Thursday, October 31, 2013

Today is my new book's Birthday!!!---Oh Happy Day (for me!)

My new book "MORE Fun with Split Ring Tatting" is officially 'published' as of today---that is why it seems to me that this is its' BIRTHDAY.

For those of you who have never published a book, getting the first copy of your book into your own hands is alot like holding your newly-delivered baby for first time.  This day came for me yesterday when I went to the mail box to find my proof-copy waiting for me after work.    After looking it over, I verified that it was ready and thus it is now 'in-print'.  

The price will be the same as my last book:  $25.   If you order direct from me/my website, I will pay for postage.  It is almost as big as my last book (63 pages) and is full-color throughout.  It features over 40 patterns (can't remember the exact number right now). 

For quite a while I struggled over what to write for my back cover and my introduction page.  I begged my friend, Jennifer Bartling to help me with ideas and she came up with "This ain't your Grandmother's tatting!".   It was just the prompt I needed to get the writing job done. 

Then came the digital conversion problems, the same ones as I had last time I published my book.  Even though I had carefully written down all the notes as to how I overcame the delemma last time, this time was different because I had gotten a new computer between the two books.  Many of the settings were different---thus back to the drawing-board as to my problems.  But there is a happy ending to this story as attested to by the fact that I did get the book printed/published and I am very happy to say that my new marriage lasted through these digital woes.

Now for the bottom line....I am not completely sure when the books will be available for purchase.  I shall have to figure out how to get the new book on my website, plus I shall have to order and receive copies myself of the physical books.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

My new book---It's almost done!!!

Here is the front cover of my latest book.  It is almost ready for sale. 

This weekend, I dealt with my 'digital issues' and got the book interior and cover appropriately converted to PDF and then uploaded to my printer.  What a great feeling that was!!!

I should (cross my fingers) have a proof copy in my hands in a week or two then I can proof-read it (yet another time) before I deem it ready for publication.

This is on the back cover and shows the rest of the patterns.

This pretty much explains the book's contents.

Monday, October 21, 2013

Tatting & Grandparents: The Rest of the Story

As I said before, I learned to tat from my maternal grandmother.

The doily I posted a photo of was made by my paternal grandmother.  She probably didn't tat much.  When I was young, growing up around her she was actively doing other handcrafts, most notably quilting. 

But my story revolves around my paternal grandFATHER.  I am the daughter of an long line of Nebraska farmers in NE Nebraska.  This includes my father & grandfather.  They were true men: probably never changing diapers, cooking for themselves, cleaning, etc.....that was women's work.  There were clearly defined male/female roles in how I was raised and I know that came down through the generations.   So I was surprised when my paternal grandfather told me (35 years ago or so, and shortly after I had learned to tat) that he too had tatted.  Even then I was shocked at this professment.  He told me that he had learned to tat in grade/elementary school as a kid.  He told me that that back when he was a kid, the Nebraska winters were harsher than in recent times and that it was to ugly for the kids to go outside for recess.  So the teacher taught them things like tatting.  Let me back up and tell you that this was a one-room country school that he went to....the same one that my father and I went to too (good old District 40).  So the heritage of tatting, my grandfather, and this one-room country school (that no longer exists) is a particularly sentimental one for me.  I would assume that 'yes' he did learn to tat, but 'no' he really never was a 'tatter'. 

Tatting (sometimes called 'poor-man's lace') was something that was cheap for the teacher to work with her students with.  Probably everyone's mother had a tatting shuttle in their sewing basket, in fact you don't even need a shuttle to do it.  So in my heritage, it truly was a poor-man's lace. 

I was raised in a humble, rural environment but was never wanting for anything though.  We raised all our own food (beef, pork, poultry, dairy, vegetables, fruit trees, etc.).  It was a good life.   However, I tell people that since "no farmer wanted to marry me" after high school, I had to get out of the area and went to college.  I now live in Omaha (the big city!) about 100 miles from where I grew up.

Saturday, October 19, 2013

My tatting thread goodies/presentation

This is my living room decoration.
It serves a couple of purposes:  It allows me to separate my threads by size and manufacture.
I think they are pretty decorations and reflect my personal taste/interest.
I can easily access/assess my thread collection to choose the right thread(s) for my projects.
The big bowl has my favorite threads---Anchor Mercer Cordonnet Size 20
The bowl to the back/right houses Flora 20
The front bowl holds Lizbeth 20.
These threads are the ones that I use the most.

