Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Back in the blogging mood

It was long time, but it seemed I just cannot find enough time for anything. So here's the short transcript of a long story.
After the last post we needed to evacuate again - damn hurricanes. This one was a complete disaster - driving from New Orleans to Pensacola (FL). It took us 5 hours to go from Algiers Point (the area we live in) to Slidell (about 22 miles). And the AC in the car broke. So guess what. Hubby (he was driving) was hot and angry, as he cannot stand staying in the traffic. When finally I got the car, it was too late. 2 days after that, the 2nd of Sept, he got a heart attack. We had an insurance, but not enough, so I am still struggling to pay the hospital bills. He's fine now, almost an year after 8 months, so he finally started to work again. And the whole business with the evacuation this year (mandatory one, and if you stay, you are by yourself and so on and other BS from the disaster, called a mayor in this city) was a complete waste. After I came home (leaving hubby with the relatives, and the daughter with school friends of hers), I discovered, that if we lost electricity, it was for no more than 10 mins. The ice cream in the freezer (sandwiches) and the cubes in the icemaker bin were intact. So ask me to evacuate again! NEVER!
Then in a month or so I decided the house we were renting was way too small - and it was, 3 rooms shotgun style with a single bath was awful. i found a new one, so guess who did the moving. Well this place is much bigger, and everybody has it's own bath, this is the most important. And the yard is decent. But more about later.
All was OK for awhile. Then, the day after the doctor said hubby can start working again, and I managed to sell the old minivan (sitting on a driveway for more than an year), and I was thinking that the life is back in order, I was presented with the nicest news - the firm I was working for could not afford my services anymore. i suspect that they decided they do not want to pay for my health issues (I had a carpal tunnel surgery 1 1/2 month before and had therapy and another surgery coming). I was depressed, as you can imagine. But hubby said - now you have the whole time you want for tatting. Isn't he the best one?
So I started to tat - made a bunch of earrings, ordered few books, made a long edging to renew an old looking skirt.
Then hubby suggested to try to sell some of the stuff I made. And I opened an etsy shop www.bayoutatter.etsy.com where I started to offer some of the earrings.
We'll see. Here is a hint of the stuff there:

Both are from the Snowgoose pattern booklet. And both are in the shop too.

The same day my sister in law came to ask for help. She liked a knitted hat in one of the local yarn shops, even she bought the not too cheap yarn that was coming with the pattern, then she realized she cannot understand the darn thing. I suggested her to let me look at the pattern and to try to make it, so I can help her.

And here's the result:

The kid confiscated the first few - but I am not angry, as she managed to get admitted in the best high school in Louisiana, so she deserves them. I just made more.

Friday, August 22, 2008

And here's the new

Finally about the snowflakes.
I made some, then I decided to try one I never made before (even if I have the book from ages) - the onion ring snowflake with SCMR off the onion from Monica Hahn's book. Well, I made it before, using (as it's suggested) two shuttles, but it was long time ago. Now I prefer the SCMR wherever I can put it. Long story short, after I made 2 spikes, I realized that the thrown ring is somewhat slanted.

It happens, because I joined the onion chain to the inside ring before making the off-ring. Well, I do not like it this way, even knowing I can fix the problem with blocking and stiffening. So I decided to try something else.
First, the idea was to join the chain to the picot after the SCMR. So we have this:

Then I realized that at this point I can kill two rabbits with one shot (Bulgarian proverb) and to join the chain together with closing the off-ring.

So I pulled the core thread for the SCMR through the joining picot, et voila, we have a better behaving off ring.

I do not know if it's something new, or somebody did it already (I bet it's the later), but I will appreciate all the comments I can get.

Tatting Olympics

In the HBT yahoo list somebody gave the idea of tatting Olympics. I liked it, even I was late and had no idea where to participate. Well, late, but still some of the competitions do not start before the second week.
The "sport" I liked was - "Emptying the shuttles". I do not have too much shuttles to empty - almost all of them are attached to some kind of UFO (unfinished object), but I had something even funnier. Sometimes I buy vintage tatting thread online or in thrift stores. In one of the batches I got about 1 year ago (maybe more, but less than 3 - Katrina), together with the unused and partially used ball there was a ball, made from leftovers - maybe the lady who owned them grow up in a socialist country or during a depression, but she rolled a maybe 200 yards long ball of leftovers - some of them couple of yards, some of them a foot or so. I was thinking about butterflies in the beginning, but then I saw something about making a crazy quilt. I do not know if I will participate in this event, even if it seems interesting exercise and I could use some CQ to make a purse. But the light bulb went on - why not to make a crazy edging? And I could use one for decorating a skirt in bad need of refreshing. So here we are:

Simple one shuttle "Hen and chicken", but the color changes all the time. And I do not select the colors, I just load the shuttle from the ball in the order it was made. It's fun.

