Friday, April 29, 2016


I did exactly what I thought I'd do yesterday. I obsessively checked for an email that didn't come and knotted thread. I did manage to also read two novellas and start reading another novel. I did do all that while not completely ignoring the children and their schooling needs.

The Armenian lace has reached about 30 inches across and I cannot get around the piece with fewer than two lengths of thread. I actually measured and I use about 14.5 feet of thread every time I cut a new piece. It's a bit unwieldy at first, but I think I've gotten used to it. The last couple of rounds have been an experiment. I mean I've been trying out a knot combination that I didn't actually learn from anywhere and making it up myself. It's similar to others, so hopefully it looks good as I keep going.

It certainly likely that today will be a twin of yesterday. Hopefully I hear back one way or another from the potential customer so I can have some closure there. I dislike just wondering what happened. So, here's so a weekend with some answers and hopefully some tatting too.

Thursday, April 28, 2016


Yesterday slowed down a bit for me. In fact I even had some time in the evening to work on the Armenian lace. Not enough time to finish a round or anything, but a little time. This is the prototype hair piece I worked up yesterday. It's been shared with the potential customer, but I haven't heard back about it yet. The challenge with this piece was to alter my existing design to be an inch wider. My first thought was to add an entire new round, but in the end I left it to strategic stitch count increases. It took two complete prototypes to get to not only the right size, but also the right degree of curve. I do hope to hear back from the customer soon, otherwise it was just a day of practice tatting since I've no other reason to simple alter the size of the piece.

I still do have a couple of pieces I could remake for the shop, but I'm stalling on them a bit. I'm not entirely sure why, maybe I tatted just a tad too much over the last few days and I need a little break. I'm not certain, but I'll try to get to them today. Well, that or I'll ignore them, obsessively check my email all day and knot on the Armenian lace in short,  unpredictable bursts. I bet you can guess which one I think I'll be doing today.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Still Busy

I was nice and busy again yesterday. I finished up the ankle corsets while schooling actually. Some days I can get away with tatting while teaching, though it doesn't always work. Some days I'm up and around so much helping with two different classes at once that I'm surprised I don't drop weight, but not yesterday. Yesterday I was able to sit and work long enough between helping that I got things done.

Right after schooling, I got a necklace order in the shop and I set to work on remaking that one. Finally I had a request for a slightly larger version of my doily fascinator head pieces. I couldn't answer the customers questions theoretically, so I'm working on a new prototype for the request right now. That should take me a bit today and then depending on the results, I could have more tasks ahead. I certainly hope this work level lasts for a while.

Tuesday, April 26, 2016


I had a lovely, busy day yesterday. Before schooling I made up a custom order of pendants. Then, just as I finished schooling the kids, I got an order in the shop. Lucky for me, that order contained a pair of ankle corsets and a bracelet, so I had plenty to do. I started by remaking the bracelet. This one is based on a classic insertion pattern. I mucked with the stitch counts when I designed it, but it essentially looks the same. I like it because it seems off balanced somehow.

After I got the bracelet made it was onto remaking the ankle corsets.They generally take more than a full day to make, so I'm not quite done with them yet. And since I skipped over the other pieces that needed remaking to get to these, I still have a nice queue of pieces after I do finish them. That means today should be nice and busy even if the shop stays quiet. I do adore being busy.

Monday, April 25, 2016

Weekend Recap

Well, my sale is finally over and I'm going to go ahead and call it a success. I still have a handful of pieces left to remake for the shop and that should keep me busy for awhile. The best part is that I sold not only tatted pieces, but also a little Armenian lace as well. Before the sale I hadn't sold much of that at all. This is the pair of barefoot sandals that I still haven't quite finished making. I should be able to get them done today.

The reason I didn't finish the sandals on Friday is because I kept putting them aside to work on other things including remaking some pineapple tassel pendants. I was pretty surprised that despite having not made them for quite some time, the new one turned out exactly the same size as the previously made ones. There are so many more variables to size with Armenian lace than with tatting. The double stitch keeps everything pretty much the same, but these had so much bare thread that you would either have to measure or hope you have a good eye. You might have guessed that I would never bother to measure, but I was surprised that I've developed a good eye for thus already.

