Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Operation Snowflake: 2nd Bonus Snowflake for January Finished

Here's the 2nd bonus snowflake all finished! Don't those Josephine Knots just make it so cute!!!  Finally I got a snowflake done without a major mistake!  3rd times a charm eh?  I was trying very hard to pay attention to this one, and I caught myself about to close a ring missing the joining picot too, like what happened in the first one!!!  Good thing I checked twice before closing!

Now that I've been a tatting maniac, I'm ready to work on Feb.'s crazy quilt block!

This brings my tree's total to 15 now! Yay!

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Snowflake Mess-Up

Well I had a tatting catastrophe! LOL
When I reached the last repeat I found that something had gone wrong somewhere...I look back and find it, a missed joined picot...I skipped one and it was so far back I didn't want to cut out all my work.  SO, when mess-ups occur I just make lemonade out of lemons!  I simply joined it to the beginning and will add it to my lace motifs stash as either a leaf or a flower.  When the time comes I can either add it to a project as is or use some dye on it and either use greens to make it more leafy or use flower colors.  I didn't have enough thread to start over without emptying my shuttle first so I tatted a doodle flower which is just 7 rings joined together.  This will be added to my small lace motif stash.

I'm tatting up this 2nd bonus snowflake again, since I really love the added Josephine Knots to the design!
You would think I'd have learned my lesson about not having distractions while I tat, but it was too tempting to watch the Winter X Games...but those Big Air tricks from all the snowboarders and skiers are just so cool with their Switch Backside Triple Cork and Harlaut's Gold winning perfect score!!!  Also history was made in women's Halfpipe with Elena Hight's double backside alley-oop rodeo! LOL  I'm not a big sports fan, but since I love watching the Olympics I love to watch the neat sports and the Winter X Games has so many cool ones!  It's impressive!  You can see why I got distracted and missed a picot!!! LOL

Monday, January 28, 2013

Operation Snowflake: Bonus Snowflake for January Finished

Here is the first bonus snowflake all finished!  I can only see my mistake when I look for it which is good!!!  So cute!  This is only the first month of Operation Snowflake and I'm already excited for my tatted snowflake tree next year!  This brings my overall total of tatting for the tree to 14.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Operation Snowflake: 2nd Bonus Snowflake for January

Well since this snowflake is so fast to tat, I decided to make another with the Josephine Knot variation idea I mentioned! I think it really adds a special something to the design!

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Operation Snowflake: Bonus Snowflake for January

I still felt like tatting so I decided to do a bonus snowflake!  This snowflake pattern is from a blogger from Hungary!  It's cool that we can just push a "translate" button and read a blog in another language!!!  Also since diagrams have no language it's fun to be able to tat a pattern by someone from another country!  It's pretty easy to figure out since it's so small.  I choose to tat it in a way that could I climb out from the center ring with a split ring instead of having to cut and hide ends etc.  The only other thing about this pattern is that it switches shuttles.  So for part you are tatting in the normal fashion and then at the point where the chains look inward instead of outward you simply switch shuttles and continue until you get back to the next inner ring and switch shuttle back and so on.  It's a tiny bit fiddly because the stitch counts are so small, but it's so cute!
I just had a thought...Josephine Knots might look good thrown from the rounded chains! It would be easy to add instead of a chain of 12 just work 6ds a Josephine Knot and then another 6ds!

I made a huge mistake and didn't realize it until I was way past fixing it...hmm...sounds like a reoccurring problem I've been having lately!!!  I can't seem to tat with anything distracting, I have to give it my full attention!  LOL  Anyway I made one of the inner rings wrong skipping 2ds and a Picot which were supposed to be there for joining the next ring and didn't realize it till I got to the next ring needing to join there!!!  AHHH!!!!!  I didn't want to cut, and I didn't want to start over so I simply joined to the ring itself and pulled tight so it snugged really close to look like a regular join and then continued on.  It seems hardly noticeable!  So I'm happy with that "fix".  At least I didn't have to cut and such and didn't have to start over so I say all's well that ends well!!! LOL  I'm wondering if every snowflake is going to have some sort of huge mistake in it!!! LOL  I need to just tat in peace and quiet, give attention to detail and check twice, close once!

