"But, really, why does anyone create? You feel a... a restlessness inside, a need to make something new, something no one has ever seen before. You want to add to the beauty and the richness of the world with a gift, an offering that is uniquely yours. It's an act of selfishness and generosity, all rolled into one."

-- Bruce Coville,
The Last Hunt

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

What I Did at Jury Duty

I was only at jury duty for a couple of hours on Friday, so I didn't get that much tatting done. Then I had other things to do over the weekend, but the tatting did eventually get finished and blocked, and is now ready for presentation.

I wanted to make a gift for my neighbor, who has done several nice things for me lately. I immediately thought of the little sachet bags I've been making, although instead of the insect repellent variety, I decided to fill it with things that smell nice just because (although the bay leaves and rosemary I've been using for myself certainly smell good too).

Here's the motif I used.

Obviously this scan was done before blocking, but I wanted to show what a single motif looks like before joining more. It is from the book Tatting Together Square Motifs by Iris Niebach, although most of the motifs in the book, including this one, are not designed by Iris. The designs come from a class in tatting design that Iris taught to a group of Danish tatters. This one was designed by Allis Norby Jensen.

Honestly, I had never really looked too much at this particular motif before, simply because the colors used for it in the model in the book are very drab and uninteresting to me. Usually when I'm choosing a tatting pattern I can see past the colors and just look at the design, but in this case it took me a very long time to be able to do that. I'm glad I finally did. The use of shoelace tricks in the second round makes for very interesting color play, even in a single motif. And the class assignment from which all the designs in this book are taken included a requirement that additional interesting patterns emerge when multiple motifs are joined.

So here are four of them together. The two colors now form whole new square and diamond patterns. I think it would be fascinating to extend it beyond four motifs. Nine or 16 of them could make a nice doily. It would depend, I suppose, on a person's attention span; too bad mine isn't that long....

Anyway, here it is on the bag.

Oh yeah, the thread colors are Lizbeth 624 Raspberry Pink Medium and 686 Seagreen Light. I went with size 80 to end up with a final product that would actually fit on the bag.


  1. Ah, Miranda, perfecto! What a beautiful piece. I am so glad you are again with shuttle!
    Fox : )

  2. Lovely motif and looks lovely on the sachet.

  3. That motif is fabulous and the colors are so beautiful together!! :)

  4. P.S. How do you get the ends on so cleanly???

    1. I'm not sure I understand the question. The ends of the tatting thread I just sewed in like always. The ends of the sewing thread are actually pretty long-- you just can't see them because I used invisible thread. Is that what you meant?

    2. OK, so we got it straightened out by e-mail, but just in case anybody else is wondering, I use hand quilting needles to sew in the ends of my tatting thread. I have a compact of assorted sizes, and I've isolated three that are just right-- one for size 60-80 thread, one for size 40-50, and one for size 20-30. I don't use anything larger than 20. The quilting needles are perfect because they have a large enough eye to take the tatting thread, but they're fine enough to get through the stitch caps. I also keep an emery bag in my tatting bag to keep the needles nice.

  5. I love the way you posted the pictures of the motif, and I studied and read and the climax was when you put the 4 together wow it sold the motif to me! Isn't it funny how it changed the look as they were put together! love this you did great job!

  6. The colors really look amazing on the filled sachet bag! Beautiful tatting with the size 80 thread. Several skills involved here!

  7. Wonderful! I think I may try my hand at making little bags like that for my mom's craft show next year... not this year... not enough time!