Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Big news!

So, I've been keeping this one under wraps for awhile, until I was sure of how everything would work out. It's been hard for me to do, since I'm so excited about it. And it's also the reason I've been so absent from the social life lately, if the internet can be considered a social life.

The first part of the big news is that we [meaning my extremely rural, small-town community] now have an LYS! The shop is called Paper and Yarn, and has been a presence online for awhile with both a website [], and an Etsy []. The owner is awesome, and the shop has a great open and welcoming feel to it. It's the kind of place that's nice to go visit and sit and craft for awhile. So if any of you reading this happen to be in this region of Ohio, the shop is located in Minster and you should definitely visit. And, she's carrying tatting supplies! SQUEE!

Along with this, comes the even bigger news. Kat, the owner of aforementioned shop, has asked me to be the official tatting instructor for the shop. So I'm now dedicated to teaching at least one class every couple of weeks, as well as selling goods in the shop. That's right, people. I'm actually selling tatting that I've made. This is a first for me, so we'll see how it goes.


Thursday, May 19, 2011

Doctor, Doctor

I was doing so good on keeping up with all my various projects. And then I caught a bug. A very nasty, persistent bug. It's had me up late at night, hunched over in frustration, cursing up a storm. That's right. I caught the Summer Sewing Bug!

It started out of necessity, when we were hit with a sudden bought of hot weather [which has since vanished, but that's besides the point.] and I realized that Rhy didn't have a single pair of shorts that would last him the summer. The leftovers from last summer he did have were barely squeezing by, literally. And then, inspiration. Am I or am I not a crafter? Who needs to go buy 20$ shorts that take less than a yard of material when I have a sewing machine?! So, I bought a few half yards of awesome material and got to sewing. And was immediately hooked.

I've made him two pairs already, and have enough material for two more. But I don't think I'll be able to stop there. They are positively the CUTEST SHORTS EVER. And, of course, as soon as I have something really awesome to share... I can't find my camera. So until the gnomes bring it back, you will just have to take my word for it. But trust me. They really are.

Now does anyone else need some handmade kids clothes? Cause I'm having a blast with these, and I'll take any excuse to keep this bug going. :)

Saturday, April 9, 2011

About Celeste

After getting some feedback from some people, it came to my attention that there were some issues with clarity on the Celeste pattern. I wrote in a way that made sense to me, not really thinking about the fact that I tat differently than most people I know. I do apologize for any confusion anyone had.

In the previous version of the pattern, I had labeled everything with two colors. These colors indicated which color of thread was being used to make the stitches, which I labeled simply "shuttle one, shuttle two." [Again, it made sense to me...]

My aunt was kind enough to revise the pattern for me, and rewrite in a way that would be easier to follow. [Thank you!!] Here is the revised edition:


Wednesday, April 6, 2011


Well, I spent the entire weekend tatting, and have ended up with nothing but a pile of cut ends to show for it. Frustrating. The good news is that I have lots of ideas brewing, from all my experimentation. None of them are what I needed though. Still, the work goes on.

It has been decided that rather than work on my new book idea, we should finish the book we started almost four years ago. "We" being my great aunt and myself. Some of you probably know my aunt by her pen name, Rozella Linden. Needless to say, the book has lots of really cool stuff in it. Very excited that we'll actually be finishing it!

The rest of my weekend consisted of crazyness. Culminated by the house getting hit by lightning [again] and knocking out all our internet and cable service. I'm so thankful that none of our electronics got fried!

I also made a few sales over the weekend on my book. That makes me ridiculously happy. :D Thank you everyone!

That about sums up my weekend. How was yours?


Thursday, March 31, 2011

Happy Early International Tatting Day!

As promised, I have a pattern for you all. Consider it an early present for International Tatting Day, which is tomorrow. This pattern will also be shared with the online tatting class by Georgia Seitz, tomorrow at 3 pm and 8:30 pm ET.

To join the free online tatting classes, send your name, email address, home town and country to The regular class meets on Mondays 3 and 8:30pm ET (New York time.) The beginners class meets on Thursdays 3 and 9 pm ET. The question and answer session and needle tatting is at 2:30 and 8PM ET (1/2 hour before the regular class.) There is also a Spanish speaking class on Saturdays with Wally Sosa.


You may recognize this star pattern from this post. Georgia asked me to make it available for her class, so as a bonus you all get it too. I simplified it a bit, specifically the way the colors work, so hopefully it's not too confusing for anyone.

Here's the pdf:

[link removed; see below]

I was a bit rushed with this one, so if anyone finds any mistakes or has problems please let me know.


[ETA: There was indeed some issues with this pattern. See post here for more info.]

Staying Behind

Yet another year is going by, and I will be missing out on the Finger Lakes tatting convention. Were I going, this would be the day that I'd be leaving. Though I'm a little sad that I can't go, again, I wish all my friends (and family) who are going a wonderful time. I hope to be there next year, perhaps with more books to sell.

I do know that my great aunt, Ruth, will be taking along a few copies of my beginner's book to sell. So if anyone going wants a copy, but doesn't want to wait on shipping, she's the person to see.

And as a sort of consolation prize to myself, I suppose, I have a pattern to give you all later today. I'll wait until after my aunt stops through on her way to Hector before posting it though. She always inspires me, and I may have a multitude of other things to show you as well.

Until then I will have another cup of coffee [or two, or three] and try to wake up the rest of the way. *yawn*

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Highest of Highs [no not that kind]

There's been a lot of really high highs, and really low lows this week for me. One of the highs: My book is up on Amazon! [link to Knots In Thread on Amazon] And I've even had a few sales so far, which makes me ridiculously happy.

Other good things this week include finally writing up a pattern that I'll be putting up for free here [so keep an eye out], making headway on patterns for the new book, the birth of a bonus-nephew, new dice, and a very, very excellent cup of coffee this morning.

Friday, March 18, 2011

It's DONE!!!!

I am so happy right now! I received my second proof three days earlier than expected. And it's perfect! (Okay, not quite, but I know it will never be truly perfect, so I'm calling it done.)


It will take about a week before it's available to purchase on Amazon. But if you can't wait, you can get it right now at my store on CreateSpace. :D

Saturday, March 12, 2011

On it's way...

The second proof copy of my book is on it's way! This could be IT! I am hopeful that this means I will be able to have it for sale by March 19th. Why that particular date? Because I've agreed to be one of the "experts" at a local DIY fair, hosted by the library and the Arts Place Collective. The Arts Place is a very cool local organization that is sort of a cross between an art gallery and an art school. They organize all kinds of really great art and craft events. I've worked with them before to teach various types of classes at their center.

I've been to events to demonstrate tatting before, but never as the singular expert. I've taught several classes, both locally and at the Finger Lakes Tatting convention [which I've been unable to attend for two years now, sadly.] But somehow this event has me more nervous than any of the others did. The idea is to simply sit at a table, do my tatting thing, and talk to people about the craft. I'm comfortable with all those things, so I'm not sure what I'm so nervous about. At least I don't have to have a huge display of tatted items, so that's a relief. Wish me luck though! I may need it. :)

Saturday, March 5, 2011


I have the proof! The proof copy of my book that is. And I must say that it is really exciting to see all my hard work actually printed on the pages. Almost exciting enough to drown my frustration out. But not quite. Because I need to retake the photos. Again. Now, I'm no master photographer. And I'm working with a point-and-shoot camera and very little know-how. So there's been a lot of trail and error here. A lot. It's been a good learning experience, though. I feel confident that this time around will be it. Fifth or sixth time's the charm? At least for the next book I'll [hopefully] have figured it out enough to not make the same mistakes.


And speaking of the next book, I already have plans. See all that pretty new thread? Most of it was bought in preparation for my next adventure. I don't want to say too much, since I haven't actually started working on it, beyond what's in my head. But I will tell you that it's actually going to have patterns in it. So for those of you thinking "well, that beginner's book is nice and all, but I already know how to tat"... this ones for you!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

It's not tatting, but I did something...

I got my new thread in the mail! I'm always impressed by how quick Handy Hands is with their shipping. I'm also impressed with their customer service. The ball of Lizbeth in Autumn Spice that I got had white spots in it. I emailed them, and within the hour they got back to me and offered to send a new ball. This is why I prefer to buy directly from them, rather than through a retailer.

Alas, I have no tatting to show with this new thread though. I spend most of my weekend and the week sewing. It's something I'm still very novice at, but I enjoy doing it. Here's what I made:


This is my bf, showing off his jedi skills in the new costume I made him. He's been waiting two years for me to [start] finish this, so I surprised him with it on Valentine's Day. And yes, we are total gamer geeks. And we dress up in costumes. And like it.

Then today I made this:



It's my first attempt at sewing a stuffed toy. I made this for my son, who needed something to snuggle with. He really, really likes balls. A lot. The ears give him something to hold onto.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Messing Around

When two hobbies combine (in this case tatting and vector art), you get stuff like this.


