Felt Rock Update

Last week I told you about the Big Ski Chair Affair. I was carving foam to make a rock that will look like it is holding up one end of the chair.

Here’s what it looked like after I finished carving it. I used a heat tool to carve the foam and it takes a while. You have to move slowly and it gives a very unpleasant odor. So I carved for small periods of time. After I got it carved, it was on to the felting process.

I covered the foam with batts, wet it down with warm, soapy water and kept adding more batts until it was covered.

I have to say that the quality of the wool I used was not really very good. Plus it was a bunch of different breeds mixed together that made it a bit more difficult to felt.

Here it is sitting over my sink after the first felting session. I spent several hours for two evenings working on it.

And here it is after the second felting session. It still is quite spongy and very hairy. I am not really satisfied with how it looks. It does look like a rock from a distance but is certainly not very smooth. I will also need to add a bit of wool to the back of the rock as there is some blue foam showing through there. Hopefully, with more rubbing the felt will smooth down a bit. I will probably have to shave it to get rid of the hairiness. Any suggestions?

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Around the Web

We hope you’ll enjoy some of these links that we have found. You might have seen some of these artist’s work but it’s always nice to take another look. Enjoy!

Jane Mercer’s Naturally Dyed Felt Picture

Renata Felt Peacock

Felt Sculpture by Anna Gunnarsdottir

Bloomfelt Sculptures

Felted Pleasure by Marina Shkolnik

Janice Arnold’s Bespoke Felt

Shelley Jones Felt Sculpture and Jewelry

Beth Marx Nuno Felt Abstract Design with Prefelts

Felt Sculpture by Stephanie Metz

Combination of Felt and Shibori by Ulrike von Kutzleben-Hausen

Layered Felt by Yukako Sorai

Crocheted Basket from Recycled Plastic Bags by My Recycled Bags

Meredith Woolnough’s Embroidered Traceries

Creating Texture and Pattern from Stitch, an article from Textile Artist

And a little extra in the style of Marketplace Mondays.

Top Ten Tips for Approaching an Art Gallery by The Golden Hare

Posted in Felting Around the Web | 4 Comments

First Quarter Fauvism Challenge

I’m really late doing the first quarter Fauvism challenge, I thought I understood it, but every time I had an idea and started to work on it, it didn’t seem right. I finally decided on a picture to use last week, one of my favourite pictures of the lake at Sefton Park, Aigburth. I used it for a previous challenge, Marilyn’s Monet Challenge, and thought it’d be interesting to do a comparison. Then right at the last minute yesterday after looking at the other entries and googling ‘fauvism’ again, it didn’t seem right! But, looking at the other entries reminded me of my sister’s photo which I used to make a felt picture a couple of years ago. Here’e the post if you don’t remember: https://feltingandfiberstudio.com/2015/08/19/felt-picture/  and here’s the picture I made:

I took the original photo (without permission, hope she doesn’t mind!) and altered the colours in Photoshop:

I’d had in my head that Fauvism was really bright, but the more I looked, the more I saw muted colours, unsaturated shades. There’s one particular jade green that I started to see everywhere! I simplified the picture to get the colour bands:

And added some ‘accented edges’:

Then I blended the last one and first one together:

A lot of the Fauvist paintings had roughly blended brush strokes and patchy areas so I blended some colours for each band to try to get that effect:

I don’t know which photo shows it better:

Then I added embellishment fibres for mre effect, this is some Kapok on the pink, there’s a bit of silk on the blue, trilobal nylon on the orange, and nylon staple on the blue:

I don’t know why I did that second band blue, I can see it’s green on the photo, I clearly wrote ‘green’ on my template, and somehow chose blue! Maybe I tilted my laptop screen back too far (good excuse!) I did realise before felting and changed it:

The other embellishments and fibres I added are: some dark blue wool and light blue nylon for trees at the top; some green wool and red nylon for trees between the top orange row and blue one underneath it; green and yellow viscose staple on the green layer and some dark blue nylon for a hedge. The track lines are wool; I used viscose and nylon on the lower orangey band, and the blue/purple band at the bottom has dyed cotton nepps and nylon staple fibre added. This angle might show them a bit better:

I only got it felted early evening, so here it is pegged on the washing line to dry, I haven’t even had a look at it yet today!

I love the colours, but I put far more detail and work into the first one, so it looks dull and flat in comparison, so I think I will add some stitching to this to improve it 🙂

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Nuno Felt Top Class

Hi I gave a private class to Anne last week end. Well really we started earlier with talking about what she wanted to make and what she wanted to make it out of  and then dying her silk. In the end she decided a long top was most versatile and she had one that she really liked so we used it as a template for the seamless garment technique. You can see the outline under the silk. we went from that and sized it up to allow for shrinkage.

Anne Likes sparkle so she added some silk and some super bright trilobal nylon I had dyed. If you click on the picture you can see the sparkle better.

And of course there was lots of rubbing and rolling

This was the first try on . It needed to pull in a bit more under the bust for a better fit.

Ann came back the next day and she made a matching scarf and a bracelet in different colours. I forgot to take pictures of  the scarf on its own or the bracelet at all. We did take a picture of the finished top and scarf on my dress form. I had to take a lot of pictures to get a good one as it was windy.

