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Tuesday, December 25, 2018

100 years ago today...

Two sterling silver tatting shuttles were gifted on Christmas day, 1918:

The last initial is the same on both shuttles, which leads me to believe that these were given to two sisters. I wish I knew the story behind them. I purchased these on eBay in 2012, the year that I learned how to tat.

The first one reads "FEC 12-25-'18"

The second shuttle reads "M.W.C. 12-25-'18"

I thought these would be interesting to post today. Merry Christmas everyone!

Thursday, December 6, 2018

Blocking Snowflakes

I'm almost done making snowflakes for the year. These have been blocked and stiffened with Mod Podge Extreme Glitter. They are not attached to each other, just laid out on the table to form one giant snowflake:

I've been using a polar grid that I printed out from Inkscape to block the latest snowflakes. I placed each grid into a plastic sheet protector, to protect the tatting from the ink on the paper (and also to prevent the stiffener from sticking to the blocking surface).

I haven't been pinning the tatting because I don't know how that would work with a sheet protector, and I also don't want the pins to get stuck to the Mod Podge stiffener. The stiffener makes it so that I can push the tatting into place by hand and it will stay.

If you'd like a copy of the snowflake blocking template, you can access and print it HERE. I've also put a link to the template at the top of my Tutorials page.

I made a few of these snowflakes in smaller thread to see how big they would be. Here's a comparison with measurements listed under each snowflake:

It was pretty difficult to get the Josephine knots to close using size 80, so I won't be making any more in this thread. Size 20 works the best, and size 40 is alright too.

Monday, November 26, 2018

Three more

Three more snowflakes are fresh off the blocking board:

The pattern for these can be found in my Etsy shop by clicking HERE. Also, a reminder that my Etsy sale is ending tomorrow, and my next sale will be sometime in early June, 2019. If you want to visit my shop, you can do so by clicking HERE.

My blocking board doesn't have lines for a six pointed motif, which made things a little more difficult. Next time, I'm going to print out an appropriate polar grid (using Inkscape) and place it in a plastic sleeve to use as a blocking template.

These snowflakes have been stiffened with Mod Podge Extreme Glitter. The sparkle is very pretty in person but doesn't show up on camera unless the photo is blurry:

It's a multicolored glitter, similar to the AB color used in beads. I will be stiffening all of this year's snowflakes with the glittery Mod Podge and see how they hold up over time.

Tuesday, November 20, 2018

Glittery Snowflakes and Etsy Sale

When the new Liz Metallic threads came out, I was excited to try them and potentially use them for snowflakes. I had high hopes for the Iridescent color, but found it difficult to work with and not as sparkly as I thought it would be. I ended up making a few snowflakes in Liz Metallic Silver but still longed for a white snowflake with sparkle.

I started brainstorming: Maybe I could mix Mod Podge with glitter and use it to stiffen a white snowflake? I wanted to do a bit of research online to see if anyone had done this before, and found that Mod Podge actually has a product with glitter already mixed in! It's called Mod Podge Extreme Glitter. I was able to find some at my local Michael's craft store:

I placed my snowflake on plastic wrap and used a foam brush to paint both sides with Mod Podge. I then blotted out the excess stiffener with a paper towel and laid the snowflake on a fresh sheet of plastic wrap to dry for 24 hours. I'm really pleased with the results! The snowflake is stiff (great for ornaments) and very sparkly. It's hard to capture in photos and seems to show up better on camera in low light:

More glitter shows up when the camera is out of focus:

If you have access to this product, I highly recommend trying it out. Maybe start with something small to make sure you like the results before using it on something that took a while to tat. The Mod Podge does add some thickness to the tatting, so be sure to blot pretty thoroughly after applying it.

This snowflake is one that I designed fairly recently. I started out with a small onion ring snowflake and extended the arms for a larger version. I took inspiration from Joëlle Paulson's Snowdrop pattern to extend the arms.

I named the above pattern Shimmer Snowflake, since it's my first project to use the glittery fabric stiffener. You can find the pattern in my Etsy shop by clicking HERE. I'm also having a holiday sale which will end on Tuesday, November 27. Everything in the shop is 20% off, no code needed. I noticed some other Etsy shops are having holiday sales as well so head on over to see if you can find any good deals :)

Monday, November 5, 2018

Four Petals Magic Square

I haven't been posting much to my blog, but I have been tatting. I put together a new magic square pattern during October. It's something I sketched on my iPad back in May and had been meaning to design ever since.

The listing can be found in my Etsy shop by clicking here. I have proofread and test tatted this pattern myself so if you come across any errors or questions, please let me know.

The samples pictured above are tatted in Lizbeth size 40 thread, Autumn Spice and Ecru. If tatted in size 20 thread, the medium sized square would be good for a coaster. In size 40 it's a little small, so I placed a mug on the larger square for this photo:

This pattern did give me trouble in getting everything lined up right. I forgot how exact the center lines need to be when designing a magic square. In the end, I got everything worked out, but it took a lot of attempts:

In the photo above, the rightmost square is what I like to call an "inverted" square. If you are familiar with my Designing Magic Squares post you will recognize that term (see Part 4: Expanding the Square). For this pattern, however, I felt that the inverted squares didn't look as nice so I did not include instructions for them. The edge for the inverted squares would be the ecru edge pictured below:

Anyhow, I've probably gone into too much detail about that part! Now that this pattern is done it's time to get back to work on my table runner. I also should start making some snowflakes for the holiday season.