Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Relax... Just do it...

I was up by five o'clock in the morning yesterday.  Don't ask me why; I just couldn't go back to sleep.

You'd think that would indicate that I got a lot done.  On the contrary, it left me lethargic and quite cranky all day long.  It probably didn't help that the first thing I did in the morning was untat the split ring I'd messed up the night before in my TIAS project --very discouraging.

So, I decided to tat one of those Heritage crosses that I've tatted over twenty times.  Of course, the shuttle I'd wound way too much thread on for something else emptied before I even finished the first portion of it.  That led to me doing a few stitches of finger tatting, just to try it, and then I moved on with my life. 

At that point, I was hoping sitting on the couch rather than pouting in bed, would make me sleepy enough to snooze.  Instead, I saw this cross sitting beside me: (LizBeth, Country Side, Size 20).
The next few hours of my life were spent tatting and untatting to create another cross, this one with shuttle and ball:
 I chose LizBeth Carousel and the supposedly matching Antique Blue Med because I figured that I'd mess it all up and I don't mind 'wasting' Carousel.  Surprising, I actually completed the cross!  

The Pattern is Gina B's Basic Ring-Chain Cross Bookmark .

I learned plenty while tatting this cross, including that I could be just as relaxed by and while tatting with the shuttle as I am with the needle.  

Now, I just need to start learning how much thread I should put on the shuttle for project (how it's estimated, etc...).  Methinks I'll try a few patterns which include the amount to be wound. 

Love and Happy Tatting to all!

Stephanie Grace

Friday, January 20, 2012

I Blame Jane.

While learning tatting, I've learned that it's a continual learning process.  Perhaps we like it so much because it's a constant challenge or because we're always learning something new.  Either way, The Wonderful Jane mentioned me comparing my experiences with needle and shuttle in the current TIAS in an e-mail and it led me to this...

While I am still learning both methods (are we ever truly done learning?) and especially just learning shuttle tatting, I've decided to make a new blog to note the differences and hopefully help beginners by sharing what I wish I would have been told when I was starting out.  Those that have or have had a relative that tats or tatted may find it of little use, but that wasn't the case for me so I know that there must be others in the same situation.  With all the changes this world has undergone in the past few decades (and especially centuries), less and less is handed down in such a way.  We may not have blood ties, but that doesn't mean we can't be family; even if you've only been tatting for a day, please, go visit my new blog and let's share our experiences.  If you've been tatting from the womb, then you should be there to guide our trembling hands! ;-)

Okay, that's enough from me for today (or is it?).  I'm going to debate the next entry for the new blog... and hope that I don't wake up to a bunch of tatters outside of door with pitchforks and torches!
Love and Happy Tatting to all!

Stephanie Grace

TIAS (Finally, pictures!)

My scanner is working again ... ya know, for now.  Hopefully, when I turn it off it won't make me go through all sorts of stuff again to make it cooperate...

Anywho, I'm enjoying being a part of TIAS this time.  I really don't know why I didn't participate before now.  It's challenging, especially since this is the first time I'm doing more than just playing around with the shuttles.  Some random thoughts:

  • SCMRs bite!  I don't know why they don't like me and my needle, but they don't.  They just don't.  And I don't like them either, so there! :-P
  • SCMRs aren't all that bad!  Something that has rarely worked for me in my nearly two years of needle tatting worked fine for me on my second try with the shuttles.  Go figure.
  • Split Rings are so simple!  With needles, the worst part about SRs is having to un-thread and re-thread the needle.  Other than that, they're simple and just like any other ring.
  • Split Rings bite!  Okay, so maybe not right now, but by golly did they make me want to throw a full-on tantrum!  Something so simple with the needle led to much cussing, un-tatting, and YouTube video watching.  I found three different ways to do it.  Dead Spider rocks.  If you're new to shuttle tatting, don't listen to any instructions that don't have you flip your hand up like a dead spider!  I can't say it made it work for me the first time, but it came together eventually.  SRs and I aren't best friends, but we managed to make nice-nice.

