22 Oct 2021


 I was supposed to organise the storage of my tatting and other sewing stuff but, as always there are many distractions.  One of them is this mat. It surfaced among a stacked of tatting motifs and tryouts and I had hoped to get back to it later.  Never did, until now, ha ha ha ...

I can't remember when I tatted this. It must have been  for a bigger project that didn't happen. I know that I was working on an idea of patchwork pieces made up of several tatted motifs joined together.

Now that I found it again, I'd better share the pattern for it.

There are three parts to this mat, 2 square motifs and one border.  Join up the squares until you get the mat to the size that you want.  Finish it off with a border around it.  I have made the bigger square in one colour, green but you can mix and match the colours to your liking.

The pattern is given as stitch counts on the motifs.  This is an easy shuttle-and ball pattern.  The squares does not use up much thread.  It will be a good pattern to empty shuttles or use up the little remaining thread on a ball.

10 Jun 2021

Update on the Sicilian Circle, a pattern by Mary Konior


Completed Round 3 of this project from the book, Tatting in Lace by Mary Konior.

I am not really happy with this mainly because of the long chains and large rings.  Had to block/press it after this round because my tension went haywire.  This is one reason why I seldom do patterns with long chains and big rings.

There is only one round left, so I will finish it.

I had my first dose of the Covid vaccine a week ago.  Was feeling okay on the day of the vaccination but came down with fever for the next two days.  There was slight body ache and soreness in the arm where the needle went in, but I was able to do some tatting.  My 2nd dose will be in 12 weeks.  

Stay healthy and stay safe everyone.  I know some restrictions have been removed in some countries but do continue to take precautionary measures.

23 May 2021

Sicilian Circle by Mary Konior

I am working on the Sicilian Circle by Mary Konior from her book Tatting in Lace. At first, I thought it would be a straightforward pattern because I needed an easy one to work on after my failure with the Norma Benporath project (my previous post).

It turned into an interesting tatting adventure with mock rings.

Usually, mock rings are utilised when there are ring(s) upon chains and you want to execute with shuttle and ball rather than two shuttles.  However, in this design, mock rings are used as a design element.

Each of the group of four rings in the photo above are made up of a mock ring with a trefoil sitting on it. The use of mock rings also created the pointed arches in the chains holding the mock rings.

Round 3 (photo above) also utilises mock rings but, unlike Round 2, the mock rings are on the reverse side of the chains.  This is something that I had not used or made before and I find it rather interesting in terms of a designing process.  

In this pattern, Mary Konior used the lock join method of creating the mock rings. I have used the self-closing mock ring (SCMR) instead for mine. I have explained the two methods early in my blog, https://tatsaway.blogspot.com/2008/05/how-to-make-mock-ring.html

A tip on how to close big rings

Round 3 contains big rings, each with 30 double stitches in it.  Here is a tip on how to close big rings so that the double stitches are snugged up evenly all round.

When all the double stitches are made, I snug up the double stitches on the left side of the ring by slightly pulling the core thread.  Then, I bring the beginning and the the end of the ring close together and pinch the double stitches between my thumb and my index finger. Once secured, I pull the shuttle thread slowly to close the ring. 

Doing it this way ensures the the double stitches will remain flat and not twisted as the ring is closed.

25 Apr 2021

Met My Tatting Nemesis? I hope not!

I am preparing for the fifth round of the Norma Benporath Fairylike Lace by making a sample of the motifs of this round.  As I had expected, it is a challenge to me.

The fifth round  is made up of tatted wheels made with shuttle only. I have neve been able to tat these type of wheels satisfactorily before.  My challenge is how to estimate the bare thread space between the rings and making them consistent in length.  I'll explain with each photo.

I decided to use a gauge for the bare thread spaces. In this case I used a small strip of card paper which I folded in half. The fold of the card paper is placed on the thread when I make the first double stitch.

I seldom use a picot gauge but I decided to use one for the big rings because there are six picots in each of them.  I thought it'll make the picots look nice with them all of equal size.

I tat the first ring, at the same time tatting over the tail but leaving a small loop of the tail thread at the beginning with beginning thread end visible.  After the last ring is made, I cut off the thread from the shuttle and pass the end thread through the loop.

I then pull the beginning thread end (tatted over earlier) to secure the thread at the end, adjusting the bare thread to be equal with the rest of bare threads.  The thread end is hidden by sewing in. By this method, I only have one end to hide for each wheel.  I know I could make it easier by putting in a magic thread, but I am comfortable sewing it in. Just my preference.

This is the wheel done. I can see that I still need to improve on the bare thread spaces, maybe shorten it a bit. The wheel is not laying flat, though you can't really see it from this photo. 

The picots in the big ring did not patch the points where I need to join to Round 4. I am supposed to join two of the big rings to the chain of Round 4.  As you can see, the 2nd ring is way out from the chain.  That is another thing that I need to think about..

Back to the drawing board!