Sunday, 26 June 2016

creeping along

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Both my tat-alongs are creeping along (Lene's snowflakes & Renulek's doily) …

The Seventeenth Day of December Snowflake
Lene Björn

My little experiments are creeping along – trying to apply different techniques to a regular symmetrical pattern ….
Creeping around 

I visualized this snowflake as a cross section of a tree trunk with a flowering creeper around it . This determined my choice & placement of colours.
Round 1: single shuttle, scrap length thread, SSSR, lock join, mock picot. 1”
I started with a normal ring, mock picot, followed by SSSRs.
After each SSSR, I made a lock join on the picot to secure & move into position for next ring.
Last ring is again a normal/regular ring, with picot join to first ring.

Thoughts : the lock join may show up in lighter shades. The shape of SSSRs did not come out as evenly as I’d hoped, but that is perhaps because of my own limitations of thread size & eye sight when working tiny fiddly rings.
Round 2: 2 shuttles, directional tatting (fs/bs or RODS), mock rings, scroll, rotate work, direct tatting (reverse stitch/unflipped), very small picots, fold chain (2 first half st or 2 second half st).

Visualizing this round as flowers in profile on a climber with leaves, I wanted to add a bit of layering effect . Hence used the running scroll & mock rings for the green stem & leaves part.
For flowers, I used 2 strands of orange embroidery thread & 1 strand of silk thread. It created a soft sheen/sparkle, which is not captured in the photos. (Even the colours seem dull in the pics :-( 

The pattern called for a figure “8”, not just a single ring-and-chain scroll, as well as anchoring to chain. Another catch was that despite the spiraling ‘8’, all stitches needed to face outwards as in normal rings!
I tried a couple of different ways to get the layered scroll with mock rings on both sides.
1. Folded Chain using 2 half stitches before & after the outer ring in order to get the ‘8’. Made 4 in this manner, first without joining the chain back on itself, then making a very small picot & joining back as a mock ring.
2. Direct Tatting was used in last 2 repeats. Switch to reverse stitch (unflipped) when change of direction is needed. 
Because the green is a continuous chain, adding & joining of picots was adjusted according to the flow of the chain.
Measures < 3½” 
Thoughts : Getting the scroll & joins right was a bit of a struggle! At times I even messed up my directional tatting.
Method 1 with folded chain creates a lot of bulk underneath, with 2 twists ! However, it can be worked with single shuttle & ball, if required in any pattern.
What also complicated matters was the fact that the leaves were anchored at their end picots ! I don’t know how I crept out of that one !
Method 2 with direct tatting worked out much better. It was easier and visually better (the top & left pair of leaves/mock rings in the pic above) 

I have to be satisfied that I could just about put it together, even if it did not come out as neat. I did see a spectacular use of the elusive Rotate Work (I’ve always found it’s application a bit confusing)

I forgot to post Round 12 of the doily last time ....

A doily tat-along by Renulek
Super 17 butterfly & Morning Glory on the doily in above pic.

A super quick round ! Used ball & shuttle this time. Happy with my long chains. It was only while blocking (I still use the rolling pin) that I noticed one chain had twisted. Oh well, got to live with it.
Measures 13¼” after this round , in size 40 thread.
This pic is taken with the doily draped over the dining room chair. Lighting is not too good, but the background is maroon.
A super quick round ! Used ball & shuttle this time. Happy with my long chains. It was only while blocking (I still use the rolling pin method) that I noticed one chain had twisted. Oh well, got to live with it.

I’ve started Round 13 & it looks really pretty !!!

happy tatting :-)))

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  1. The thought that sprang to mind is that you make life difficult for yourself! I do understand that you're experimenting with different techniques, good for you. Doily is looking fantastic!

    1. LOL, you are ABSOLUTELY right, Jane :-D But that is what keeps me interested & challenged ;-P This time the snowflake experiment was a failure ; I would not repeat these applications !!!

  2. I did a pattern like that and it has a way of looking like you drew it with a pencil Like loops instead of rings if you know what I mean. I do like that look though and well done with your doily too looking good!

    1. Yes, Carollyn & the lovely pencil effect is called running scroll (Elgiva Nicholls). But to get an '8' figure with it, with all the other pattern elements/joins, was very difficult, unless I allowed the chain & stitches to turn - realised it after I had set my mind on using this technique ;-P

  3. Creeping along is still progress, and I love the way your Renulek doily is looking. Good for you, trying to look at things in a different way. Even if a technique doesn't work as you think it will, at least you're giving it a try!

    I'm not sure that I've ever looked at a piece and tried to figure out a different way to tat it. If a pattern calls for cutting, tying, and joining a new thread for the next round, that's what I do. Maybe I'll take some inspiration from you and start looking at things a bit differently. It could be fun!

    1. Thanks Diane :-) I start getting bored if there's no challenge. But more importantly I want to get comfortable with as many techniques & paths as possible, so that I can pick & choose without hitting a roadblock (hate that feeling) .

  4. Great snowflake!! :)
    Your doily is coming along beautifully!!! :) I love it with the maroon background!! :)

    1. Thanks Sue :-) The maroon background is even more striking in natural light. But I'm just too lazy to go to the trouble ;-P

  5. Rotate work always gives me pause. I have to have a clear brain, and a surface to set things out on to try different "rotations" and still get muddled occasionally. Looks like you conquered it this time though! And the color choice is wonderful.

    1. Yes, Rotate Work has me confused often, Mel. Maybe sometimes it's just a natural part of tating that we don't even realise it ? Glad you liked the colours :-)

  6. Lovely snowflake, and your doily is coming along nicely