Saturday we went over to Monterey for the day and visited the Aquarium. Sunday we recovered from the trip with a little housework and laundry. I honestly didn't touch a thread most of the weekend. That does leave me refreshed, but with quite some work this week and I am glad for it. Thank you so much to everybody out there who made a purchase and helped me celebrate 10 years of selling lace. I hope I have at least another 10 years of it in me.

Friday, April 22, 2016

A Good Day

Yay! The shop had such a great day yesterday and that means I had a great day of tatting and Armenian lace. I even woke up this morning to another order which means I have plenty of tatting and knotting to keep me busy for another couple of days. I started the day very early remaking this neon green necklace. It had been so long since I'd sold and made one that it took a bit longer than it should have for me to remember what little tricks I employed to make this small piece work.

Next up I got to remake an Armenian knotted lace necklace. Luckily I already had a crochet base made up so I got to start straight away with the knotting. Since I've been working on the tablecloth pretty much nonstop, I've gotten used to using much longer lengths of thread, so it went a bit faster than before and with fewer starts and stops.


After that I has an order for barefoot sandals and one for a bracelet. I knew I didn't have time to finish the barefoot sandals yesterday and the bracelet was yet another piece where I employed mystery tricks to make it work, so I opted to spend the time remembering how I did that one. It was trickier than I thought, but I managed to finish that piece as well.

That brings me to today. I've got those barefoot sandals to make and a couple of Armenian lace tassel pendants as well. I'm crossing my fingers that the weekend holds more, but even if it doesn't I'm pretty pleased with what I've sold so far. This much work might even inspire me to create something new soon. Now, I'm really crossing my fingers for that.

Remember my sale is good through the 24th! Get 25% off with the code HAPPY10TH on anything in my shop.

Thursday, April 21, 2016


No sales in the shop yesterday and I didn't do any tatting either. I did work on the Armenian lace quite a bit though. I fear the ripple that formed so long ago is not going to be worked out at all. I shall keep trying, but I'm starting to accept it as a feature, not a bug. I've now reached 30 inches across which make each round just under 8 feet long. Of course at this point I kind of feel like I've knotted miles. I don't know the math needed to make that assertion though.
I made another graphic for my sale using the Armenian lace as the background. It didn't seem to inspire any sales though, so maybe it's not as neat as I thought it was. There are a few more days left in my sale, so if you're thinking about picking up a piece, or pattern, please do pop by the shop. The sale code is HAPPY10TH and it's good for 25% off everything.

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Back to Tatting

Thanks so much for the congratulatory comments yesterday. I did get a few sales in my shop. Not as many as I had hoped, of course, but the sale code is still good until the 24th, so I'm crossing my fingers that they'll trickle in over the next few days. The ones I did get though, will keep me tatting for a couple of days at least. I started by remaking a couple of pendants that sold. The first one I did was this heart. It's one I designed years ago based on a common edging.

Then it was the tiny triangle. This one is definitely not an original design, but rather a vintage element that I adjusted the stitch counts on until it served my purpose. After these I got to work on remaking a beaded necklace that I didn't get a picture of at all. I did finish it up last night though.

This morning I do have a couple of orders to pack up and send out and an anklet to remake for the shop. Then I'll likely spend much of the day pestering various social networks with my sale. I even made a little graphic to share it with.

So remember you can get 25% off with the code HAPPY10TH in my shop until the 24th of April, and please do share the sale if you can!

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

10 Years!, here we are, the anniversary of a whole decade selling my tatting and some other nonsense on Etsy. When I first started I was the only person on the site doing tatting at all. I signed up for my shop on April 19th, 2006 and then five days later I tried to sell my pieces at the then brand new UC Merced campus at one of my only craft fair appearances. I did not enjoy it, but when it was over, I listed my pieces in my new shop and sold my first item. It was this bracelet here. I still had no idea where to buy colored threads and was relying on what I was finding in my local Michael's store. I even spent some time using awful perle cotton just for the sake of color in those early years. My, but I've come a long way since then.

So, I waited until this morning to decide that I shall have a sale that lasts until that first sale on the 24th. So for six days please use the code HAPPY10TH to get 25% off everything in my Etsy shop!

