Yesterday I went to a shop in Wichita called ‘Heritage Hut’ where I go to get thread sometimes. It’s a nice place, mostly for weaving, knitting and crochet with lots of unique yarns and has DMC thread in size 80, 8, and almost all the DMC colors of Cebelia size 10,20 and 30. The owner doesn’t tat but she has a woman come in Saturday mornings to give a tatting class, starting with beginners but answering questions from more experienced people as well. It’s a really nice shop. She also has lots of tatting books, that you can actually pick up and look through, or drool over as the case may be. There are also several choices of shuttles, Tatsy, Clover, Boye, Aero, as well as tatting needles, doilies with the holes in the edge for edgings and other miscellaneous supplies.
Most days you are greeted at the door by Big Daddy, a Great Dane. He’s very friendly, comes to see if you would like to give him some attention. He has the run of the shop and will leave you alone when you’re done petting him or you would rather he goes away. Another dog, a half-grown Irish wolf hound puppy, is usually behind the counter because she hasn’t learned how to behave yet. Her name is Maggie. As I like dogs, I get a big kick of going into the shop to see them as well as check out any new stuff that might be there.
Mary, the owner, enjoys seeing what you are working on. I showed her my little doily with beads that I just completed. For not being a tatter she pays attention to the classes enough she had some very good questions about it. It made my day to have a chance to get more thread, share my tatting and visit the dogs.
I have been cleaning out drawers and cabinets lately and found a lot of tatting from years ago. Some of it I shake my head at, amazed at how far I’ve come, and some I look at with a laugh at the things I tried.
I found the lady in a drawer where I put her after she had hung on the wall for awhile. She’s “Colonial Lady Applique” from Aunt Ellen’s Tatting Handbook, originally from Workbasket Vol. 19, August 1954. It’s marked as “challenging”. I knew I could tat pretty well when I completed her! I don’t remember what thread I used but I do know I worked very hard on her because I entered her in the Kansas State Fair in 1990 or ’91 (terrible I don’t remember exactly!). I actually got top blue for her that year. The one and only time I’ve entered at the state fair.
And poor Aunt Ellen’s Handbook! I have made qute a few things out of it and it shows how much I used it. It’s falling apart and has notes in the margins of the items I made. It was given to me by my “other mother”, my mother-in-law, in 1989 – I know because I made a note in the front cover. I rarely even look in it now, but it is responsible for many gifts and happy hours of tatting.
I’ve been looking at the 25-motif challenge. Sounds like good incentive to keep doing new or different things, so I thought I’d give it a try. This is something I’ve come up with for Christmas this year to send in Christmas cards. I’m also looking at the possibilities of useing it for doily, using about six for the center and without the ‘trunk’. Maybe in varigated thread…
A couple of days ago I drove my parents to Wichita so Dad could visit the VA clinic. While waiting for his turn to have blood drawn and what-not I pulled out my tatting, it looked to be a long wait. There was a couple beside me that instantly wondered what I was doing. The gentleman was quite intrigued with it. Another lady across the way had to come over and see what I was doing, also. She knew what it was but had never actually seen anyone do it. We had a nice conversation about tatting. The gentleman commented that he had used the word ‘tat’ in crossword puzzles before but had never known what it was. When they left he thanked me for the knowledge about tatting. I always enjoy meeting people this way.
Well, I’m going to try blogging. I’ve been reading some really great ones and I’m excited to try it myself.
I’m going to start with an old idea, at least in our family. This is a turkey wishbone thimble holder. A great-great aunt of my husband’s had made these, some with tatting and some with crochet. I decided I would give it a try. Unlike my husband’s aunt’s, I sprayed the bone with a sealer before putting the thread on.
My kids liked what it looked like after I was done, but a little unhappy because they never got to break the wishbone at Thanksgiving.