Tuesday, April 8, 2008

TattingChic Around the House, Part I


People have often asked me, "So, since you're really into crochet (yes they call tatting "crochet") you probably have lots of doilies all over your house, don't you?". I often respond with something like, "Doilies? Oh, NO, doilies are for grandma's." Not that there's ANYTHING wrong with being a grandma, mind you. "No, I don't have doilies all over my house, ewww." So, while I thought about what to post today as proof that I am a tatter and in going through my house I realized, "OH MY GOSH, I have doilies all over my house!" Just kidding, folks, I only have two laying out and about so that doesn't constitute ALL OVER the house, but it's enough to make me wonder, "Just how in touch with my "inner grandma" am I getting?" So, for now, let's put that depressing thought aside and get into the good stuff... the TATTING.
For instance, let's look at this beauty above to the left. That is a fabulous find I got at an antique store a few years ago. It was tagged "crochet doily $25.00". Can you believe it? I can't remember which I was more insulted over, the fact that it was labelled "crochet" or the fact that such a painstakingly, time consuming, rare, handmade beauty was being touted for sale so cheaply. I simply had to rescue it. On the other hand I jumped for joy at the rare find and after making the purchase let the shop owner know that not only was this not crochet, but she could have sold it for a lot more. Was that wrong, I ask? Don't answer that...
This is a very victorian pattern found in the book, "Tatting Designs from Victorian Lace Craft" Ed. by Jules & Kaethe Kliot. In the 2nd edition book it can be found on pg 9 entitled "Fig. 26 Centerpiece". (It's also in the first edition.) So let's take a look at it uncovered.

My Little Treasure

That book (1st edition) was the first tatting book I ever bought. I was 15 and I saved all my babysitting money for weeks to purchase it and I had to talk my mother into driving me to the next town ( the only town for miles with a needlework shop) to purchase it. I told myself "Someday, I'm gonna tat that doily." Heh heh heh, and now I don't have to, lucky me. It looks like it was done with size 30 ecru thread and measures 18 inches across from tip to tip. The interesting thing about this doily is that it is a doily that consists solely of rings. There is not a chain on the whole thing. Can you imagine all the work that went into this thing? Wow! It blows my mind. Let's take a closer look, shall we?

closeup of the doily's center


closeup of doily's edge


I often wonder about the person who made it and what she must have been like...and how did such a little treasure end up in an antique store? How could someone possibly let a gem like this slip out of their hands? Some unknowing relative who inherited it, perhaps? Maybe they thought it was just another one of "Aunt Emma's" silly doilies and took it to the antique store just to get rid of it. I'm sure glad they did, because I certainly get a lot of pleasure out of having this treasure in my home to enjoy. It certainly has been fun sharing it with all of you today. Stay tuned...as there is more to come on this multi-part series on "TattingChic around the house".

Thank you for stopping by my little blog today, your comments are always welcome and appreciated. Be sure to fill out the poll at the bottom of the page.



A pattern for this doily can also be found online here (Page 9, fig. 26)

15 absolutely fabulous things were said:

Melissa said...

OH I had a good laugh at your Poll the Oops I thought this was tatoos was all too funny!
Also...HEY what's wrong with doilies? I'm far from a Granny and I'd have them around MY house! I think they are elegant and your photos are a prime example! LOL Oh and I wanted to say you are SOOO TattingChic!!! AND I think we now believe it now that we see it...or should we since it wasn't your work after all? LOL
Looking forward to seeing more tatting around your house!
P.S. For some reason I can't click on the doily photos to really see them up close, I don't know why.

Lace-lovin' Librarian - Diane said...

What a lucky find! I would have rescued it also. Some people just have no appreciation for needlework of any kind. About 20 years ago I went to a garage sale and found at least two dozen crocheted doilies from 6" to 12" in diameter, all marked 10 cents! My girlfriend and I bought them all. The woman who was selling them hated doilies and just wanted to get rid of them!

I see nothing wrong with correcting the shop owner and telling her she could have sold it for much more. One time my sister and I were in an antique shop and found a gorgeous treadle sewing machine for $95. We put down a $5 deposit and went home to get my sister's care to take it home. In the meantime, another customer came in and offered the shop owner $250. The shop owner was honest and said it was already sold. He let us know that he had no idea he could have sold the machine for so much! For less than $15 for a new belt and tension spring, I had the machine running later the same day! You never know what goodies you'll find out thee!