When I opened my Etsy store I was just hoping to make a little money for thread while I stayed home caring for my then nearly 2 year old daughter. I had no aspirations about designing new pieces. I wasn't looking to meet other artisans and tatters and I certainly had no clue that I would create videos to teach tatting and write patterns people might actually want to buy. I didn't even anticipate that two years later I would start writing on this blog nearly everyday of my life. All of that was years away when some nice gal bought this bracelet from me and convinced me that maybe I could make a go of this.

I've had good years on Etsy, weathered many changes, but it's been more bad than good in recent years. The market is saturated and my focus is more on schooling my kids and I let the shop take care of itself more than I should. Unfortunately it's really not so good at that. All that being said, I'm pretty sure I'll spend the next 10 years on Etsy as well. I'll hope for a turn around, I'll get inspired sometime and create something new and interesting and I'll keep writing the stories of my successes and failures no matter how dull they get.

Thank you so much for your continued support of my ramblings and my work. I'm crossing my fingers that the best is really yet to come.

Monday, April 18, 2016

Weekend Recap

Let's see, what did we do this weekend? Well, there was the normal running about on errands. There was a bit of housework, but mostly there was sitting about and watching movies together. Since I was sitting I did get what passes for a lot of work, done on the Armenian lace. Of course all that work and I'm still making so very little progress. I even popped by the store and bought another ball of thread because I see the end of this second one coming up soon. I also bought a mini perler bead kit and took some time to play with tiny beads.

I still don't know what sale I might be doing tomorrow to celebrate 10 years on etsy, but I've only got today to figure it out and it would be a shame to let this kind of milestone go by without some sort of acknowledgment, right? I'll think of something and hopefully it will be good.

Friday, April 15, 2016

Nothing of Note

I really shouldn't even be bothering to write this morning as I have nothing of note to share. I am feeling much better this morning, but yesterday was still just reading and knotting. In fact the most interesting thing was helping the oldest child write a propaganda essay. Not an essay about propaganda, but one using it. It was rather a lot of fun to be over the top and boy does she love using the most loaded words she can find. Of course the only reason I had to help was because she saved writing it until the last minute and it was due to the teacher yesterday.

We have no big plans over the weekend and I haven't felt inspired to any new creative endeavors in quite some time. I fear a bout of malaise is descending upon me. Here's hoping something interesting happens to shake me out of it soon.

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Not Much

I'm afraid I don't have much to share today either. I received no opinions on next weeks celebration sale either, so I'm going to have to wait until my brain is again fully functional to figure it all out myself. I am feeling better this morning, so I have high hopes that that should be soon.

Yesterday was again mostly knotting and reading. I finally started in on small loops, only to switch it up immediately for slightly larger ones. I think I just need a sense that the piece is growing a wee bit faster than it has been. I still have to be careful to keep everything tight to continue the reduction of the ripple, but at least with the larger loops I might get the sense of accomplishing something in a day. I'm really crossing my fingers for a sale so I can do some purposeful tatting soon.

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

A Question For You

Well, my sick brain is fading, just a bit. I likely have the rest of the week to spend time with this cold though, so don't expect too much. I spent most of yesterday knotting on the Armenian lace again with no pictures to show for it. I did attempt to get back to reading a bit while doing so and since everything made sense, I must be getting better.

I remembered yesterday afternoon that I forgot to mention something here. You see, next week, on the 19th, is my 10th anniversary selling my tatting on Etsy. I'd like to do something to commemorate this milestone. I was thinking a sale, but I'd love to know what percent off would be the most inciting to get you to celebrate with me? You know, within reason. Personally I don't consider it a sale until it's 25% off, but that's just me. I was also thinking about maybe creating a sale section where I put the patterns on sale for a couple of bucks each and some tatting for $10 or something like that. Any opinions would be greatly appreciated. The shop is still mighty quiet and I'm kind of hoping that I can at least wake it up next week.

Tuesday, April 12, 2016


I have a bit of the sick brain right now. You know, that kinda fuzzy, nothing is quite in focus brain. I mean it's just a cold, but it is definitely interfering with my ability to function correctly. I did still manage to school the children, but I haven't bothered reading any books that last few days. I'm pretty sure my comprehension skills are on the fritz as well. Luckily knotting thread does not use too many brain cells. Also, it's a really good thing that spell check exists or this would be a nightmare to read right now.