On the good news side is my lace finger guards work really well, no more sore skin from the thread!  And I really love the feel of shuttle tatting, it's so fun to work the double stitch, the motion is just so cool all smooth.  Especially when you think back and remember what a hard time you had when first learning to get the stitches to move into place, how you had to concentrate to move your fingers to do it all right, and now it's so easy and natural.  I really love using the small clover shuttles they just fit in my hands so nice and I don't get snagged as often as I move them and I always love the convenience of the pick tips!  They really help me keep the nice smooth flow of work that I enjoy!  Yup, I just really love it!  Especially so, now that my fingers don't get hurt from the thread!!!

Friday, January 25, 2013

Operation Snowflake: January Snowflake Finished

Here it is all finished!  Stellar is such a pretty design don't you think?  It makes me want to make more than one!  I love how it creates a flower in the center and the edges look nice and lacy! 

I want to do some sort of thing to hang the snowflakes as they appear over the year in my creating studio.  My idea is like a banner sort of thing that is strung across either my window or my cork board that I can have them hanging from and add them to.  For now it will stay right there on my cork board adding more lace too it! ;D

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Operation Snowflake: January Snowflake Almost Done

Yay almost finished! The next time you see this snowflake it should be ready to hang on the tree waiting for next year!  It really is a pretty pattern!

Oh one thing I forgot to mention was that this has thrown rings, to me they are so easy that I don't even consider them "intermediate"!  LOL  You simply at the specified place put down shuttle one, and pick up shuttle two, work the ring, and then switch back!  This pattern does this a lot, so it would be a good practice pattern for someone who just learned thrown rings.

I had a huge mess up happen though.  Not sure how it happened, I think the thread just got twisted and I wasn't being extra careful about it, but one of my Josephine knots got all knotted and wouldn't budge and the more I tried to fix it the worse it got and then I ended up having to just cut out everything back to a ring!  OY then I had to tat over 4 tails because there wasn't any other places to put them but the chain so it's a super fat chain in that spot!  The good thing is you can't seem to tell in the photo!  I did tat the chains next to it a bit looser so it wouldn't stand out so bad and I realized that I'm a tight tatter! But tatting loose just doesn't feel as "right"!  LOL Other tatters who tat tightly will know what I mean! ;)  The down side is that it's harder to fix mistakes when it's so tight!  I had to take a day off after all this before I could work on it again once I got it fixed enough to continue.  Today I was more careful and got a lot done without any problems.

I've also been thinking about reading patterns and diagrams as I tat this snowflake.  If you are experienced you can simply go by the diagram alone, but until you get to that level you just need a little extra guidance.  Sometimes I will rewrite patterns just for myself so I can follow it easier once I figure it out.  I think I prefer the modern style that needle tatting patterns usually use, because that's how I first learned to tat, and then switched to the shuttle later.  My brain still likes patterns in that form though, nice and clear, in rows of steps instead of a paragraph broken by commas.  It's like I have to translate for myself!  It's nice when you can read any form of pattern or go just by diagrams though!  I wish I was stronger in that already, but it takes time and experience to get there!  I can read and go by basic diagrams alone but if it has more than basic I get confused still.  I did write up my "ideal" version of her pattern but I don't want to infringe on her copyright by posting it, it's still her pattern just written differently the way my brain likes reading patterns.  LOL  For me a lot of the time the written pattern helps me understand the diagram so as I get going I can just glance at the diagram for reminding of what's next or what the stitch counts are.  Other times the diagram helps me understand the written pattern so I can then understand the diagram!!! HAHAHAHA  Yup that's how this one was for me!  LOL  I guess I'm still on the beginner side of intermediate...unless intermediate is the beginner side of advanced?  LOL  All I know is I'm not experienced enough to never get confused, but know enough to figure things out eventually.