Now, for the pictures.  Both are done in LizBeth threads, size 20.
The one on the left is light turquoise and some thread with spring in the title, I think.  (I'm too lazy to get and grab the color card.)  The one on the right is Pink Cocoa (that I constantly want to call Pink Mocha) and is done with a needle.  It seems so bulky in comparison!  (Hmm.. will this experience turn me against my needles?  I think not, but I'm going to love if I can get to a point where I can choose which to use depending upon the pattern...). 

Of course, when you charge right into something instead of actually learning what you're doing beforehand, there's got to be a casualty, right?
That was my first attempt with the shuttles.  Don't ask me what happened... You know full well thread has a mind of its own! ;-)

Love and happy tatting to all!

Stephanie Grace

Friday, January 13, 2012

TIAS Day 2 (No pictures yet)

My computer is finally giving a scan option, so I'll catch up with all of that after I tackle some of my To Do list (which may or may not include rearranging my bedroom...).  

Anywho, Jane posted Day 2 so I jumped on that right after my tea (okay, during).  While this isn't a major thing to share, the decision I made yesterday might be... I decided to climb out on a limp (the one without a net under it) and do the TIAS twice --one with needle and one with shuttles!  My rings still aren't closing right on the shuttle and I'm not very neat yet, but I figured this would be great practice and, hopefully, by the end I'll be better.  :-)  It's a good theory, right?

Okay, going to finish watching Millionaire and then tackle the chores.  I'll be back later with some pictures --Or it'll be the first thing I do tomorrow! :-*

Love and happy tatting to all!

Stephanie Grace

Thursday, January 12, 2012

TIAS (No Pictures)

No pictures, but Day One got tatted yesterday --ya know, once I got all happy because I realized that it was the tenth ... and the realized I lost a day somewhere!  LOL.. Ooops.

Love and happy tatting to all!

Stephanie Grace

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Printer/Scanner hates me!

I was doin' pretty good with the whole new post each morning thing, right?  I thought so.  Then, my stinkin' printer/scanner decided that it no longer wanted to let me print or scan through WiFi.  Then, it didn't want to connect via USB to my desktop.  

Without pictures, I figured there was no point in a post, but how am I supposed to get used to a schedule if I don't go through the motions, right? 

Well, yesterday, I tried using the webcam.  Note that I haven't used one in probably ten years (at least), didn't play with settings, and am an incredibly shaky person.  

On Saturday, I received my copy of Ms. Marilee Rockley's Tatted Jewelry!  (Did I mention she SIGNED it? Eeee!!!).  I was in the middle of doing something and wouldn't let myself open it until I finished --good idea because I got lost for several hours after I ripped open the envelope!  

I dove right in and started making things right away.  Here are the three.  
These are "Keyed Up" on page 23 done in LizBeth 662 and 605, both include size 11/0 Czech glass seed beads.
(The green one that you see half of is in 144).
This one is in Color 109 --and wanted to jump off of the paper and lid that I'd laid it on for the picture! LOL. 

Those that have the book may notice that I omitted the top ring.  Personally, I like how they look better without it --until a jump ring is added.  Oops.  I knew it was there for a reason! LOL.  I already have more of these to shows and I don't think I'll be stopped with this pattern any time soon.  Perhaps because, when ordering the book, I was drawn to this pattern and almost ordered it at the same time in PDF format?

Well, hopefully I'll get the stupid printer/scanner (Stephanie, insulting it won't get it to work for you...) to work for me later --And actually scan at the right size which has long been a problem for me.  It appears, though, that I'm not the only one with this problem.  I'm thinking of blaming Epson, but I'd rather blame Windows. 

Enough rambling... If I want to add that to my list, I need to get started like yesterday! ;-)

Love and happy tatting to all!

