30 December 2012

There are now 33 Lace Mats in the Gallery

.....  and will soon be 35 because I am expecting a couple more to come in before the closing date.

The closing date to submit a photo of your Lace Mat is midnight of 31st December 2012, Malaysian time, that is UTC+8.  To help you figure out what time it will be in your individual time zone, here is a Time Zone Map that you can look up.

For example, at 12 midnight of 31st December, 2012, it will be 11.00am on 31st December 2012 for the people on the east coast of the US, and 2.00am for the folks in Brisbane, Australia.  I'll probably be asleep at that time, and will only read my e-mails the next morning.

On Doily no. 3
I have decided to make the overlap as in pic #2.
I finally chose this because of how the overlap appears almost the same when viewed from either side of the work.  The overlap in pic#1 is different viewed from each side.  I am not one for front side/back side tatting and I want it to be simple in that it can be used on either side.

Working with size 20 Manuela, it is now about 12 cm wide.  I plan to add another overlapping round, or maybe two depending on how big it will become.

28 December 2012

Doily No. 3 started

I have started on a 3rd doily.  I have finished four rounds but could not decide on the next round.
I wanted to have an overlap in it but could not choose from these two options.
The overlap is at the rings
The overlap is at the chains
This is the full picture of Doily no.2.
Thread used is Lizbeth size 40 golden yellow #613.
The size is about 7 inches diameter

26 December 2012

Yellow-gold doily

This is how the yellow-gold doily is finished.
There are 12 rounds in the doily and the full doily measures about 7 inches diameter.  The ends still need hiding.  I did not measure the amount thread used up, but I think it is about six shuttles-full working with two shuttle.

As with the raspberry pink doily, I utilised split rings to go up to the next round up to the 11th round and any tails at the point of adding new thread were tatted over.  I did not plan the final round properly, so had to cut the thread after the 11th round and start over for the 12th round.

22 December 2012

Yellow Doily update

I am almost done with this series of rings and chains for this doily when the 10th round is done.  I needed to add more thread and took the opportunity take a picture of it.
The rounds may be simple rings and chains, but I had to cut off two rounds because it started to ruffle on me.  Had to adjust the stitch count a few times before getting it to lay reasonably flat.  Now, I'll have to think of a design for the next few rounds in order to finish off this doily with a flourish!
In the meantime -
if you want to try tatting with embroidery floss, 3 strands of it makes a size 20 for tatting. Here is a drawing on how to separate embroidery floss.
One set of 3-strand floss from an 8yd skein fully loads a clover shuttle.

17 December 2012

Yellow doily take two and workshop update

It looks much better the second time round, compared to earlier version.
I removed the picots that appear to be crowding up the empty spaces and stick to clean lines.  I don't know how big this will grow before I decide to stop.
The workshop at the National Textile Museum was a success.  I was not expecting such a big number to sign up - 17 initially but grew to be more than 20.  Since it was held at a museum, which is open on that day, a few visitors to the museum also stopped to see what we were doing.  I had a visitor from France who showed an interest but was hard-pressed for time and could not stay longer.  However, one from Germany stayed and joined in the lessons.
Three of the students, the one on the right is the German visitor.
If I looked tired in this picture, that is because I was on my feet for almost three hours, going from student to student, and that was the first opportunity for me to sit down.
A few more of the students.  On the right is the President of the Arts & Craft Guild of Selangor and KL who worked hard  together with the Museum, to get the workshop realised.
Of the students, almost all are beginners who have not tatted before and have zero knowledge of tatting.  I was a bit afraid initially at seeing the big number, in case I could not attend to everyone. But it turned out alright in the end.  I think it was due to the students themselves who were really keen to learn and showed full dedication.

I started by explaining the movement of the hand to loop the thread and showing the flip by using two colours of thread, and continued with rings, picots and joins.  Not everyone managed to get to the stage of making rings and joins but everyone definitely got the flip.

That was yesterday; and today I received homework photos from two of the students,


13 December 2012

Yellow next

After the raspberry pink, I picked up a yellow gold and started on another doily.

It did not turn out the way I had wanted it to, so I snipped the thread off. With the balance of thread in the shuttle, I attempted the loop tatted ring.  This is my frail attempt of it.  I struggled a bit, no .... a lot, in trying to figure out which thread to pull to close that ring sitting on top of the base ring.
I was trying to be clever and tatted this, all the while trying to figure it out by recalling from memory what I had read from Tatting Fool's blog.