This is just a little doodle I did in Adobe Illustrator, the same program I used to do the illustrations for the basic book. Vectors are fun. :)

Now Comes the Waiting

Well, it's on it's way! The proof copy for my first book, that is! I've been going through the process of uploading, reviewing, and re-uploading all week, and I finally got to the proof ordering stage. After all the hard work that's gone into it, it hardly seems real. I probably won't actually believe it until I'm holding the proof in my hands. Still, my excitement is barely contained!

And of course, I'm already plotting my next book. This one will be a pattern book, and I put in an order to Handy Hands for thread yesterday. Cause, you know, I needed the right colors. And if I happened to order a few... extra, so what? You can never have to much thread, right? I can't wait to get it so I can get started.

Seems like that's all I'm doing this week. Waiting. Impatiently. Maybe I'll go make up a little pattern just to keep my mind busy.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Sneak Peak


Here's a quick look at the tentative cover of the book I'm writing. Actually the writing part is done. Now I'm (impatiently) waiting for a friend to review it before I begin the process of getting it ready for publishing. So close to finishing!

This is not a pattern book but rather a guide for the absolute beginner. It started as a collection of notes I would hand out while teaching classes. But it just kept growing, and now it's going to be a fully fledged book, with ISBN number and all! Very excited!

Saturday, February 5, 2011

And In Other News

You'll notice that I changed the layout of this blog yet again. I had been trying to keep this blog mostly centered around my adventures in tatting, but it's become clear that sticking so strictly to one topic really isn't working for me. I am a multi-crafter. It is what I do. Why I ever thought I could convince anyone otherwise, I will never know.

So from now on you, dear reader, will be subject to an onslaught of all my follies and frolicking. Hang on tight, because it's sure to get messy. Somewhere amidst all the string and glue my life, and the very essence of who I am, is inextricably tangled.

And one of the things I like to do is graphic design work. Hence the new look. What else am I supposed to do at eight o'clock in the evening, when both my boys are asleep? Craft? *snort*... oh... wait...

Because Someone Said I Couldn't...

Well, they didn't exactly say it wasn't possible. Only that it would be difficult and undesirable. So of course, I had to prove them wrong. And here's my proof. It is entirely possible to tat with 100% wool yarn!


I find the results of this little experiment quite pleasing. One of the key factors in felting wool is agitation. Now making all those little knots causes a bit of agitation on it's own, and so the yarn becomes ever so slightly felted while working with it. That, coupled with the fuzziness of the wool, means that stitch definition is somewhat lost. However, rather than seeing this as a negative occurrence, I rather like it. Now, instead of seeing all that texture and individual rings and chains, the eye sees rather a solid (well, not solid, as it's lace, but you get my point) piece of fabric.

For anyone who is considering trying this themselves, I've used 100% wool laceweight yarn. And yes, it's shuttle tatted. The biggest key in working with this yarn was tension. Working with regular tatting thread (which is more of a cord, really) you get used to being able to pull your tension very tightly. Yarn is so much loftier than thread (or cord), so pulling your tension too tightly makes it very difficult to close rings. Not to mention it puts even more stress and agitation on the yarn, which will cause more felting.

So there, more proof that you really can tat with anything even resembling thread! Now I'm thinking up all sorts of other oddball materials that could be tatted with...

Friday, February 4, 2011

Other Obsessions

There's about a million reasons I could give for being so absent here. The holidays, winter, the baby (who is now a toddler), bouts with illness, etc. But the truth is... I've been neglecting my shuttles. It's shameful, I know. But I haven't picked up my shuttles since last November. Eek! I haven't entirely abandoned my crafty ways, though. I've been seriously attached to my knitting needles all winter.

I managed to complete my first sweater, immediately followed by my second (which fits much better than the first.) Though I haven't managed to get decent pictures of it yet. Here are a few things I can show you though. First up, I subject you to random cuteness, wearing a hat I knit him of course.


Next up, a truly awful picture of an awesome sweater.


And finally, a cute little cozy for my new toy! (Have I mentioned how absolutely wonderfully awesome my bf is for getting me a Kindle?)


The pattern for this cozy is available on Ravelry. It's my first knitting pattern up there, and I'm very excited about it! Quick Knit Kindle Cozy on Ravelry

I'm sure I'll get back to tatting soon. In the meantime, these meager offerings will have to satiate your craft curiosity. :)