Stephanie Grace

Saturday, January 7, 2012


I think I've become addicted to just tatting without patterns!  New threads came yesterday and I dove right in and just started tatting.  I'm not sure if this is just to see where I end up or just to test the threads to see how I really feel about the colors, but I enjoy it nonetheless. :-)  

First to be played with was Color 625 (LizBeth).  
Just a little, bitty thing.  When I set it down as it is in the scan, I saw the top of a lady's head with a flower at her hairline, and then I saw the eyes... The bottom ring is a mouth should be... Do you see it too?  Either way, this all ended up putting Little Guitars by Van Halen in my head, so I'm calling it the Senorita doodle. LOL.  I might toy with her more at some point... Maybe?

Then, I opened up Color 665 and began freestylin' again...
Definitely needs to be played with, but I kind of like it.  

The last thing I have to show is from two days ago...
It's an atrocious scan, sorry.  This is Flopsy the butterfly. {e:laugh}  She's done in LizBeth 20, Color 135.  The pattern is designed by the wonderfully talented Jane.  It's a surprisingly simple pattern, though I did somehow leave out a picot on the center ring. >.<  I didn't notice that until the end, so I just went through a stitch --no way as I starting over for such a menial reason! LOL.  Poor Flopsy is all sorts of out of shape from being crumpled up in my hand as I tatted!  I was so afraid of the bead's weight stretching the thread, that she spent her birthing all bunched up in a ball.  Methinks I may venture into stiffening to see if I can't restore some of her dignity!  Another thing is that the backsides of both wing sets are facing each other.  I don't think that's how it's supposed to be, but I don't know what I did wrong either. LOL.  Oh well, Maybe when I make a sister for Flopsy (Will it be trite if I call her 'Mopsy'?) I'll get it right. ...And now I'm thinking I should follow that with two rabbits named Cottontail and Peter. :-D  Oh, how I love Beatrix Potter!!!  

Well, that's all I have for now.  We went to a fundraiser breakfast in support of a No Kill animal shelter, so my belly feels full which means I feel sleepy. ;-)  Pancakes = Belly sinkers!

Love and happy tatting to all!

Stephanie Grace
P.S. Eliz, thank you!!!  Not only for your constant encouragement and support, but for your feedback on the anchor.  Another friend thought maybe I should lengthen the longer chain.  I'm definitely going to be toying with that and making several versions.  Since they'll all at least somewhat resemble anchors, at least they can all decorate cards! LOL.  :-)   ♥

Thursday, January 5, 2012


I'm sure that everyone knows that Mrs. Jane Eborall has announced the next Tat it and See.  I have a tendency to sit out, usually terrified of a technique shared before it starts.  Well, I'm sick of missing out!  Once again, Mrs. Eborall put up a technique to practice prior to TIAS starting and, once again, I felt sad because she only gives instructions for shuttles (I understand that completely and I don't mean that in a negative way. LOL).  

I looked at it, though, and thought, If I'm not afraid to try older shuttle techniques and figure them out for the needle, why should this be any different?  So, I grabbed a needle.  

I'm not incredibly sure that it's done right, but this is what I ended up with.  It's done in LizBeth 20, color 144.  So, here's what I did:

My brain already translates shuttle thread as needle thread and ball thread as ball thread (see how smart I can be? LOL), so I brought the ball thread UP through the picot and then simply ran the needle through.  Repeat for the other picots and you're done.  

Here's a closer look:
 Again, I'm not sure if this is right.  It appears to be right to me so I'm sharing it.  If it's wrong or Mrs. Eborall would like me to take this down for any reason, just let me know.  :-)  If it is right, I'm hoping it will encourage at least one needle tatter to tackle a shuttle trick today!  (Or tackle a shuttle!).  ;-)

Other than that, I haven't anything to show.  I don't know where my day went yesterday and, since I have nothing to show for it, I'm pretty sure it never happened. ;-)  

Stephanie Grace

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Two posts in one day? Wow...

I was going to let this sit around until tomorrow, but I just couldn't wait.  LOL.  I played more with the doodle that made me think of an anchor... I still need to play with it more, but I can't figure out what's bothering me about it... Have you any thoughts about what it could be?  Perhaps a bigger bottom?  I just don't know...

