I was recently asked If I would like to review the new book First Time Felting. The Absolute Beginner’s Guild. It is a new book from Quarry Books by Ruth Lane. @QuartoCreates.
This is a great book for those just starting out Needle felting. It is clear and easy to follow with lots of pictures. There is information in equipment and fibres both wool and the extra embellishment fibres. The process of sculpting in 3D using wool is explained using a number of techniques and how to combine them. I would say two-thirds of the book is dedicated to needle felting and one third to wet and nuno felting. So if you are primarily interested in needle felting but curios about wet felting it is a nice quick introduction to that side of the craft. Just to wet your curiosity.
So far I am failing at my third-quarter challenge. I hade a couple of ideas and then changed my mind then picked something else and even did a layout but nope, I am not feeling it. It was another planet sort of thing. I have another idea but we will see.
This was the other planet one. The white domes are paper.
I wanted to remind people that World Wide Spin in Public Day is coming up, September 21, 2019. Are you Planning to spin with friends or by yourself? Or at a shop or other event? If you have been thinking about trying spinning this would be a great day to do it. I will be at the farmers market with my spindle. Here is a facebook group. There are lots of posts about places to participate. facebook.com/groups/wwsipday/
I will show you how things have been going with my second quarter challenge piece. If you missed my last instalment it is here. seascape-progress
I finished adding the green for the vegetation.
Next, I worked on the flattened serf
First I tried this,
But no, and then this,
I might have been able to make this work by adding something to the edge of the wave but I didn’t like it
And finally, I went back to silk throwsters waste. I also broke the water edge up into 3.
Next moved on to the foliage. I added green stitching here and there to give it a more vertical look. It doesn’t show much but does add to it. I added some handspun yellow that a friend Bernadette made up for me on the spur of the moment when I was moaning about not having the right yellow.
After this, it was just a matter of adding more stitches. I did add more of the yellow to mingle them more and stop them from being a line across the picture.
This is where I am, stitching away and I still need to add a little dark wool between the planks of the path. I had forgotten about that until seeing the pictures. They are more defined in person.
I was going to just keep going with the stitching. The picture if you recall is quite plain but I was finding it boring, and to uniform in proportion. It needs something else. I wondered about a railing. Not this railing I think, it looks like a Japanese character (badly build temple maybe) or something.
I think I will finish the stitching even if I add something else. Anyone got another idea? I have seven more days to be finished in time.
After I felted it, the front wave mostly disappeared and the white for the flowers was gone too. I should have known I would need more. Oh well, onward I go.
I thought the best way to do the boardwalk would be to make some felt and then cut it up. This was the best match I had for the wood. It is not white but it’s not really beige either.
I laid out a small rectangle of the wool and of course that was much to flat so I added the next shade up and some black wisps.
You can see better when it’s wet.
After it was dry I cut it into uneven strips. The pictures above are taken in my studio and these are in the guild studio, much different light. There are fluorescent but also lots of natural light. in the guild studio.
And here they are just lightly attached. I needled them down more after. I may put some black or dark brown between the boards. I haven’t decided yet.
Next, I started adding the greenery. I wanted more texture. The picture had gone very flat and it made the boardwalk look like it was floating.
I will work on the lost wave and add some stitches to help the plants look more vertical and then flowers of course. It should be done before the end of the month. Are you doing the challenge? How is it coming along?
I finally pieced a picture for my second quarter challenge piece. If you remember is it seascape this quarter. this is the picture I chose.
I found it on the internet, where you find everything. It should be ok as I aske for free to use pictures.
I started with a piece of prefelt a little bigger than a piece of paper, with the idea it would shrink to an to be the size of a piece of paper. And for a change I have a piece the right size. It is a mazing what some planning can do for you. You would think I would learn.
Next I layered some more prefelt to make the basic shapes in the picture. the mottled piece at the front was dyed by a friend.
That is v
That looks very boring and flat so now it has to be brought to life. I added some silk hanky scraps to the water to give it some depth and movement.
