I haven’t finished anything yet. But I found a little bag at Hancock Fabrics, it was on sale for under $5 so I grabbed it. It fits my tatting perfectly! I went ahead and sewed along the edge (on the crappy bias tape) to strengthen it a little. You can see I have stuffed all my WIPs except the Epic Doily in there! Sweet! I’m having so much fun.

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And a quick look at a cool keychain/chatelaine I made for tatting. I’m going for an Wonderland theme. I’d love to find a dragon charm, or something similar, for the Jabberwocky. It needs a cheshire cat too! Maybe a picot gauge?

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I dragged out Man’s Best Friend by Dimensions again. I read some neat sites and articles about different stitching methods to make it easier to transition between lots of color changes, as well as make it easier to count stitches as you go along. Normally, I will start in the dead center of the pattern and go from there, counting little sets of stitches as i go; it is fairly random and tedious. But one method I’m going to try is splitting up the pattern into columns that are 10 stitches across and use another method called “parking”. Parking is when someone is using lots of colors, but instead of stopping/securing an old color then rethreading a new color, the colors are all left on the piece and parked for later. Some people use multiple needles (one for each parked thread) and others use one needle. I have a wall of half stitches to do after finishing this section, so I think I’ll go for both of those methods. I won’t have to count so diligently and go cross eyed keeping all those greens in order. I hope it goes as quickly as those articles said it would! Here is my progress so far, I need to fill in that little white area with dark green, then I might backstitch the dog and grass. I have some french knot snowflakes to do too, but since those are delicate, I may wait until the end. It sounds fun to add the snow last and then see the scene really come to life! I want to backstitch each section (there are four) as I finish them. I think it will go by faster and encourage me to finish.

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I love labrador retreivers

I spent too much time on the forest background. I was stitching the half stitches (with the recommended 5 strands of floss! That’s twice as thick as the usual 2 strands! So that is tiring in itself) In a bad way, so I was wasting a lot of thread. No big deal because Dimensions will replace it if I need to order some. You can see on the back where I was using too much thread, then where I tried a different way. It’s slower going but much more effective. I also broke down and bought a hoop big enough for the whole thing and having that extra fabric tension is really helping. Whew! This project turned out harder than I expected, but now that I changed my game plan it is going well. Normally I don’t use hoops/frames at all.
More soon! I’ll post more pics of parking and columns when I get to it.

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P.S. For reference, this is what it will look like when I’m done:

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So I’m head over heels into this tatting gig. I’ve made a few bookmarks, played with different thicknesses of thread, and bought a ton of stuff to play with! Whee! I have five shuttles already (oh boy) and lots of thread (not counting the size 10 DMC Cebelia doily stuff I already have) and even a tiny hook for joining picots (the little loops). Hobby Lobby has some tatting stuff, like books, thread, etc, while most craft stores only had the Clover shuttles, if anything. Handy Hands and Be-Stitched are the nicest sites that I found so far. HH is by far my new favorite site and I need to stay away for awhile, lol.

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Shuttles are plastic Clover (used together), bone (what kind of bone?? This keeps me up at night…I like to pretend it’s dragon or chupacabra, but let’s be honest it’s probably pig or cow), plastic Moonlit (HH) with a tiny hook (fantastic idea), and my Dymondwood shuttle (also from HH). I splurged on that one…just look at those stripes! (heart) I even have a couple thread holders. They’re awesome. I can knock them off the table and they keep everything neat and clean and wound. You can really see the difference in thread weight here too. The size 20 threads are in the top left corner and the green edging. My favorite size 10 is the one on the right (that’s half of a heart right now), and the massive size 3 is on the bottom, soon to be a bookmark. I’m using the sample HH sent so I hope I have enough! I’ll improvise if not. ;-)

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I’m making more bookmarks and a couple edgings for hankerchiefs. My friend bought me the bone shuttle and the green holder, so she gets a green edged hanky. Everyone needs hankies, in my opinion. I’ve embroidered them before and now, by gum, I can put pretty edges on them!!

