One Week to the Show

With one week to my guild show (October 31, November 1 and 2) it must be  time to get ready. Time to put things together and make a few more hats. Last weekend my daughter painted spindles and here they are waiting to get put into kits.


The kits should be done already but when I started I discovered I was out of white wool. I have no idea how that happened. I had to order some quick. I put my wool order in with my friend Maureen at  Dreamspin Fibres. She got my order out asap and it arrived yesterday.

wool box wool box inside

The white wool is the bottom half but you can’t just order white. Now I can put the kits together. she also sent me a colour cards for her wool. this is great because every computer shows the colours differently.

wool samples

I was working on a hat as well. I will finish it today. I put decoration on the inside and outside. I will show you the finished hat next time.

hat inside layout hat outside decoration


Posted in Design, Felted Hats, Wet Felting | Tagged , , , , | 5 Comments

Give Away Winner and Update on Caricatures

Last week, I posted a review and give away for the book Felt So Good by Tone Rørseth. I randomly drew from the comments posted and the winner is: Kim

Kim, I will send you an e-mail to get your mailing address. Thanks for all your comments and if you’re still interested in winning a copy of the book, there are more blogs that are giving it away. You can find the list on the initial give away post.

Becky Sue

Back in September, I wrote a post about caricatures in stitch that I’ve been creating. I had only gotten as far as one of “the girls” at that point.

All the Girls Cut Out

Since then, I’ve gotten all the pieces backed with fusible and cut out for all four of them.

Pieces Cut Out for Mary Jane and Becky Sue

Here are Becky Sue and Mary Jane.

Pieces Cut Out Anna Belle and Sally Jo

And this is Anna Belle and Sally Jo.

Background Painted

I had a piece of dyed background fabric but it seemed way too busy. So I decided to paint a piece instead. I used Dye-Na-Flow paints and added a bit of salt after painting to get some texture.

All the Girls Ironed Down

Then I placed all of the pieces and ironed them down.

Mary Jane and Becky Sue

I added stripes to Becky Sue’s shirt with a permanent marker. I decided to go with the red marker as it gave the best contrast.

Anna Belle and Sally Jo

Putting the pieces in place is a bit painstaking as everything has to be in the right position and then kept in place while ironing. I covered them with a piece of parchment paper to iron. Now on to the fun part – stitching them. I am in the process of choosing thread colors and I always like to do a little practice free motion stitching before I start. I did buy some stretcher bars for this piece so I will wrap the background fabric around the stretcher bars to finish it. I’ll keep you posted about the stitching.

Posted in Stitching, Uncategorized | Tagged , | 15 Comments

The Base Makes a Difference

In my Monet Challenge blog post this past quarter, I pointed out I had used a Domestic 56 base without pre-felting it. The domestic fiber is coarser than merino, approximately a 29.5 micron compared to a 19 of the merino. I had a lot of hairiness migrate through the merino and had to shave the piece a couple of times.  I wanted to try a pre-felted base with the same fiber. So, I set out to do another Monet.

I chose Monet’s Water Lillies 3.  Water lillys conjur wonderful memories for me from my childhood summers at my Grandmother’s cottage on a channel off a lake.


Using two layers for the base, I wet felted it and let it dry. I was surprised at the shrinkage even though I did light rolling in all directions before drying. A rectangle turned into a square.

I laid out my design.  I wasn’t terribly happy with it.  I did some needle felting to give the lilly pads more definition.  Here it is before wet felting.

monet 2 before

After wet felting it, I still wasn’t enamored  with it.  I did some more needle felting and it seemed to take on a better life.

Monet 2 layout

The one thing I did learn was that using a pre-felted base of the Domestic 56 made it less hairy.  I didn’t need to shave it at all.  Even though I fulled it the same way I did the first Monet, it wasn’t as stiff.  Both methods had advantages. So, I will continue to experiment depending on the results I want to achieve.

What is your experience with using a pre-felted base of a coarser fiber?

