Monday, May 30, 2011


I am making progress on the Mary Konior Flowerpiece doily.  The pattern seems pretty straightforward and easy to follow - and I think I'm getting more confident in my tatting ability.

I was concerned that I couldn't get the chains very even, so I tried to be very conscious of my tension.  Improvement is always possible, but I am pretty happy with how the chains look.

The only thing I really wish I would have done is put Jane's "blipless join" to use on the chains. I don't like seeing those little blips!  Otherwise, I'm really quite thrilled at how this doily is looking.  And I do like the look of ecru thread with a color accent :) 

Being successful at a doily that I truly think looks nice and neat really makes me much more interested in trying more patterns. I really recognize the new confidence when I find myself saying "I should have" or "it would look better if".  Doily patterns are not looking so daunting anymore.

Next is a hanky edging - with beads!  I am forcing myself to finish this doily before starting anything else, however.  I really don't like having too many unfinished projects waiting for me - it's just too overwhelming!

Friday, May 27, 2011


I'm not sure why I was keeping these, but it was hard to finally decide to take them apart.  Silly to keep them, I know, but they were kind of cute.

A craft project of sorts.  My aunt gave them to me with some other hankies that had crocheted edges - she just knows I like these things, so she saves them for me.

For each parasol, there was a hanky wrapped around a pencil for the handle.  Then one hanky for the parasol part, stuffed with rolled up kleenex/toilet paper for filling.  The edges were pinned tightly into the hanky handle around the stuffed areas.  The tip had a little thread wrapped around it, and one of them had a ribbon handle. Very simple and cute!  I can only wonder if they were made for something special or just a cute little craft.

With all of the hanky tatting I've been seeing lately, I couldn't resist taking these apart to be able to see the hankies!  
I was happy to find them in good condition, and washed and ironed them up.  The only color for edging that seems appropriate to me is RED. Now I just need to find some spare time to tat some edges :)

Friday, May 20, 2011

A Great Find

My Mom happened across this great tatting find, and snapped it up for me. I rarely see any tatting in antique shops, and certainly none as wonderful as this set. When I unrolled this, I couldn't believe it!  The set is beautiful, and is hours of someone's embroidery and tatting. 

The tatting is with teeny-tiny thread, and lays nice and flat.  I have not tried tatting with anything smaller than size 40 thread, so this is just amazing to me.  I can barely see the stitches with my bifocals! 

What a great find!  I just don't know where to put it. Other than framing, any good ideas on how to display beautiful linens?

Since I showed winter photos into April, here are some spring shots - finally! 

The tulips that didn't get eaten by the deer:

Clouds during a thunderstorm/tornado warning last night:

And an Oriole arrived today.
They don't stay long, but they are beautiful to see and have a beautiful song:

Sunday, May 15, 2011

No . . . I need another day!

Is it really Monday tomorrow?  Dang - I've been on a roll! 

I finally got a start on the Flowerpiece doily from Mary Konior's Tatting With Visual Patterns. (OK, I got more than one start.)

Took me a few tries to get it right.  The pattern is quite simple, it's my brain that didn't comprehend an extra picot and join from the diagrammed pattern.

Once I read the instructions and followed the pattern correctly, I got the center done.  Whew!  I really do make things difficult sometimes.

I'm using an ecru Cebelia size 20 for the main motifs, and I've started on the chains in Lizbeth size 20 "Mountain Breeze".  I really like using beautiful colored threads as an accent vs. an entire doily, so  "ecru" is not a swear word for me.  (Hate to admit it, but I know and use plenty of others anyway.)  I'm liking the look so far.

My plan is to continue the next 4 rounds of chains in the Mountain Breeze, and then do the final round of motifs in ecru again. 

On top of the tatting, I've been sewing like a madwoman this weekend. Again.  You know those bags I love to make? And the large purses that are so popular? Well, stuff ends up in the bottom of the bag, and I hate digging for everything. I started putzing around trying to come up with a purse organizer, and eventually found the perfect pattern. (Lazy Girl Designs.)  I met up with some friends on Saturday, and everyone agreed that a purse insert is a necessity!  So, these will make some purses smile:

My life is much easier with the contents of my purse organized and ready to move to the next bag at a moment's notice.

Need. Longer. Weekends.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

A Special Mother's Day

I spent Mother's day with both my Mom and daughters.  I can't believe my youngest is now a college graduate!  A special day, indeed.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Upcycling & Repurposing

I love old stuff.  I don't know why, but it has always been interesting to me to explore, find and wonder about things from the past.  When I was a kid, we used to hike in the woods by our cabin, and find old logging trails and old garbage piles.  There were rusty old cans, cool old bottles, etc.  Just junk, but interesting junk.  And I love the repurposing I've seen lately, and wish I had more time to be creative.  Or at least copy some great ideas :)

My friend recently gave me this old printer's drawer.  I debated for a bit whether or not I should try to clean it up, or if I should leave it alone and just hang it on the wall.  Hanging it on the wall in my new woman-cave to display sewing and lacemaking items just fell into place.  It really feels like a "me" thing.  This is my contribution to today's repurposing. Not original on my part, but it's my own version.

I have old shuttles, old crochet handles with screw in hooks, old wooden thread spools, a piece of hairpin lace in progress, and I threw in some new collectible thimbles.  Some of the openings are too small for anything I have at the moment, but I'm sure I'll find something to fill them up eventually. 

I also did some of my own "upcycling".  I've seen plenty of cute needleminders out there, and only recently realized they are not just attractive, but how really very useful they are.  I was forever stabbing needles into a coaster or the arm of my chair.  I had some cameo jewelry that I had given to my grandmothers years ago for Christmas.  My Mom gave them back to me after my grandmas passed away, and I have had them in my jewelry box.  Coming to terms with the fact that I'd never wear them, I dug them out of the settings and glued a very strong magnet on the back of each one.  Voila!  Perfect little needle-minders.  Making these from old jewelry is a great way to upcycle, and I think they'd make a great gift for any needleworker.  I didn't do anything to cover up the magnet - I think they are just fine the way they are.  And a sweet reminder of my grandmas everytime I use them.

And with that, I'll show you the two bags I made this week.  I found this fabulous pattern I just had to try, and ended up making two.  This one I'm using for a purse that I can load my tatting bag and my lunch into for work:

And this is the same pattern, but I didn't use the thicker interlining and interfacing.  I'm very pleased with this pattern - a quick and easy bag!

And that was my week.  Oh, and I've started another tatted doily.  Mostly ecru, but it will have some color accent.  More on that next week!