Wednesday, 25 March 2015

Kings and a teapot

In 1662 Charles II's Portuguese Queen, Catherine of Braganza is said to have introduced the act of drinking tea into Britain. This quickly spread throughout court and country and to the English bourgeoisie.  Today  it is our favourite beverage and it is the first thing that is offered when you go into a English house, a cup or mug of tea!

This is a pattern that I have been wanting to tat ever since Martha put it on her blog. It us her 'Anything Teapot' and can be found  here.

Martha gives many ideas of how to complete the middle of the teapot but this is mine, of course it had to include a button.

Another King of England in the news at the moment is Richard III and the remarkable story of finding his bones in a Leicester car park in 2013.  He was killed in the Battle of Bosworth Field on 22nd August 1485.  Tomorrow he will be re-buried in Leicester Cathedral.   The most remarkable part of the story for me is the way they identified his remains by using DNA, and by doing this some surprising facts have also been found out about him and his descendants.   This is how the people of Britain and  many others from overseas have been marking the occasion.     

Wednesday, 18 March 2015


What you probably don't know is that 'im in the garage' is interested in windmills and watermills.  Over 20 years ago he helped restore Burseldon Windmill which you can read about here.    So I made a request to Jane for a tatted windmill and she came up with this pattern.  It was really fun to tat and I can see me making many more, perhaps for some of those who belong to 'Hampshire Mills Group' of which 'im in the garage' is a member.

The restoration work he carried out was not on the outside but making some mill furniture. What you see in this picture is a hopper and chute.    All this was made in the garage, it was his first big project since moving to our current house, since then of course the garage has never had room for a car!

Six more pop-a-bobbin shuttles have been delivered to Jane and she will be putting them into her shop soon. 

Sunday, 15 March 2015

Mothering Sunday

Today is Mothering Sunday in England, also known as Refreshment Sunday, it is always on the 4th Sunday in Lent, therefore the day varies depending when Easter falls.                       

The Industrial Revolution in the eighteenth century led to people increasingly working and living a significant distance from home and family, and the Refreshment Sunday tradition was kept by many as a day to return to worship in their home community.   In the nineteenth century those who were working in domestic service, who would be working through Easter, were allowed to return to their own communities on Mothering Sunday.  The tradition was to pick flowers on their way home to give to their mother.

Sadly today is cold, damp and miserable, but I have spoken to my son and daughter-in-law in Singapore, my other son was too ill to make the journey from London to see me and 'Im in the garage' is with his mother, so I am 'home alone'.  

I decided to make these button hearts as they make lovely giveaways .  Here is the pattern, obviously one of Janes!

My son bought his grandmother a lovely bunch of flowers the other week and I was really taken with the colour of these roses.

Happy Mothering Sunday!

Tuesday, 10 March 2015

Rule Britannia

There was great excitement in this part of the world today as the Queen came to Southampton to name the latest P&O cruise liner - Britannia. You can read more about it here

I gave this piece of tatting away on Friday it is is Mary Konior's Rockingham cross, didn't particularly like the design, it probably would have looked better in a plain colour.

We needed a practical way of storing all the wood which has come our way lately, instead of piling it up behind the garden shed!  So 'im in the garage' came out from the garage and made a little house for it all.  Having such large pieces means that not only shuttles can be made but other interesting wooden items.

And here is the table that Anne asked me to show you, the one that held the Advent Wreath  it was made over 30 years ago when we lived in Germany............

But still very much admired

Friday, 27 February 2015

Scarf Trim

Another project I started almost exactly a year ago was a tatted trim for this scarf.   I never finished it at the time because I ran out of the big brown beads. When eventually I got some more beads to complete the project, interest of course was lost, together with the scarf!!

So instead of a fringe this long scarf has a rather smart tatted trim.  

Today was a bright and sunny day and I was really surprised to see the bits of the Cedar Tree that had been damaged in the storm had been chopped up.  

 Such an amazing amount of wood and so we are going to collect a few more logs tomorrow morning.

Monday, 23 February 2015

Tatting embelishments

I managed to finish the bag which is embellished with tatting in the form of a braid.  Here is another picture of it.  Must say I am quite pleased with the result and the fact that there is at least one less 'work in progress' in the house now!

And a close-up of the braid/tatting

I used two threads together to make it more interesting.  Then tatted one row of chains with picots and the second row joined on to the first row as I went along, not pulling it too tight but keeping it firm.   Simple but very effective. 

Here is another fun way of using tatting as an embellishment

Saturday, 21 February 2015


I was meant to tell you either yesterday or first thing this morning that more shuttles would be on sale in Jane's Etsy shop, unfortunately life took over and I did not get around to writing a blog post until now.  However, it really wasn't necessary as the shuttles sold extremely fast .  After I heard the news I went into the garage to tell the 'shuttle maker',  and then we looked at the blocks of wood on the shelves trying to decide which should come down to the work bench in order to make the next batch of pop-a-bobbin shuttles. 

About five years ago I purchased some tiny cards and envelopes and they have been very useful for putting the odd bit of tatting on, but I still have about 30 of them left and it seems pointless keeping all of them for the next five years   So I am making these tatted crosses and sticking them on the cards, some I will give away at Easter whilst others will be sold. 

Here they are on the cards, all packaged up

And the pattern is here,  designed by Jane, it is definitely one of my favourites, quick and very elegant. Named after Iona which is small island off the coast of Scotland and famous for its religious community

I have three copies of this book, a bit of a long story to explain why! But if anyone would like one I am happy to post it to them, however I would ask that the postage is paid as
it is fairly heavy. The book gives the history of the island and has some amazing photographs.