Grey Wools and Banana Fibre

Grey Wools and Banana Fibre

Sometimes, the wool and fibres I’m using don’t felt the way I expect them to. This was the case recently when I tried banana fibre with grey Suffolk wool tops. We often say there’s no bad wool, just the right wool for the job. I’d say that was true for wool and fibre combinations too. The banana fibre I used came as combed tops, but I fluffed it up and placed hair-ball like bits of fibre dotted around on top of a couple of layers of the Suffolk. I really didn’t expect the result I got, it was the most unusual effect I’ve seen with fibres and wool so far. Although the banana did felt onto the Suffolk somewhat, it wasn’t firmly attached and gave interesting cobweb like results. The banana fibre in the top right corner reminded me of the compact cocoon-like spiderwebs you find in crevices. Or all over trees and fields after flooding (eek!) πŸ™‚

I finally got around to trying out Ann’s bird pods this week πŸ™‚ The first couple of layers are grey Merino, then I added lots of raw Gotland locks around the edges and added a couple of layers of Gotland roving that Kaz sent me a while back. To finish, I used some carded Gotland fleece and a few wisps of banana fibre. It is about 11.5 inches tall and about 7.5 across the middle. I mainly get small birds here, so the hole is only about an inch in diameter.

There are a couple of new uploads in the Tutorials section of the site. The first is How to make roving from silk hankies on the Fiber Preparation page, and on the ‘Other‘ page, is a short guide to taking photos of felt and fibres. They are both in PDF format and can be downloaded.

16 thoughts on “Grey Wools and Banana Fibre

    1. Thanks, Fleur πŸ™‚
      I’m going to put it in the garden this week, so I hope it’ll be used.

  1. What an interesting effect with the banana on the suffolk. Where did you find gray suffolk. I have never seen it, it has always been cream. it looks like it felted down quite flat and hard. The suffolk I’ve used stays spongy. It would be interesting to use for a picture. It would add a lot of dimension. The bird house turned out great. I have been wanting to do one with curles around the edge like that. If I were a bird I would move into it.

    1. Thanks, Ann πŸ™‚
      I got the grey suffolk from World of Wool. It didn’t really felt flat and hard, it stayed spongy and kind of ‘loose’. I wouldn’t be surprised if a few birds (or squirrels) pulled the curls off!

  2. That is a really nice effect Zed and if i was teeny little bird i’d want to move right in there, its gorgeous and the extra curly bits look great πŸ™‚

  3. The spider’s den is creepy! What an effect.

    I love the bird house but I hope the birds don’t peck the pretty curlies off to use as nesting material.
    Come to think of it, at nesting time, any bits of fluff from the drum carder could be put on bushes for the birds to take away for their nests.

    There’s some interesting info on this royal society for the protection of birds site:
    and although it refers to birdboxes, the advice would apply equally apply to bird pods.

    1. Thanks Lyn πŸ™‚
      Yeah, it is creepy, even though I know what it really is.
      Thanks for the link, that baby Robin is adorable πŸ™‚
      I didn’t think about fleas and cleaning.

  4. I love the textures you created and the bird pod is way cool. I’ve had mine out all winter with no takers thus far. Hope yours has better occupancy!

    1. Thanks, Ruth πŸ™‚
      I’ll be happy if it just stays in the tree, we get really strong winds here at times.

  5. Mine has flown out of the tree several times, been eaten by a squirrel and needed repair, got stuck against other branches and was hanging upside down…

    1. I haven’t hung mine out yet, I’m really considering adding ties to the bottom too.

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