Not tatting this time

It's past the middle of August, and it's time for snowflakes again. I started to make some snowflakes couple a days ago. Actually, I needed to finish this:

first, so I had not too much time to tat recently. With a full time job ... but we need to eat LOL.
Long story short, at the beginning of August hubby went to his favorite (and mine too) Big Lots and came back with some yarn. Mohair, Fancy Fur, Brilliants and so on - on the nice price of dollar per a skein. Well, the next day I was there and I think I bought everything they had - now I can knit more often too.
I managed to finish the shawl 10 days ago - took me about a weekend and 2 evenings. It looks like this:

Soft, fluffy and will keep me warm enough in the New Orleans winter - for your information, I do not have a winter coat - I use shawls here. A poncho, couple serapes and now I have this one too. The idea was to make something like the Orenburg shawls, but the mohair is not the yarn you want for, so instead I divided at half one of my favorite knitted lace tablecloths, and added an edging about 6 inches wide. I hope I will be warm LOL, but working with mohair when the outdoors temperatures are over 100 is not fun.

Monday, July 07, 2008

Barrette - almost ready, and something else

The barrette - the tatted part, I mean - is ready. Now I need to look for a ribbon. I do have some, but I cannot decide what color to use - the barrette is bright yellow with green beads, so the choice is difficult. Does not matter too much, here it comes (TATATATAM)

The other thing I started yesterday, was a necklace. I do not know about you, but I hate not having enough thread to finish the neck part with one shuttle. And loading beads means less thread on the shuttle. Working the "usual" tatting, decorated with beads, just became lot easier after Jane Eborall made available for the tatting public a wonderful way to add beads to picots (see here.

As you can see, there are no beads on the shuttle! (And on the ball too LOL). I hope to be able to finish this one without adding more thread to the shuttle. I do not mind working with hundreds of beads on the shuttle when I try to make something in beanile style, but in such a case I do not use too much thread. I will keep you posted about the necklace progress. (And when I find a ribbon I like, I will show the finished barrette.)

Sunday, July 06, 2008

How to make a barrette my way

Recently a friend of mine asked to make her a barrette. I knew there were some patterns I wanted to try, mainly Nancy's from Be-stitched, I just had no motif to do it before. So, after I got ready to start and even was half way ready, I realized I do not like the way the tatting looks like. Well, I used thinner thread (my fav poly Turkish one) and seed beads, so I guess this was a good reason to not to get whatever I wanted. Instead of cutting all and starting all over again, I decided to try to make the small band fuller.
See what I have in mind.

The idea I had was instead to making the chain of rings longer than the barrette base and then gather the rings together through the spaces between them, to make a row of rings the exact size of the barrette, and then double it or even make 3 or 4 rows for a fuller effect. As you can see from the picture, the second row of rings is lock joined to the first using the spaces between the rings.
As I kept going, it looked like 2 rows will not be enough, so I started with a third row:

As you can see, the 2 first rows are folded together, and I keep working over the third row, joining it the same way. The look now is fuller. When I finish I will post a picture again, it starts looking interesting.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Long time since the last update

Yes, it was a long time. We needed to move 4 times, first I came in New Orleans, then the whole family moved in Austin, and now we are in our second home since the fall in New Orleans.

Way too much moving for my taste, with not too enough time for tatting (if there is such thing as enough time for tatting).

I've been tatting, of course, but I just had not time, nor wish for posting. But today I just need to share.

We live on the west bank of Mississippi river, working (of course) on the east one. It means using the ferry (less gaz and it's closer to our home) twice a day. And I love the ferry, as it gives me the 15-20 extra tatting minutes a day. Today I had with me a shuttle I got on eBay together with other stuff, and it was fully loaded with some naqsty thread - thick and fuzzy. If the thread amound was less, I would consider unwind it and discard it, but I just could not do it with a full shuttle. I did 3 square/diamond motifs - sort of trefoils with chains. Well, on the ferry I finished partially only one, so when I came home, I placed a jump ring in the last ring. I made another one like it, plus a third one, with some beads. The third one will be described tomorrow.

The first two motifs came out nicelly, but were just plain boring - no beads, no metal filament, just plain think white thread (almost a rope). But I had an idea, and see what kind of earrings I got from!