Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Mandy in Autumn Spice

I don't usually make the same pattern more than once at a time, preferring to go on to other things or change it up in some way. It's true this time, too, mostly.  Yes, this is 'Mandy' again - without any changes except thread color! - and this post is right after one where I talk about 'Mandy' in orange and brown.  But I didn't tat them one after the other, I just finished sewing them to the table runners one after the other. 

'Mandy' Edging © Wanda Salmans 2015
Lizbeth #136 Autumn Spice in size 10

About the only things I sew are table runners, but I love shopping for material. I have quite the stash to prove it, too.  I usually have at least a vague idea of what I would like to tat for each material when it's purchased whether I ever get to it or not. When I do get to making the edgings I try to match the pattern to the material as well as the thread. Sometimes this takes a while and sometimes everything just falls into place.

'Mandy' Edging © Wanda Salmans 2015
Lizbeth #136 Autumn Spice in size 10

The edging for this runner kind of came as a surprise.  I had another thread and another pattern in mind for it, this one was actually for something else. But when I laid this edging close to the material I couldn't believe how well the colors went together.  Plans changed right away. In a good way!

This table runner is the same size as the other one, 12 inches by just over 40 inches. I don't know if you're into roosters or not, but this runner looks pretty good!

"As with anything creative, change is inevitable."

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Mandy in orange and brown

A couple of months ago I made this 'Mandy' edging in orange and brown.  I finally have it stitched on the runner.

'Mandy' Edging © Wanda Salmans 2015
 Lizbeth #694 Harvest Orange Medium and #692 Mocha Brown Dark size 10

The picture doesn't show very well how good the thread goes with the material - lighting? angle? background? - but in person the two are a great match.

Here it is again showing a bit of the material that is the backing of the runner. It shows it off a bit better than the other background. 

The runner is 12 inches wide and a little over 40 inches long. I'm very pleased with how this turned out. 

I also finished adding 'Finn' to the runner I started last week. That took a lot longer to sew on than this did.  I like both patterns but I like this one much better when it comes to sewing it down because it went so much faster.  But if I had a choice between sewing by hand or doing any kind of housework the sewing would win hands down!

"I'd rather be stitchin'
than in the kitchen!"
Author Unknown

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Odds and ends

It has been a busy week, both at home and at work. At home there are several things coming up that I have to get ready for - including a craft show - and I've been putting in a lot of overtime at work.  Evidence of this can be seen at my house (it's a mess!).  After a while a person gets tired, body and mind, and it's hard to keep track of what needs to be done.  Or have the energy to do those things you know needs to be done!

In spite of being tired I've actually gotten a lot of tatting in - as the passenger in the car, sitting in waiting rooms - but none of my projects are at a place I want to take pictures and share.  But I like posts with pictures in them so I'm sharing a doily I made a long time ago.  I can't honestly say who's pattern this is, whether it's from some book or other or one of mine. Anyone recognize it??  (Please let me know!)  I think the thread is size 30 but what color or brand I couldn't tell you. The cup and shuttle were found in antique stores, the cup just recently, the shuttle several years ago.  I don't try to tat with the shuttle as the points have something to be desired.  Let's just say it looks very well used (but I couldn't resist buying it anyway).

In the midst of all my busy-ness, several things happened this week that I am pretty excited about.  One of them is the prospect of giving tatting lessons in a month or so.  There is a quilting guild (club?) that meets in the fellowship hall of our church once a month.  I needed to pick up some things from the hall this week while they were there and one of them asked if I would be interested in giving lessons. (!!☺!!) Several of the ladies showed interest.  Now we just need to agree to a date and time.

The other thing I got excited about this week was tatting I saw on a shirt.  There was a lady in the waiting room at the doctor's office wearing a shirt that was covered in tatting.  It was all the way around the collar, all the way down the front with the buttons, it was across the top of a pocket.  And then there were four (?) large butterflies in various places. I asked the wearer if she had tatted it all but, no, she had picked it up at a garage sale. (!!)  I wanted to take a picture of it but the lady was filling out paperwork and I didn't want her to think I was trying to steal her information, so the opportunity for a picture was lost.  But it was an impressive display of tatting. 

