Saturday, June 23, 2012

Beaded Bracelets Be-glorious!

Remember this bracelet?  I tatted it earlier this year, using SCMRs.  This let me put the beads on as I tatted, rather than having to string the beads on the thread first.  I used one shuttle, and flipped the work over after each SCMR.  I had only one shuttle to work with (I was working off the ball of thread), plus adding the beads.  Piece of cake!

Then we have this one - which I started at the PTG meeting last Saturday.  It's done pretty much the same, except you are working with two shuttles. Each shuttle provides the core thread for the SCMR on the other side.

I had also planned to post a picture of a bracelet I made (one year ago? two years ago? lots of years ago??) that looks much the same as both of these, except you must string the beads first.  It is a one-shuttle pattern, and as all the rings are regular rings, you flip the work over to make each successive ring. 

Except... the bracelet has gone into hiding and must really be shy, as I can't even find a photo of it! 

My point (and I do have one) is that although all the bracelets look very much alike, they're each made differently.  I remember making two of the single-shuttle, regular ring bracelets in a week, tatting mostly at lunchtime.  I have an hour each day for lunch - which, after eating, tidying up, and going back to my desk, I generally have at least 30 minutes to tat, load shuttles, string beads, sew in ends, whatever.  So I would have probably had two and a half hours that week to work on each bracelet at lunchtime.  I did start one Sunday night and sewed in ends after I got home in the evenings, but most of the tatting was done at lunchtime at work.  I have been working on the two-shuttle SCMR bracelet since last Saturday - and I have added only 24 beads, to bring the length to 4".  I don't see myself finishing this one; it's consuming too much of my time, and I have some other irons in the fire right now.

In the future, when I'm making a bracelet like these, I'll consider these factors:
  1. Single shuttle, pre-strung beads:
    • Am I using a random mix of beads, or identical beads?  Either type can be strung quickly and easily using the Bead Stringer. 
    • Does it need to be completed quickly?
    • Is working with loose beads going to be a problem? 
  2. Single shuttle SCMR:
    • Am I using a shuttle that's narrow enough that beads really get in the way? 
    • Will it be easier working with just a single shuttle?  
    • Do I want to choose bead placement as I tat?
  3. Two-shuttle SCMR:
    • Am I using two different colors of thread?  This could be really fun, too, because you wouldn't necessarily have to have one color on each side of the bracelet - a Shoe-Lace Trick (SLT) would reverse the thread positions, and you could alternate colors in a 1-1 pattern (or a 2-2, or a 3-3, or 2-1, or whatever you  like).  Lots of possibilities here!  I may have to explore some of them!

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Where Did the Weekend Go!

...It sure didn't stick around!  Yesterday was the meeting of The Palmetto Tatters Guild in Lexington, SC, where a good time was had by all ~~
We had at least 20 in attendance - this picture shows just one end of the table!
Our lesson, taught by Katharine Buckner, was Beaded Lanyard Made Easy; the original pattern is by Patti Duff, and the "made easy" part is by Gary Houtz.  It can be made lanyard length (about 30", or your preference) or shorter - between 7" and 8" is a good length for a bracelet, and that's what we worked on!
Looking over Donna's shoulder to see the bracelets in progress!

Marie worked with a small group of ladies who came expressly to learn to tat!
We had some newcomers who wanted to learn to tat - we're looking forward to seeing them again, at next month's meeting! 

And today, of course, is Father's Day - so I've been every bit as busy today as I was yesterday!  My bracelet didn't get finished yesterday - it's about 2" long - and I haven't had a moment to spare for it today, but will get back to work on it tomorrow.  Hopefully I'll have a bit of time this week to post again, and include a picture or two of the finished bracelet!

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Great News a Day Early!

The bone doc's office called this morning - they needed to reschedule my appointment from tomorrow, so could I come in at 3:15 today?  I said, "Sure," and that was that.

They took more x-rays of my elbow and sent me to the examining room to wait for Dr. P.  He arrived with the terrific news that the bone is fully healed, and I can go back to my normal activities.
The pattern is Jane Eborall's; the variegated thread is
Olympus; and the plain pink is ... not.
I can drive my truck again!!!  You just don't know how much you miss being behind the wheel until you have a long period of time when you just can't - in my case, eight weeks.  I plan to drive myself to work tomorrow!

I have finished (until Joanie says otherwise) tatting my Tat Days projects - I'm now making a bunch of Cherry Blossoms, and then - I'm going to tat something from one of my Tat Days Pattern CDs! 

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Hoping for Good News!

My elbow and I will be returning to the orthopaedic doctor on Thursday - I'm hoping that he will find that the break has fully healed.  This will mean I can drive again - I hope - because for the last eight weeks, I've been a passenger only!

I've had to restrict most regular activities - tatting included, darn it! - and have just, in the last couple of weeks, started getting back into them.  I'm still writing with my right hand - at times, I think it looks improved from eight weeks ago, but it's still not as neat (IMHO) as my left-hand handwriting was.

Thankfully, I can manipulate the thread with my left hand relatively easily now, with the barest of twinges - and I can now type with both hands again.  I'm finishing up edits and re-tats of Tat Days classes, putting in corrections (thanks, Joanie!!!) and tidying up the pages for printing.

You've seen the Merry Wreath - we'll play with it Saturday evening. Here are the other classes I'm teaching this year: