I've had a request for my folded rings tutorial, so I've added it to the Free Patterns Page on the blog here. I didn't try to edit or update it, so I hope it's understandable. Those were the first diagrams I ever drew on the computer using Serif Draw. (Which I still use, in a somewhat less primitive fashion.)
This reminds me that I am way behind on creating the new website so I can get all my old free patterns and techniques back up again.
You may recall that my current personal 25 Motif Challenge is to complete motifs from vintage patterns from prior to 1925, so here are some more. When I made that quilt block for Georgia, I had some pieces left over. The top 3 are all from Priscilla Tatting Book No. 2. (You can get a free download from Georgia, or the Antique Pattern Library.)
The top one is from another of the elaborate collars in that book. The next two are from a handbag. The bottom one is a part of an edging in Buttericks Tatting and Netting (1896). It was to have gotten a bit of a stem to make a nice flower. It looks rather too unfinished in its current state though. Maybe I shouldn't count it as one of my motifs yet. (Free downloads of that book also available from Georgia and the Antique Pattern Library on the same pages linked above.)
All the thread ends are left loose, since I had planned to pull them to the back of the quilt block. That's one of the nice things about tatting for applique projects.
Here is my current vintage WIP. Can you recognize it yet? I hope I have the fortitude to finish. Working with size 100 thread periodically is good for the soul, if not the eyesight.
Meanwhile, registration for the Palmetto TatDays will open sometime soon. They've been adding more pictures and more information every few days, so keep checking back.
While I stand by the things I said before, I wish I had said more, or moderated my tone. In my mind there is a difference between those copytatters who knowingly mean to do ill, and those who do it unknowingly, and they should be treated differently. People with the good intention of protecting copyrights can come down too hard on the latter group.
I have been told that other crafting communities perceive tatters as an insular bunch, hostile to newcomers, and overly obsessed with copyright issues. We bring this on ourselves when we over react. My inbox tonight included a message from someone who was giving up on tatting after being made fearful of condemnation from an accidental misstep. Tatters are also a very caring, generous group, but we sometimes scare people off before they see that side of us.
There are those who knowingly, willfully copytat to take advantage of others' hard work without paying for it, and I have no tolerance for this. On the other hand, those who act out of ignorance like I did in my younger days can be redirected onto a better path without the need for frightening them or hurting their feelings.
As a community, we need to uphold our standards of behavior by informing people as to what constitutes a problem and why, not threatening them for crossing a line they did not know existed. Imagine the fledgling tatter proudly showing off a new accomplishment, and being pounced on by half a dozen people saying she could be liable to legal action. Too much of this goes on, especially on Facebook. Someone who has done a little copytatting without realizing it is a problem needs to be enlightened, not threatened. If they have learned enough to be able to copy, they are on their way to becoming a proficient tatter, someone whose energies can be redirected into becoming a valued member of our community. If they acted in ignorance or misunderstanding, but meant no harm, we can work with them instead of attacking them.
For the future strength of our craft, we need to be careful not to frighten people out of trying to develop their creativity. It is OK for them to be inspired by something they have seen if they aren't trying to mimic it too closely, so don't tell them they can be sued for making something that resembles anything else. Many basic designs have been re-invented again and again independently, so don't jump to a conclusion of plagiarism. If you think someone's copyright has been violated by copytatting, it is best to notify the injured party and let them deal with it. Failing that, state your concern tactfully, and listen to their response. Try to discuss without attacking. You can always toughen your response to a true offender if you find it justified. It is harder to get someone to come back into the fold if they have fled after being rained down upon with condemnations. Chastise the real wrong doers, but don't scare off potential new friends.
Usually, I see other tatters only when I go to one of the tatting conferences. It was a real treat to have a real live tatter come to visit recently. This is Marjorie and Graham, from Ireland. They were visiting family close by and came to see me too. Our mutual friend, Tatskool, helped arrange getting together.
We had a lovely time talking about tatting and other things. She has been working her way through Jon's "Elegant Tatting Gems" and showed me some of her very nice work.
She surprised me with some gifts. What at first appeared to be a card with the Claddagh design is actually a piece of Carrickmacross lace, very light and delicate. She brought me a book about Ireland and a map printed on a tea towel. I had never thought much about where in Ireland my friends lived. Now I can find them on the map.
Tatskool sent some lovelies too. There is a celtic style bracelet with tons of beads, and 3 skeins of HDT. My camera couldn't do justice to the colors. One of these is called Bali Sunset. She hopes to feature it on her blog sometime soon. She was one of the first people I ever got HDT from, and the new colors are as wonderful as ever.