I never really have a plan for what I’d like to do in the coming year. There are a few things I’d like to do, though.
Karen sent me a package of gorgeous fibres that I can’t wait to try, and Ruth sent me a package of lovely hand dyed threads to use and some lace-weight yarn to dye myself. I don’t know many stitches but Mariana was telling us on the forum about Take a Stitch Tuesday, so hopefully I’ll learn some new ones from that.
I really enjoyed experimenting with direct dyeing on felt, I’d like to explore that some more, try some different techniques and use more colours to get interesting patterns and designs, and maybe even try some stitching on it. Wrapping leaves in felt and steaming to get the pattern interests me too, it looks gorgeous when it works well.
Early last year, I made a couple of Huacaya alpaca fibre felted samples, with the intention of making a scarf. I wanted to see whether 1 layer or 2 worked best (I decided that 2 made a more even felt without losing the curly cobwebby effect). I then bought some Suri alpaca fibre with the intention of making similar samples. I’d like to make the samples and hopefully make the scarf too.
I mentioned in my 2011 review that I’d bought a lot of new ‘other’ felting fibres and made samples. It always fascinates me how adding different fibres to wool can alter the way it felts or looks so much. I’d like to do something with what I’ve learned from using lots of different fibres over the years, maybe write some tutorials or an e-book for the Studio site. I’d also really like to be able to make felting fibres more accessible and affordable to people through the site. There seems to be a misunderstanding that these fibres are hard to find or expensive, they’re not. I hate to see people being ripped off and misled.
I’ve had a few ideas for projects in my notebook for a couple of years, hopefully I’ll get chance to try them out this year. The ‘trouble’ with felt is, it always seems to teach you something new with each piece you make, so it’s very easy for plans to get derailed as other ideas are explored. Sometimes it’s nice to go back and rework old ideas.
I can’t wait until Ruth’s book is published. It was a real privilege being asked to help out with it. I know just how much work she put into it, and what a wealth of information is in there. I also know just how clear the instructions are because I have no idea what any of it looks like, none of us have seen any of the photos, so I really can’t wait to see how all the projects look.
One thing I’m really looking forward to in 2012 is continuing to learn and be inspired by the great felting and fibre community we’re part of. I really like the way people have joined in with the spirit of the site and helped each other out through comments, passed on links and information. I don’t think I’d have tried direct dyeing on to felt if it hadn’t been suggested in a comment. I’m also looking forward to the Studio Challenges and seeing what Karen, Ruth and Ann work on this year.