Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Shuttling my projects

I have taken a hiatus from my onion ring projects. I am starting on a series of exercises that I hope will improve my tatting. For various reasons I should not discuss the various patterns and techniques publicly, so I will be even more limited on my thoughts here.

One strange turn of fate is that my first exercise uses size 10 thread. I used size 10 thread when I first tried tatting but almost everything thing after the first couple of edgings has been done in size 20 until my recent work on the onion rings.

The thing I did today was load my first shuttle. I am going to use the Jan Stawasz’s shuttles for this project. I have emptied the sapphire and the gold shuttles with the onion ring project and a few experiments, so today I loaded the pale yellow one.

The one thing I have learned using the Stawasz Shuttles is the importance of the stiffness of the material. The Plexiglas is fairly flexible so as I reduced the amount of thread in the shuttles the tips came closer together.

In loading the pale yellow shuttle I endeavored to not allow the thread to come in contact with the blades. This produced a very round profile to the winding. Now, once I load the other shuttle I am off to a new tatting adventure.

I still intend to return to the onion rings and a few other things as time goes by.

I am still not totally pleased with how this motif looks so I am thinking about it while I do other things.

I still think it is a very nice motif.

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Thursday, September 20, 2007

Still frying onion rings

I knew when I decided to take the plunge and start a BLOG that I would have little time to dedicate to writing. I just thought I would have a little more time than I actually have had.

I have been fighting onion rings. I decided that the size 30 project I mentioned before should actually be a size 10 project and instead of the GR-8 shuttles I am using a couple of shuttles made by Jan Stawasz in Poland. They are a little open for my taste but given the trouble Aero style shuttles have given me I am used to not being able to rely on the shuttle staying where I put it. A couple of my German Aero shuttles will unroll to the floor if I let them go.

Jan’s shuttles feel great and look pretty good also. They are also larger than all but the Tatsy shuttles in my collection.
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The size 10 project consists of six joined onion rings connected by chains.

I am having difficulty getting the area between the chains and the onion rings looking and acting like I want them to look. I was able to incorporate some advice I received on the eTatters forum but they are still too floppy for my taste. Not to mention a slight tendency to twist.

I have decided to keep at my two projects, both with onion rings, while I begin a learning journey that I think will really help me with my tatting. But more on that at a later date.