Felt Picture

Felt Picture

I had an idea over the week to do a piece of felt for my sister to say thanks for helping me at MakeFest. I saw a photo she took and thought that would make a great piece. I haven’t told her or asked her, so I probably shouldn’t post the photo without permission, but I made a simplified version on Photoshop as a guide:

field field picI don’t have a computer downstairs (or working printer) so I didn’t have a photo to work from, but I did draw a guide πŸ™‚


I marked out the bands on a template and did the first layer, I’m afraid some of the photos aren’t the best, it was dark and I had to use flash at times:

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI then started on the second layer:

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI thought it was looking alright until I got to the bright yellow patch near the bottom, it’s a field of bright yellow rapeseed flowers, and I really wanted to capture the almost bubbly look it had. I blended Nylon and silk throwsters and Bamboo, and it looked great, but made the rest look really flat:

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERASo, then I had to go over all the areas with more texture. I blended shades, mixed in fibres, fluffed it all up and filled in the rows:

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI realise now if I’d taken photos of the blends etc, I could have used this for the 3rd Quarter Challenge πŸ™‚ My favourite part is the bottom, it was a hedge with lots of colour to it, mostly greens, but the new growth had shades of red. I used lots of different shades of nylon staple fibre for this.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI added the details on next: hedges, trees, telegraph poles:

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAFor the trees I used black viscose top, I pulled lengths off, fanned out the top, then gave it a twist to make the trunk and branches. Then I added fluffy wisps of blended wool.


OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAFelted and still wet:

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAA few bits of yarn I used for tracks didn’t work, so I removed them. Here it is dry:

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe back looks good too:

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAIt’s completely the wrong shades, the original photo is more ‘acidic’, but I liked how it turned out. I’m not sure it’s my sister’s thing though so it might be back to the drawing board there πŸ™‚

32 thoughts on “Felt Picture

  1. Zed, I think you did a fantastic job of capturing the essence of the original simplified photo. Your planning paid off. You gave the pic movement and a sense of life. I’m sure your sister will love it! Excellent blending to get the effects you were after. You’re right, even the back looks good. Bravo!

    1. Thanks a lot, Marilyn πŸ™‚
      She did like it πŸ™‚ I’m glad I added more.

  2. Gorgeous. Thank you for sharing your step by step process. It was fun to see the fibers you used and the layering process.

    1. Thanks, Karen πŸ™‚
      It was nice to have lots of fibres to choose from to get the effects I wanted.

    1. Thanks, Judith πŸ™‚
      I should have taken a photos of all the various different shades of mustard nylon and yellow bamboo I had!

  3. Looks so nice, Zed! I like it that you took the extra effort to make the whole thing more 3D. And can I say (like I often do) that I do love it before it’s wet? I think the wispy bits of wool make it move somehow…

    1. Thanks, Leonor πŸ™‚
      I forgot actually, I used some viscose nepps for extra texture too. I think if we ever discover a way to preserve wool and fibres before felting, there’ll be a lot less felting happening!

  4. It’s beautiful Zed and I’m sure she’ll love it! This landscape is alive thanks to all the ‘fiddly bits’ you added in just the right colours too.
    I like your planning and I think having a template is a good idea otherwise it’s difficult to get the proportions as you want them.
    And yes, the back looks pretty good too!

    1. Thanks Lyn πŸ™‚
      Fiddly is the right word, I think I watched a whole Indian Railway Journeys programme just making the trees!

  5. I think it turned out really nicely and that your sister will appreciate it. You did a great job with the layering and achieving the overall feel of the template. And I love the back too πŸ™‚

    1. Thanks, Ruth πŸ™‚
      I think it might have been a bit too ‘structured’ or stiff or something if I followed the photo, so I’m kind of glad I just had my template.

  6. I think it turned out great, I like the colours. It sounds like you liked making it. If you really think the colours are not ones your sister would like, then make another one. Use brighter colours and blends and get the challenge done at the same time. Lots of artists do the same pictures in different colours. Think of yourself as Andrea Warhol. πŸ™‚

    1. Thanks, Ann πŸ™‚
      Luckily she likes it, but if I was being like Andy Warhol, I’d just get a lackey, I mean ‘assistant’ to do another one for me!

  7. It’s fascinating for us to see the process in which another artist creates, so I appreciate your taking the time to show us. You were able to produce a lovely piece of felt with tons of texture.
    Bravo! And lucky sis!

    1. Thanks, Cathy πŸ™‚
      I’ll try to take more pics of the actual fibres and blending next time.

  8. Your wool picture is fantastic and has a great depth to it. Loved reading about the step by step process. I was interested that you used nylon staple fibre , I’ve not heard of this before. What is it and does it felt well?

    1. Thanks, Chris πŸ™‚
      Nylon staple is a short, crimped, synthetic fibre. There’s a photo here: https://feltingandfiberstudio.files.wordpress.com/2011/10/crimped-nylon.jpg?w=700&h=
      It has quite a matte look and feel to it, so it’s good for adding texture and detail when you don’t want sheen. You can dye it with acid dyes the same as silk and wool, and it is really cheap too, I pay about Β£1.25 for 100g, I think from World of Wool
      It felts like most other fibres really, i.e, from getting completely ‘absorbed’ if you use a tiny amount, to being ‘loosely’ attached and very texturey if you use loads.

  9. This is beautiful Zed and it’s all the more interesting to be able to follow a piece of work, through images, and see how it has been developed.

  10. I am new a novice in fact but I always go in with any craft and try to do something different – I think your pic is fantastic – I did not know you could use Viscose is this Viscose as in a man made fibre fabric you can buy or recycle a top from a charity shop made out of viscose. I have just felted my first attempt a gilet not knowing a thing what to do but following instructions in a book and asking. your input to using any other fibres would be great I want to do a large contemporary picture for my family for the “C” time to include trees and the country side. best wishes Denise

    1. Thanks, Denise πŸ™‚
      The viscose I used was Viscose staple fibre, the fibre before it is combed into tops or spun into thread to make the fabric. I have some photos of the dyed viscose I used here: http://feltingandfiberstudio.com/2015/07/02/naturals-and-dyes/ We have some info on fibres here on the site, if you look at the menu bar at the top, you’ll see ‘Other Fibres’ and if you hover over that, you’ll see the drop down menu, we have lots of photos of the different types of fibres you can use in felting and each page has a gallery too showing examples of the fibres used. If you want more clear information though, I have an e-book about embellishment fibres, it shows 20 different commonly available fibres felted in 3 different ways each, showing their characteristics. Fibres are great for creating more texture in felting, especially representing natural textures. And they’re really cheap from World of Wool, too πŸ™‚

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