After years of deliberation I finally decided to take the plunge and purchase a drum carder. This year’s AGM of the International Feltmakers Association which took place in March put it back in my mind. My friends in the Felting and Fibre Studio cemented my resolve as they gave me lots of excellent advice during one of our get togethers.
So, research completed, I purchased from the German company Wollknoll principally because they offered the best value for money. While I was on their site I made some other purchases too, including a felting tool, some pre-felt, locks and a few other items. The parcel arrived quickly and it was so exciting to receive it. In fact it was like Christmas day only better because I didn’t have to stop what I was doing to cook dinner!
The exciting opening revealing all the extra ‘stuff’ on top!
I bought the Ashford wide (12 inch) drum. I opted for this rather than the 8 inch drum because there was less than €50.00 difference in the overall price. It was very easy to put together and the box will be stored in the attic as I am given to understand that second hand carding drums have a good resale value in Ireland. But for the moment I am going to enjoy it.
Once I put it together, Enda and I set out for Ikea which is not far away. Jan had recommended purchasing one of their trolley tables on wheels for it as it could be secured to the surface and it would become its permanent home. I found a lovely one. (Thanks Jan ). Enda helped me make it up and now they are sitting in my workroom.
Et Voila! Here it is all set up in its new home 🙂
On Easter Monday I finally found time to try it out using scraps of wool. I am so excited with the results of my first experiments.
One of my reasons for adding to my order was that the overall weight of the package was not going to increase the transport costs. Therefore, what I generally would ignore (because postage costs of buying small items made the price prohibitive) suddenly became attractive (with the ‘free’ postage).
My other purchases included some prefelt to experiment with. I only recently found out that the Wollknoll merino prefelt is a lot softer than DHG Italy product. I’m an not sure why this should be important – it may be more malleable. It certainly feels softer. I shall report back in this regard. The grey one to the left of the photo is DHG Italy and the other is from Wolknoll.
I also purchased a new felting tool. I like the feel of this beauty as there are no sharp edges to possible tear the felt (I have other felting tools that are quite pointed and rough). I hope to test this one out soon:
Then comes the two ‘down the rabbit hole’ purchases. first up, warp thread and then a concoction called ‘Foto Transfer Potch’ which I will need to read up about before attempting.
These should keep me out of mischief for a while.
Do you have any hints and tips for a novice drum carder? Any assistance will be most welcome!
Over the past few months I have been experimenting with felting on a ball. This is just a personal challenge. I wanted to see if I could make some pieces with different finishes which would be felted on the outside of the structure (the videos I have seen place the design against the ball then turn the piece inside out so that the design shows). I am sure there are videos that show how to do this the other way around (where the design is already on the outside and there is no turning involved)but I have not been able to find them. Here are the four I have made so far:
First Shibori and Ripples:
Next: Fantasy flower:
Here’s Geode Ball:
Finally, here’s Disco Ball using recycled coffee pods (my least favourite). I used four different colour pods on this particular one. You can see the different colours in the photo inset. I did not like the colour of one of the sets of pods so I decided to use nail varnish to paint over it. Two coats. It adhered very well.
I used a small yoga ball for my base. It was handy as it could be inflated/deflated and it cost a fraction of what I would have paid for a felting ball.
Have you ever tried this method of felting on a ball? I would love to hear how you found it and see your pieces.