With the first quarter challenge being all about making samples by deconstructing/reconstructing different materials I had intended to spend a day doing precisely that and detail them in this post. Like a lot of well intentioned plans time slipped away and I’m sitting here with no new samples and a post to write!
For the sake of getting this post out on time I’m going to have to cheat and show some of the deconstruct/reconstruct work I’ve made in the past.
This sample was my first attempt at Nuno Felting, made with synthetic sheers and some cotton fabrics. I remember thinking at the time “never again” as the process seemed to take forever! Obviously I did do it again and soon learnt which fabrics I prefer to work with. This sample eventually got cut up and used for brooches. Thanks to Helene and her post, which you can find here, for reminding me about these.
My second sample had silk fabrics top and bottom, cut from charity shop scarves, with a piece of my aunties wool shawl in the centre. As you would expect, being somewhat bulky, the wool section shrunk far less than the silks but all three pieces felted very quickly and easily so I was encouraged to go on and make lots more Nuno felt.
It hung around for quite some time before I decided to cut it down, add some stitching and put it in a frame. It’s now a lovely reminder of aunty Das who has since passed away.
Off cuts of prefelt, or deconstructed fully felted pieces, never get thrown away as they are always useful for cutting up and using as inclusions beneath fabric when Nuno felting.
This little fossil sample was a trial using Merino fibres and cotton wadding left over from a quilting project. The wadding felts very easily and is useful for creating ”lumpy” relief designs.
One of the great things about making felt is that, even if it doesn’t work out how you wanted, it needn’t be wasted. This mossy pebble necklace is an example of that. I had intended it to be asymmetrical but when it was finished it wasn’t asymmetrical enough. There’s a fine line between something looking intentionally asymmetrical and looking like you tried to make it symmetrical and failed! This looked the latter….. just plain wonky!
Thinking I would work on it at some point I left it on display next to a grey Bergschaf bowl……… and months later had a light bulb moment! The necklace was deconstructed and recycled to create the large surface “bumps” on this bowl.
Another deconstruct project was this triangular scarf. I loved the combination of the Superfine Merino and Viscose Fibre but wasn’t particularly happy with the design of the scarf. Several months later, after never being worn, it got cut up, pleated, beaded and recycled to create this chunky, highly textural bracelet.
My final samples were inspired by a photograph I took of barnacles. I can’t remember now what they were attached to but I saw them in the harbour in Ullapool and just loved the shapes and colours.
The hand dyed cotton fabric, left over from an old project, was given to me by a friend. The barnacles are constructed from several pieces sewn together on the machine and stiffened using acrylic wax. The next step will be to sample materials and techniques to create the very textural background.
If you have any deconstruct/reconstruct projects you would like to share, big or small, we would love to see them over on the Forum.