These bookmarks are not the impressive display of tatting as I wanted them to be. I had this idea to decorate these cards with scrapbook paper roses but also with some tatting.  Nothing I tried seemed to work, nothing looked right.  So I added the thread at the top and gave them to my mom and her sisters for Mother's day anyway.  There are only so many hours in a day and I ran out of time (and imagination).  But I do have more of the rose paper and plan on trying again another day.

Now back to being busy.

"I put my heart and my soul into my work, and have lost my mind in the process."
Vincent Van Gogh

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Finn on the edge

Now comes the hard part - sewing an edging to the material.

At least it is for me.

The fun is in the tatting - and the end result when it's completely on the material.  The actual sewing-on is slow.

'Finn' edging © Wanda Salmans

I had trouble making up my mind which side of the tatting would be 'up', or sewed to the material.  Originally it was supposed to be the other way 'round.  I took a picture of it on my phone both ways  so I could quickly go back and forth to make the decision.

'Finn' edging © Wanda Salman close up

When making the edging the rings with only one picot were going to be attached to the material.  Having decided the other side looked better put me in a bind as to how to sew it on.  Laying the rings on top of the material instead of at the edge looks great but it also means sewing each picot down as well as a stitch right at the edge of the material.

Having to flip to the back-side for every stitch to make sure the backing didn't get caught is a real pain.  It will be worth it but makes the stitching go even slower than usual.

It will be worth it, it will be worth it, it will be worth it.

If said often enough will it make it go easier and faster?

I have a bag with lots of doodles (okay, all over the house I have doodles....) from the tail end of projects, those little bits of thread left on a shuttle that I hate to throw away but isn't enough to do much with except make butterflies and flowers out of. I was trying to come up with different ways and places to use them when I had a thought.  I don't know that it was a good one but I have so many of these doodles that will never get used that I'm not wasting anything except maybe my time.

The idea is to make the tatting look like it is part of the wood or metal. These are wooden pieces but I thought maybe it could work on metal as well.  I have some plain metal picture frames that I thought would look cool to have 'metal' tatting on them.  I'm not there yet but I'm going to try again.  

If nothing else it's a fun experiment.

What do you think?

"I love fools' experiments. I am always making them."
Charles Darwin

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Happy on the edge

Yes, after taking a break and working on other things I'm happily back to working on edgings.  One day very soon I'm going to have to start attaching them to the material part of the runners, but I'm so much happier tatting them than sewing them down!

'Finn' © Wanda Salmans 2015
'Finn' was made with DMC #437 Tan LT in size 10 (it always looks more gold to me than tan).

The pattern is actually one I came up with a few years ago to edge a Christmas stocking I made for an Advent gift exchange. I changed it up only by adding another row to make it a deeper edging.

I posted about this here for a December 2010 Advent swap

The stocking edging was made in white size 20.  I liked it but never jotted it down anywhere because I was in a hurry getting things made for Christmas.  I thought of this pattern a week or so ago and decided to try it again.  Yes, I plan on writing out the pattern but, no, I haven't yet.

I'm actually pretty happy with myself lately.  I've actually been using patterns I already have instead of starting from scratch on new designs every time.  Not that I haven't made changes to about every one of them in some manner or another, but I've based them on patterns that already existed.  I say happy in that designing from scratch usually takes more time than using one that's already been done, and I really need to put the time into the tatting instead of the designing.  Now if a pattern just comes to mind that's great and I go with it, but right now I just need to get some edgings done.

But I really need to start sewing them down soon. Happiness is a finished table runner!

"Happiness is not something you postpone for the future; it is something you design for the present."
Jim Rohn