I'm still working on rounds of basket stitch. The ripple is starting to finally work itself out, but it's definitely still there. I'm thinking about switching to small loops after the last round, but I'm not entirely certain. I hope my brain clears up a bit today and I can make an intelligent decision. Of course I'm also hoping that my sinuses clear and I can breath properly again. There are a lot of hopes and wishes going on in my head right now. I'm crossing my fingers that a few of them come true soon.

Monday, April 11, 2016

Weekend Recap

I guess I'll start off with the sad news. The mourning doves eggs were missing when the sun rose on Friday. We've no evidence to what actually happened, but no more eggs to watch. The doves are still about the yard, so I suppose it's possible that they'll lay another clutch, but I'm not holding my breath.

I spent most of Friday crocheting up a circle cardigan for my future sister-in-law's birthday. I've known I was going to make her one since Christmas when she expressed interest in the ones I made the nieces. Of course then I procrastinated until her birthday was, well, it's today. Then I didn't even bother to get a photo of it.

We has a nice calm Saturday that ended with dinner out with friends, which was lovely. Then on Sunday I woke up with a cold and now I'm annoyed. I did get a little work done on the Armenian lace, but I didn't take any pictures of that either. At least I can blame sick brain for all my laziness this time. I just hope this is a short cold, because it didn't let me sleep at all last night and I love my sleep. So this week, here's to short colds and sales in my shop to get my brain to focus again.

Friday, April 8, 2016

So Slow

Yep, it was just knotting and reading yesterday. I got a couple more rounds done on the tablecloth, but it's growing so very slowly now. I fear I need to get another project going to give myself a sense of accomplishment. The Armenian lace was doing that just fine when it grew at least an inch a day. Now it's got to be like a quarter of an inch and that doesn't give me a sense that I did anything at all. It's like the lace is just teasing me now.

Let's see, what else? Oh, we caught the mourning doves changing places on their nest, so I snapped a picture of the eggs in the the nest. We're just a few days away from them hatching. So that's interesting. We also had a bee get in the house and buzz against the windows in our living room. The windows that are about 15 feet up and impossible to reach without an extending pole. We eventually got it out after injuring it with said pole with a fluffy dust attachment on it. Yes, it was as fun as it sounds.

It's still quiet on the shop front and we've got no huge plans for the weekend, so perhaps I'll come up with something new to make, or maybe I'll just read and knot some more. At this point I'm really just hoping something interesting happens and surprises me with new work over the weekend. I mean, that may not be likely, but it's possible.

Thursday, April 7, 2016


I don't have much to share this morning. Yesterday went as expected. After schooling, I went outside to work on repairing our drip system and got all muddy. This was followed by sitting down with my Kindle and the Armenian lace. That was pretty much the whole of the day. No, seriously. I mean, sure I stopped to make meals and the occasional kid-related drama and there was laundry, but most of the day was reading and knotting. I even managed to finish not one, but two rounds on the tablecloth. I'm now on the third round of basket stitch. I'm not sure how many rounds of this I plan on doing. I think I'll just know when it's time to move on.

Today's plan has even less on it than yesterday. No sales in my shop, no cleaning that needs doing, so it's reading and knotting again. I know, my life is super thrilling.

Wednesday, April 6, 2016


My tatting task yesterday was to remake a lapel pin I sold over the weekend. This one is based on a vintage or antique tatting picture, not even a pattern. I can't, for the life of me, remember where I saw it originally, but I had to use a lot of guess work to figure out the stitch counts and joins. I'm fairly certain that the ones I use are utterly unlike the original ones, but it looks close enough to the original that I call it a win. Of course now I just have to use a completed piece to remember how to make it again.

After that was done, I went back to knotting, but I don't think I got very far. I think I might have made it around the piece once, but that's really not enough progress to share, is it?

I don't have any tatting in queue today, so it'll just be reading and knotting. Well, after schooling the kids and maybe a wee bit of yard work. Not too much though, we're due for some summer temperatures today and I am not ready for those yet.  The rain is suppose to return on Friday and through the weekend, so things should be back to normal soon. Well, what passes for normal around here anyway.

