Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Leaning Picots

So I was tatting this pretty little snowflake (Sweet Rose from Jon Yusoff's Tatted Snowflake Collection)...it's very easy to tat up and I love it and had no real issues with it...until I was done.  Then I laid it on my desk and looked at it and noticed something odd....

All my picots were leaning to the left!  What the .... ?  When I blocked it I was able to straighten them out but it was an odd thing and had nothing to do with the design but all to do with how I tat.

Being very curious as to why this happened I picked some more thread and started tatting it again, same thing...all the picots leaned to the left.  I had to figure out what I was doing to cause this and correct it!  So I started stitching it again and paid careful attention to what I was doing when making a picot.  What I discovered was surprising to me and might help others so I thought I'd share.

For those who don't tat, a picot is made by having a gap between the double stitches and the thread is carried across this space then the next double stitches (DSs) are pushed next to the prior ones so the carried thread bends up to make the pretty little picot loop.  Well, when I was making mine I was using my left hand (I'm right handed) to pull the DS's over to those already done.  This put my thumb and index fingertips on the DS and picot loop but because I was 'pulling to the left' the loop was also 'pulled to the left'. 

Once I saw this was the cause of the problem I tried different ways to correct it.  I tried tightening the shuttle thread to make it slide the DSs over...didn't work for me, it just made my stitch tension uneven.  I tried pushing the already done stitches to the right to meet up with the new stitch...nope, that also pushed the picot loop out of whack.  I tried pushing the new stitch over to the existing stitches with my right thumb and index finger...ah ha...better...but still not quite right.  Then I tried something new...I tried using my right hand fingernails instead of fingertips to slide the new DSs over to the previous ones (not that easy to do because I don't have long fingernails)...WHALLAA !  The picots were correctly looped and positioned! 

So I redid my little Sweet Rose snowflake doing the picots by sliding the DSs with my fingernails...and here's the result...nice pretty little picots.  I can't show you the other "leaning" one because I can't find where I put it.  Ugh.

Motif # 19:

What works for me will probably not work for everyone but if someone else is having a 'leaning picot' problem..maybe this info will help.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

25 Challenge Motif - # 17 & 18

One of the groups I'm in was discussing how to tat the Spring Flowers bookmark by Julie Patterson.  I decided to give it a try making the flower parts multicolor while making the 'stem' green.  It took me a while to figure out how to get the colors to come out where I wanted them but once I had that down I found this one very easy to make.  The colors I used were Lizbeths' # 153 for the flowers and # 658 for the stem.  Worked up in size 20 it came out 4 inches long, then I added the tassel.

Motif # 17:

I also saw Jane Eborall's blog about her new edging, Fandango, and just had to fiddle with it to see if I could turn it into a bookmark.  I think it turned out really well.  Again it's size 20 Lizbeth threads, colors # 156 & 615.  Here's my Fandango Bookmark.

Motif # 18

Thanks, Jane, for the lovely design.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

First Tatted Doily

Today I'm posting about reaching another goal.  I want to be able to tat all kinds of things not just trims and bookmarks.  From previous posts you can see I also create doilies so one of my tatting goals was to tat a doily.  This is a small coaster/doily called "Merriment" designed by Jon Yusoff.  I tatted it in size 20 thread and it came out at 5.5 inches across the widest points.  So YAY!  I have done a small doily.  Now that goal can change to making a larger tatted doily..hehe.

Here's the picture - Motif # 16:

I've been taking more pictures so expect more to posts to come soon!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Slow Days

Sometimes days just go by slowly, especially those when you're hurting.  With all the drastic weather changes that we aren't used to here in the south, some of my old injuries have been acting up and moving about is sometimes painful...so the days have been slow moving (literally) for me the past few days.  When these kind of days come around I tend to hibernate and just take some easy time to myself....which is why I haven't posted anything in a bit, but it's time to catch up.

First of all yesterday I was quite honored to have a piece of my tatting shown to Georgia's online class as an example for people.  Thank you very much, Georgia!  This particular piece is one I did to replicate a design Fox created (with Fox's permission).  It's for her design called Maeve.  Here's my version of it using Lizbeth threads.

Motif # 15:

I've also put three of my doilies in my Etsy shop:

Cottage Rose Doily

Vintage Roses Doily

Wildflowers Doily

I actually stitched these last fall and just now got around to putting them out for sale.

I've been working on a few more tatted items and will have another picture taking session soon.  Plans for a new bear are swirling around in my head and I want to start work on that soon.  I've also been putting in alot of work getting my updated website ready.  I hope to have it finished and online by the end of the week!

I'm ready for spring...I want all this cold weather to go away!

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Boot Camp - Week 11, 12, Finished!

The snow from the 2011 winter storm in GA is melting, roads are clearing, things are getting back to normal.  So I decided to dive in and finish up the Etsy Boot Camp activities and get them DONE !

Boot Camp - Week 11
[ X ] Set your shipping deadlines (was done before this came out)
[ X ] Follow the tips for selling local
[ ] Post in Week 11's thread (Can't - in Catch up mode)
[ X ] Extra credit: Reading List

Boot Camp - Week 12

[ X ] Have Clear Shipping Options
[ ] Send a Letter to Your Future Self ( I don't get this one...no information just a link to send an email..ugh. I use a bring up fine and calendar reminders to remind me of things to do so I don't see the purpose in this one)
[ X ] Take the Boot Camp Survey (Did this earlier when it first came out)
[ X ] Share Your Final Thoughts in This Forum Thread (Done via Survey)

Boot Camp - Final Week

[ X ] Read this week's blog posts
[ X ] Ponder your plan for 2011
[ X ] This week's Reading List
[ ] Post in Week 12's thread (Can't since I"m doing this late)

The Boot camp was well worth the effort, but I wish it had been started earlier so these things were finished before the holiday season started.  The gist of my feedback to them was about starting it earlier so the end of the activities didn't run into the holiday rush.

