Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Wednesday's Words of Wisdom

“Tonight’s December thirty-first,
Something is about to burst.
The clock is crouching, dark and small,
Like a time bomb in the hall.
Hark, it's midnight, children dear.
Duck! Here comes another year!” 
― Ogden Nash

Blogging with my dear granddaughter - a sweet way to end the year.

Here's wishing you and yours a safe and happy 
New Year's Eve celebration! 

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

"It's a String Thing" #73

It's Tuesday - your good news day - and the last Tuesday of the great year 2014.

For the final challenge of this year, we begin with TanglePatterns String 068 by Barbara Finwall~

Copyrighted image used with permission by 
The string reminded me of the basic shape of Rick Robert's Schway and so we will use that wonderful tangle along with Rick's fabulous Paradox.

It seems a fitting way to finish up the year and ring in a new one.

Our hats off to Rick and to Maria for the marvelous method we call Zentangle®.

Both tangles can be found on TanglePatterns or by clicking their names below :

Schway by Rick Roberts
Rick's Paradox by Rick Roberts    
                     Click here for my Tips for Tangling Paradox.

Here are the (Not so) Official Guidelines:
* Challenges are posted on Tuesdays.
*Use the string posted for the week and patterns that begin or contain the letter(s) indicated
* Submit a photo of your tile saved as jpg or scan your tile (300 dpi or higher) and save as a jpg
*Email your jpg file as an attachment to -
*Entries are to be submitted by Saturday evenings.
*Photos and 'Best of Show' are posted on Mondays.

Send in your photos - you will encourage and inspire fellow Zentangle® enthusiasts all over the world.

PLEASE NOTE: I will add a link to your blog or web site with your tile photo, upon request. The site specific URL must accompany your request.

I look forward to your emails.

Monday, December 29, 2014

"It's a String Thing" #72 Tiles

This was a wonderfully happy week - Christmas celebrations and the anticipation of the New Year - all topped off with a bit of tangled fun with a beautiful string and two festive tangles.
Let's take a look ~

The first tile arrived from Carmela who wrote ~
...To me it looks like a heart and i loved it.
Mooka and Uncorked are also beautiful and favorite patterns, but freestyle is with these patterns easier.
I made a few variations of the patterns and for the contrast i made the background black.
Then i used some shadow and i enjoyed it very much.
Christmas greetings...
[on]My blog
The dark background makes the tangles stand out and highlights the many variations of the patterns Carmela beautifully tangled.

CZT Kath Gregitis said, "I just purchased a set of six colored Sakura pens, so I thought I add some red."

Christmas ornaments come to mind with Kath's delicate tangles and red accents.

Lori Byerly said, "...I used a couple of tangleations of uncorked - one lashed down and the other free floating. You can also find my tile here
Merry Christmas"

Lori tethered the large arc of Uncorked, anchoring them to the lower corners.  That is a fabulous idea.  Notice how the dark undersides of those lines mimic the "free floating" tangles in the corners.

Cat Trask wrote ~
This weeks challenge was a blast! I really enjoy both MOOKA and UNCORKED!
I thought I would try it on some tan paper. I think it turned out pretty good for a first effort.

Yes, it is very good for a first, second, third - or any effort :)  Cat's pretty patterns, shaded and highlighted, have a glow about them.  Notice how she shaded with many fine cross-hatch lines in Mooka.

Sandra, along with Christmas greetings from Germany, said ~

I just wanted to calm down a bit in these christmas days and so I tangled a tile for your challenge :-) I always wanted to try Uncorked but I didn't use it before and Mooka is one of my favourite pattern. So it was a great pleasure to tangle this tile.
I posted it to my blog too.

This is bold and delicate at the same time.  The dark spaces, delicate loops, and perfs dancing freely all add to the festive look.

Audrie Wiesenfelder wrote ~
Belated Merry Christmas, and Best Wishes for a Healthy, Happy, Peaceful New Year.'s my response to this week's String Thing; a little on the simple side, but I like it...the link to my blog:

It is marvelously simple and elegant.  Audrie morphed the two tanlges together and notice that she darkened Uncorked and added weight to one side of her Mooka lines.

