Textile Bowl and the Finished Apron

I adapted Ruth Lane’s felt scrap bowl tutorial to include a piece of hand-dyed cotton scrim to make a small textile bowl from felt and fabric scraps. The method involves laying out your fabric scraps on a piece of water-soluble fabric (WSF), creating a sandwich by adding a second piece of WSF, pinning it together and using free-motion embroidery all over it so that all the pieces of fabric are stitched together. Here is my layout (scrim on the botttom, then WSF with felt and fabric scraps – I put another sheet of WSF on top of this):

Here is the finished bowl after wetting out the WSF and leaving it to dry over another bowl:

I most like how the scrim has solidified and looks like water splashing up from the surface of a pond.

I am really pleased with how the apron turned out, all those hours applying wax were worth it in the end! It’s not very obvious from the photo but there are lots of pale greens and blue still visible from the original rainbow dyeing. The label said it was 100% cotton but clearly the waist straps aren’t. I have sprayed it with clear plasti-drip to water-proof it and hope to find out on Sunday if that has worked…

And a close up:

Linking up to nina-marie, off the wall Friday

Busy Week

It’s been another busy week but unfortunately not in a creative way, my day job has been going more than a bit crazy. It’s been as much as I can do to make myself eat something before crashing into bed each evening. This weekend I have really thrown myself into textiles to make up for an otherwise rubbish week. It has been a very productive weekend though…

Mr TB was out on a stag night on Saturday so I put the evening to good use, watching trashy TV while applying wax to an apron I rainbow dyed with blues and greens that morning:

This is the batik pattern I have been doodling, it’s taking a surprisingly long time, 4 hours so far and I’m only half way finished…

I plan to over-dye this with a deep purple and then spray with plasti-dip spray to waterproof it so I have a felting / dyeing apron (no more soggy felter’s middle for me!).

I have finished a couple of C&G “samples” that I started last weekend, the assignment is to explore natural wools with a view to creating a wall hanging but to my mind these pieces are too large (approx 40 x 60 cm / 16 x 24″) to be samples and I like them as wall hangings in their own right:

Do you remember this piece of ice-dyed felt from a few weeks ago?

I turned it into a bag, this is the front flap: 

Inside the front flap:

I plan to do a lot of hand embroidery on this piece, mostly blanket stitch around the edges and bit of embellishment on the front flap. If I can get it finished in time I will submit it to the Yarns in the Cathedral exhibition in May.

And finally, some blue tits have been showing a lot of interest in the bird pod I hung a couple of weeks ago. I can’t decide if they are nesting in it or just stealing the cat fluff I put in it as welcome present…

Linking up to nina-marie, off the wall Friday

Batik on Wool

I was curious to see if a batik style dyeing could be employed for wool felt, here I have used liquid cold wax on a piece of rainbow dyed prefelt. I think you can see from the photo that the wax had a tendency to sit on the top of the wool so I tried to push it down using the nozzle on the bottle. Hot wax might work better.

I used some black  and magenta dyes over the batik and steamed for an hour. As you can see the wax has melted and spread across the wool.

This is the reverse side, no wax is visible and the dyes don’t appear to have been hindered from penetrating the wool.

This is what it looked like after removing the wax with a hot iron. Although the lines aren’t as distinct as what you get with cotton, I was surprised to see any lines at all given how the wax wanted to sit on the surface of the felt.

 It sort of worked but gives quite a delicate effect.

First Quarter Challenge 2014

The lovely ladies at Felting Fibre Studio have set another fab quarterly challenge, this time it is to interpret Jackson Pollock’s work into fibre. I confess I’m not a big fan of most abstract art but some of his more colourful pieces do intrigue me. Looking through images of his work, the following caught my attention the most:

I like the radial symmetry of this piece and think the white dotted lines might do well with some batik style dyeing.

I’m not so keen on the aesthetics of this piece but I like the concept of twisted ropes of felt and other fibres, this piece definitely lends itself towards interpretation in fibres… it reminds me of my attempts at knitting!

At the time the challenge was set I was working on some batik pieces and this seemed like an obvious place to start, effectively throwing the liquid wax at the cloth a la Pollock style and then dyeing and painting over the top of that. This is the first step towards that piece…

I am also hatching another idea I had was sparked by Annie’s birds at Rosiepink, she uses acrylic paint on felt after sketching with machine embroidery. More on that another time.