I am teaching mittens next year at my guild. I haven’t made any in a long time so I have been working on some mittens for my grandson.  Here you can see where I was enlarging the pattern.  They look huge. I did add extra in the middle because it is easer to cut off some at the wrist then not have enough and try to add. Do you like my sheep duct tape?

I used a small piece of plastic to keep the thumb wool separate. They can so easily get all tangled with the wool from the finger part.

Here is it flipped over and ready for the second side.

And here they are on my grandson. He was a moving target.


I had planed on adding some trim to thread an elastic and tightener thingy but they seem to fit him well and don’t fall off. I will add some more detail to the car. I know he likes them because we couldn’t get him to stand still. He was dancing all over with them.

Have you made anything for winter Yet?

Posted in Classes, resists, Uncategorized, Wet Felting | Tagged , | 16 Comments

UFO’s Are Taking Over

I have tons of UFO’s (unfinished objects) in my studio space. I need to either get rid of some or do something with them to make them more functional.

This is a piece of felt that has been printed with thickened dye and then free motion machine stitched. It’s been hanging around for more than a year. I thought about framing it but decided against that.

So I had this tea tin that it wrapped around and fit perfectly.

Here it is getting ready to stitch. I used safety pins to hold it together and then used two needles to lace up the back. I can easily remove the stitching if I want to use the felt for something else.

Here it is after stitching. It’s a bit wonky but the edges weren’t even and I wasn’t really worrying about being straight.

And here’s the tea tin in my kitchen, all finished and looking pretty 🙂

Do you have any UFO’s that you need to complete? Show us some of your unfinished projects over on the forum. Maybe we’ll be able to give you some ideas of getting it finished or made into something useful.

Posted in Free Motion Stitching, Wet Felting | Tagged , , | 15 Comments

Maneki-Neko for 2017 3rd Quarter Challenge Part 2

I never dreamed this project would take me almost two weeks to complete.  But it is finished.

If you missed part one, you can read about it here:

It would seem adding the details to finish would be easy.  Not!

I needle felted blue roving around the eyes.  The gems underneath are actually blue, but because they were put over black it wasn’t obvious what color they were.

Then I spent time looking for a gold bell, but decided on using a wool ball instead.  When I added the ribbon I made a slit on both sides of the arm to pull it thru.

The nose and mouth are also needle felted.  But at one point, the nose fell off and had to be reattached.

I curled over the raised paw and secured it in order to show the paw and nails.

The nails proved to be a real challenge and after ripping them out at least a half dozen times, trying needle felting, then using floss and finally rayon thread.

I tried needle felting the arm in front and the tail in back to show the dimension, but it was negligible partly because of it being black. So, I stitched around them which helped.

Another challenge was the writing on the coin.  I made a gold prefelt and copied the characters I had translated from an app for Good Health and confirmed with my daughter in law, Mari. I transferred the characters to a stabilizer.

I thought using the satin stitch on my Pfaff machine would work, but its not a straight satin stitch, but the stitches varied.  So I decided to use a triple stitch which was fine until I reached curves.  I ended up finishing by hand. I’m hoping I haven’t butchered the characters too much.  After finishing the coin, I slip stitched it to the kitty.

The final addition were the whiskers.  They are a little funky and I had to use a little GAC to give them a little stiffness.

Now its time to find her place facing East in hopes of bringing Good Heath to my household.

What challenges have you had lately?




Posted in Wet Felting | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | 23 Comments

2017 4th Quarter Challenge

My first thought for this quarter’s challenge was to choose something very old, like very first cave paintings etc, but it isn’t really an art ‘period’ and it was hard to come up with something that wasn’t too wide or too narrow a topic. Then, like Marilyn, my instinct was to choose something to do with abstract art, I was thinking abstract non-figurative, bold patches and sweeps of colour, but after a bit of searching and researching decided on: Suprematism

Kazimir Malevich – Airplane Flying

According to Wikipedia, Suprematism “was founded by Kazimir Malevich in Russia, around 1913, and announced in Malevich’s 1915 exhibition, The Last Futurist Exhibition of Paintings 0.10, in St. Petersburg, where he, alongside 13 other artists, exhibited 36 works in a similar style.” Suprematism followed the Futurism Modern Art Movement. Looking through the work of the artists featured in the first Suprematism exhibition I found I was more familiar with a lot of their work than I’d realised. Even if you don’t know the artists mentioned, you’ll probably find their work or style is familiar too. For more info about Modern Art Movements in relation to each other, I found this timeline:

Ivan Kliun – Suprematist Composition

The Art Story website explains some of the ‘Key Ideas’ of Suprematism: “The Suprematists’ interest in abstraction was fired by a search for the ‘zero degree’ of painting, the point beyond which the medium could not go without ceasing to be art. This encouraged the use of very simple motifs, since they best articulated the shape and flat surface of the canvases on which they were painted. (Ultimately, the square, circle, and cross became the group’s favorite motifs.) It also encouraged many Suprematists to emphasize the surface texture of the paint on canvas, this texture being another essential quality of the medium of painting.”