Having completed this I now feel a weight lifted off my shoulders.  Instead of having this 'hanging over my head' waiting to be done...it's done and I can now breath a sigh of relief and get back to working on my bears and other creations.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Snow, Ice & Boot Camp - Week 10

The weather here is awful! Snow in Atlanta!! Sunday it started snowing by Monday we had 3-7 inches...normally it doesn't snow enough here to stick to the ground if it snows at all. Then it turned to freezing rain so all that snow is now covered with a 1-3 inch thick layer of ice. Everything is shut down. Yesterday and today the Post Office isn't even running! The big 18 Wheel trucks are sliding into one another and at one point we had 9 of them in an accident and the some of the major highways totally shut down. Lots of them and some cars still stuck on the highways.

Today none of the entrance ramps are open. The little bit of sun we had today turned the top layer of the ice into slush but the weather is cold enough that it will be turning into more ice in the next couple of hours. More freezing rain/snow expected by Thurs and again on Sat.....Yuck!

But I'm comfy and warm inside and catching up on things....today I'm working on catching up the Etsy Boot Camp stuff and doing a little creating.

Almost caught up! This is Week 10's activities. 2 more weeks to go to finish after this. I might be doing these things late but better late than not at all and I'm still learning from them!

[ X ] Read this week's blog post (All about branding your packaging, which I already do)
[ X ] Schedule tasks & get more done! (This is about Time Management - I learned to do this years ago! I live by my bring up file!)
[ X ] Set your location in your profile (did this one back when this first came out)
[ ] Post in Week 10's thread (too late to do this)
[ X ] Check in with your buddy

Not alot new for me in this week's worth of activities...but good reminders of things I already knew.

That's it for now, gonna go grab a cup of hot chocolate!!

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Something Different

Today I'm posting about something different.  I made a couple of doilies for my Etsy Shop.  They are Valentine themed, white with either red or pink hearts.  I think they would be perfect setting on a table for a romantic dinner for two :-)

Yesterday I got in some new threads and can't wait to try them out, but I wanted to finish up the tatted doily I am working on first.  I finished the tatting and now just need to block and photograph it :-)  Yay for progress.

Today I'm mostly doing some admin stuff and trying to finish up on my website redesign.  Talking with my daughter about some ideas for it helped to develop a new way for me to set up the items I have for sale so I'm redoing that part.  Then it's just the gallery of past bears and friends left to go!  Hopefully I'll have the newly designed website on line this coming week!  That's the goal anyway.

Friday, January 7, 2011

More Tatting

Yay I finally got caught up on my blocking and pictures.  Here are more of what I've been working on the past week or so....

Motif # 12 -

It's never too late for snowflakes!  I've not made many of them and I want to make more so I'm working on them here and there.  I'll probably still be making snowflakes in July!! lol

This one is Efflorescence, "Tatted Snowflakes Collection" designed by Jon Yusoff.

Motif # 13:

This next one is a bookmark, by (I stand corrected, thank you Beelizabeth) Jon Yusoff, called Interlocking Chains (I think that's the name).  I was trying to make something for Valentine's Day but I think it ended up having more of a 'spanish' flair.

My daughter really liked it but told me I needed to make it in pink and white....so I did!

I really liked this design and found it easy to do!

Motif # 14:

Next is another bookmark.  This was on a site of free tatting patterns but didn't give the designer's name.  I worked it up in white and teal and I love how it turned out!

That's all for now.  I'm currently working on Jon's Merriment Doily.  I've not done a Tatted Doily before, but I've seen so many great versions of this I just had to try it.  I'll post pictures when it's done.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Tatting 2011

Along with catching up on some of my adminitrative stuff and working on updating my website (which I hope to have finished soon!) I've been taking little breaks here and there and at the end of the evening to do some more tatting.  I finally got some of it blocked and photographed too!  So without further adieu:

Motif # 10:

When I saw this little Hummingbird motif (by Heather Designs) I just had to tat it up in Lizbeth Caribean.  I sometimes get real humming birds visiting the flowers outside my workroom window in the summer and this little one really brightened up a dull winter day!

He's made with size 20 thread but is just barely larger than an inch as seen in these pictures:

Motif # 11:

I also tried my hand at a couple of hearts which I did in DMC red perle 8 thread.  I'm not sure where I saw the design and I'm afraid I didn't note it down at the time like I should have :-(  I like the one on the left the best.  I'm not sure yet what I'm going to do with them.

To finish off my left over red thread I did up a couple of little heart earrings adorned with a pearl.  I've done these before so I'm not counting them for the challenge, but thought you might like to see them.

I'll upload more pictures tomorrow :-)

Monday, January 3, 2011

Admin Stuff & Boot Camp Week 9

Boot Camp Checklist - Week 9

I've been working on administrative activities today. Lots of paperwork..ugh..also did more Boot Camp catch up. Here's Week 9's checklist:

[ X ] Read this week's blog post
[ X ] Organize/stock up on packaging supplies
[ X ] Read this Cyber Monday post (No longer applicable but some good info)
[ ] Post in Week 9's forum thread (Not gonna do this since I'm trying to catch up)
[ X ] Check in with your buddy

I got some great ideas on packaging for shipping from these articles. Some of them I'm already doing but now I have some more things I can try. Also found out about some suppliers that are nearby that I wasn't aware of...definitely gonna check them out!  My Boot Camp Buddy and I stay in contact all the time so that one was EASY! Week 9 - Completed! Slowly getting caught up!

I did get some tatting blocked...hope for sunshine tomorrow for picture taking !