Posted in Wet Felting | Tagged , , , , , | 20 Comments

Sewing and Bargains

I’m doing another Craft Fair at the beginning of November so I wanted to make a few diary covers. This usually involves my desk getting covered with embroidery threads, and the only exception this time was that I decided to tidy them up too. I made cardboard ‘bobbins’ for some of them and spent ages untangling and winding and then putting duplicate spares in a bag. Then a couple of days later I decided to clear some more drawers and spread the threads out a bit, make them even tidier and easy to choose. These are all the drawers:

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOne of the pieces I’m using for a book cover is a piece I made years ago. I wanted to see if I could make a subtle plaid design by laying out bold stripes of colours on my two layers, it was more subtle than I thought, but I like it. I’ve cut to size and sewn the inside pocket edges so far:

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAYou might remember this next piece from when I tried some commercial pre-felt from Heidi Feathers. The silk hadn’t attached in a couple of places so I added blanket stitch, then decided to add some more simple stitching in the blocks of colour. I’m still working on this, and have added a bit more since I took the photo:

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI went in to the city centre this week, which I don’t often do, so made the most of it looking for bargains. I found a couple of elasticated summer dresses for £1 each so got them because I liked the pattern, they were only tiny though, so once I cut the top off, the bottom was a bit bigger than a pillow case, but well worth £1!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAIn the same shop I treated myself to a ‘scarf’ because I liked the pattern, it’s actually the size of a door!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI saw this scarf in a bargain shop and thought I’d see if it nuno felts well:

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAAnd, I couldn’t go to town without a trip to Abakhan fabric shop, where I got some more braiding (I took a photo of the back for you, Ann!)

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAAnd probably the best bargain of the day, I found a roll of silk fabric, down from £10 a metre to £3, so I had to get some :)

silk 2

Posted in Prefelt, Scarves, Stitching | Tagged , , , , , , | 18 Comments

Christmas Balls

This last week I bought some empty Christmas ball to fill for an upcoming sale. I am always looking for something a bit different. They are plastic. They are very clear. I had planed on getting glass but theses where so clear  I though it would eliminate the breakage problem.  I was going to get a different shape as well but for some reason a flat circle cost twice as much.

pink 1

First you pop of the top and then add what every you like.

pink 2

You can add anything that fits through the hole. This is silk throwsters waist fluffed up.

pink 3

When it’s full you pop the top back one and your  done.

pink 4 pink 5

I used Blue Faced Leister Curls, some mohair curls, silk hankies fluffed up and some throwsters waste. in a few I added some sparkly angelina.



Posted in Mixed Media, Tutorials, Uncategorized, Wool | Tagged , , , , , , | 20 Comments

Felt So Good, Author Q&A, Review and Give Away

We were contacted about reviewing this book and doing a give away. I thought our readers would appreciate a chance to win this new book Felt So Good by Tone Rørseth, published by Sellers Publishing, Inc in September. Tone is a well known for her design both in jewelry and accessories as well as being a photo stylist for interior design magazines.

Tone Rorseth

Tone Rørseth

Felting 3, 2, 1
Q-3 Three types of fibre you can’t live without?

Three types of fiber I can’t live without: I like the very soft merino wool. A contrast to that one is the natural wool coming straight from the sheep. I also use the 3 mm thick Nepal wool.

Q-2 Two tools you use all the time?

Two tools I use all the time: My different felting needles. I use very thin, medium and thick needles for different types of work/art. I also use soap and water for wet felting!

Q-1 One fibre art technique you love the most? 

Favorite technique: I love the needle technique the most, to me it´s a little similar to painting and drawing.

Felt So Good Cover

Now to Tone’s new book that just came out in September. Here’s what the publisher has to say about the book:

“Felt So Good is all about wool. A wonderfully versatile material, wool is a simple and satisfying fiber to work with, and that makes these projects very accessible for crafters of all levels.

Norwegian designer Tone Rørseth has put together a delightful collection of projects for clothing, accessories, and items for the home. She guides the reader through the different types of wool felt to buy and shows how to upcycle all of your slightly worn, slightly damaged, or out-of-style wool sweaters into fabulous new items for your wardrobe and your home. Readers learn how to choose, cut, restitch, felt, and embellish old sweater fabric, transforming it into beautiful handbags, mittens, scarves, hats, skirts, jewelry, soft toys, pillows, and more!