Well here I am rambling again! LOL  But hey what are blogs for?  Hope you enjoyed my rambling! ;D

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Operation Snowflake: January Snowflake Started

Operation Snowflake has commenced!  I've chosen a pattern called "Stellar".  I consider myself an Intermediate Tatter being past the basics of tatting and I think this pattern falls in that category.  It's a little weirdly written, a little confusing, so I'm glad it has a diagram to help you figure things out, I think a beginner who is learning intermediate things would be helped by clearer written instructions. 

I wasn't paying close attention when I began and ended up skipping a section and had to start over ruining my continuous thread, so I make a weavers knot, that I just learned recently on YouTube and tatted over the ends.  Then I wasn't paying close attention...again...and assumed the stitch count was the same and added an extra stitch and by the time I realized it, it was too late to go back...well it's not a big deal as long as I do the same thing consistently all the way around, the snowflake will turn out fine, just one part will be slightly bigger than the original design.  No one will ever'll be our little secret! ;-) LOL  But the good news is it makes the stitch count easier to remember.  I like patterns that have easy to remember repeats of stitch counts, this one has a lot of variation, not a bad thing, just more to remember as I tat the repeat. 

Overall it's a pretty design and would be good for learning the Paperclip Method of a Mock Ring since this pattern uses it!  As you can see I didn't have any paperclips so I used a bent piece of floral wire...same difference! LOL  I love how easy it is to look up a technique online, sometimes I forget a detail so I just google search it and refresh my memory! 

It's a wonderful thing to have the internet and even in the few years since I've learned there is even more resources online as more and more tatters are willing to make tutorials etc. to help others!  I own books and I also enjoy finding it online fast and easy.  To me the stuff shared online is the same as a friend helping and teaching you, and that friend may live far away from you instead of next door, but the internet brings you together.  I'm all for "Freely you've received, freely give." generosity and goodwill towards others.  Makes you happy and makes others happy too.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Saturday, January 19, 2013

CQJP 2013: Block 1 now Page 1

♥ “I dream my painting and I paint my dream.” ― Vincent van Gogh ♥

When I saw this quote I just had to share it! It's exactly how I feel about this project! And isn't that exactly what those of us who create do?  We dream it and then create what we dream!

So here's block 1 all finished now turned into page 1 of the little book this will become!
The first photo is the front side of the page, the second photo is the back side of the page.  The third photo is the two sides before I sandwiched them with lace etc.
LOL Construction is not my strength!!!  LOL  But since there is lots to look at I don't think people will really notice...sometimes it's okay to just accept imperfection, otherwise you won't do anything at all!
I noticed the bottom sequin of the bon-bons got a little warped from the iron, I didn't think it would have been enough heat to do that...I will have to remove them and redo the bottom sequins...that's a "live and learn" moment for me!  LOL

Friday, January 18, 2013

CQJP 2013: Bon-bons

Aren't these little bon-bons so cute!?!  I could just eat them right up!  LOL
I created them using a large flower sequin, a large round bead, a smaller flower sequin, and a tiny white bead to top it all off.  You can see the process in this photo.  I bent all the petals of the large flower sequin upwards, added the large pink bead, then added the small flower sequin.  When I sewed them onto to the block I added a tiny white seed bead on top!
This block is looking pretty finished to me.  All that's left is to turn it into a page and I will be finished with this months block!

Thursday, January 17, 2013

CQJP 2013: Sandwiches and Cookies

Here are some goodies I created!  I love it when I get idea after idea.  Sometimes I get a little lull but then another idea comes and I'm off again!

The cucumber sandwiches I made using felt with a top layer of lace to give it texture.  Between the bread I put some green fleece that is in a heart shape but with the bottom point rounded so all points look like little cucumbers sticking out of the sandwich.
I tucked napkins under each sandwich.
The heart beads looked like cookies to me, so I added them between the sandwiches.

The cylindrical cookies are inspired by "Pirouettes" which are a rolled wafer cookie.  To create them I used a brown felt rectangle and rolled a piece of vintage cream lace around it.