Ilse Lukken sent Merry Christmas greetings and wrote ~
Mooka and Uncorked are two well-known patterns, that I don't seem to use very often. So, it took me a little time to figure out how to put these in string 072. The result doesn't look as balanced as I wanted, but it was a nice excercise!

Ilse struck a nice balance of dark and light, especially with the heavy black sections around the perfs of Uncorked.

Jane Glotzer sent wishes for a "very happy new year" along with her entry.  She added,
"Mooka and Uncorked were fun, celebratory tangles to work with this week (and so celebratory that some "champagne" bubbles just bubbled right out of the top of the tile!) I had no idea where the challenge would take me this time, and I was actually surprised with where I ended up! I got to this point and while I wanted to add some more Uncorked somewhere, the tile told me it was done! So very zentangly..."
Yes, it is so very "zentangly".  I cannot add much more to Jane's wonderful description except to say that I agree, it is celebratory!  Happy New Year!

Lily Moon sent lovely wishes for a "wonderful and joyful" Christmas and "good health and a very happy New Year."  She used tan paper for this tile and posted it here on her blog ~

Lily's Mooka and Uncorked are just fabulous.  In addition, the way that she aura-ed on either side is the most wonderful idea.  Notice how she used brown, white, and black and then shaded and highlighted the area.  Could you just picture an entire tile completed that way?  What a marvelous touch.

Natasja Rijsbergen said, "This is a great challenge. I love both tangles... And both tangles were new for me. I will use mooka in more of my drawings.  I wish you all the best for 2015!"

That is a gratifying comment as one of the goals of these challenges is to learn and use tangles that you might not otherwise try.   Mooka is not an easy one to grasp and Natasja clearly enjoyed this tangle.  Her drops of red with just a bit of sparkle add to the fun!

From Beverly ~

Beverly darkened the string lines and unfurled the tangles from there - beautiful lines of Uncorked and Mooka with shaded accents.

CZT Kathryn Crane-Thielen wrote ~
This challenge was quick and fun but I had to work at it. Since you mentioned about the holidays being in full swing and with Christmas over, I decided to add some zing with gold sparkle to bring in the New Year. I incorporated the 2 tangles, Mooka and Uncorked together.

Kathryn's Mooka and Uncorked intertwine and sparkle with the gold accents she added.  Happy New Year!

Heike Mosebach said that she liked the two tangles so much that she drew two tiles ~

That doubles our pleasure, doesn't it?
It looks as though she effortlessly blended the two tangles together and enjoyed the process.

From Ingrid Coventon ~
It was a great pleasure to draw this tile. I love Mooka and Uncorked. I used the string upside down, because I was attracted by the heart shape. I hope you can still imagine the stringline. Although you can't see it, it is still there.
I started with the center Uncorked. Then for Mooka I started on the left of the heart shape and went on to the right, and back to the left and again to the right and so on. At last I drew the smaller Mooka's on the very left and right side of the tile after I drew the smaller Uncorked on both sides of the center one.
I wish you all tanglers around the world a very HAPPY NEW YEAR.

That is a New Year's celebration!  Ingrid's description of her process in tangling this helps when viewing her masterpiece.  The dark spaces are perfect for complimenting her wonderful variations of the tangles.

Portia Hyde sent in two of the three tiles she completed and explains ~
Attached are first and third tile. #1 is pretty heavy duty, #2 was dark and stormy and I went for light and airy on #3.
Hope everyone had a Merry Christmas and is looking forward to the New Year.
Heavy...perhaps she was referring to her shading and dark lines.  Striking is an alternate description.  Notice her fabulous fanned black lines - straight on the sides and curved in Uncorked.
This is light and airy and very pretty.

Kathryn White sent "Blessings for the new year" along with her tile.  She also posted it here on her blog.

What a wispy, wonderful Mooka she tangled - and the perfs along one side of each Uncorked arc are just lovely.  

Sharyn Penna said ~
This prompt was so soothing after all the holiday prepping and celebrations. I just cozied up and tangled away.
Wishing all a happy new year!

Sharyn's tile is soothing to behold.  She and Mooka are good friends and that shines through in her piece.  The three large Uncorked are so very pretty in the foreground.

