This last Saturday I taught a slipper class to 6 lovely ladies. I gave them a choice of templates, so there were different types of slippers being made at the same time. We used the one that looks like bunny ears, the one with little pointy the ears on the sides, boots and some pointy ones. They used Corriedale wool for the slippers. I prefer something like Fin wool but it is hard to get it in colours and everyone wants colours. So Corriedale is a good compromise. After everyone made templates it was onto laying out the wool.
Last week I had the opportunity to take a 2 day class with Moy MacKay. I went with a couple of friends and we had a great time. We did the wet felting on day one. We had 2 pictures to choose from for the landscape.
I chose the one the left.
Moy demonstrated and explained to us how to work and what to do. We got to ask questions. She told us to take lots of pictures as we went because you see things in the picture that you don’t see in just looking at it. Still I didn’t take enough.
First we laid out the background
Then we added the foreground and details. The house is prefelt and the flowers in the front are chopped up curls
We wet them down and gave them a 2 or 3 min rub and then rolled them for about 3 min one way and then the other for another few min and we were done. They are very lightly felted but that’s ok because they are pictures not hats.
That took the morning. After lunch we did another piece, a still life, flowers. We had a vase of red flowers and babies breath to use for inspiration. We were not to copy it but to use it to see how flowers look. You can see it in the group picture. Moy demonstrated again and explained again and then we only had about an hour to put the picture together and then a short time to get it felted before we had to be out of the room for another group.
We started with the table then the foliage and then the vase and then moves some leaves around. Then we added the flowers. The babies breath is nepps.
I quite like it at this stage. Not as much after it was felted.
On day 2 we started the embellishing. Moy talked about and demonstrated needle felting accents and refining the pictures. Also some machine embroidery and stitching. we could try the machine stitching if we wanted but my picture wasn’t ready for that yet. This is what they are like now. No where near done but works in progress.
This is after I straitened up the house and removed the mangled fence and added a new one.
This is where it is now. I added windows and ivy to the house. I removed the cobwebs from the trees. I added some shading to the trees. I added in some stems for the flowers in front and another fence. I think the field behind the left fence needs to be darker because it’s farther away. It doesn’t show well in the picture but right now it is lighter and more yellow than the front field. It needs a lot more work but I think I know what I want to do to it.
And the flowers. I forgot to take a picture of when it was wet felted but had no embellishments. But here it is so far. I am not as keen on the flowers but they are alright. I may like them better after I work on them some more. The table needs straitening up and lots more texture. And notice the nepps have stuck. We had chopped up some green fibers as part of the foliage and I think the short fibers under them made them stick.
And lastly a picture of everyone’s works at the end of the second day. the flowers we used are beside Moy.
It was a great class. I think it’s given me confidence to try some more. Jan will be doing more posts for us and I hope she will do one about this class too. She will have taken at least a hundred more pictures than me and be able to show you her works in progress too.
Don’t forget to sign up for the holiday card exchange on the forum. Read all about it here: https://feltingandfiberstudio.com/2018/10/10/time-for-the-holiday-card-exchange-again/
Last week I missed doing my blog post because I had no power or internet. My area was hit by 6 tornados. We were not hit we had no damage. Some areas near us were hit very hard, the large power substation near us was hit and some of the cell phone and internet towers too.
Before all that I did manage to work on my piece for the guild exhibition and sale. I do not think I will get it done in time as it is due in a week. The theme was a 100-mile inspiration. I decided to do a scene with the Parlement buildings. I am using 2 prefelt layers with a piece of cotton gauze in the middle for the background.
First I found a simple outline picture I could use for the outline of the building. I cut that out and tried it on the background.
I pinned it to another piece of prefelt and cut it out.
Then it was time to work ou the clouds.
After I took the picture and looked at it I realized I had made the clouds to symmetrical. Its funny how looking at a picture sometimes shows you more than just looking at it. I tacked all the pieces together with a few jabs of a felting needle
Next was adding fireworks as I am thinking it should be Canada Day.
Then I cropped the picture to see better how it will look.
