Gorgeous Goodies

I haven’t had much spare time for felting this week but I did receive this gorgeous bundle of fibre from my blogland friend and fellow Artybird student, Jane Mercer of Takingaturn.

We did a fibre swap after she read my post about sculpting with different breeds and this lovely bundle arrived last weekend. So far I have only been able to make one piece. The purple bag at the bottom of the picture contains Cap Merino, a breed that I have read lots about but as yet not had a chance to play with. I was so excited to be able to try it out. From what I have read I was led to believe it would felt very quickly and form a very firm felt with a smooth (not at all hairy) surface.

Armed with this information I thought I was holding the Holy Grail of wools for sculptural felt so HAD to try making a 3D piece with it.

It didn’t quite felt as I expected, in fact it took a lot longer than most of the wools I had previously tried just to get to the prefelt stage. I was so surprised by this I made the same piece from BFL to see if I was just having an off day, but the Cap Merino took twice as long to felt as the BFL piece below.

Felting time aside, it does have some very nice qualities though, it does form quite a firm felt when compared with conventional merino (it’s not as firm as the coarser wools such as Finnish), and the surface is very smooth and soft. It also forms really nice sharp folds and does hold 3D shapes well.

This is what it looks like before felting, it’s a fine, very short staple fibre with some crimp:

Here is the piece I made (using the same resist template I used for the other sculpture tests).

And the BFL piece (I blended red and blue with a little white silk):

As promised in my last post, I have been playing with crayons and other mark making implements as part of my C&G course, doing this has been a real trip down memory lane, it’s just like being back in art class at primary school ;).  I expect to be using these as design inspiration for felt pieces. They all started out from images of bone cross sections like this.

20 comments

  1. Thanks Teri for mentioning our swop. I like the smooth finish of the cap , but feel its denseness means it doe s not have the liveliness of other fibres. It am still trying to find out Cap a breed or just cut up merino. It certainly made a nice finish in your test sample.

  2. Thanks Teri for mentioning our swop. I like the smooth finish of the cap , but feel its denseness means it doe s not have the liveliness of other fibres. It am still trying to find out Cap a breed or just cut up merino. It certainly made a nice finish in your test sample.

  3. Thanks Felicity, I'm a great admirer of your Cap Merino work, you paint outstanding "pictures" with it, your work was one of the reasons I was so excited to try this fibre.

  4. Thanks Felicity, I'm a great admirer of your Cap Merino work, you paint outstanding "pictures" with it, your work was one of the reasons I was so excited to try this fibre.

  5. Hi Jane, Kate suggested that the short staple merino supplied by Norwegian Wools is a different breed of Merino (from South Africa) but I'm not sure if that is the same as Cap Merino. I've read in a couple of places that Cap merino is just ordinary merino cut up into small fragments and carded into a batt but I don't know if that is just an urban myth. My other half is off to Germany in a couple of weeks so I'm trying to see if I can get some Cap Merino delivered to him so I can play some more….

  6. Hi Jane, Kate suggested that the short staple merino supplied by Norwegian Wools is a different breed of Merino (from South Africa) but I'm not sure if that is the same as Cap Merino. I've read in a couple of places that Cap merino is just ordinary merino cut up into small fragments and carded into a batt but I don't know if that is just an urban myth. My other half is off to Germany in a couple of weeks so I'm trying to see if I can get some Cap Merino delivered to him so I can play some more….

  7. Interesting – I haven't used the cap merino before but have used short fiber merino batts that are the short ends left over from the carding process I think. It felts really quickly so it sounds different than the cap. I like the result. Looks like you had fun with your design work.

  8. Interesting – I haven't used the cap merino before but have used short fiber merino batts that are the short ends left over from the carding process I think. It felts really quickly so it sounds different than the cap. I like the result. Looks like you had fun with your design work.

  9. I've got some short staple merino from Norwegian Wools and it's not the same as Cap merino. Cap is softer and even shorter fibres. If you look at the link below you can see it.
    http://postimg.org/image/u44bw8oi5/
    Left is Norvegian and right is Cap merino from Wollknoll.
    And by the way short Norwegian Wools get their short staple merino from some German supplier as well.

  10. I've got some short staple merino from Norwegian Wools and it's not the same as Cap merino. Cap is softer and even shorter fibres. If you look at the link below you can see it.
    http://postimg.org/image/u44bw8oi5/
    Left is Norvegian and right is Cap merino from Wollknoll.
    And by the way short Norwegian Wools get their short staple merino from some German supplier as well.

  11. Hi Felicity – thanks for posting the image of the 2 wools, this is really interesting. I'm just about to order some short staple merino batts from Norwegian wools for my C&G course so I will be very interested to compare how they both felt…

  12. Hi Felicity – thanks for posting the image of the 2 wools, this is really interesting. I'm just about to order some short staple merino batts from Norwegian wools for my C&G course so I will be very interested to compare how they both felt…

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