Lucy Banta, CZT, wtote ~
Here's my Mooka and Uncorked challenge this week. I love these two tangles, and wish I had more time to be creative in weaving them together. Maybe in the new year
Thank you and here's the link to my blog post.
Happy New Year!

That is very creative - a pleasant blend of the tow tangles and beautiful shading.

From Birthday Girl, Sue Agnew ~
I just used Uncorked, because I've never been able to bond with Mooka. I'm uncomfortable with its ambiguity (moebius-ness?) ... I think last time it was used in a challenge I removed the ambiguity by drawing it more like Uncorked with the bottoms joined. I suppose it would be good discipline to work with it, but today is my birthday so I can do what I want.
In this one, I was trying to use the fine lines to indicate shadowing, rather than using the white areas to indicate highlights. In retrospect, I think small areas of "sparkle" are much more effective ... but I didn't want to redraw it or risk messing it up by trying to fill in more fine lines.
I was also taken by your variation where you put ovals in the negative space. When I very first started Zentangle I was in love with pearls (used to do Onamoto all the time), so it was fun to "return to my roots" by doing one with pronounced negative space and pearls filling it.

Because it is her birthday - and because it is Zentangle - Sue can do whatever she wants :)
And what she did is just fabulous..the perfs, the dark spaces, the fine lines, the interwoven arcs.  She "did the tangle proud!"

CZT Joan Delony said ~
I drew this tile about 5 different ways. I really like drawing Uncorked and Mooka. This is the first of the 5. I can't say it's my favorite because I am happy with them all. You can see the others on my blog.

Joan's appreciation of the tangles shows in her tile.  The string line is visible and wonderfully accented by the lovely patterns.  Be sure to check out her blog to see the others she completed.

Susan Theron sent a note of thanks and wishes for a Happy New Year with her tile ~

Susan's Mooka is long and graceful.  She added an elegant balance with two variations of Uncorked.

Elena Müller wrote ~
Here is my tile for this challenge. I'm not sure if I have the pattern Uncorked strictly followed; my intention was to give it a three-dimensional effect. It was fun.
I wish you and the other tanglers a Happy New Year.

Elena's Uncorked does have a dimensional effect especially with the sparkle that she added.  Her Mooka compliments it very well.

Felicity Strohfeldt sent "compliments of the season" and added ~

 I enjoyed getting to grips with these two tangles and getting some practice doing them. As you can see I turned the string around, as this is the time of friendship and love and the string tugged at my heartstrings.
Here’s wishing you and yours a prosperous and happy 2015. Looking forward to the challenges 2015.

Notice what she did with the tangles.  Felicity added Uncorked to the ends of her Mooka loops - what a wonderful idea.  She made some arcs dark and added deep shading - great touches.

And now, the tile for honors this week was sent in from northern Germany near the Baltic Sea.

Congratulations,  Henrike Bratz!  

Henrike has been very busy with creative endeavors and short on time - she wrote,
I was so very busy producing and selling straw stars, I had hardly any time for tangling. But now there has come the time to relax and I did your string thing #72. I called my tile “follow your heart” which seems to be a good motto for 2015!!!
It is an excellent motto and an excellent accompanying tile.  The deep dark background makes her tangles pop and they are just beautiful.  Just look at the details in each of her Mooka strokes.   She tucked Uncorked here and there in various sizes and topped both tangles off with tipple.

 Henrike also sent last week's tile - much too pretty not to post ~

I have a little something coming in the mail to you, Henrike.

Many thanks to all of you for making time to send in your wonderful work in the midst of the Christmas season.

Thank you to TanglePatterns for String 072 by CZT Rita Nikolajeva and to Maria Thomas for the marvelous Mooka.
I am happy to know that my beloved pattern Uncorked provided enjoyment.

I wish you all the happiest and healthiest of New Years.

Stop by Tuesday afternoon for "It's a String Thing" #73!

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Merry Christmas!

Adele Bruno, CZT
Oh holy night!
The stars are brightly shining
It is the night of the dear Savior's birth!
Long lay the world in sin and error pining
Till he appear'd and the soul felt its worth.
A thrill of hope the weary world rejoices
For yonder breaks a new and glorious morn!
                                                                                       ~ "O Holy Night" by Placide Cappeau

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Wednesday's Words of Wisdom

At Christmas
all roads
lead home.  
                                                                                                    ~ Marjorie Holmes

Zendala ornament by Adele Bruno, CZT

Project particulars:
This ornament is made from four Zendala tiles.  Each is folded in on three sides to create an equilateral triangle.
Each triangle is tangled with a different pattern:  Mooka, Bales, Cubine, and Betweed (not pictured) - all creations of Maria Thomas and Rick Roberts.
The rounded sides were then glued together.
A loop of silver string is glued to come through one of the points.

Special thanks to CZT Dorian Eng for the idea :)

Merry Christmas Eve to everyone!

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

"It's a String Thing" #72 Happy New Year!

Yes, it is Tuesday, your good news day!

As I write carols are playing, the trees are trimmed, and Santa is due here tomorrow evening.  What a magical time of year.

In one short week the festivities will, for the most part, be over and the anticipation of the New Year will be upon us.

With this in mind, here is "It's a String Thing" #72 ~

We begin in TanglePatterns String 072 by CZT Rita Nikolajeva ~

Copyrighted image used with permission by
The two tangles for this week are my own Uncorked and Maria Thomas' Mooka, both of which we have used in previous challenges.

We are familiar with them and in this busy season, that is an added bonus.

They are free flowing, celebratory tangles and seem so fitting to ring in the New Year.

Simply pencil the string line onto your tile and tangle away!

Here are the (Not so) Official Guidelines:
* Challenges are posted on Tuesdays.
*Use the string posted for the week and patterns that begin or contain the letter(s) indicated
* Submit a photo of your tile saved as jpg or scan your tile (300 dpi or higher) and save as a jpg
*Email your jpg file as an attachment to -
*Entries are to be submitted by Saturday evenings.
*Photos and 'Best of Show' are posted on Mondays.

Send in your photos - you will encourage and inspire fellow Zentangle® enthusiasts all over the world.

PLEASE NOTE: I will add a link to your blog or web site with your tile photo, upon request. The site specific URL must accompany your request.

I look forward to your emails.

Monday, December 22, 2014

"It's a String Thing" #71 Tiles

It's Christmas week and finding time to tangle in the midst of the festivities has proven to be very relaxing, especially for the participants of this week's challenge.
We used Arukas by Molly Hollibaugh and a lovely string by Carolyn Koesters.   Let's take a look ~

The first tile arrived from Carmela who wrote ~
Arukas is a very beautiful pattern and I tried it 2 weeks ago at the Diva Challenge, but without a string.
Now I placed Arukas in the spaces of the string. i made different sizes and variations...
At my blog.

Carmela tangled beautiful variations and sizes of Arukas and in so doing, defined the string line - how fun.

Lori Byerly said ~
This was a challenging challenge. :) I was tempted to go simple and use only a couple of the lines from the string, but instead I decided to go all out and use them all. It took me a couple of tries to make it work, but that was nice too because it gave me the chance to work with akuras. I like it more each time I play with it.
You can also see my tile here.

The finished tile is very dramatic.  Gorgeous shading and a deep dark center play well with the lines of the pattern.  But to think that Lori included the string line in her piece while managing to create one large Arukas is truly a fabulous feat.

Lucy Banta sent Christmas greetings along with her note ~
LOVE Arukas! So happy you featured it as a monotangle this week. I did add in some tipple, so mine isn't truly a monotangle, but in the spirit of Christmas, I thought it would be OK to stretch the boundaries.
Here's the link to my website.
Yes, it is more than OK :)  Lucy added Tipple along the border, as filler, and popping through the center of her tangles.  Note all of those overlapping and intersecting lines - wonderful!

Portia Hyde wrote, "This is very busy but I think it might look good colored. Kind of Steam Punk? "

Perhaps she was reminded of such because of the angular finish to some of her sections and certainly her wonderful shading adds a metal type look to some of the sections.  However one would classify it, it must come under the category of "wonderful" !

A very warm Christmastime welcome to Beverly who sent in her first tile ~

While Beverly used her own assortment of patterns, she did include the string line.  It in turn, stands out so well in conjunction with the tangles.

Natasja Rijsbergen sent Christmas wishes with her note - 
Here is my monotangle Arukas.
At first I thought what to do with this string... So I just started drawing and this is my finished tangle. It was fun to make!!

That describes a true Zentangle experience - letting go and being pleasantly surprised - and pleased - by the outcome.  Look at the variety she added and notice how her lines along the string curve under just a bit giving a sense of depth.  That is fabulous.

Sandra also sent merry Christmas wishes - 
I was so happy about your new string challenge, because I
used Arukas for several christmas cards and I really love that pattern :-)

When I saw the string I had the idea to draw arukas a bit different as before and so I used the string as the arukas-basic in the middle :-)

To tangle the tile was great and though the days before christmas are so stressful I felt calm and confident.
Thank you so much for this :-)

I posted my tile on my blog too.

Just looking at Sandra's tile, a calm can be felt.  Notice how she made the string line dark and complimented it with darker spaces in her background.  By adding shading and sparkle, she gave great dimension to her tangles.

Jenna Wheatmann returns this week!  She said, "Loved the string line and I had lots of fun playing with arukas. Not sure it follows the pattern strictly, but I just let it flow and this is what I came up with."

She "just let it flow" in true Zentangle style and the result is stunning.  
Then she added ~
"Not sure if you are putting a challenge on next week or if you do whether I will have time so I have attached a Happy Christmas "

Tomorrow will feature "It's a String Thing" #72 - yay! - and it is wonderful to receive such a festive Happy Christmas.  Thank you, Jenna.

Heike Mosebach wrote,"...Arukas is a versatile pattern. It's fun to play with the variant. I wish you a merry christmas."

The tangle looks beautiful on a Renaissance tile.  Notice how the string peeks out from behind.  Heike ended the tangle while the arcs were quite large, leaving wonderful spaces.  It is very dramatic.

Sue Jacobs, CZT, said ~
I snuck in a little time between festivities to do the string challenge this week. I really enjoy doing Arukas. I started with a dark blue colored tile and used a white jelly roll pen for the Arukas, I then added some highlights with the white charcoal pencil and a few shading areas with a blue colored pencil.
It [is] on my blog.

Sue has an enviable touch with the Gelly Roll pen - the tangle is just beautiful in blue.

Annemarie sent wishes for a "great Holiday" ~  "I created two tiles this week, it was relaxing and after finishing I did a Bijou tile extra."

She also posted them here on her blog.

Annmarie created two totally different looks for Arukas by mixing up her paper and color.   The first brings a Christmas tree star to mind, doesn't it?

Ilse Lukken said ~
I decided to use all of the lines the string offers. I like monotangling! Once finished, I realised I should have left some white space in the top right as well to get a tile that is better balanced, but I'm still happy with the result.
Happy Holidays!
Ilse darkened the string line and created a new Arukas in each section.  Notice how she tangled some 'arms' of the pattern to a point and others not.  Her shading in fabulous.

From Ingrid Coventon ~

Arukas was very new to me, but it was a pretty acquaintance. I was too much in the learning mode drawing this pattern then to discover different ways to draw this pattern. Because this time of year I colored the "stars" with a little touch of yellow and orange.

The acquaintance made for a very pretty tile and it is very festive for the Holiday.  Ingrid left just a few spaces of the string white and tangled an Arukas in each of the other spaces.  

From Jane Glotzer ~
...Arukas is totally fun...tried a variation or two, different numbers of spokes, but wasn't able to get a cool star to appear...I realized I have to follow through more with the aura-ing of the initial circle, but I still like what did appear with my choices... I kept it simple with just a touch of darkness and shading, and left lots of white space to show off the patterns...looking forward to seeing the variation everyone gets with just this one tangle!

Jane's "darkness and shading" and white space do really show off the tangle in all its beauty.  Notice the dark center of her pattern, too.

Colette Horsburgh said, "I forgot about the Arukas rule, and got carried away, so I did it twice!"
This is her first tile ~

 And her second ~

Notice how Colette used a variety of widths in her initial spokes.  This provides a lovely diversity within the same pattern.

