Wednesday 29 February 2012

Leap Year

The last day of February, the month when snowdrops are seen. The dove is made out of the oak wood left over from the making of the font, there are another 30 resting in a basket.  A few bits of wood have also been reserved for some shuttles, so as the wood was originally in the church for many years (underneath the altar) they will be very holy shuttles!

It is of course a Leap Year and today 29th February gives us an extra day which only happens once every 4 yrs.  These extra days are needed to keep our calendar in alignment with the Earth's revolutions around the sun. It is also the year that women are supposed to be able to propose to men, what's new?!

Leap stands for something that jumps, or taking a leap in a different direction,  in my case it stands for leaping from one country to another.  I am travelling to see my son in Singapore this year, and have another trip in the planning stage, but more of that later.

Time to leap over to the wood pile!  We are delighted to say that more Mahonia wood has been sourced and these pieces have been cut trimmed and are now drying out.  It is the yellow shuttle on the top of my blog and is quite popular.

Also this plum cherry was found locally and so it is also drying -  look at that lovely pink stripe in it.

Pop-a-bobbin shuttle making has commenced again as the font is finished.  The new crochet hooks have arrived so the hook holders can now be made for them.   My 200th blog post is also nearly here and I am planning a giveaway but cannot decide what - will have to see what is in the garage!

Tuesday 21 February 2012

Oliver Twist

This year marks the bicentenary of Charles Dickens who was born on 7th February 1812. One of the many books he wrote was Oliver Twist about a poor orphan boy in Victorian England.  Probably the most famous line from the book is when Oliver asks for more gruel and says "please sir, I want some more".

So it was with some amusement that I walked in to a charity shop this month and picked up a reel of machine thread called Oliver Twists, for it just reminded me of this character which Dickens portrayed so vividly in his book.  By adding some brown fine sewing thread it became a bit more manageable but sadly the original colours disappeared.  The star motif is Janes and can be found here.
Next I tatted it with a turquoise colour size 60 Coats thread.

This is the Canopy Bookmark from Martha Ess's book Playing with Picots, I thought it looked complicated to tat but was amazed how easy it was and what such a lovely effect.

And finally the thread bare without any additions, using another of Jane's patterns 
called Oh so simple edging  as Oliver Twist said "please sir I want more!"

Wednesday 15 February 2012

Special Book Marks

It goes without saying that the 'tatting world', as well as the 'blogging world'  is poorer since Gina from Threads of a Tatting Goddess passed away on Monday  There have been so many tributes to such a lovely lady, that all I can say is that she will be greatly missed by so many people near and far.  I won this bookmark when Gina held a giveaway for American Independence Day (which also happens to be my birthday) and it will be for ever treasured.

On Monday I was given this bookmark from someone who is a lace maker and admires tatting. Gina was also a lace maker, in fact she was so talented, and this bookmark will also remind me of her.

She has gone to the real 'tat's heaven'

Thursday 9 February 2012

Button Necklace and Font

I made quite a few button necklaces before Christmas and have either sold them or given them away. So more are now in the process of being tatted so that there will be a variety to offer, should there be a sudden demand.  Having attempted designing my own tatting patterns I have never actually seen any of those I have published on this blog ever tatted by anyone else.  This must because either my patterns are hard to follow or they do not appeal to other people, I am not disappointed though as I continue to use them and enjoy them.

The font is now finished, it is made out of oak, and the wood comes from a plinth that was underneath the altar of this church, it is covered by a red carpet in the picture.   The plinth was removed last year and most of it was found to be solid oak.  The knob on the lid is made from an old piece of wooden furniture that belonged to 'Im in the Garage's' grandfather, the same person that taught him to work with wood. The cross is made out of the wood that had to be removed from the porch of the same church and be replaced with new wood.

At the moment the font is still in our home as it is not being dedicated by the bishop until next month when he is also visiting the parish to dedicate a new stained window at the church from which this wood has come from. The font is replacing a stone one which is a little unsteady and so is going to be removed from the church.  We have saved a little of this oak to make pop-a-bobbin shuttles with, and estimate that the plinth must have been in the church for at least 100 yrs,  so they will be very holy ones!

Wednesday 1 February 2012

Button Picture

Instead of my button supply decreasing I seem to have acquired many more recently, so in order to put them to good use, other than tatting of course, I made a picture out of some of them.   The frame was in my parents house and my mother had put dried flowers in it, but they were faded and so when my father died I acquired the frame.  When removing the contents I found it was quite an old frame and there was a nice gap between the glass and the back board.   This photograph was taken before the glass was put back to avoid reflection.

I wasn't sure about adding the tatting but in the end decided that it enhanced the fish.  Every button is sewn on, I thought this was better than gluing them so that if any had to be repositioned (which frequently happened) they would come off easily.  For the background I used some calico material which is of a reasonable thickness and then painted it.  I would like to make more of these pictures, but probably not so large. Also next time I will probably use a frame without any glass as they are quite bulky so will not always accommodate glass.

The pattern for the thistle is now on my blog.  Today I received a lovely note from the hostess of the Burns Night  thanking me for the thistles, this is it showing the house where the event was held.

As you can see there is snow in the picture, we may be having some of the white stuff coming our way very soon!