40 Ocean Turquoise.

My final accomplishment while being under the weather? Tatting over rings of course. I thought it would be fun... This, I think will eventually be a bird of some kind.. This would not have been possible except for the well written directions here and here (both from Jon Yusoff's blog). I wonder, how in the world do you hide your ends? My stitches were so tight against the ring that it was hopeless. Oh well. That and not liking how the variegated thread turned out leaves much for me to work on.

I guess I am a more productive sickling than I thought I would be...

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Goodies, Motif #2, and Dash #2

On Saturday I placed an order over at Handy Hands for some thread, a needle, and a crochet hook. It came today! Although needing to get back to work on another piece I am working on, it was quite the nice surprise on a dreary rainy day.

Just what did I get, you ask? Wanting to venture with slightly smaller threads, I bought two size 40 in Ocean Turquoise Light and Purple Splendor. I bought three size 20 threads as well in Spring Garden (my mom was hoarding her ball of thread in this and would not share!), Tropical Punch, and Black. I'm not a fan of black thread.. I have a cat that is quite a fan of ALL of my thread. She is just growing out of the kitten stage and her fur is already a large nuisance to deal with while tatting. But I could not resist the thought of making a butterfly in black and Yarnplayer's Garden Afternoon. I also bought a size 13/14 crochet hook (turns out, that might be too small? But it is certainly nice to stop having to use an Aero shuttle as a hook) and a size 7 needle.

As I mentioned yesterday, I am working on Mom's Pink Doily. I didn't get any further with the third round than just making sense out of it. The center ring is a lovely green medley (Christmas Green Mix?)  from Lizbeth and the second ring is Christmas Green. I plan on trying the third row in the variegated green.

My mom set me to work trying to design an interesting window ornament/dreamcatcher like item. So, with inspiration from the vintage motifs I posted yesterday, I came up with something like this... Please note, it is NOT done in any shape or form. The butterfly will be larger and more center and there will be more vines. The random thread at the top is to signify "hey, this is the top". It was a fun break from other tatting. On that note my hunt for the perfect butterfly pattern continues. I most likely will end up trying to write my own. But in the mean time, I found this. It is a relatively simple pattern, yes. But up until that point the double picots were kicking my butt! And some how, I don't know what it was, but his pattern and directions made it make sense to me!

So I present to you Motif #2 of the 25 Motif challenge. Yes, it is unfinished. This is tatted in size 20 Tropical Punch. I'm using this as #2 because figuring out a new technique that had made me stare at my computer screen and puzzle about it for quite some time has been conquered.

Dash #1:

This is a very simple recipe and it got two thumbs up from everyone in the house, Cinnamon Breakfast Muffins. The article I was reading when I cam across this link, recommended making a large batch of these muffins and freezing them. Then thawing them the night before in the refrigerator and then warming them up in the morning. I will be trying them like that come the start of the school year for me in late August. Anything is better than the same bowl of cereal every single day.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Promises, Planning, and Pain

Promises: I promised myself I would never post without photos because blogs with photos keep me reading. But I am in a desperate need to distract myself. I have a package arriving from Handy Hands some time this week. And it is going to be full of goodies! I am currently working on Mom's Pink Doily and it will be my largest project to date (yet again). I'm about to start the third round and it is quite intimidating.

Planning: With planning out the third round of my current project, I am also planning a sun catcher ornament. It is a combination of two vintage patterns: Motif 9109 and Floral motif 9112. There will be a butterfly added, but I want the butterfly to be stiffened in a 3D position, so hunting down the right butterfly is proven difficult!

Pain: I won't say much here. I got my stitches out yesterday afternoon! Some history: Sunday May 30th I fell outside my home and sliced my big right toe on our concrete/brick steps outside the door. The Novocaine shots were horrible! But the 3 stitches were necessary. And I'm on the mend and go swimming again!!

Promise my next post will include some sort of photos!

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Motif #1 and the First Dash

I've decided to start the 25 motif challenge. This will be my first motif. (Granted, I still need to buy the supplies to block it...)

The pattern is from TATBiT and the thread is size 20 Witch's Brew by LadyShuttleMaker.

I left off the final row of split rings for a few reasons. Mainly, I ran out of thread! I also don't really enjoy tatting spilt rings as a needle tatter and have a tendency of killing needle threaders every time I tat many spilt rings.

Dash #1:

I recently started cooking more, so with each blog I'll add a little dash of spice. The other evening for dinner I made Chili Chicken and Pasta with a few minor changes to the recipe. Take a little of the sauce they have you make with the oil and chili powder and slice up green onions, zucchini, and carrots. And prepare them stir fry style. Afterwards I mixed them with the corn (we used frozen corn and not fresh off of the cob) and served with the noodles and chicken. This rounded out the meal more since some of us do not like tomatoes.

First Blog!

First, I'd like to introduce myself. My name is Paige. I am a full time college student. I started tatting in November of 2009 and recently have started up again after frustrating myself greatly with failed attempts at larger pieces. I am an artist at heart. I've dabbled in glass blowing (although burning myself too many times to really enjoy it...), ceramics, weaving, and photography. I've recently started being enthused by the art of cooking; which my mom takes quite a delight in not having to cook and waking up to cinnamon muffins.

Now that we have that out of the way, I would like to introduce you to my stash. This is the bulk of my non thread items. As most of you will recognize the items here, I would like to introduce you to my handy needle holder (far right). It is an on pen that I pulled the ink and tip out of and taped the hole in the top of the lid. I normally have 8 needles in there at once, don't own more than that so I wouldn't know if it could hold more.

Next up is my threads that are wound onto plastic squares! And they store nicely into a note card holder.

And my spools of thread:

I'd like to share my tatting with you now. I still feel like I am a beginner because I still have goals of larger more complicated patterns that I want to complete. Most of these patterns have been relatively simple. Please note, I am not claiming these patterns as my own, because they ARE NOT mine.

I recently figured out how to hide my ends, but have not had the chance to go back through my nearly completed items to hide all of the ends.
Thanks for all the amazing tatting blogs on this site for helping me learn.