Well, here it is with one of the cards I mentioned earlier.  I didn't attach it and it decided to put itself at more of an angle when I flipped it onto the scanner, but you get the gist... I hope. ;-)
Hmm... You look silly tilting your head like that... Perhaps I should scan it straight? LOL. ;-)

Love and happy tatting to all!

Stephanie Grace

Here's Goes Nothin'...

The new modem arrived yesterday, so I'm hoping to get things on track.  (With the old modem, it wouldn't cooperate with my wireless router and to go from laptop to desktop, I'd have to plug in which one I wanted and call ... then call again when I went back to the first one.  It was irritating as anything!). 

Back to tatting... I've been just toying around.  All the patterns I have and nothing was screaming out, so I grabbed threads that I don't care much for and just had fun... 
The navy blue one is designed by Mary Konior.  It's around page 70, I think, in Tatting With Visual Patterns.  I want to say Masquerade, but I could be wrong (okay; new goal... write down the pattern information when it's complete in case I'm feeling lazy when I blog about it. LOL).  The final chain got twisted, of course, but when I did it again in obnoxious green, it came out fine, so go figure...

The pink with the heart is just a simple little thing to help me be sure I was adding a bead on the right way. ;-)  I kind of like the tiny little fella...

The other pink is just there because I wasn't sure how the color would be changed in the tiny one and wanted something to show the color.

The bright green was me just letting the thread go where it wanted to.  I think it looks like an anchor; do you see it to?  I think I might actually toy with it some more and make the bottom part bigger.  I have some nautical-themed note cards that an anchor might work well with. ;-)

This was another of me just playing around.  Of course, the stinkin' snowflake is facing the backside of the main ring. >.<  I kept on truckin' though ...then a chain didn't want to tighten enough, so I gave in and cut it off the ball.  When I went to scan it, though, I realized that I like it a lot, so I just might have to make another attempt at this one.  I like how, in the scan, the snowflake points look like they're attached to the ring --they're not, it just sits as though it is which makes me happy. LOL.  

Well, time to move on with my day.  I have a new book of patterns arriving today, so hopefully that will inspire some more playing around. 

Oh!  I'm also working on another project using the bright green Mary Konior motif, so maybe I'll have that to show tomorrow?  (I got smart with that one and, since other bits are being repeated, I scanned and planned out the positioning on the computer before tatting... I'm scaring myself with all of this playing around!  I'm too meek and mild for this stuff! LOL).

Love and happy tats to all!

Stephanie Grace

Monday, January 2, 2012

Happy New Year!

I hope that you all had a wonderful holiday season!  I am so glad that's it all over and done with and now I can relax and work on trying to figure out my health situation (nothing serious).  

Most of my tatting in the last few weeks were these: 
I included one with every Christmas card that went out (even poked a hole in each card so just the snowflake was incorporated into the awesome New York Giants/winter field scene...).  ;-)  

I was pretty distracted after the first batch since I'd gotten that flip figured out and the amazingly generous Ms. Fox sent me Clovers, plastic bobbins, and some Finca thread!!!!  :-*  Thank you! THANK YOU! THANK YOU MS. FOX!!!!  The Clovers are a delight and feel much more comfortable than the metal shuttle I was using --especially since I was terrified about cutting myself removing and replacing the bobbin!  It feels so sharp to me! :-/  So, yes, I am still shuttling too!  :-)  Most of my rings still don't seem to want to close properly (completely, I mean), but I'm gettin' there!!  

Of course, I am still playing with my needles as well!  Even venturing into tatting without a pattern or just letting the thread tell me how it wants to be shaped.  Yup... I want to "design" at least one thing in 2012.  

Aside from all that, thanks to Ms. Diane's sharing of her beautiful creations, I've been looking into Romanian Point Lace.  That might just be another 2012 thing to be accomplished. ;-)

Well, this is getting long so I'm just going to post it.  My new modem should be here tomorrow so I'm going to try and post more frequently... I'm getting myself on a schedule in life (which is VERY good) and the modem will hopefully let my laptop online which will make blogging more frequently much easier for me, I think... We shall see, right?

Love to you all!

Stephanie Grace