Friday, 13 October 2017

enclosed space medallions

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Enclosed Space Medallions
I have no idea where I got this lovely pattern or when. Years back I had made several (in blue and white) and have since given them away to my MIL, except for a couple. This was shared as part of the flower within” series of snowflakes.

Last couple of days I tatted these afresh, for a document on medallion classification I was preparing (for Design Class). It will be shared soon – with explanation and respective samples.

Based on Elgiva Nicholl’s book (Tatting: Technique & History), these medallions come under the category of enclosed space.  
Notice that there is a central negative space surrounded by rings.

Traditionally this medallion is tatted in 2 separate rounds – the inner rings-only round and then the outer one with clovers and chains. When done in this fashion, the rings face outwards and we also have a choice of using 2 different colours for each round.
(We can climb out with a split ring,  though. Even with single shuttle and ball, pull a length of tail to be used for the last split ring).

20th century tatters like to tat in one pass. The easiest way in this case is to work the inner round as thrown rings off the chains, using 2 shuttles.
Notice anything?
Yes, the rings are now facing inwards ! We thus have an enclosed space with inward facing rings. And the inner rings will take the chain colour, being tatted with 2nd shuttle.

I like the flower within medallions, but the one-pass medallion is quicker and easier to tat. The 8 rings of the ‘flower’ tend to overlap until joined (one can add tiny joining picot at base of each ring to stabilize).

Notice the difference in the size of each medallion ? These are all worked with Anchor Mercer Crochet Cotton. But –
The white-only is in the new size 20 (probably close to size 10 or thicker in Lizbeth);
The blue center one is in vintage size 20 (equivalent to size 20 in Lizbeth);
The variegated (embroidery, 3 strands) center one is in size 40 (equivalent to size 40 Lizbeth).

How can one combine threads (same brand, same ‘size’) for a pattern ??? Anchor (Madura Coats, India) has really gone down the dumps – not just in size ; even the smoothness and silky sheen are missing!

‘Picots’ is the topic for I Love Tatting’ series, posted this time by Renata. It actually translates to “picnic” !!! Either way, it was an enjoyable picnic tatting these and the picots do perk up the medallions :-)
I was hoping to create something new - I have something in mind, but in case I don’t get the time, this is my entry for now. Do check in the other entries – lovely tatting as always !

tatting is always a picnic to be enjoyed thoroughly !

Monday, 2 October 2017

why, this far

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Aspiration Doily – Trial 1 completed !
So a few days back I completed my first doily trials! Decided to end it with a 9th round. One has to stop at some point ;-P

Despite all my gyan about designing a doily, I had to snip off rounds !
Why is it that mistakes show up at a late stage ?
Why is it that the camera catches that one mistake/tweak in the entire round that you missed unintentionally or intentionally ?
Why does it take an entire round to zero in on the right stitchcount ?
Evil forces at play, for sure ;-D

After posting the pics last time, I started on the 7th round and only at the final repeat did I notice that some of the long ring-like chains in Rnd 6 were distorted. Now I had been experimenting in Rnd 5 as well but had let the mistakes remain. What's one round more to snip ?Hence decided to snip off all 3 rounds and re-tat. Yes, much better.

But hey, look, is that a possible edging pattern ?!

Here are the 3 rounds tatted again - Rounds 5, 6, 7 - 

Round 8 went smoothly with only the first chain shorter than the rest (barely visible) -

Since this was a first trial, tweaking on the go was okay by me. For example in above pic, in the same round 9 there are 3 segments with slight alterations. As you can see, the last segment finally lies flat. Then snipped off the round and tatted the acceptable version. ....

So far I had fun doing it. Shouldn’t make it a habit now!

In size 40 thread, it measures just over 5 inches ! I could continue (had sketched a different round 9 & 10), but ending for now. 

I’m happy with the last round. Some enthusiastic Craftreans confirmed that I did not really need decorative picots in the inner rounds. We all like how the picots in last round give the final emphatic finish, though. 

Usha has volunteered & started to test tat it for me. Problem is that I still haven’t made a no-snip model myself ! Got to get down to it right away! Creative and enthusiastic as ever, her shuttles took on a life of their own & I urged her to continue and we'd share it as her version. But she insists on testing my pattern first. We'll just have to wait to see what she comes up with :-)

All 9 rounds can be tatted in one pass using split rings or split chains to climb out. However, I am writing the pattern for each round separately. Only the composite diagram will indicate the continuous path in a different colour - easy for an advanced tatter to work out. Without split rings & split chains, it becomes a doily for all levels.

So what's your verdict, dear readers ? A good first attempt at designing a doily ? 
How far can I go ? 9 rounds far ;-D

We don’t have to go far to enjoy every bit of tatting !

Saturday, 30 September 2017

charming in pink

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Encircled Charm
Usha Shah
Another beautiful medallion pattern from Usha ! Well, it would’ve been, if I hadn’t been in such a hurry. Using some leftover threads, I managed only 6 rings to her 8.

A very clever pattern and 2-colour effect ! The dot picot cluster is overlaid midways through tatting a ring. It is a variant of Alternate Thread Tatting (ATT) and Ikuta’s Picots (method 2).

I deliberately tried to increase the bare thread space (from 6mm to 7mm), intending for it to look more like a flower. But it didn’t work out properly. This was tatted in a hurry before class, using some leftover threads – wanted to be prepared before attending.
Notice the pink thread beneath the cluster on the topmost ring? That is the core thread which lies across the cluster at the back. In this first petal I tried to decrease the space, tugging the ring hard. Wrong ! Close the ring normally and let the bare thread lie behind.

Future Idea - Can you see this around a Gem or Penny or a Button – a new Ice Drop pattern?

Many many thanks, Usha, for sharing this adorable pattern !

Charming view ! 
Jack’s Beanstalk ?!


These are a few pics of the Rangoon Creeper just outside my window. I love the flowers and the rapid and luxuriant growth of these climbers (there is  a 4-day gap between the 2 pics). We have these on every building in our complex – climbing up a rope right up to the terrace. Every year for one reason or other a climber may fall down. But like Jack’s Beanstalk they grow back in no time !!!
DH kept prodding me to cut and put a bunch in a vase and I kept telling him this is one inflorescence that shouldn't be vased - there are always ‘ants’ inside them. Would he listen – Nooooo! 
So anyways, here’s a bunch on the table. True to modern times, this was a quick photo-op set-up. I was working quickly to avoid any critters showing up – didn’t even wait to properly arrange or for the flowers to straighten out. 
Even as I was clicking, the Hubster noticed a couple of the bugs crawling out on to the leaves. Rushed them outside! I can triumphantly say – told ya - but am saddened to see such a beautiful bunch thrown away :-(
This was taken only 4 days later. The climber had climbed up out of range !
Now another 4-5 days later, some of the flowers have started to wilt. But they've spread their joy and fragrance :-) Waiting for the next flourish, while still enjoying their fading beauty ...

Have a great weekend J