A Productive Week

Not sure what happened to me this week but it’s like someone put amphetamines in my coffee. Last week I could barely motivate myself to cook for myself and only managed to produce one piece of felt. This week I have turned into a felting whirling dervish… Here are a few of the things I have started / finished so far this week:

I dyed the lacy scarf I made on Sunday but after looking at it for a couple of days decided I wasn’t that happy with it so put it back in the dye bath.

Much better!
It now makes me think of autumnal leaves falling into a river.

Some felt cuffs using a similar technique to the scarf, there is an adult and 2 child sizes, I think you can just see where I have cut some slits in the adult one, I hope the cuts will open up to make a lacy effect with a little felting persuasion.

A little felt pod made using an adaptation of the lacy felt technique to create the loops you can see in the second picture.

A felt vase made from some shibori dyed prefelt, this is still very much a WIP but I hope the top will look like a 5-petal flower when it’s finished.

A Halloween-inspired bag, still quite a long way to go on this one but I think you can make out that it will be a pumpkin… one day!

I started this “coral” piece before I went on my hols but it takes so long to needle-felt each strip into place that I only just got as far as wet felting it this week. It is currently drying and waiting to be fixed to some stretcher bars.

These 2 pieces were started at Dagmar Binder’s class in September. The pale blue piece was an uninspiring, flat multi-layered disc that I have been looking at for weeks trying to decide what to do with it. I finally picked it up and started playing with it this week, folding it this way and that and this shape was born. An hour of stitching later and it is now drying in it’s new form. Given that I was ready to throw it on the reject / recycling pile a few days ago I’m rather pleased with how it turned out.

The dark blue piece below is a sewer’s bowl, the raised ring around the outside is a perfect pin cushion, while the bowl will prevent your reels of thread, beads etc. from rolling away. It was inspired by photos of a coral polyps:

A nuno felt scarf (would you believe, dyed the silk, felted and finished this week, including a rolled hem).

I also felted this cotton scrim and embroidered bowl, even after using CMC to stiffen it I wasn’t that happy that it would keep its shape so opted to felt it.

And finally another piece from Fiona Duthie’s surface design class. I think this might be come a book cover…

As if all this wasn’t enough I have also scoured and dyed a Shetland fleece, all the beautiful colours are busy drying over my bathtub. More on those in another post.

I think I have earned myself a glass of wine 🙂 Hope you are having lots of fun in your felting adventures too 🙂

Linking up to nina-marieoff the wall Friday

Finishing up C&G work

I’ve spent most of the last few days working on the last assessment pieces for my C&G work. My biggest problem is I can never make just one piece to demonstrate a skill or technique, I usually have a head crammed full of different ideas to try and it is really hard for me to stop at just one…. I really should exercise some self control but I don’t want to! 😉

This is a sample made from different  ways to needle-felt pieces of prefelt. This sampler has already spawned 2 new ideas that are WIPs, the first is a lattice style scarf the second is a bag with lots of texture on the surface. More on those in my next post.

In a similar vein, this piece was made by needle-felting different fabrics onto a prefelt base, I like this as it is but am itching to add some machine embroidery but will have to wait until after it has been assessed before I do that (I have been told by my tutor to refrain from embroidering my felt pieces). This piece is only the size of a postcard so I am already planning a similar piece on a much larger scale…

And a couple of vases, the purple one is Norwegian C1 while the green one is Corriedale. I made the Corriedale one to see if it would produce a firmer / stiffer felt but there isn’t a great difference between them, the Corriedale is only marginally firmer than the Norwegian. The yarns wrapped around the bases are the products of my hand-spinning, I like to think my spinning is definitely improving 🙂

Linking up to nina-marieoff the wall Friday

Rainbow Theme Continues….

I have been making a few of these recently, dyeing the prefelt is a lot of fun and I think the finished effect is very striking and the bright colours make me feel happy. This piece reminds me of aliums as they go to seed so have called it “Rainbow Alium”.

I also managed to mount my coral piece onto a wooden frame ready to go onto Etsy. I decided the white shows off the folds beautifully so chose not to dye this one. Here is the finished piece.

3D Coral

I came across this photo of coral by Wolfgang Seifarth on pinterest and it got me thinking about a 3D felt piece. It looks like felt already doesn’t it?

Color, Pattern and Texture, Wolfgang Seifarth, Photographer, coral

Using a similar technique to the one I used to make my felt cuff for my C&G course I thought I should be able to make a 3D wall hanging. I wanted to dye it so that the folds of the “coral” are visually thrown forward of the background but I thought complementary colours would be too much, maybe a lighter colour on the tips than the background?

I constructed this piece from prefelts stitched together before fulling and then dyeing. I’m afraid I forgot to take a photo in my excitement to dye this piece. Here it is after the first round of dyeing.

It looks OK but I felt was missing something. So it went back into the dye pot…

And after mounting…

I like it but can see ways to improve it, most notably by placing the raised squiggles closer together as they are in the coral photo.

BTW, I got my dates for Weyfest mixed up, it’s not until next weekend, so I’m sure to make one or two more hats between now and then! Watch this space 🙂

Natural Wool Colours

This week I have been a good girl (mostly) trying to catch up on my City and Guilds work, there’s been some dyeing of wools and animal fibres and using natural fibre colours. It’s very easy to overlook all the lovely browns, creams and greys that wool naturally comes in when confronted by the vast array of juicy, commercially dyed wools that are so readily available but I hope I can convince you to at least take a second look at the natural colours too….

For the current series of C&G assignments I have been using bone micrographs as my starting point and this piece was no exception. I found this photo on the Microlab Gallery and used it for inspiration. This is a piece of fossilised dinosaur bone as seen under the microscope.

Here are the fibres wetted out ready for rolling, I even used some of my hand-spun Jacob wool for drawing lines (my spinning is still a bit erratic but is getting better and I like the thick and thin effect in this painting).

And the finished piece.

I really like this piece, it is quite heavily textured and I’m finding hard not to stroke it whenever I wander past. I think it looks lonely and needs some companions, so will have to make a few more ;o)

For a related assignment we were also asked to make a piece from just white fibres with the intention of dyeing it so that the different design elements would be revealed as not all fibres accept the dye at the same rate. Here is the piece laid out, ready to be wetted out and rolled:

And before dyeing (not very inspiring!):

And after dyeing:

I’m a little disappointed with this piece, I’m glad I incorporated some vegetable fibre (igneo corn top) which does not accept the acid-fast dyes, the corn top is the only element that has provided a reasonable amount of contrast. All the wools, silks, mohair and alpaca seem to have accepted the dye fairly evenly so the changes in colour are rather subtle. The different textures are nice though. I am tempted to add some embroidery to make it more interesting…..

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