Sunday, April 24, 2016

Mary Konior's Spinning Wheel Glass Mat

Occasionally a "snowflake" which doesn't have six sides slips through...this one is Mary Konior's Spinning Wheel Glass Mat (aka a coaster) from her excellent and sadly out-of-print book "Tatting with Visual Patterns."  I've seen a number of people posting photos of these lately (especially Diane) and finally tatted up my own.

I was a little surprised how small it was; the pictures I've seen look bigger.  I used an unlabled vintage thread which I'm guessing was either size 20 or 30 and it was just over 3.5 inches/ 9 cm.  It also took some coaxing to get it to lie flat with my tension; I was in a hurry blocking and it's still a little ruffly.
Mary Konior_Spinning Wheel Glass Mat
Then I tried another one with fewer picots so they didn't bump into each other (because I am Sarah, Remover of Picots!) and I think it emphasizes the shape better. 
Mary Konior_Spinning Wheel Glass Mat variation
I may try a larger one as a small doily, per the excellent idea Batty Tatter shared (here) to enlarge the pattern by doubling the length of the arms.

I can only hope this book is reprinted, as it's a wonderful book of patterns but has become prohibitively expensive. 

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Tina Fraubergers' motif #53 (filigree snowflake)

Some years ago I was able to glance over a copy of the July 1996 edition of Knots and Notes.  I was struck by this pattern and jotted it down.  My notes did not include the name of the motif, but it was originally from Tina Fraubergers' book "Schiffenspitze" published in Dusseldorf in 1921.

Edit:  Mimi kindly notified me that Georgia Seitz has posted a scan of Tina's book at  This is motif #53 on book page 54.

I have since noticed that the stitch counts are identical to the Small Cross in Mary Konior's book "Tatting with Visual Patterns", though obviously there are slight differences in the arrangement of rings and chains to make it six pointed. I have to wonder - was one inspired by the other?  Or is this another case of great designers arriving at a similar look and count independently, as seems to happen so often?

I like the look of this motif with longer joining picots instead of my normal microscopic ones (it seems to benefit from the open airy look - like filigree or wrought iron) and this time I tried twisting them before joining.  Some picots are bumping into the chain above; I'll fix this with pinning when I starch it.

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Rebecca Diamond's snowflake Remembrance

I was playing a little with the pattern for "Remembrance" by Rebecca Diamond (aka TatMom), though I omitted the beads.  To me it looks incredibly lifelike - like an actual snowflake.
Rebecca Diamond_Remembrance

I did think that a real snowflake wouldn't have arms longer than the tips so tried adding a ring - and also changed the little ring stitch count to 5 so I didn't have to remember to switch between 5 and 4.  I think this would be an amazing center for a doily.
Rebecca Diamond_Remembrance variation

Not quite long enough, so tried adding a ring plus the same "mock ring" made from a chain joined to the  picot on both ends.  The longer tip is better, but I lost the lovely triangle by joining to the top picot; maybe I should have used a SCMR instead.  Next time...
Rebecca Diamond_Remembrance variation

They all look nice.
Rebecca Diamond_Remembrance and variations

Rebecca has generously shared her pattern here.

Sunday, April 3, 2016

Darlene Polachic's Jack Frost Snowflake

Jack Frost Snowflake designed by Darlene Polachic, published in "Big Book of Tatting" by House of White Birches.  I know snowflakes should have 6 points, but I'm a sucker for arches. The picots in the center were bumping into each other and annoying me, so I tied them together into a little star in the world's simplest application of needlelace.
Darlene Polachic_Big Book of Tatting_Jack Frost Snowflake

Turns out this is yet another out of print tatting book.  It has some nice patterns but is not something I'd recommend spending a lot of money for.  Weirdly, the cover image below is not the same cover as the Amazon page itself or my copy of the book.  Not sure what is going on there.