Later, I decided to watch this video on Loop Tatted Ring that Frivole prepared.
Silly me, I was passing the shuttle through one of the loops before closing the ring, whereas Frivole had passed the loop over the top ring.   (I am not surprised if you can't understand what I am trying to say, I am confused myself).

*Loading the shuttles again for another attempt of the yellow-gold doily*

12 December 2012

Lace Mat Poll - details coming soon

Here is a collage of 21 out of 26 Lace Mats that I have received so far,

In preparation for the poll, I am removing the names of the tatters of each Lace Mat and only assign a number.  That is to ensure that there are no undue advantage to any tatter when the polling starts in ealy January.

You may still submit a picture of your Lace Mat until 31st December 2012 be included in the listing for the poll.  I will add it to the Gallery but will not include your name with it.

I have not put together the goodies for the winner.  When I do, I will try to put together things that appeal to tatters.  Who knows, I may decide to have more than one winner, ;)

10 December 2012

Raspberry Pink Doily Done

Finished the raspberry-pink doily that I started here.
There are nine rounds in this doily. I tatted with size 40 Lizbeth and ended up with a doily measuring slightly over 7 inches.

I was contemplating adding a 10th round, an all-chain round of arches over each small ring. But I want to get started on the next design so I think I'll leave it as it is for now.  Maybe I'll come back to it later and if I feel like adding that 10th round.

Now, on the demo/workshop.
I only managed to get two students that day.  there were many interested to see how I do it but not enough to pick-up the shuttle and attempt it themselves.  But, the two that did managed quite well.  One progressed up to making joins and finished one half of a butterfly in the two hours allocated.  The other was slightly hampered by sweaty hands and had trouble closing the rings, but showed real interest to learn.  They went home with a shuttle each and some thread for them to continue tatting, and I hope they will keep up with it.

There will be another workshop on Saturday and I hope the turnout will be better.
As requested by Fox, here is the pink doily with against a white background.
I have to agree with Fox on this one.  The white background is more pleasing to the eye.

I forgot to mention earlier - I tatted this without cutting after rounds.  I worked with two shuttles and utilised the split chains and split rings to jump to the next round right up till the end. All in, I used up five shuttle-full of thread.  Any thread ends at the point of adding new thread are tatted over.  The only ends that I need to hide are the two at the end.

Don't you love split rings and split chains ;)

4 December 2012

Butterflies: what became of them

Here is the answer to what I am doing with the butterflies,

These flat shuttles are made by sandwiching the butterflies between clear plastics.  First, I printed shuttle shapes on a piece of paper.  One page of A4 gives me 14 shuttles.  Then, I place the shuttle template under a clear plastic and glue a butterfly at the centre of each shuttle shape. Using spray glue, I glued two clear plastic together with the butterflies in between.
To cut out the shuttle shape, I placed each butterfly over a template and trace the shape out with a craft knife with only enough pressure to cut one layer of the clear plastic. The second layer is cut by using scissors following the cut mark of the first layer.  I did it that way because I don't want any ink mark showing if I were to trace the shape with a pen.  To finish off, I punch holes and snip to the edge for winding the thread.

The shuttles worked fine, though it slowed me down a bit.
And all this is in preparation for a tatting demo/workshop that I will be conducting two days from now.  I would really like to be able to use actual shuttles but I will not be able able to get enough in time for the event.  I need to place orders for them.  But, I will bring some real shuttles for them to get the feel of it.

My next post will be about the workshop.

1 December 2012


What am I going to do with these butterflies?  I need to tat about 50 of them,
You will know in a few days, ;)
I took about 10 mins to tat each one, in between watching the telly, which will make it 500 mins or about eight hours if I don't do anything else.

24 November 2012

Starting on a new piece

I decided to listen to the advice of a good friend and put aside the large NB doily for  a while and start on a new piece of tatting.  There are a number of pieces that I have tatted along the years but never got round to doing up the chart or write out the instructions.
Thread is Lizbeth  #623, size 40
The picture above is the first three rows of one of the first doily that I designed, that I am tatting again for the purpose of preparing the chart/instruction. I have often read other tatters commenting that they can see the difference in the tension when comparing their work now to those done much earlier.  I can see that in mine, too.  Comparing this with the original, I don't think I would be happy with the loose tension of my earlier works.

17 November 2012

Working on the next NB Pattern

I've been quiet in recent weeks because I have not been tatting much and there isn't much to share anyway.  I did put up short posts in my Facebook page though, (also named) Tat-a-Renda.

