Monday, October 4, 2010

Tatting Today

Since I won't be able to post much tomorrow and certainly not tatting, today just became tatting day.  First, I have to show off my new shuttle from Chris Hinton at the Shuttle Shop (visit him on The Tatting Forums).  This is his own invention - he calls it the Winder Shuttle.  You can see a video of it in use here.  Basically, it's like a bobbin shuttle in that the thread winds on and plays out without turning the shuttle end to end and taking the thread between the blades.  But there is not a removable bobbin - the bobbin is built in and has a ratcheting mechanism that lets you wind thread on easily with a little wrench and plays out thread with a clicking sound.  The post itself is the bobbin and it spins inside the shuttle.  Chris made a few of these and has been passing them around to various tatters for them to try the shuttle and then give feedback.  This has been going on a while now and he's actually making them for sale - mine came in the mail on Friday.

I have to say I love this shuttle.  It is far and away better than any bobbin shuttle I have ever tried.  The Winder Shuttle has all the benefits of a bobbin shuttle, ease of loading and ease of pulling out thread, without having the drawbacks of too much thread pulling out or too much tension and you can't pull the thread out.  It was easy peasy to wind the thread on with the little wrench thing and a ball of thread just sitting on a chair.  I managed to get 12 yards of size 20 thread on mine without over filling it (tho it was definitely full).  I had no trouble winding thread back on after a ring because you have little ridges on the top of the spool mechanism so you just run your thumb up the side and it winds back on with it's cute little clicky, clicky.

The shuttle is gorgeous.  I don't know what wood Chris used, but I love the color and the feel of it - a lovely color and nice and smooth and warm in my fingers.  The shuttle is small, about the same size as a clover (the clover is in the picture for size comparison) but it's shaped perfectly and fits in my fingers in a very nice way.  Tatting with it is easy and effortless - I think I tatted faster with this shuttle but that could be my imagination.  

These shuttles don't come with a hook yet, but that is planned for the future.  I don't like hooks on my shuttles.  Points are ok, but I'm just as happy with nothing at all and that's what this has.  

I would love to buy another, but first I'm getting some of his Tatted Shuttles.  I've been working on the tatting for them and I'm almost ready to send it off.

This from Mary Konior's Tatting with Visual Patterns - it's all rings.  I made it with the first 12 yards I put on my Winder Shuttle.  Forgive the picture quality - not enough light and no time to take more.  This is Lizbeth size 20 in Christmas Green Mix #152 and it's much prettier than in my picture.  It took most of the 12 yards, but not quite all and it's all rings, no chains, so it was only shuttle thread.

I've been working on the motifs to be made into the Tatted Shuttles (see here and here and here).  First I made some of Anne Bruvold's patterns (third here above).  The first one I made is the center one.  I didn't like the color of that thread enough to have it made into a shuttle but the pattern was easy and it was quick to make.  So I picked out some thread I liked more and made it again.  The only problem was that I picked the Stardate hand dyed thread by Yarnplayer and it is size 10!  The black in the center is size 20 lizbeth.  I wondered why these wanted to curl after they were finished.  So I am thinking that I might just remake these in an actual size 20 thread . . .

Then I decided to follow Lace Lovin' Librarian's lead and make a Stumpy to see if it would work.  She made hers in size 80 thread and I haven't mastered size 40 yet, so that wasn't really an option.  I decided just to try it and see how big it would be in my size 20 - asked Chris how big a motif could be and he said 1 1/4" wide.  My first try with Stumpy was about half way done when I made a stupid mistake - closed a ring without enough picots and double stitches and couldn't reopen it.  
So, I tried again and finished the second one only to see that I'd made some kind of mistake in the last 10/5 chain - not even sure what I did but I'm certainly not going to embed this in acrylic and look at it every time I tat!
Tried one more time and this time the end result was acceptable.  These are not really this color, again this is poor photography with too little light.  These are made using size 20 lizbeth in Island Breeze 130 and a plain turquoise for the chains.  I'll get better pictures later.  These two measure right at 1 1/4" across and 2 1/2" long - within the maximum size limits.  I'm going to make two more this week in a different color and then decide which ones to send off to be "shuttlefied"!  I may experiment with the pattern just a bit on the next try.

1 comment:

Lace-lovin' Librarian - Diane said...

Lucky you! I'm so happy you like your Winder Shuttle! It took me several tries before Stumpy came together for me. Now that I have the pattern down, it's a piece of cake! I've now made them for Chris in 80, 40, and 20. 20 will make a rather large shuttle. 40 works really well. Have fun playing!