This block looks like it's nearing completion!!! YAY!  It's been so fun to think up all these little treats and to see them added to the block.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

CQJP 2013: Additional Treats & Details

I created some little wafer cookies using the criss-cross fabric and some felt.  I made them offset to look like a bit more of an angled view.

I also added some steam using a bit of lace.
I printed out the word "Brew" in a pretty font onto muslin, then sewed on a bit of lace that is actually vintage imitation tatting.  Since real tatting can only be done by hand and never machine this lace is made like venice lace but to look like it is tatting by the shapes and pattern.  I only have a little bit of it, but because it is more flat than tatting it's easy to use for a lot of things and was perfect for this!  Then I added beading to give it more sparkly prettiness.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

CQJP 2013: Treats

Here are some of the treats I've been adding to the block!  Little pink Tea Cakes or Petite Fours made with pink felt a cool bit of lace on top that looks like decorative icing and a flower sequin with a bugle bead. I also added some larger bugle beads as candy sprinkled in here and there.  White lace serves as a doily under everything.
The cookies are made using a decorative sparkle round thing covered with lace.  The lace not only gives the cookie a cool texture but makes it able to be sewn onto the block.  No glue is used!

Monday, January 14, 2013

CQJP 2013: Teapot Details

I am so loving the teabag tag!!!  So the little details that have been added is stitching all along the edges in a brown thread.  I think it helps, though not as much as I would have liked.  Then I did some tiny back stitching in the same thread along the lid and top of pot area.  That helped give it more dimension the lid fabric lays more flat and the pot fabric puffs to make it look more 3D.

For the teabag tag I took a couple of fabrics, a criss-cross print and a words print, and ironed on some normal interfacing then cut out the squares to give me clean edges with a more paper-like feel.  Then I took a couple of tiny stitches on the 2 ends with clear thread to hold the pieces together.  Next I used some size 80 white tatting thread for the string.  Took a couple of stitches at the top of the tag which holds it into place (conveniently covering the odd-ball red rose...muah hahaha), then took the thread back to the top and took a wrap at the top of those stitches and then under that loop and up to the top to let it "come out" at the lid.  The string is movable and the tag can flap!  And I love that "Love" is on the's so cute!!!

OH an seeing that cute criss-cross fabric makes me think of wafer cookies!!!  Future idea in the making!!!  This little Tea Book is going to be so cute!!!  I'm getting more and more ideas, maybe a tag or something that says "Brew The Tea" or "First Brew The Tea"...I love how the fabric books have little sayings in them that go with the images in the pages.

And is it just me or am I the only one that thinks it's proper to brew the tea in the pot NOT the cup!  LOL  I always think it's so wrong for just hot water to be in the pot and teabags be set out for the teacups...that method is for MUGS where you don't use a teapot!!! LOL  Just my opinions on the subject...just in case you wanted to know...HAHAHA ;-)  And I don't just use bags I'll do both loose and bags, it's true, loose tea is better!  LOL

Sunday, January 13, 2013

CQJP 2013: Teapot Applique Finished

Ok so last night I buckled down and finished the applique! Once I finished the handle, the top handle needed it too, but that tiny little thing gave me the most grief! If you look closely it's chewed up, the fabric pretty much shredded. So now I'm ready to stitch around it and see if that helps clean it up. I have a feeling it will do the trick nicely and make me very happy with this little teapot applique. Off to stitch I go!

Saturday, January 12, 2013

CQJP 2013: Teapot Applique

Finally I finished the outer edges...and I thought I was done and then I realized...yup I need to do the inside of the handle too.  So now I'll work on that.  I'm dreaming of seams of little tea cakes...I want to get on to that part!!! LOL  I also am going to take some brown thread and stitch around the edges...they aren't pretty so that will help them look nice and it look like the lines used to draw the teapot in the print too.