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Flying Stars

Man, those pendant kept me busy most of yesterday. I mean it was a good handful of them, but I didn't think it would actually take me days to get them all made. Apparently I'm out of practice or something. I suppose that's possible given that I've spent so much time knotting lately to make up for the slow shop.This is the stack of stars yesterday afternoon as I started in on the outer rounds of them. I did finish them toward the end of the day and went back to knotting to unwind.

I'm on the second round of basket stitch and progress is slow. I'm at about 27" across and that makes for rounds that are over 7 feet of knotting each. It's taking me three lengths of thread to get around once and I use, oh about 13 feet or so at a time. I still haven't gotten it back to flat yet either. I fear it will be quite some time before I get it flat enough for a picture of the whole thing again.

I do have one more piece that was ordered over the weekend that I need to get tatted up for the shop, so I'll get to that this afternoon and some more knotting I imagine. These stars will go out in the post this morning, so if you're expecting some, they're on their way and I hope you love them.

Monday, April 4, 2016

Weekend Recap

It was quite the whirlwind weekend I had around here. First of all, Thank you so much for all the pattern and pendant orders on Friday! While I don't think I'll ever match the volume I did on the first couple of ITD events, it was much better than anticipated. I couldn't work on much of it until Saturday though. Friday was for cleaning and errand running ahead of my youngest daughter's birthday weekend.

Saturday was the family birthday party. That meant more cleaning, decorating and setting out food. I even baked a bit. Then there was a couple of hours of chaos, followed by more cleaning and then I finally got to sit for a spell. I started in on the stars, but I still have all the outlines to do as well as a few more middles. Hopefully I'll have them all done by tomorrow.

Sunday was the actual birthday, so the day was given over to family birthday adventures. We started with a trip out of town to the zoo. This is us waiting for the bird show to start. The birthday girl is wearing her brand new top hat. This was followed by a trip to the toy store. Then there was the mall because she had asked to get her ears pierced. Then it was out of town once more for dinner. To say it was an exhausting weekend is a serious understatement. I hardly even touched the Armenian lace. But we're back to Monday now, so tatting, then knotting and hopefully just a little extra sitting time.

Friday, April 1, 2016

International Tatting Day 2016
Those of you you've been reading awhile are probably aware that today is International Tatting Day. To those of you who are new this year, it is, I assure you, a real, albeit unfortunately timed, holiday.  The traditional celebration ritual has been established as tatting some lace and eating some chocolate. Clearly this is a holiday that is easy to celebrate. The previous few sentences may also be familiar because I copy and pasted them from last years post. You can only think of so many ways to say the same thing. I also can not promise that I won't resort to that technique again in this post.

My slightly less traditional personal celebration ritual is to design and sell a pendant at a very low price for this day only and more recently the pattern as well. This year I opted to make them two different pieces, though the pendant is similar to the pattern. As always, I hope that by offering a small bit of lace cheaply, it can fly to new people exposing tatting to more places. I also hope that by offering the pattern, those that already practice our art can create something new to share with others as well.

This year's pendant design is a modification of the center of my Black Star piece with the added
elements of a few beads, and your choice of color surround by a black outline giving it a stained glass look. The pattern for sale is my Black Star necklace. Both listings are up in the shop now. They will continue to be available after today, but the price of the pendant will double and the pattern will go up to $4.75 tomorrow, the 2nd. I will be making the pendants to order, so depending on the number of pendants that sell, it may take up to a week to get them all out. I'm really crossing my fingers that I sell a ton of them, so please pick up one or more if you can! pendant listing is here or click on the picture above. The Black Star pattern is here or click on the image to the right. The pattern is written for needle tatting, but a bonus shuttle tatting addendum has been included thanks to my wonderful test tatter. I can't really help any further with that though as you know me and the shuttle have a long standing grudge.

So, that's it for me today then. I really hope that you like the pendant and the pattern. I'm always a bit nervous about new pieces. I'd love it if you would share these links around, or at least share tatting with someone new. Wear some lace around or sit at tat at the mall with some tasty chocolate and try to ignore the the other April holiday.