Roland-designs , Virginie's blog.

"Never lose an opportunity of seeing anything beautiful, for beauty is God's handwriting." - Ralph Waldo Emerson

Sunday, 20 August 2017

Tatting the summer away.....

Earlier this year, a dear friend sent me some tatting shuttles. I have to admit that it had been some years, since I had tatted anything. 

So I decided to use the summer holiday to brush up on my tatting skills, now tatting is pretty straight forward but if you have doing a lot of crochet it can take a little while to get the movement, and tension right. It’s all down to muscle memory, the more you do something the better you get at it. So don’t start on a big project when learning a new technique, do small try-outs, learn to fix mistakes and don’t get discouraged… your brain is programed to remember movements, so just keep practicing !

If you are thinking about taking up tatting, here are a couple tips:

-        -   Learn how to attach a new thread.
-        -  Practice opening closed rings. You will need that skill to fix counting mistakes.
-      - Understand how to join the last ring to the first ring, when tatting in the round…. you don’t want a twisted picot.

There are lot’s of useful youtube videos and books, but one of my favorite for absolute beginners is:
Easy tatting by Rozella F. Linden 

Now that I’ve practiced a bit, maybe it’s time to take on a larger project ?

Tatting practice. The red circle is mixed tatting and crochet.

My largest project so far. Free pattern here:

My little growing collection of tatting books
Tatting theory and patterns by Jan Stawasz is just amazing, but not for the impatient soul. Beautiful, heirloom quality patterns, the book is hard to find but can be ordered here:

PS. The books I recommend are my own preference, I  am not sponsored by the publishers nor authors.

Sunday, 6 August 2017

Visit to Florence

I wanted to share with my readers a few photos from our little trip to Florence. My dear maman came to watch the children, so my husband and I were able to escape a couple days for a well deserved holiday.

Florence is one of the most visited cities and Italy, and July might just be one of the warmest and busiest months. The first day we visited the Galleria Uffizi. A beautiful museum, and well worth waiting the 40 minutes in the line - despite our having arrived right around opening time.

We had planned on seeing as much as possible, but the long lines in the hot Italian sun did not appeal too much – So we explored on our own, rested then went out in the evening to see the Ponte Vecchio and eat Gelato.

The next day we took a long walk along the Viale Galileo, the sun was not too high yet and the view was beautiful.

There is so much to see in the historical center of Florence, statues, replicas, beautiful buildings, etc… but the best time is definitely early in the morning before the town comes alive with crowds of tourist, and crazy traffic. 

The evenings are lovely, a little cooler but with still a lot to see and experience. Our second evening we sat on the Ponte Vecchio, listening to a street musician while the sun set….no photos, some things just need to be experienced not documented !

The Duomo

Statue of Dante Alighieri

Even if you don't manage to see all the museums, there is plenty of art, and replicas to enjoy around town

Ponte Vecchio

The Ponte Vecchio is very crowded during the day, but early in the morning before the shop opens it's so charming with  the small gold sellers stalls all secured up with metal bars, padlocks and decorative iron works.

View from the Ponte Vecchio

View of Florence from the Viale Galileo

More views from the Viale Galileo

Ponte Vecchio to the left, and Palazzo Vecchio to the right

Piazzale Michelangelo

Sunday, 16 July 2017

Gamle Norge - R.T.Pritchett

Gamle Norge, 1879
‘Gamle Norge’ is an account written in the 1870’s by an English gentlemen who travelled in Norway to see and experience the ‘old ways’. 

Purposely avoiding spending too much time in the big cities he travelled through the countryside, visiting remote villages, glaciers, went reindeer hunting and often slept beneath the stars. 

My copy was printed in 1879, and was a lucky find in an old bookstore in T√łnsberg.

The book is written in a charming and engaging manner, you feel the excitement of the traveller as he describes the peasants, their traditions, dwellings, and simple way of life. 

Much has changed in Norway, but one thing that will never change is the spirit of the traveller, and these lamentations written in the Victoria era still ring true today. 

“In these days of express trains, fish torpedoes going twenty knots an hour, telegrams, and instantaneous photographs, people will not give sufficient time to do anything with steady enjoyment. Skurry and scuttle are too prominent by far”

“..Still we made the best of it, and came to the conclusion that one of the charms of travel is the variety of situation; and then, after all, with pleasant companions, anything short of bad accidents is only the kind of thing which the true traveller must expect, and almost seeks.”


Original blog post from 2012: