Tangle Reference Guide


Lately when I’ve been ‘trying’ to tangle, I have a lot of . . . do I know any tangles??? What do I know? I can’t remember a thing! Has this ever happened to you? I am probably not the only person who has so many things going on in my life that my brain is just bogged down by the end of the day and I am left with – – – do I know any tangles???Now. Rewind to May. I flew to Toronto to surprise a friend I had never really met in person – just online – who is really as close as a sister. While I was visiting Cindy, my CZT friend Cherryl Moote invited us to spend a little time in her home – and studio – and we did some fun shopping that I talked about here. One of the things Cherri showed us was a tangle book she was  building in a moleskine storyboard journal. I loved what she showed us so much that I ordered my own journal from Moleskine and got started.

This is what one page looks like. This journal can be ordered from moleskine.com or amazon.com for around $15-20.00. It measures 5″ x 8.25″ and closes with an attached elastic band. Each of the 108 pages has four story blocks already drawn on the page like you see in the photo above.
From the first photo in this post you can see that I started by keeping primarily to the blocks. That extra space in the middle can be used to make notes about the tangles, or to sketch out the steps, or to say “hey! this is my absolute favorite!” By the time I got to this page I was regretting losing that space in the center and began filling it with tangles that needed more room than one box.
For me – this book isn’t intended to show step-outs. This book is all about being something I can grab when I hit a brick wall and can’t remember anything. It is a reference. A refresher. A reminder.
Being such, I want to fill it with my favorite tangles to draw. Not ones that I don’t want to use, or ones that I can never get to look right. It isn’t a place where I ‘practice’ – I do that in a different sketchbook. I want these pages to look pretty. I want to be able to flip through and have the tangles bring up good memories in my mind.

When I look at cat-kin I remember how I could never get that to look right until Meredith Yuhas taught us the steps in a Retreat to Paradise class.

When I look at verdigogh I remember that it is a cool, versatile tangle that adds a little spice wherever I can use it.

When I look at copada by Margaret Bremner – it reminds me of her little wonky houses – even though there isn’t a single house in the tangle.

Anything by Michele Beauchamp reminds me of her beautiful spirals and I find myself trying to fit one in – even if there isn’t enough space – just because I love them so much!

And when I see those awesome little Lilah Beans I just smile from ear to ear! I love those little beans!

And thanks, Cherri, for letting me take your idea and make my own book!

As a quick reference guide of tangles I am comfortable with drawing – this moleskine journal is awesome! Except for that whole quick part. Any time I sit down with this journal is good for at least 30 minutes because I just get lost in remembering!

The Creator's Leaf

4 thoughts on “Tangle Reference Guide

  1. Yes, I often find myself wondering 'what's another tangle with small circles?' or 'I need a tangle that's quite dark'. I have my trusty list of categorized tangles, and it's becoming a bit unwieldy. I recently got a small 'notebook' on a big ring that's intended for use by language learners to record new words in. But I think it will be very useful as a tangle reference. When I get around to actually drawing the pages in it! Sheesh. I need two of me.

  2. how funny…I have the very same moleskine and I also use mine as a visual guide for tangles! it's so perfect for that, with the way the pages are printed. only 'official' tangle patterns go in mine, though, so I can remember what they look like!

  3. I'm so happy to read that I'm not the only one to draw a blank on patterns. Sometimes I, too, am somewhere with a few minutes to tangle and can't think of a single one! This doesn't seem possible to completely blank out on patterns, but it does. Thank you for the peace of mind this brings in not being alone! 🙂 Also thanks for the peak at your book. I love it! Mary Reich

  4. Hey Alice!!! I love this idea!! I have a 'book' I put together to put tangles in, about 10 per page of squares… I never thought to think "outside" the box, too much OCD in me and perfectionist, but I will definitely try to tangle around the boxes and write… I had the pages bound into a spiral notebook at an office supply store and carry it with me everywhere… this reminded me that I have been so busy I have not tangled just 'for me'!! and that is so wrong!!! I am doing an oral presentation in my business communications class in a few weeks and I think I am going to do it on Zentangle (its our choice of our subject, as long as its not illegal, and cannot be guns cause no guns on campus lol) … so this will work 🙂 love your moleskine!!!

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