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Most of the thread is Lizbeth from HH, those variegations are so very cool. If I know you, and you read this blog, I will make you a bookmark! Whee! Just comment about it and I’ll get one for you (eventually). This is a neat hobby because it doesn’t pretend to be useful. It’s just relaxing and pretty. I did some more research and learned how to fix mistakes by just cutting them out, and how to add more thread withouthaving the ends show. It’s so much like crochet, but not. Easier, really. And the cutting the mistakes out? Not near as scary as I thought they would be, in fact, much easier than trying to pick the knots out.
These books have been really helpful to teach myself how to tat. I’m going to learn split rings eventually, but I’m having a lot of fun with the basics now and don’t want to do too much. *cough*notlikewhenilearnedtoknitandcrochet*cough* I haven’t seen anything harder than split rings yet. Whew!
I’m still knitting stuff while watching shows with B. The Hitchhiker scarf for Game of Thrones and a new one, Leila’s Shrug Driftwood Tee, for House of Cards (and everything else). I’ve been crocheting too but it’s for birthday presents, so I’ll post those after I finally send them in the mail. Better late and hand-made than never! ;-)
I totally considered how to attach a thread holder to my purse so that I can bring it with me everywhere. I decided against it.
I just put a rubber band around the holder to keep the shuttle in place, and put it directly in my purse instead. ;-)

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Ha, I get some weird looks with this guy. Kids love it! B says I look like a spider weaving webs. (cool!)

Look at this! I found all of this in the Closet of Stuff and the Basket of Things. Think about adding a dozen or two wee little stitches patterns to my collection and that adds up to a lot of stitching to be done, besides what I posted last week.
(Whee!)

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It just didn't stop. I kept pulling out another, and another, and oh look there's one under that other one...
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All the kits I have left, plus some cool patterns I collected over the years.

I’m not kidding, I have 24+ wee little stitches patterns. I’ve stitched a lot of them, but I have 12+ left I’d love to get to eventually, and I still want to buy a couple more! ;-) First step is admitting I have a problem…ok maybe not a “problem”, maybe just a favorite hobby of awesomeness. B-)

Happy Halloween!! October is the best. Colorful scenery, crisp air, candy, and spooky stuff. Who could ask for more? We have glow in the dark bouncy balls to give out along with candy this year, yessss!
Dracula Shawl:
This is from one of Woolgirls’s wonderful yarn clubs. I think I got it last year (or before), but just now got the ambition to start it. I blame fall’s approach. This time of year I just want a hot cup of coffee, lace, scarves, and a good book, preferably a scary one, so why not revisit a classic?
(The pattern is written for beads, and I got 30g of Japanese Rocaille size 8 in shiny blood red. Adding beads is a lot more fun than I expected.) It is from Susanna IC. The yarn club is fun because I don’t have to buy a year’s worth, I can get one or as many kits as I want. This kit came with the pattern, exclusively dyed yarn (Madelinetosh lace no less), a nest blood drop inspired stitch marker, a shawl pin, and a little tin with Drac on it. I ordered a Edgar Alan Poe themed one this year, I hope it’s in the mail today!
Funny thing about the beads: I foolishly didn’t have the pattern notes when I shopped for the beads, so I bought three times as many as I actually needed. Sigh. Knitter problems. I guess now I have lots of sparkles for future projects…I love how sparkly the beads are. This will be a big shawl, more of a wrap.

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See the super cool bracelet in there? It’s a stitch counter bracelet- an abacus to wear to count how many rows I’ve done. Penny made it for me out of a couple old bracelets I had. Remember the gemstone/rock bracelets from 1998? I had like 12 of those because they went on sale when I worked at Hastings. Through some glitch or twist of fate, the computer rang them up as 1¢ each with my employee discount. Scoooore! My faces were the hematite and labradorite, the ones now on the abacus bracelet. :-) I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, Penny makes the coolest stuff.
I keep this project in a neat basket that a friend gave me. (I love it, Janel!) I was playing with the camera and tried to make the photo all artsy for you.

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Happy haunting!