This does not constitute my entire thread collection.....I have many more manufacturers, sizes, colors in my studio.

My tatting treasure

This is my Paternal Grandmother's Tatted Doily
Tatted by Louise Goeller Reuter--born in 1900.  Probably tatted in the 1920's or 30's.
I learned to tat from my maternal grandmother, Julia Kominek Dolesh. 
I was so thrilled to get this.  I had seen this doily in my grandma's house probably 35 years ago, after I had learned to tat, but hadn't seen it since.  My Aunt Janelle had it and recently gifted it to me for my recent wedding.  It is truly a treasure to me.

I have small items that Grandma Julia tatted that I shall have to bring out and photograph and show off in the future.

Friday, October 11, 2013

New SRT Pattern Du Jour


To get the pattern, go to:

Click on "Free Split Ring Tatting Pattern"

Then clik on the PDF File at the bottom of the page labeled 'POW11Oct13'

Thursday, October 10, 2013

More Textile Finds in Budapest, Hungary

This is the piece of Kalocsa Embroidery/Lace that I purchased in Budapest, Hungary.
Kalocsa is a town 88 miles south of Budapest.
The colored embroidery is hand-done.
Then the 'embroidery' is turned into 'lace' with a sewing machine--usually old sewing machines with the feed-dogs dropped out, creating the design with machine stitching.
This is another hand-embroidery piece that I purchased.  It is Translyvannian in design and worksmanship.
It is a pillow cover and is now in my living room. 
Alot of the textiles and lace that I found in Budapest had connections to Translyvania (Romania).

The following pictures are of textiles that I photographed in a shop in Budapest. 

If you look closely and can see the detail of the first and last photo, you will note that the textiles are created in a style of embroidery most people know as Hardanger (Scandinavian). 
I talked to one shop owner about the origins of the different lace types and she said that the Hardanger-like embroideries that you see in the top & bottom pictures are truly Hungarian.  In fact she pulled out her own work to show me. 
The middle photo shows Kalocsa embroidery/lace pieces.
Unfortunately I didn't have enough money or suitcase space to bring everything home with me!!! 


Lace Finds in Dresden, Germany--Plauen Lace

On my list of things to see in Dresden (lace of course!) was Plauen Lace.

Plauen is a suburb of Dresden and so I was hopeful that I would be able to find and buy Plauen Lace there.   AND I DID!

Plauen Lace is actually a machine-made lace--created as an embroidery on a water-soluble backing.  However I have been studying for several years for it's traditional design elements. 

While in Dresden, I happened to stumble upon a shop devoted to it completely.   The shop owner informed us that it had only been open a few months!  How lucky for me/us! 
This is me outside the shop

As you can see in the above photo inside the store, they now have both traditional and modern design forms of the lace.
These are are pieces I purchased:
The upper piece is an example of the 'Modern' and bottom piece is the 'Traditional' design.
When the shopowner realized that I could not buy one of everything, she allowed me to take photographs of the pieces and the shop!

Other Pieces I bought

This is a Plauen Lace piece of the Frauenkirch (Church of Our Lady) that was destroyed in WW2 The ruins were left untouched until 1994, when the painstaking reconstruction of the church began. Almost completely financed by private donations from around the world, the people of Dresden could celebrate the resurrection of their Frauenkirche in 2005.



New look for my blog

I'm bored at work--so I started playing around with blog templates.  (It's either 'feast or famine' in the diagnostic medical laboratory that I work in.)

I don't have the time or interest to write/design my own unique blog website (I actually did that for my first website 25 years ago, writing HTML code).  Nowadays they have all these cool, easy applications built into the website/blog hosting site.

Let me know what you think of this new format.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

3-D esque design

This is something that I have been playing around with lately....designs that have a 3-dimensional appearance to them.   The following is a small example of this design concept.
What I find interesting is that if you turn the design a certain way you get a whole different image perception.  
The first image looks to me like a big box corner with a smaller box inside it.
The second image looks like a big box with a small box piece missing.

If you can't see the differences, then maybe the images are too big---step away from the screen, or squint at the images. 
I understand that some people cannot see three-dimensionally very well.  My new husband and I just went to the 3-D movie, 'Gravity' last night.  Jerry claims that it's a waste of money for him, that he can't see the dimensionality of it anyway.