Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Update! Naked Turtle No Longer Naked

Due to recent insomnia, I worked on the turtle last night. And here is the final result:

The beading part of the pattern went pretty quickly (to my surprise). I couldn't find the beading needles that I had bought (for a purpose that I don't remember!), so I used the next best thing, a floss threader. Yup, I used a floss threader to do the bead work. It worked, but next time I will use an actual needle. Teri doesn't mention what she uses to do the beading. I really like how the turtle turned out and will make some more. I see some of these becoming Christmas gifts. Since the size 50 thread worked, I might try some HDT next time.

I never mentioned why I wanted to make this pattern. It's because there isn't very much tatted jewelry or wearables for men. Sure, Ruth Perry has a few patterns that she calls masculine as well as a few that could be made manly (the Celtic watchband in her new book for example). I'm sure there are others that could work. I don't wear much jewelry; only a chain with a Sterling silver dragon on it. I would love to wear some tatted items besides what can be sewn onto clothing but it has to be masculine looking. A tatted dragon would be nice, but most are too big for my purpose. Anyway, that's all I have right now, I'm starting to ramble. Later.

BTW Tattingchic, I almost choked on my Coke when I read your comment on the previous post! Should I have my blog rated R now?

Monday, November 24, 2008

Another Snowflake, Stone Discs, and a Naked Turtle

It's been a while since I last posted. I have been alternating between snowflakes for the Snowflake Round Robin (have a look at the gorgeous snowflakes that have arrived at their destinations, but remember to come back!), and working on Christmas gifts for various family members. These gifts are crocheted, but I will have pictures once they are done. Here is my next snowflake that I sent this past Friday:

This is "The Eighteenth Day of Christmas" by Lene Bjørn from her book "24 Snowflakes in Tatting". Again, for this snowflake I used DMC Cordonnet size 50 thread and Guttermann Metallic thread. I wanted to use this thread combination for all of the snowflakes I am making for the Round Robin, but I will probably run out of the size 50 thread before I am done, so I will have to use other threads as well. This snowflake is motif # 11 of my Second 25 Motif Challenge.

Like many people (I think, anyways), I am facinated by the tatted turtles that Teri Dusenbury makes. If you go to her blog (remember, come back when you are done!), and scroll down, you will see some of her turtles. She has the pattern available for a fairly simple version of her turtles. If you want it, go to her blog, and on the right side under Tatbits Tatting Patterns, select the Tatting: Turtles link. Once there, select the bottom pattern (Tatting Turtles Agile.......). I don't know if I should link directly there, so I won't. Anyway, for the turtle you need these small stone discs for the turtles shells. These discs look like this:

I know, discs are round and these are oval, but bear with me. The green discs are Jade and the others are Tiger's Eye. The small discs are the size that Teri calls for in the pattern, but I wanted to get a couple larger discs so I can try to scale up the pattern. I said try. I also ordered some of the thread that Teri calls for as well (I guess you could call four spools some).

While I am waiting for the thread to come, I decided to give the pattern a run through to see if I could even make the turtles. Here is where the naked turtle comes in! Presenting the naked turtle:

See? It has no shell; so it's naked! I guesstimated the thread size to be about a size 50, and I think that it is very close. Probably somewhere between a 40 and 50, but I may be able to add the shell. If you are unfamiliar with the pattern, the shell (ie: the stone discs or cabochons) are beaded onto the tatted turtle which encloses the disc in the process. I am planning on trying this real soon, though I don't know how well this will work. Teri waxes the thread heavily while working with it for both the tatting and bead work, and I don't have any "wax" (the product she uses isn't actually wax) to use so I will skip that step.

That is pretty much it for now. I'll try to post again soon. Until next time.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Snowflake Round Robin and Wooden Boxes

I think I mentioned earlier that I joined the Snowflake Round Robin that Sharon B. is running. Our first snowflakes have been made and sent, and a few lucky people have already received theirs. I know these things because I'm the Group Coordinator. Anyway, since I haven't received mine yet, I'll show you what I made for my first partner:

This is, again, Ruth Perry's Celtic Snowflake 2008. This time, I made the snowflake in DMC Cordonnet size 50 combined with Guttermann's Metallic Thread. This is the same thread I mentioned in a previous post. This combination works out to be equivalent to a size 30 thread. It is about 4 inches in diameter. The colours of the metallic thread really comes out in a larger sized piece of lace. I love this thread! I'm going to count this as motif #10 of my Second 25 Motif Challenge.

Inspired by Diane's recent find at Michaels, I decided to get one myself.

Yup. It's one of those Photo Treasure Boxes. I'm pretty sure it is slightly different from the one Diane found. But I guess that is to be expected; I'm sure each Michaels store has a slightly different inventory. I figured that the box would make a nice shuttle box to hold my small but growing shuttle collection. It is a little small for this purpose, at least for the way I envision it to be. You be the judge:

It only holds maybe 4-6 shuttles, depending on the size. Not to worry (I'm sure none of you will, but bear with me), while I was at Michaels I saw another box that looked suitable. I went back a few days later, armed with a 50% off coupon, and purchased the box. Here it is:

Michaels calls it a "Cigar Box", but to me it was screaming "Shuttle Box"! The approximate outer dimensions are as follows: 8 1/2" x 8 1/4" x 1 3/4". I think it will be very suitable. See for yourself:

See. I told you. Now, I need to finish the box to make it work. I was thinking of painting the box. What colour you ask? I was thinking of a nice glossy bl.................. black! What were you thinking? After it is painted, I will line the bottom with black felt. Finally, to hold the shuttles in place, I'll add some loops of elastic. This will probably wait for a while. I have a few crocheted gifts to make, and of course snowflakes for the Snowflake RR. That's all for now.
Now playing: The Puddle Jumpers - Pay the Piper
via FoxyTunes

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Rainbow Snowflakes: What a Difference Colour Makes

You knew it was coming. You had to. As I mentioned in an earlier post, I purchased some of Pamela's Rainbow HDT. Of course, I had to make a Rainbow snowflake. Here it is:

This is called "Kim's Snowflake" designed by Kim Millar. It is probably my favourite snowflake pattern. I have made this pattern in a variety of threads: regular cotton, metallic, glow-in-the-dark. And have used beads in combination with the above threads. Diane probably can make MK's Spinning Wheel in her sleep; I could do Kim's Snowflake in my sleep. As mentioned I used Rainbow HDT in size 60. The snowflake is about 2 inches in diameter. This is motif # 9 in my Second 25 Motif Challenge. I forgot to mention in the last post that the Invisible Tatted Layered Snowflake (ITLS) is motif #8.

I figured I should mention my attempts at blocking the ITLS last night. I tried ironing it. My iron has a "Nylon" setting which I figured should work. It didn't. The temperature seemed too low (I think you know where I'm going with this....). Being a man I turned the temperature up. And............

It didn't help. I didn't crank the temperature too high (just to be safe). You know, I think I would rather have a wavy snowflake than a melted one. Now I just have to find it ............

Oh, before I forget, the ITLS was featured today (Nov 4) on the Needlework News blog. You'll have to scroll down to find it. Pretty cool. That's all for now.