TattingChic said...

Hey Melissa, I know, Iknow, all I proved today was that I own some tatting LOL...but hey, at least I'm honest I could have taken credit for that masterpiece, but I didn't. Don't worry there is more to come. This camera/software/download/upload business is just lot of work, but once I get it down, it will go a lot faster. I gave myself a crash course in a few days. Thanks to all the pressure from fellow tatters I got it done! Thanks for the fun comment.

Carol Lawecki said...

How lucky can you be to have found such a beautiful doily at that price. Wonderful!!! Your background on your blog is pretty. I don't remember seeing this one when I made mine.

TattingChic said...

Diane that is such a cool story about your sewing machine. I love looking for fun stuff like that...I'm usually on the look out for tatting to "rescue", old tatting shuttles and old tatting books or articles. I've had pretty good luck so far. It's a lot of fun.
Thanks Carol, the background is from pyzam.com you can go there by clicking on the link right below my navbar at the top of the blog.

yarnplayer said...

That is a wonderful story about how you got your beautiful doily. I think you did very well to help educate the shop owner.
Glad you have been able to get some photos on your blog, and am looking forward to more!
Oh, BTW, when I was in my 20's I tatted quite a few doilies, mostly in white. Now that I am "not as young as I use to be", I am into wild colors and funky jewelry. Reverse ageing, or something...er, yeah :-) Truthfully, I just don't have the time to tat big projects now.

Susanne said...

A very nice story how you got that large doily that match the table so perfect. I think you did a bargain and nothing wrong in telling the shopowner afterwards.
I am doing doilies and I am not a grandmother ;-D. Some years ago I bought a smaller doily at a jumble sale and paid around 2 dollars for it. Have not been able to locate the pattern for it though. My motivation was also to save the doily, lol. But it is true that you start to think who made it etc. when you hold such a thing in your hand.

LadyShuttleMaker aka MadMadPotter said...

Whoo hoo! You got some pictures up in here, not that's what I am talking about! I am glad you rescued and apreciate such a lovely treasure. You should still tat it though....that would be quite the accomplishment!

OmonSan said...

They are great! I love tatting things and antiques and 'saving' stuff is a true art! It simply has to be done and I quess that you were just the person to do it. I have quite a numer of items in my home too, that I just had to rescue!

TattingChic said...

Hey Yarnplayer, Susanne, Sherry, and Omon...Thanks for all your great comments. Yarnplayer, I love your "funky" necklaces. All that doily tatting made it possible, don't ya think?
Way to save the doilies, Susanne! It just so happened I already had the pattern for years and recognized it when I purchased it.
Sherry, yes, It's great to be up and running...(ya know uploading photos and stuff) as far as tatting that doily all I have to say is this. AHHHH HA HA HA HA HA!!!! That's a good one. ;)
Omon, so you are a fellow doily-rescuer? Maybe we could all start an organization, instead of "GREENpeace" we could call it "DOILYpeace". ***BA DUM DUM*** (That was the joke drum playing)well, peace out for now...

Sandra E said...

I'm actually starting to tat this doily (white DMC Cebelia 30) and there are SOME chains in it, but they are hidden. The rosettes in the center have chains on the outer edges.....

TattingChic said...

You are right Sandra, upon closer examination of it, there are some chains though they don't stand out, they are used as a frame around the little flowers on the edge and around the ovals. Good luck, I'm sure we will all be looking forward to seeing your amazing accomplishment once you finish it.

Gina said...

I'm so glad you rescued this doily. Even tho I'm not a doily person, I still appreciate the time and skill that has gone into them. I SO hate hearing about tatting being in rummage sales and sold cheap ( or worse, tossed in the junkpile!) and I really don't even like it when CQ stitchers break up a perfectly good doily for their embellishments, tho I'm fine with one that is already damaged somehow. This really is a beauty!

❦TattingChic said...

Thanks Gina! This was one of those things that I HAD to have! I couldn't believe my eyes when I saw it! I consider it a very lucky find!

Marie Antoinette said...

can you be so kind as to tell me where I can will find yourself the pattern of this rug. please ....
clik the link but I can not .. I could help .. your work is so beautiful.