Kazimir Malevich – Supremus 56

Other geometric shapes such as triangles, semi-circles, arcs and all kinds of regular and irregular quadrilaterals were also popular. The more I looked at Suprematist works, the more I thought how interesting it would be as a Challenge topic, because, even though the shapes and colours are ‘simple’, and in the case of some pieces, very minimalist, I thought their idea of emphasizing surface texture would appeal to many of us 🙂

Yakov Chernikhov – Suprematist Composition

Enjoy researching it and please share any of your projects with us on the Forum 🙂

Posted in Challenges | Tagged , , , , , | 8 Comments

Demo Last Weekend

This last weekend my guild did a Demo at the Carp Fair I went on the Sunday.  I took a blending board to make some more rollags. I had some hand cards with me and I had a spindle I was spinning a rollag on so I could explain it all.  It was very popular with the visitors to the fair. .

Bernadette was spinning Rambouillet on her wheel. In this picture she is Chain plying it.

Jan was working On the Edo Challenge. And Yes that is an octopus. I am hoping to get her to do a post about her progress. Here she is explaining it to some visitors.

Her fish was there on display and tried to eat a passing child.

Julie was weaving. She is doing shibori on the loom. She weaves the draw strings right into the scarf ready to be tightened up and then dyed. She has a finished sample onto of her loom.


And lastly 2 of the display tables.

I didn’t get any of the third table except Jan’s Fish.  We had a great time chatting with people about spinning, weaving and felting.  Have you been doing your crafts in public lately?


Posted in Challenges, Demo, Fairs and Shows, sculptural felt, Spinning, Weaving | Tagged , , , , | 11 Comments

Art Retreat

Our fiber art group had an art retreat the first weekend of September. We stayed at a lodge on Little Bitterroot Lake near Marion, Montana. It was a bit smokey this year due to wild fires but we still had loads of fun.

We started the weekend with deconstructed screen printing. I hadn’t made up any screens in advance since part of the group had never completed this part of the process.

This is a screen that Deb created with blue glue.

Here’s another screen with thickened dye.

Here are just a few of the results from the screen printing. We printed on paper and on fabric. We were using Procion MX Dyes so we didn’t print on any felt during this session.

Deb had agreed to show us her technique for making a cut and taped collage with some of the papers that we have printed, screen printed, gelli printed, eco printed over the last year. It was a neat method where the pieces were taped together and then sliced with a craft knife, re-positioned and taped back together again. The process is repeated many times.

Here’s Sally working on her eco printed papers. I didn’t get a photo of the final result but if you click on the photo on the right, I think you can see how the process works.

Louise created a collage using old photos. Hers was much smaller and was a bit more tricky than starting with larger pieces of paper.

This is Deb’s collage. She used screen printed papers that she made the day before. Normally, she would have squared up the edges and ended with a rectangular shaped piece. I encouraged her to leave the jagged edges and I really liked the end result on the right. She also made a companion “baby” piece with the leftover scraps but sadly I didn’t get a photo.

And here’s my piece. I used some of my dyed papers plus eco prints to create my collage. I have no idea what I’ll do with this. Perhaps I’ll cut it into smaller pieces and make greeting cards out of it.

We also did some gelli printing. Louise and Paula gelli printed feathers. They hadn’t tried that before and it was kind of cool. The larger white feathers seemed to be the most successful. You do the printing in layers, first apply the background colors and then add detail on top. I’m not sure what the plans are for the feathers but they turned out pretty cool.

Don’t forget to sign up for my upcoming online class that begins on October 6th. The class is Printing, Stenciling and Playing with Thickened Dye on Felt. Just go here to sign up and it’s only $45 for a 4 week course with loads of information.

Posted in Surface Design | Tagged , , , | 15 Comments

Pandagirl’s Maneki-Neko for 2017 3rd Quarter Challenge Part 1

I’ve still been in the mood to explore the Edo Period.  I remembered when my oldest son was in high school and brought home a Japanese exchange student who gave us a little kitty statute to bring prosperity to our home.

Of course, when I looked for it I couldn’t find it, but found plenty of pictures on the Internet.  It is technically called Maneki-neko which means “beckoning cat.” Of course,  there are many stories behind the cat.  You can read a few of them here:

There are also different meanings and results for different colored cats.  I chose black since it helps with good health (or getting rid of evil spirits).  Different writings have different meanings.  I did see one for green for good health, but I just wasn’t ready for a green cat.

Normally the traditional white cat brings wealth and prosperity and is seen in Asian restaurants and shops.  There is also confusion as to whether it is Japanese or Chinese.  It was the Japanese in the Edo period who developed this character.

I knew it was going to be a bit more complex than just making a resist for a pod.  Since I didn’t have a particular size in mind, I just made a resist I felt I could get enough detail on and manage.

I used prefelts for the first layer and merino wisps for the sides.  I also added needle felted noses, cheeks and prefelt and cotton batting for the one arm. Then added three layers of corriedale putting the eyes under the last two and prefelt for the ears.  On the back I also made a small tail using needle felted Jacob wool.  Not much of it is visible on the wet cat.

Then I added some silk with throwsters waste to add a little bling.

Then I fulled it and stuffed it with bubblewrap to give it some shape.  I did forget to open the eyes.

I rewet it and opened the eyes. So, next I will have to add all the details needed to finish.

Stay tuned!

Posted in 3D, Wet Felting | Tagged , , , , , , | 13 Comments