Sunday, May 21, 2017

How tight is tight enough when it comes to chains???

A few of weeks ago I bought two patterns from Renulek. The current Wiosna 2017 and a pattern called  "Snowflake".                                                                                            

The big doily I am having zero issues with and am up to round 9 so far.....the Snowflake doily however is frustrating me to the point that I am questioning every piece of tatting I have ever done!

I tat with a mediumish tight (definitely not loose) tension  that is pretty consistent however EVERY attempt on this doily has given me issues and bowled.

After 5 attempts to get past row 3, using different thread, different size thread, different tension, I just cannot get it to sit for me. So in desperation I searched everywhere for someone that had completed the pattern and didn't have any success (unusual) so I wrote to Renulek. Her answer was that perfect tension on this doily is essential, I am not tatting tight enough and that I need to pull my chains a lot tighter. "As tight as you close your rings". (Although being referred to as a beginner did ruffle my feathers slightly)

TRY AGAIN and this time TAT TIGHT...(ohhh my aching fingers!!)

 A tad tight but workable...

 Flattened out ok.

Chains pulled up so tight I broke the thread and cut into my finger.


This is not going to end well......


No recovering from this one.....

Hmmmm.... on the pics above,  I thought I was pulling the chains up as hard as I could but it still didn't sit for me!! Really worried about breaking the thread all the time too.

So - how tight is "tight enough"?

Oops....been a bit of a while!!

Just looked at my blog and cringed at the fact that the last entry was in 2015.....

So much for keeping up to date with logging my tatting!

Been a hectic year and not a lot of tatting but I will try to catch it all up over the next couple of weeks. Our dairy farmers here in Victoria had their milk price dropped unexpectedly and needed some support so I have been spending most of my time helping with food packages and assisting with applications to get the household allowances and other support. A big year and sadly still ongoing at the moment.

Moved into my own house (yeay!!) in Mooroopna in February and still unpacking and sorting things out. BUT..... do have a lovely little tatting nook, a lovely glider rocker (which is Sheridan Femia's fault because she introduced me to her one way back in 2006 and I haven't forgotten it!!), a nice warm fireplace for the coming winter and lots of natural light. No excuses now eh?

Today I have a bit of time to look again at some books.

These are from Terachi Yuuko and are available at

If you haven't had a chance to go and look there yet, make it a priority!! The shuttles are amazing, the books are reasonably priced and the service is quick and very pleasant!

(the first 2 were samples so the number on them isn't correct but they are Vol 1 and Vol 2) 

All the patterns are diagrammed, photographed and explained in English and Japanese. Easy to follow but not really something for beginners unless you are adventurous. Lovely all the same though!

Monday, October 12, 2015

Trying to master something I dread.....

I guess every tatter has something they dread doing. For me it is two very different techniques.
Split chains and mignonette stitch......(shivering in a heap in the corner).

Well.... To my amazement I managed to master the split chain thanks to the wonderful tutoring from Susan Moore at our last Tat 'n' Chat in Melbourne. Yes there is evidence but going to hold off showing that just a bit longer!! (But now I can do that pesky TARDIS bookmark for my mate Andrew!)

So now it is on to bare thread spaces.......eeeeek.

 I have read back through my wonderful book by Judi Banashek and have selected ANOTHER Konior pattern called Love-In-A-Mist but only the glass mat version unless I REALLY love it....

BUT!! Always a but when I am doing something I am scared of!

Gloria Nelson from Sparkling Light Creation Studio has come to the rescue with her Bare Thread Space Tool!

With a bare thread space measure AND a picot gauge, this handy little tool will get a reasonable amount of use! 

For more info you can contact Gloria at She is based in Canada and ships worldwide.

Another oval!

One more oval for the collection.

Two great things about this pattern.
First - it is a really easy one to follow. By the lovely Lis Christiansen from the Danish Tatting Association.

Secondly - the gorgeous hand dyed threads by Alenalea Rako. She sells her thread through her Etsy shop.

Beautiful threads right here in Melbourne!

           I can honestly say I really enjoyed tatting this one!!
      Thread is AlenAleaDesigns size 40 Crocus (Variegated) and Violet
       Special thanks to Belinda Spence for helping me with my color coordination issues!!

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Finally......a Konior Doily added to the collection!

Almost ashamed that I own all of Mary Konior's books and all I had ever done (until now) were a couple of bookmarks and a cross.

So as a challenge at the last tat 'n' chat day in Melbourne I chose to complete 'Primrose Path' from A Pattern Book of Tatting.

Had to laugh. I distinctly remember saying no more motif based doilies for a while and this one has a whole outer round of them!!

Oh well. I accepted the challenge.

So here it is.......

Thread is Lizbeth size 40. Charcoal and Spring Garden.

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Update on Amelia.

This girl never ceases to amaze me. The shy little puppy we picked up at the end of May has blossomed into a wonderfully savvy, smart dog with a huge personality and talent to match.

We recently took her down to the beach for a run. This was the second time we had been along the coast with her but this time it was at Balnarring where the waves were not so imposing and there was lots of things to play with.

Ben took his camera along and got some great action shots of her playing in the water and then the dog wrangler (aka ME) had her do some fence jumps so he could take some more.

She behaved beautifully and reveled in the chance to go for a swim.

So I have created a swim monster! Now when we go up to the park it is training, then play chase the ball then a swim in the river before a bit more chasing then a cuddle. Loving this dog. At just on 8 months of age she is really starting to shine.

And from there....the final finishing steps!

Wow... Actually finished this one without further issues. All thanks to having a couple of weeks of work  - minding a gate.....yep.....the mindnumbing job noone else wanted was the saviour of this particular doily!!! (not to mention my bank account!)

Ta Da!!!

Pattern is by Inga Madsen

Thread is Lizbeth 40
Ocean Sunset variegated with Ocean Teal Medium and Ocean Teal Dark.
Like it much more with the added colors. (Great idea Kit and Amy) but SO many motifs.

So Susanne, this challenge is over. What do you reckon we do next??