From Kirsten Bish   ~

Enclosed please find my newest Tangle,
"Ode to Stary Night ".
I had a lot of fun with this challenge.
All that line work...
Thanks for all you do!

P. S. Happy Holidays to you and all my fellow Tanglers .

A gold mine of Arukas!  Kirsten tangled a variety of beginnings for the tangle and wonderful line work flows from them outward and into each other.  It is an energy filled "Starry Night".

Susan Theron who's work in the computer field can be trying at times, said it is "no wonder" she needs Zentangle in her life.  I think we can all relate to that :)  She wrote of her tile, "You will find Arukas-Akuras as well as the string there but a bit disguised." 

The alternating light and dark spaces are striking.  Notice how Susan added sparkle and shading and how both follow the curve of her tangle's lines.

Lily Moon, along with her good wishes, sent two tiles this week that are just spectacular.  She wrote,
"This week I drew two tiles. One of them on white paper and the other one on Tan paper."

Such a simple statement for simply beautiful work ~
 Both of these are 'feasts for the eyes' - so many details...shading, highlights, her signature touch of brown...
Study this one carefully.  Notice how Lily added the dark triangles to the spokes of the pattern and black lines turn to white as they run through.  She striped the arced lines, added sparkle, and tapered them into dots.  It is marvelously mesmerizing.  

A very warm welcome to Suzanne Moshier who wrote ~
Here’s my creation for the It’s a String Thing Challenge #71. I really enjoy Arukas and I’m happy with the way this turned out.
...a link to my blog too.

Suzanne began with squares, triangles, and circles - how fun!

Felicity Strohfeldt created a tile full of good tidings.  She wrote ~

This week’s challenge was a bit of a nightmare for me. When I saw the string for the first time, my mind couldn’t get past all the lines in the string and only one tangle to cover it all. The next thought was Christmas, Holy Child , angels and stars! Burnout time! First I decided against trying at all. Then the conscience took over. I also found Akuras a challenge to use. What to do with all the lines and how to do it neatly trying to control my shaking hand? Anyway I went ahead with a simplified string. Tackled the Christmassy idea and introduced slightly comical versions of the spiritual characters...

It is a wonderful thing that Felicity worked through her hesitations and set aside time to tangle this. It captures Christmas joy - the Babe sleeping peacefully as angles sing.  Merry Christmas!

From Ragged Ray - something we can all take to heart - 
I've learnt a valuable lesson this week - instead of thinking 'I've got no time, I can't tangle' I've tweaked it to be 'I've got little time, what can I tangle with what I've got'.

And this tile is the result. No time to fill all those different string sections, no time to try all sort of fancy variations and complex ideas. Just turn the string into a ribbon, pick a couple of variations I'd previously tried out in my sketchbook and pop them into a couple of the areas. And lo and behold a strange but festive harp, ready to accompany us as we tangle our way toward our celebrations, in whatever form they take.

Simple and elegant and timely - a gift in itself.  Merry Christmas.

From Sharyn Penna ~
Arukas has captured my heart and attention, but I have yet to find the star within. So, I added my lemonade remedy to the mix...I curved the straight lines and added Mooka for the rescue!
I really like this tile, but I won't rest till I can ultimately find that star! Sounds like a New Year resolution!
Wishing you and yours a warm and Merry Christmas! 

The star effect is more evident when the spokes of the tangle are straight.  Sharyn's curved and connected spokes make the star less evident but her tile shines in its own way.  Lovely lines of Mooka and carefully shaded Arukas are beautifully complimentary.

And now, the tile for honors this week was submitted by Germany's 
Christiane Plate ~

She called her tile "Stars and Holly" and sent "twinkling greetings" ~

That takes us right into Christmas, doesn't it?
Christiane created playful patterns peeking out from one another.  She varied the centers as well as the shapes and topped them all off with sparkle and shading.

Congratulations, Christiane!  I have a little something coming in the mail for you.

Many thanks to everyone for sharing your work and inspiring the rest of us.

Special thanks to Carolyn Koesters via TanglePatterns for the lovely string and to
Molly Hollibaugh for the amazing Arukas.

Stop by Tuesday afternoon for "It's a String Thing" #72!