Ann took some pictures at home later. If you are a member of the wet felt makers group on Facebook you will have seen these.

I really like the way this green scarf works with the purple. And how well it goes with a glass of wine and the great shoes.

Anne was a great student. She listed well and asked lots of questions. I think she had a great time, I know I really enjoyed teaching her. I am looking forward to seeing what else she makes.

Posted in Classes, Inspiration, Nuno Felting, resists, Uncategorized | Tagged , | 21 Comments

The Big Ski Chair Affair

As a board member of a local non-profit called the Big Mountain Commercial Association (BMCA), I am always trying to think of ways to raise money for the organization. The BMCA runs the bus transportation system in our resort town of Whitefish, Montana. In the winter, the bus runs up and down to the ski hill and in the summer we have added Glacier Park to the route. To raise money for the bus, we decided to host The Big Ski Chair Affair. Whitefish Mountain Resort donated 10 older ski lift chairs, we had them converted to benches and now ten different artists or groups of artists are creating masterpieces that will be auctioned off to the highest bidder. During the summer, the ten chairs will be displayed at the businesses who sponsored a chair.

My local fiber art group decided to decorate a chair. The drawing above is our basic design. Our theme is leaves so we’re using eco printed felt and leaves made from copper, wire, stitched threads and felt. On the left side of the design you’ll see what looks like a rock under the bench. It will be foam covered with felt.

I have stitched quite a few felt leaves on to their copper wire frame. Hopefully, we’ll have enough leaves, currently we have about 40-50. These are a combination of hand dyed felt and an eco printed wool blanket.

Here’s a photo of the chair after we pulled off the padding. These seat four skiers and are very heavy.

This is after we primed the chair and put the eco printed fabric on to see what it would eventually look like with cushions covered with eco printed wool. We have since that time painted the chair a dark chocolate brown but I don’t seem to have a photo of it so I’ll have to show that to you later.

Now I’m starting to work on the rock. This is the foam that I am using.

I glued it together with WeldBond Glue which worked very well.

The leg of the chair has to go through the rock so it looks like the rock is holding up that side of the chair. So I cut holes and glued pieces together to start forming the rock shape. I am now using a heat cutting tool to shape the rock. It’s taking me much longer than expected but I’ll take another photo when I get the final shape carved down.

And each night this week, I have been making batts of grey crossbred wool from RH Lindsay on my drum carder.  I still have quite a few batts to make before I am ready to felt. And of course, I have to get the right shape of the rock. But the project is moving forward and we’re happy with our progress. It’s a big project but we’re having fun and it’s interesting to problem solve how we’re going to handle different issues that arise as we work with the chair.




Posted in Mixed Media | Tagged , | 17 Comments

Shaping up the Crochet

Now that I’ve learned the crochet basics, I’ve challenged myself to follow instructions to learn to make shapes.

I guess I’m really thinking spring because I first tried flowers using two different methods.  I like the yellow one better since the hole is less noticeable.

A little fancier flower which wasn’t as hard as I thought.

Then a circle.

Feeling more confident I did a triangle motif. Since I’m using medium weight yarn it ended up larger than I expected and kind of floppy.  I may try again with a smaller hook and tighter yarn.

Of course, I needed to try  a heart.

And my favorite shape an octagon.

By accident in making an octagon,  I made a nonagon (a nine sided polygon) which I didn’t know existed.   There is a cool animation of how a nonogon is calculated here. It’s not perfectly balanced, but I like it.

All of these were made with combinations of the basic stitches.  It was interesting re-learning how to follow instructions to create these shapes.  I thought the videos would be better, but found I kept referring to written instruction. Probably because I could reread instead of rewinding. That is if the written instructions are accurate which in a couple cases they weren’t.  I did a lot of tearing out and redoing, but that’s how we learn.

Have you tried something new recently?


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Inspiration Photos

I’ve still not decided on a photo to work from for Ruth’s Fauvism Challenge. I’ve looked through lots of my landscape ones, and have narrowed it down to a couple, and I planned on making the background this week. Then we had the boiler changed, a 1 day job which still hasn’t been finished a week later, so apart from the mess everywhere taking up my tables, I can only have the hot water on if I have the heating on too! It was really sunny on Saturday and Sunday so I thought I’d take some inspiration photos in the garden instead. I know nearly everyone hates dandelions, but I like them. And Galina does too, so at least one other person will like my photos! I loved these two growing close together like pom-poms:

I took this one on the Saturday after I’d been doing some tidying up in the garden, when I zoomed in, I saw how filthy it was!

I don’t know how many different types of actual Dandelions there are, but it’s amazing how different they look at different stages of growth:

And they look different during the day, depending how open they are:

I was surprised to see some tulips blooming this year. The last couple of years they just grew leaves, so I thought they were too old, I’d probably had them in the same tubs for 10 years, so I tipped them out onto a compost heap, where 4 of them decided they liked it! It looks like the sun is lighting them up, but I took these two when it was shady, it’s just their colouring:

This one is blurred, but I liked the shapes:

I took this when it was sunny:

One flower I have masses of is wild geraniums, they grow everywhere. They look nice, but strangle everything else, and smell like a cat has been marking its territory 😦

I know it’s not felt or fibre, but I hope these photos give some inspiration to some of you 🙂

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