My progress with the large NB doily has been slow too.  This is the latest picture of it.
I thought I can be done with the mesh or rings before I start on the next drawing of another NB's pattern but it is not moving fast enough.  So, I decided to work on charting the NB medalllion pattern from the Trove site, linked here.

I have tatted these medallions before and wrote about it earlier. I decided to tat them again because I did not finish tatting all three.  I need to get them done and post the pictures together with the charts before sharing in my blog.  I have finished the largest of the three which is this oblong shape shown here, and have started on one of the squares.

6 November 2012

Lace Mat poll

As of now, there are 16 Lace Mats in the Lace Mat Gallery, with the latest entry from Katherine B.  I think you will agree with me when I say that each one is unique on its own even though they are all tatted following the same pattern.

As I admire each one, I had a light-bulb moment! What if I hold a poll to pick a favorite Lace mat from the Gallery?  And the tatter who tatted the mat will get some goodies from me.

This is how I plan to do it.

  1. For this poll, I will continue to accept photos of the Lace Mats up to 31st December 2012.  This will still give ample time for anyone who is still working on the Lace Mat, or yet to get started, to get their Lace Mats ready to be displayed in the gallery.
  2. Please e-mail me a picture of your Lace Mat with information on the thread used and the final measurement.
  3. I will put up the poll in my blog after the closing date for the entries.  Details on how the poll will be conducted will also be given at that time.
I have not been tatting much, so there are no pictures to share in this post.  I hope I can get something done by the next post.

30 October 2012

Crochet your own shoe/sandal

I know this blog is about tatting but I just want to share this.
I came across this crafter crocheting the tops of shoes/sandals straight to the soles.   I have heard of crochetes shoes before but have not seen anyone doing it in person.

This lady has a stall at the Pengkalan Chepa, Kota Bharu airport and will be there for a few more weeks. She gave me permission to video her but not her face.

The video screen has shot off the page. I don't know how to adjust it but I think you can still see her hands working.
I only saw her as I was leaving so did not take many pictures but here is one that I took, and did not stay long to find out more about what she does.

16 October 2012

The Mesh of Rings

Just a short update on the large NB doily -
It is now up to this stage now.  I pressed a bit for the photo so that you can see the ovals clearly.

I have started with the rings mesh between the ovals.  They are single-shuttle rows of alternating rings.  I was not sure how it will turn out because I always have problems with bare thread space.  This time I am very happy with them so far.

Below is a close up of the mesh.

14 October 2012

Towel Edging and Insertions - pattern by Norma Benporath

This is the best that I can do for this pattern of Ms Benporath's, A Dainty Guest Towel in Tatting. I am quite happy with the small square insertion and the edging but struggled a bit with the large square.  After tatting a second time, the large square still did not turn out quite the way I was hoping it would, it showed some bowling.
Small square insertion
Towel Edging.  I have added a corner to the original design
Large square insertion
Round 1 of large square insertion makes a pretty motif on its own.
The chart for these will be too small for you to see if I were to post it here.  Instead I have prepared a pdf of the chart.  Please e-mail me if you would like a copy.  I am not always online, so I may only be able to e-mail it to you a day later.

9 October 2012

I have decided the next step for this doily

Remember this post earlier?
I made a pick of three solid colours to continue with in this pattern of Norma Benporath's. In that post, I have asked which colour you would choose to fill in the space between the ovals.  The Rasberry Pink was picked by most.

Just to be sure, I have tatted a portion of the rings mesh in each colour.  I hope the colours show up well on your screens.
Medium Leaf Green
This medium leaf green appears too dark against the bright colours of the golden yellow and variegated thread.  So now it is either the light leaf green or the rasberry pink.

Raspberry Pink
Seeing it tatted up, the raspberry pink does not really match any of the colours in the variegated thread.
Light Leaf Green
That leaves me this light leaf green, which I think is going to be my choice.  It gives a light contrast to the variegated but with enough tinge of yellow in it to match the golden yellow.

This is how the doily looks now in full.  I have not blocked it so far.  I have not figured out yet how to block it because the size is now bigger than my blocking board.
The mesh of rings will fill up the space between the ovals, and then a final round to tie it up altogether.

1 October 2012

Working on another NB design

I am working on another Norma benporath design, Guest Towel in Tatting, but the first attempt did not turn out right, it bowled.
Will have to go over the stitch count in the original pattern and try and figure this out before posting the chart.

In the mean time, take a look at the different variations of The Lace Mat tatted by the various tatters.  Click on the blog links on the right.  I have set it so that the blogs with latest updates appear at the top.

