Lace Plates found in a Thrift Store

Rosanna Venetian Lace Plates

Rosanna TM Venetian Lace Plates

While in a thrift store (looking for items for my daughter’s new apartment) in Denver  I found 4 of these ceramic plates.  The photo above is from the internet and shows all 4 designs.  I have only 3 different designs–I have 2 copies of one design.

From what I can tell, they are still available for purchase.  However, the price I paid of $2.50 each makes my thrift store purchase a bargain.

In my research I found the following items in the same design series.  Darn it!  that Christmas is over—I could have put these on my ‘Want List’.

Rosanna mugs Rosanna teapot Rosanna teapot2 Rosanna Tray

Interesting Fiber Art Exhibits in Denver

My daughter and I decided that after 3 days of moving her into her new apartment in Denver that we would take one day to sightsee around Denver.

We went to a really wonderful neighborhood on Broadway that had alot of great antique, thrift and other stores.  We ate at an Argentinian cafe called Maria Empanada, which I highly recommend–the mushroom torta is ‘to die for’.  While in the Broadway neighborhood I saw my first ‘yarn-bombing’–a bicycle rack covered in knitted and crocheted squares.

According to Wikipedia:  Yarn bombing, yarnbombing, yarn storming, guerrilla knitting, kniffiti, urban knitting or graffiti knitting is a type of graffiti or street art that employs colourful displays of knitted or crocheted yarn or fibre rather than paint or chalk.


DD behind a ‘Yarn-bombed’ Bike Rack in Denver, CO

Then we went downtown to the Denver Art Museum (DAM) where we saw the following exhibit that sparked my Fiber-Art-Loving interest.


Me (The ShuttleSmith) and DD at DAM (I’m the old/fat one)


DD peaking out from the Blanket exhibit at DAM–notice tags that tell each blanket’s story

This was a relatively new exhibit (Sept 2013) in which blankets were donated & collected from the community along  with stories about the blankets meaning and memories to the owner.   Each blanket has a tag attached to it with its ‘story’.   The stories were published in a book (one was located next to the exhibit).  The blankets were stacked (quite high) to become part of a permanent artwork and blanket story column installed in the American Indian art gallery.  The artist’s (Marie Watt) work is centered around community, particularly through her use of wool blankets.  Wouldn’t this be an interesting way to accumulate other fiber art pieces such as lace, doilies, dish towels, etc. to preserve historical memories to bygone times?!?!?!

‘Tatting’ seen in odd place in Denver

Last weekend I had a bit of an adventure (‘adventure’ defined as something other than being home, doing what I typically do at home).  I helped my 24 y/o daughter drive her car and move from Omaha, NE (where we live) to Denver, CO (where she will be starting grad school in counseling at No. CO Univ.)  We drove out on Saturday and had her new apartment waiting for our arrival that evening.  It was an uneventful trip with the minor exception of a fairly crazy head/side wind on I-80 across the plains of Nebraska.  I took Monday and Tuesday off of work to have a mini vacation in Denver.  Most of the time was spent shopping for things she needed for her new apartment, including a bed, as well as moving in her possessions (all moved in the back of her car–so not too much stuff) & setting stuff up.

I wasn’t planning on having any tatting-related sightings.  But while shopping for a bed, I was pleasantly surprised to see this backpack at a restaurant that had lace on it.  Upon further observation, it had tatted designs on it.  And when I really started looking, the tatted designs were high-level SPLIT RING TATTING motifs!!!!!

The girl who was wearing the backpack thought I was a crazy woman to be so interested in her backpack.  I told her I was a ‘lacemaker’ and that was why I was so interested….but I don’t think that she had a clue as to what that meant.  She did (somewhat grudgingly) allow me to photograph it (though she mentioned that I was to purchase her lunch for her–which I ignored.)

DSCN1571 DSCN1572

This is a very interesting backpack!!!!   When I got home, I did a little bit of research on it.  The company is Dakine and is made/sold from Oregon.  This particular model is from 2013 but is no longer available/for sale.  I WANT ONE!!!  I think that the model is called  Prom Crochet.   If you click on the photos (especially the top one) you should get a enlarged, fairly crisp view of the intricasies of the design.  The tatting is crazy cool!  A lacemaker, especially a tatter had to have been the one to design the pattern.  I have no idea how to research this any further.

I will be posting OTHER Lace, Tatting, & Fiber Art related sighting from this same trip in further posts—coming soon.

New Tatting Designs based upon Grandmothers Flower Garden Quilt Block


‘Grandmothers Flower Garden’ in Split Ring Tatting

This is my Quilt-Inspired Split Ring Tatting design based upon the classic quilt pattern ‘Grandmothers Flower Garden’.

The fabric quilt uses hexagonal motifs, joined together in rounds.

My design uses 6 rings per motif, but the motifs are tatted as one round– ‘continuously’.  I do all the figuring-out as to how to work the ‘path’ of the round.

Watch for variations that I have designed/drawn in future posts that use this basic design as the basis….lots of fun!

Tatted (Quilt) Heart Design


Quilt-Inspired Tatted Heart

I’m not sure if this design for a Heart fits in with my ‘Patchwork’ or ‘NonPatchwork’ Series of Quilt-Inspired Fun with Split Ring Tatting.

It is ‘patchy’ in that is made of blocks of either squares or triangles.   But it is not squared-off—edges filled in with tatting to complete a square shape.

I also have a second Quilt-Inspired Heart design….not yet tatted, still in the design-stage.