I wet felted the piece and now I need to do some stitching around the building so it will show better.and my daughter said I should add beads around the fireworks like the sparkles you see with fireworks. I thought maybe some sparkly thread and a bead at the end of each firework. What else would you add to this silhouette picture?
Last week I taught a Ruffle Neck Scarf workshop. This was the first time teaching it and it went very well. I was worried about the timing but it all worked out. I thought the class at the Mississippi Valley Textile Museum. They have a nice big classroom with lots of light. and water.
As usual, I forgot to take pictures early but here are two of them being laid out
You can see the template they used to get the layout right and keep it even from one end to the other. I drew it with the outline to follow and a line on them to let them know when they had shrunk enough.
Here they are using the plastic under their scarves to make nice edges.
And a shot of the class working.
Here are the results. I really like the ones where you can see the wool that migrated through the silk.
The Class was a lot of fun. I made the written instructions more detailed than normal because I want to make it a kit. If I ever figure out video iI would like to make an online workshop. If you were to buy a kit for a ruffled scarf would you want it to be a short neck scarf or a long scarf? the only difference really would be the amount of wool included and the length of silk. I was thinking a short scarf but include the sizing to make a longer template too. I am wondering about the template I usually use thick plastic to draw it on. but it is too bulky to fold flat and too big to ship cheaply rolled up. Should I include a template on thinner plastic or just the instructions on how to draw it up on whatever you want to use?
Last time I showed you the parts of the bags ready to be put together. Now I will show you how I do it.
First I wet one side. I use the resist to press the wool down and make sure it will be wet where I need it to be.
Next I add one of the pieces of silk.
Then I add the resist and the 2 pieces used to close the bag.
Next I add the second piece of silk and wrap the wool around everything
I add the second side of wool and wrap that around too.
After I’ve done that to all the pieces I add some embellishments. I am using a multicoloured top for grass on the blue one and the pink one got a rolled up ball of silk scraps. I covered the ball with more pink wool and will cut the top off near the end.
This is after several rollings. you can see they are curling as they shrink.
I cut the slit for the bag and rub it with well soaped fingers to heal the cut edges.
Next will be more rolling and some throwing to get the fulling done. I will show you the finished bags next time and some I finished with some embroidery.
I haven’t had much time to felt and today I finally got some time to start some new little bags.
The last time I made little bags I forgot to add the spikes that end up as the closures so I made a bunch of spikes to be ready this time. Now to remember to make the rings for the bottom.
I make these bas self lining by putting fabric next to the resist. This creates a nuno felt lining and I don’t have to do it later. I licked this silk scarf a friend gave me for it’s nice bright colours and interesting dye pattern.
The other thing adding the nuno lining does is add strength allowing me to make a thinner, less bulky bag. I set up 4 resists because if you are going to rub and roll some felt you might as well do make it worth while.
Here are the 4 bags ready to be put together. I try not to match the linings to the bag colour to much so it doesn’t disappear when I am done. I may have to switch the 2 middle ones.
At this point I had to stop and switch the laundry and got distracted with other things so I haven’t made it past this point today. You will notice that I have forgotten the rings at this point but I have a chance to fix this when I get back to them. It is not to late …..yet. Next time I will hopefully have some progress to show you.
While making little bags I also made a small picture. i suppose it would count for the first quarter challenge. happy-new-year-prepare-to-be-challenged/ I hope to do somthing a little more challenging before the quarter is over. I like little pasture scenes. I started with a piece of black prefelt and then laid the blue sky and pasture. I thought I took more pictures but it seems I didn’t.
This what the back looks like. I wrapped the coloured fibers around the prefelt . I use black prefelt because it will intensify the colours. If I used white it would take the colours towards pastel.
This is the front side felted. I made the contours of the meadow by using a multicoloured roving I had. I think it lets you give the meadow some texture and shape without painstakingly adding tiny bits of colour. I added some clouds to the sky and some flowers to the meadow with some soft silk and little white blobs of sheep as place markers for the next part.
I added the sheep using some embroidery floss and french knots.
Then added the heads and ears. I used a grey for the sheep that are farther away. I think it worked.