Then I added the surf using throwsters waste.
And lastly I added some foliage and flowers
Now it is all ready for wetting down, I plan to add the wooden path to the beach later. I am not sure I have the right colour for the wool. what colour is that anyway?
I had another wonderful group of ladies learning to make Nuno felt. I had 5 in the class.
Here everyone is laying out their base wool on the silk blanks I had dyed for the class
Ruth has been talking about layout effecting shrinkage. Some of these ladies are laying their wool along the scarf to get a shorter but wider scarf and the others are laying the wool across the scarf to get a longer but narrower scarf.
After the base is laid down they get to add the embellishments, more wool, curls or silk fibres, hankies or throwsters waste.
Then after much rubbing and rolling and some scrunching and throwing everyone had a lovely finished scarf. the first 2 below put very thin layers so the silk would show through to the wool side.
Everyone seemed really pleased with what they had done and the magic of making nuno felt. I am always amazed at how different everyone pieces are and the surprise when it really works.
This is a throw back post I thought you might enjoy because there have been a few people asking on Facebook about felting with dog hair. Just like sheep there are different kinds of dog hair and even the top coat and undercoat on every dog so you need to do a test piece for every new breed.
Recently I was asked to make something out of dog hair in memory of the dog it came from. Originally the woman asked a friend of mine to spin the dog hair so it could be woven into something. The hair was to short for that so she suggested talking to me. I wasn’t sure about doing it but she was so emotional I said I would give it a try. She had a large bag of hair that was quite short. The problem was she wanted me to use as little wool as possible and not to blend it. From My dog grooming days I knew this kind of curly coated small mixed breed dog felted their hair while wearing it so I was hoping it would do it here too. I laid out a base of wool and then add a thick layer of dog curls to the top. I made a sample that turned out quite well, I showed her and she agreed to me making a pillow and stuffing it with the remaining hair.
Here is one corner as I started to add the dog hair. You can see the blob of hair I am working from.
Here is the finished pillow.
and a close up of the texture.
The only problem with this felt is it sheds a lot. With the dog hair being so short, the really short straight dog hair sheds out very easily. Fortunately she will not be using it as a pillow but putting it a way to remember him.
Wednesday I taught an evening class in flowers at the Ottawa Valley Weavers’ and Spinners’ Guild. It is a bit rushed for beginners to get both flowers finished but everyone got it done and we all had a good time.
As usual, I kept forgetting to take pictures but I did get some and Jan was in the class and got some but she was busy too.
First, we did a petunia/morning glory shaped flower this is me explaining how you layout the wool for the flower.
Jan remembered to take a picture of her layout. This is part way through.
Here everyone is diligently felting their flowers
This is Jan’s flower after scrunching and throwing. People usually look skeptical that this will be a flower at this point.
But then Ta Da!
Then there was no time to waist and we were on to Flower 2. Stems and stamens and silk hankies.
There was rubbing and rolling and gentle fulling and no throwing for these.
And lastly Jan to a good picture of her 2 blue flowers.
I think I may make this into a full-length class with a few more flowers. and maybe add some leaves to the stems.
So this week I managed to finished the hat in my last post.
I left you with this picture:
Next I covered it and rubbed it for a while. then rolled it up and into the dryer with no heat for 10 min. while I was waiting for that I started to lay out another hat. After the first tumble I took the hat out flipped and rotated it and rolled it up again. you can see the other hat I am working on under the bundle.
After a few turns in the dryer I cut the hat open and shifted it so I would not be felting in the seam crease.
I continued to roll it in the dryer shifting the hat on the resist each time. Once is had shrunk some, I continued to full it by hand. This is what it looked like still wet and in need of a rinse.
and this is after it has been rinsed reblocked and dry. not really much different. the close up picture is a truer picture colour wise. it is a light silvery grey with pink and grey accents.
I like it, it is simple but interesting. I think I will leave this one the way it is. the next on in this style may be more embellishment after there fact. I need to dye more silk hankies.