Tatting Website I ‘FOUND’

Thought I’d point out a website that I ‘discovered’ through a post on HBT Yahoo Group.  The post pointed out an old (and fabulous!)  book by Judy Banashek in relation to a tatted cluny loom that she invented and sold probably 20 years ago.  (I need to write and article about Judy sometime in the future—she was a TRUE tatting innovator, before she suddenly dropped out of the tatting world.)  


The author’s main expertise is in soft doll scupting and she has compiled a bibliography of meterials related to this subject with over 600 personally written reviews. It seems that she branched out from the doll world next into Tatting and this is where we benefit. According to her info, she has about 400 reveiws of Tatting materials (books, periodicals) published plust alot more listed on the site (not reviewed–yet).

When you open up one of the listings (press the REVIEW button), you will find the author’s personal summary/review of the book.  She also has a nice Table of Contents so you can better see what is in the book.   This is especially invaluable to someone like me who has waaaayyyy to0 many ‘pattern’ books but who loves ‘technique’ books.  (Actually I have most of the books that she has on her list anyway—YIKES!!)  But if there is a ‘technique’ book I may have missed, I might be able to discern this information from her printed Table of Contents.

If you follow this link it will take you directly to her bibliography of Tatting books, periodicals, etc.:

This link takes you to the list of the bibliogaphies the author has compiled & has a button to get you back to the Home Page of the website:

In addition to Doll/Soft Scupting and Tatting she also has a less comprehensive start of biliographies for Candlemaking and Polymer Clay.  I am interested in reading her website further because she outlines how she got started in compiling these lists/biographies as well as why she feels it is important to write REVIEWS of the books and periodicals she has collected in this list.  She claims that her most important contribution with this website is the bibliography collection of magazines/periodicals and that “there is no other accessible database of this nature out there!”  The magazine bibliography is at the bottom of the page (past the books section).

I was pleased to see my two books Fun with Split Ring Tatting and MORE Fun with Split Ring Tatting in her bibliographic lineup with reviews!!!  (BTW, she DID like them!)

She also has a start to a section on Tatting Suppliers and future section under Professional Organizations.




The OTHER 2015 IOLI Class I am Teaching


This is the pile of tatting that I have ready to block and photograph for the second class I will be teaching at the 2015 IOLI Convention this coming July/August in Iowa City, Iowa.

The class is titled Pearl Tatting Techniques (or something on those lines–the main concept is Pearl Tatting Technique). 

This picture is of the group of pieces that I have tatted and have a plan to block and photograph them later.

More about these pieces and the class in another post.

As a side, I am going to be leaving this weekend for a mini vacation to help my daughter drive from Omaha (where I live) to Denver where she is going to be starting grad school in Counseling at Northern Colorado Univ.  I’m taking a few extra days off of work (Mon. & Tues.) and will fly home Tuesday night.  I’m excited to get away for a few days.  Even though I driven THROUGH Denver many times, I really haven’t spent much time there and can’t picture what Denver really looks like (except for the I-70).  Probably won’t be too much Tatting related happening with me either here or in person.

Quilt-Inspired Tatting–Another Design Approach–3


Diamond-Based Quilt-Inspired Tatting Designs

These are just the designs that I have tatted in my ‘Diamond-Based’ Series of Quilt-Inspired Fun with Split Ring Tatting.

There are a whole bunch more designs that can be done with this design principle using stacked diamond motifs that I have drawn/design into my design notebook and computer.

Even if I quit my full-time job, I could NOT keep up with tatting my designs!!!!  I pick and choose which ones I want/need to do during my lunch breaks and a few minutes in the evenings.  My time at home however is split between actually tatting and working on the computer, drawing the designs and the patterns themselves.  The good thing about my patterns is that they are all so geometric and mathematical.  I can draw a design and put stitch number in between picots and as long as I can add the numbers up to equal the ring count total, it all works.  I use alot of geometry in my designing and pattern-making.

Not all designs work up into tatting though!  There are some quilt-block designs that won’t work up into tatting.  Maybe in the future, I will share some of these designs ideas that will never be tatting (as least in my hands).

The bottom 3 designs are directly attributed to quilting patterns

  • Bottom Left:  ‘Lucky Star’
  • Bottom Middle:
  • Bottom Right:  ‘Tumbling Blocks’

The Upper Left & Upper Right designs are sort of 3-D in appearance.  The use of thread colors and placement of the blocks tricks the eye into seeing them as blocks (imagine the kind you play with and stack).  I have written about the Upper Right design before in old blog posts:  Click here to open this blog post in a new window  

All of these Quilt-Inspired SRT designs will be published  in books by next August when I will be teaching a class on it at the IOLI Convention in Iowa City, Iowa.

Another Quilt-Inspired Approach to Tatting–Part 2


Log Cabin


Grandmother’s Flower Garden

This is The ShuttleSmith’s second ‘style’ of Quilt-Inspired Fun with Split Ring Tatting.

These two photos show interpretations of ‘Log Cabin’ and ‘Grandmothers Flower Garden’ quilt blocks using hexagonal split ring tatting motifs.  Each color block can be tatted continuously–I (Karen Bovard/The ShuttleSmith)  have worked out the path of the pattern for you.

There are a bunch more variations designed/planned, but not tatted into thread yet.  Offhand, I know that i have designs ready for  ‘Courthouse Steps’, a second form of ‘Log Cabin’, ‘Sienna Square’, and ‘Granny Square’.

I’m tatting as fast as I can!!!!  but am not keeping up with all the fun designs that I have waiting to be done.

These Quilt-Inspired Split Ring Tatting designs as especially fun because you get to play with COLOR.  We all have those great colors of thread stashed away (especially with the luscious choices Handy Hands gives us in the LizBeth thread line)—why not mix/match them together in various ways.   You can go the Coordinating route or the Contrasting route of color selections.