At this point it could have been done but I needed something else. Your eye goes to the middle and it is empty. I discussed it over on the Felting and Fiber Studio Forum and I decided some trees were needed. I only know how to do one kind of tree that looks half decent so ever greens were next. I did them in a medium green and then when back with fewer strands and added some darker stitches to give them more depth.
Here it is finished. I had to trim the top off so it would fit in the frame. I always seem to make to much sky anyway so that worked out well enough.
I looks quite nice in the frame. The frame seems to pop it out. I didn’t realise how many scratches it had until I took a picture. I will have to paint it. It is not a great picture, ther was so much reflection. this was the best compromise between the light reflecting or having a clear shot of me in the glass.
I need to learn to embroider more then far away evergreens and sheep. A little cabin or a nice oak tree would have been a nice addition to the picture. I am thinking of buying Moy MacKays book. Do you have a favourite art felt or how to hand stitch pictures or art books?
This week I decided to make a new pouch for my business cards. The one I am using now is getting a little ratty looking from being in my purse for several years.
I didn’t take any in progress photos. I wasn’t really thinking about it, just enjoying the process of making something.
This is the first one, front and back and closed. It turned out well but I tiny bit smaller than I wanted. Not bad considering I didn’t do any measuring I just cut out a resist and started.
Here it is on the resist so you can see the shrinkage
And a pictures of the nuno felt designs.
I made the second pouch bigger. I wanted some ruffles along the sides so added extra fiber there sticking out from the side. I didn’t make the extra wide enough and it almost disappeared. It is a tiny bit ruffled but not great.
and on the resist.
And a close up of the silk roses, I think I will shave them, they are a bit fuzzy.
Finally both of them with a ruler to give you an idea of size. one is about 6 and the other about 8 inches
I have a thought of making them to sell. I thought maybe I would put a grommet in the back with a carabineer clip in it. I am just not sure they will sell at a decent price. Do you like the idea? What do you think people would pay for them?
I sent a card to my partner for the Christmas card on the forum. holiday-exchange-2017 She has it now so I can tell you all about making it.
First I went through my old felt bin to find a thickish piece of felt and cut out a tree shape. It’s a blueish green even if it doesn’t look like it.
Even with 2 layers the prefelt is not very thick so I added red merino to cover the extra silk and make it thicker and more sturdy. I cut the wool to give it a nice straight edge to put up against the tree and give a nice clean line.
After that was done I flipped it over and wrapped the excess around to the back. I wanted to make sure the tree would stick to the finished felt so I did some poking with my felting needles.
I went through my stash looking for some fuzzy gold yarn to use as tinsel but instead found this yarn with beads that I think looks like lights. I sewed it on and then added some shiny pony beads as Christmas balls and a star.
I printed off a post card template from the internet and using fusible web ironed it to the back of the felt. I forgot to take a picture of that but I am sure you all know what the back of a postcard looks like. I like it and my exchange partner seemed to be very happy with it. No I just wait for Canada Post to decide to get mine to me. I am hopeful it will arrive before Christmas.
Here’s wishing you all a great holiday season,
I taught an enthusiastic group of ladies how to make felted vessels last Sunday. They were a great group and without Carleen’s reminders to take pictures I would have nothing to show you today.
Three ladies chose to make pots that were a different colour inside. and two made theirs a solid colour.
Then of course there was the wetting, rubbing and rolling and shapping
Blowing up a balloon inside helps get a nice shape. In the back ground you can see Carlene rolling on a car mat.
For some reason I did not get a picture of all the finished pieces. This is the only one I have of this white and gold pot. It was very elegant and I think it would make a great light cover. She said she was rewetting it and reshaping it. I hope she remembers to send me a picture of it when it’s done.
There was also some very determined rolling on the glass wash board.
I do have some finished pictures.
The blue one is Carlene’s. She wants to add to it. Here are 3 thoughts. The second and third pictures are the same yarn but different ends, one has more blue in it.
Her husband thinks the yarn covers up to much of the pot. I like the spiral but think maybe make the lines farther apart. What do you think? It may have been better to felt it right in. It would still be texture but flatter, more integral to the pot. Hey Carlene, maybe you just need to make another pot.