Tuesday, October 29, 2019

Finger Purses, and What's in a Name?

Someone had asked about finger purses like the one I entered in the fair in the last post.  "Finger purses" were so-named because they had a ring at the top that could go on your finger.  Some, but not all of them, had "strings," usually crochet chains, that fastened to the front edge of the opening and passed through holes or loops in the back, and effectively held the purses closed.  Some people call these "miser's purses," but that term more properly goes with an earlier form of purse, also called "long purses." They were occasionally called "string purses" or "string bags," but that term can get confused with modern string-bag shopping bags.  I'm going with "finger purses with strings."

 One of my Facebook groups is talking about coronation cord, so here you go, a finger purse with coronation cord from Needlecraft magazine, November 1915.  What seems to be an advertising pamphlet calls it "coronation cord," but all the tatting and crochet patterns I've seen call it "coronation braid."  (For the pamphlet, see the Antique Pattern Library, "Application of Coronation Cord." )
Here is a purse I made from that pattern years ago, with my own crocheted substitution for the coronation cord, er, braid.  No, I don't remember how I made it, sorry.

Here are the instructions, hope you can read this:

For a modern pattern of this type of purse, Sheron Goldin shared a pattern with the Online Tatting Class in 2011.  Click HERE for a direct link to the pdf pattern.

For bearing with me this long, here is an advertisement from another issue of the magazine that may give you a smile, or make you just shake your head at what amuses me.

Tuesday, October 22, 2019

I"ve Got the Blues

Blue ribbons, that is.  I feel very lucky because there were some other very nice pieces in competition.

State fairs vary a lot with their competition categories.  Our main tatting category is "Tatting or bobbin lace, framed or mounted."  I didn't have a round or square frame the right size, so I turned this Mary Konior design into a sun-catcher to mount it.  That's size 80 thread, and I loved working with something dainty for a change.

We also have a category for tatting attached to linens, so that's where I entered the table runner I showed you last time.  

For my last piece, I found a category: Clothing-Accessory-Other and entered a finger purse made with a combination of tatting, crochet, and vintage turtle braid.  But wait, here it is, with the back side facing.  The nice ladies working there said they couldn't open the display cases while the public was in the building, but they would turn it around later that night.  

I like the front side better.

Then I went back and looked.  Yup, the table runner is hung with the back side outward too.  but that one doesn't matter as much and I didn't want to be a trouble maker, so I kept quiet on that one.  I'm sure judging all the entries and arranging the displays is a huge endeavor, so I shouldn't be too critical.  

Then back to the sun-catcher, and I couldn't see the tiny thread well enough from my vantage point outside the case to tell which side was which.  It goes to show that much as I enjoy doing one-sided/front-sided tatting, except really close up, it doesn't matter.  

While I was there, I visited the Village of Yesteryear to enjoy the handicraft artists and their wares and to visit Anitra at her tatting display.  Her booth won the Honorable Mention this year.  The lady doing rug hooking let me sit and try making a few loops and that was pretty cool.

And more fun fair stuff.  I walked through the gardening displays and listened to a string band.  I had some local craft beer and some crazy fair food.  Korean BBQ pork belly eggroll and Cheerwine fudge, aw yiss.  I didn't summon up the nerve for red velvet funnel cake topped with cheese and enchilada sauce, or to ride that ferris wheel, though.

Wednesday, October 16, 2019

Table Runner & Antique Pattern Library

I've actually made something useful, or at least something to be used, rather than stuffed in a drawer. A table runner, hooray, for those rare occasions when my table isn't piled high with stuff.

This is one of my favorite edging patterns, "Dentelle avec Fleurs, en lignes sinueuses" from the book La Frivolite from the Cartier-Bresson company, published probably 1920's. (I've written about it before, when I did my practice piece.)  


In the original pattern, the rows I've done in ecru had picots tied to the center row with bits of thread, sometimes 3 picots at a time, and there was bare thread running behind the rings.  With modern techniques I've fixed all of that.  

I owe all of this to the Antique Pattern Library, a treasure trove of patterns of all sorts of needlework.  Unlike some, they are very careful to make sure that the items they post are public domain or the copyright holder has given their permission.  In fact, they have been given permission to post all of the Workbasket magazines in their entirety, a project which is on going. If you go to their home page HERE you will see some red headers near the top, for Tatting, for Workbasket Magazine, and lots of other crafts to take you directly to your favorite hobbies.

You will also see, near the top and bottom, a yellow Donate button.  This non-profit organization does so much good for needlecrafters, I encourage you to help them out.  Their fundraising goal for this year is $6000 and they are about half way there.  Small donations are welcome; I think most of their funding comes from lots and lots of tiny gifts.  (I'm promoting it here because I like it so much; I do not get any recompense for advertising for them.)

My table runner isn't perfect, and I wish my picots had been more regular, but I've entered it in the State Fair anyway.  I'll find out how I did in a few days.

Wednesday, October 09, 2019

Another Halloween Pattern

I've realized I seem to have more space in my Keep&Share account than I thought I did, so here is another old pattern to add to the free patterns page.  Maybe I will resurrect a few more as space permits.  Someday, I need a new website to do this more properly, but this will do for now.

It's on the free patterns page now, and another link HERE  If I've messed it up again, don't sign up for anything, just let me know to fix it.

Sunday, October 06, 2019

Pearl Tatted Skeleton

Remember me? I used to have a web site and a blog.  Well, the blog is still here, but you would hardly tell from as seldom as I post.  Can you bear with yet another resolution to do better?

One of the Facebook tatting groups has been asking for my Pearl Tatted Skeleton, which was on the old website that was taken away.  I've managed to find it, brush it off a bit, and add it to my Free Pattern Page (look near the top of this page for the Free Pattern tab). 

If anyone still has a copy of the old website 2007 version, let me warn you, it had some bad mistakes in it. I hope I have corrected those mistakes without adding any new ones.  I have written the pearl tatted section in greater detail as well.

This is not an easy pattern.  In fact, this is a horrible pattern, with some ridiculously long chains and some huge rings that are hard to close.   I can see how I can possibly rework it with some different techniques to make it better, but that will not be ready in time for this year's Halloween.  Since I have this in my mind's eye already, please let me do it myself.  But meanwhile, for everyone who was wanting it right away, here you go, and good luck.

A direct link: HERE

Update to add: sorry everyone having trouble with the link.  I hope I have it fixed now, so please try again.  If you are still having problems after 7:15 pm EDT 10/6/19, please let me know.