Rørseth’s designs are whimsical and fun, and most can be made in an evening or a weekend. She has even included a section dedicated to holiday decorations, such as garlands, tree ornaments, and table decor.”

Felt So Good Acorn Wreath

Felt So Good is 144 page long paperback book that is project based. There is one page about materials and techniques with a paragraph about needle felting, wet felting and “felting” (fulling) wool clothing in the washing machine. This book isn’t going to teach you how to felt but it is great for those of you who like to upcycle wool clothing and sweaters. There are many cute projects including accessories, wearables, home decor and holiday ideas.

The book is laid out with lots of photos of finished projects and basic written instructions. There are patterns at the end of the book for any of the more complex projects. There are not any step by step photos and the book assumes you know basic embroidery stitches and how to use a sewing machine.

Felt So Good Sleeves

And now for the give away. I have one copy of the book from the publishers to give away to our readers. So that anyone can be eligible to win the book, I will be shipping it to you instead of from the publisher. If you would like a chance to win, please leave a comment below and I will need to have your e-mail address so I can contact you if you win. The deadline for making a comment is October 22, 2014 and I will announce the winner of Felt So Good on October 23, 2014.

Felt So Good Woven Containers

If you’d like to check out the blog tour for this book, here’s the schedule:

10-16 Blacksheep’s Bit of the Web
10-17 I Hook Design
10-21 Funk and Weber Designs
10-22 Pittsburgh Knit & Crochet Festival
10-23 The Funky Felter
10-27 Poetry in Yarn
10-28 Funk and Weber Designs
10-29 Moogly
10-30 Monkey Mayhem
10-31 Mama O Knits/CraftLit
Posted in Book Review, Giveaways, Guest Artists | 18 Comments

A Weekend of Felting in Quebec

Our guest artist/author is Cathy Wycliff sharing her experience of
felting at Meech Lake, Quebec, with Fiona Duthie, October 3-5, 2014.

When I heard about the opportunity to felt with Fiona amidst the Fall splendor of Quebec province, I did not hesitate to sign up for this class! There were eight female students and Fiona, and the weekend was informative, fun and felt-a-licious! Not too many photos taken, and no long walks as previously imagined, simply because we were too busy felting.

The country cottage where we stayed was just outside of the Galatin National Forest, a beautiful area just twenty minutes from Ottawa. In the first photo, you may see a small boathouse in the background, which was just by the side of Meech Lake. It was a bit chilly for a swim, and besides, we were too busy felting!


I took a minute the first afternoon to shoot these photos, and I was playing around with capturing the hanging bird chimes on top of the tree.


A quick photo of the planter, and then onto felting.


We learned how to make two different projects:  a nuno tunic (choice of white or black) and  a lampshade (varied sizes and wool choices).









The lampshade is not totally finished.  It needs to be ironed and steamed, then a final shaping. It was made to be a pendulum light, hanging from the ceiling. For blog purposes only, the lampshade is sitting atop one of the posters on my 4-poster bed.

With 8 different women felting, you would think there would be some uniformity in what we chose to make, but I can tell you that each project was different, and each was amazingly beautiful and well-crafted. There were white tunics and black tunics, tall lampshades and wide lampshades. Embellishments were as varied as the attendees.

Most of our meals were at the cottage and we all pitched in to make it work. Some cooked, some loaded dishes and others provided scintillating conversation over mugs of coffee and tea (and at times, glasses of wine). One lovely lady who did not stay at the cottage brought fresh croissants and scones one morning. We and several local ladies celebrated Felt United on Oct. 4th at the cottage by making a very large piece of “Peace” felt.


On the last eve, some of us took Fiona out to dinner at a marvelous nearby fish restaurant. If you ever have an opportunity to take a class from Fiona Duthie, I highly recommend her–not only as an instructor par excellence–but as a wonderful human being.

Posted in Guest Artists | Tagged , , , , , | 19 Comments