28 September 2012

Edgings for Embroideries

This Norma Benporath designs was published in The Queenslander on 3rd January 1935, and is of a set of five dainty edging designs. This is the chart for the edgings.

As before, click on the chart to enlarge the image.  Then, right-click on the enlarged image and choose "save image as" to save the chart to your computer.

A few notes regarding this chart:

  • The single digit in the center of rings shows the stitch count between picots. 
  • All chains have 3ds between picots.
  • All, except for Edging 2, are worked best with two shuttles though it is possible to use shuttle and ball and utilising the shoe-lace trick where required.
Below are my models of the edgings.  Almost all are curving up, especially Edging #2, though they will straighten up with blocking, I think.
I have tatted these earlier and posted about them in my blog.  Please read up the earlier posts here, here and here.

Besides sharing her beautiful patterns, Norma also gave hints and tips on tatting.  This hint was given at the end of the article,
"When working diagonal chains similar to these in Edgings 2 and 3, after each has been worked, slip the shuttle forward under the thread which is still on the left hand without making a stitch. Release the ball thread, and make the next rings as usual. Passing the shuttle under the chain brings the thread in the correct position for the next ring, and the chain will not be twisted."
Could this be about doing the shoe-lace trick?

I am really enjoying seeing the different versions of this Lace Mat in the variety of thread used by different tatters.  I have not been keeping count of how many tatters are tatting this since the doily is showing up all over the place in blogs, websites and Facebook.  As for my Lace Mat, this is where I am at now,
Thread is Milford size 40
One more round to go and it will be done. You'd probably guessed already from the picture that I will be using a split ring to start the last round. 

20 September 2012

More notes on the Tat-along Lace Mat

Progress has been slow on the Lace Mat doily.  This is where I am at with the Lace Mat, didn't even manage to get a good picture of it.
The progress of the other doily is slow as well.  I have only completed the third oval and there is another three to do.  After that I plan to tat the first row of the mesh of ring in each of the three colours that I am considering to see how each would actually look against the yellow.

To help you visualise the clovers with split rings as suggested by Hegla, here is a chart showing the split rings.
The red arrow show the direction of the split rings.  As Hegla has written, all the split rings are uneven split rings, i.e. the ds count is un-equal between the first half and the second half.   Before starting Ring B (and Ring E) leave a small space in thread to form a mock picot join.

The other thing to look out for is, Ring E is joined to Ring A on the un-flipped side of the split ring.  I searched for instruction/videos showing how to join on the un-flipped side of a split ring but I couldn't find any.  Will update this part later when I find it.

Thanks to Susie and Fox for the links showing how to join on the un-flipped side of a split ring. The two joins are:
Lily Morale's Larks Head Picot join from Paradise Treasures
Video by Frivole - Joining on the second half of a split ring

The way that I make my join is like how Frivole does it.

17 September 2012

Instructions for the Stand alone Clovers in Lace Mat

I am trying to catch up with e-mail request for the pdf files.  If you have sent me an e-mail but have not received the file, please e-mail me a reminder.

You can also save the chart direct from the computer by right-clicking on the mouse and choose "save image as".  This will download the chart to your computer which you can save.

Please note:
I have not actually tatted the Lace Mat using the split as my explanation in the earlier post.  It is possible that the position of the split rings maybe be switched when taking into account 'reverse work' in the tatting process. This is my progress so far, not much have been added to it actually.
Thread is Milford size 40 solid blue
I use the split ring from Rd 1 to Rd 2, but have decided  not to use it for the other rounds. I like my rings to have regular shapes.

Meanwhile, Hegla has suggested a solution for the clovers to be made in Round 4, using a series of split rings.  She has given me permission to share it here.  The steps begin at the short chain where the clovers are attached to, referring to the chart.

-Chain: 4-3
-Uneven split ring A: 3(join to picot of above chain)3-3-3//(other half of
the split ring)3-3 [remember to go into the next uneven split ring by leaving a bit of thread to simulate a mock picot]

-Uneven split ring B: 3-3-3-3-3//6
-Regular ring C: 3-3-3-3-3-3-3-3-3-3
-Uneven split ring D: 3-3-3-3-3//6 [remember to go into the next uneven split ring by leaving a bit of thread to simulate a mock picot]

-Uneven split ring E: 3-3-3-3//3(join to picot of split ring A)3
-Chain: 3(join to picot of last uneven split ring)4

Thank you Hegla.  I amd all other tatters appreciate this very much.