All this trouble has made me realize I can't tolerate doing tons of applique and I'm looking into other ways to attach them to my future blocks rather then the torturous tedious tiny applique of these prints I want!  LOL  So I'm looking into some double sided interfacing that I can iron onto the back of the print, then cut it out, have no fraying, and then iron them into place.  And now I totally understand why this stuff was invented!!!  LOL  Ya know even having interfacing on the back of the applique that you are going to sew down would help with the fraying ends of the fabric that you have to tuck under would be amazing!

But for now I don't want to tuck any more edges under...  One more tiny part to go...I can do it...ok...heh...ugg...meh...(Hows that for melodramatic?) I go...LOL  If I finish it off tonight, tomorrow I can work on the fun stuff!  LOL  I have to bribe myself!  LOL

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Favorite Things: Tea Cookies

Thought you all might enjoy this sweet shot since I'm working on tea themed CQ!  One of my favorite teacups a Royal Albert 'Old Country Roses' and my fave tea cookies on one of my antique Haviland Limoges plates!

Wednesday, January 09, 2013

CQJP 2013: Slow Progress

Here's a quick photo from my phone. I am slowly working on the teapot applique. My hands don't like doing it for long, and it's really fiddly. I don't know what I could do to make it easier. I guess working in little bits is the way to go.
Also I am not sure if I should cut out the spaces in the lid handle and pot handle or leave them. The space of each handle is so small that I didn't think it would be practical.

Thursday, January 03, 2013

CQJP 2013: Block 1

 Today I pieced together my 6 inch block for this month!  I am not sure I'll keep the same color theme each month, but I do know it will be "Tea".  LOL

I have an idea for turning each block into a page though!  I will turn each block into an applique using This Method I use for hearts, and then so the same to a square of fabric and then place them back to back sandwiching some bits of lace and such out the edges.
 I figured for this block I would do a Teapot so I cut out this pretty one from a teapot print.  It's all clipped and ready to applique down.  Next is simply to get that applique done!
The Teapot needed a Doily so I found a little one in my stash and cut it out in a crescent shape and sewed down the raw edge.  It will be nicely hidden behind the teapot applique.

I promise that piece of fabric in the lower left is not really how it looks in the's not purple at all but a hot pink and similar to the top piece.  And the top piece is a little more soft and matching with the other pinks too.  It's always annoying to me that it's so hard to capture accurate photos of the pieced fabrics, with all the differences in sheen, texture, and fabric types.  I just have to keep going anyway.  You'll just have to trust me that the colors do indeed go together well!  LOL  My worry is that red rose on the teapot...not sure how I'll deal with that, but I will think of something because I do NOT want to add red into the mix...

Tuesday, January 01, 2013

Madie Snoozing


  •  CQJP 2013 (Crazy Quilt Journal Project):  Create a Six Inch Crazy Quilt Block a Month
This project will be posted at HoneyBeesBliss I will post my progress as I work on each one there.  I resolved on a Tea Theme, and that the blocks will become pages in a book.
This one was born from seeing a beautiful Christmas Tree FULL of tatting!  So I resolved to tat at least one snowflake a month for the next year giving me at least 12 additional snowflakes to the 12 I currently have.  This should give me a tree pretty full of tatting!  I have found lots of tatting patterns from bigger ones to small ones and everything in between.  I will tat whichever I may so desire that month!  I will post it on HoneyBeesBliss as well.
This project is very flexible and not strict.  I love photography so I will be using different methods to capture a photo each day.  Some days I may simply use my phone or tablet, and on other days I will use my DSLR.  I may use the idea list, or just simply capture something that catches my fancy for that day.  It's pretty anything goes.  Today's is "Resolve" hence this post!  I will be posting the daily photos at HoneyBeesFancy, which is a Journal Blog for anything I fancy to post about, also on HoneyBeesPhotos, which is mainly for showing all my photos in one place, and only posting a few Sweet Shots or Favorite Things on HoneyBeesBliss. which is a Creating Blog for all my various projects.

We had fun ringing in 2013!

 LOL With all this Resolve I will accomplish quite a bit this year!  I have a feeling 2013 is going to be a very good year for me.  YAY!