Working Small

I’ve been trying some new things to work on that I could do easily and fairly quick. Right, haha.

I had seen some crochet and bead earrings online I wanted to try.  I used the same Aunt Lydia’s variegated cotton thread that I used on one of the scrubbies  I posted about recently.

 

It turned out out to be a little fiddly, but I got the hang of it and was pleased with the results. I especially like the variegated thread since it makes it easy to wear with several colors. My favorite ocean like colorway.  Here they are lying flat.

 

But then I thought they would nice hanging. So I scoured my house for something to hang them on.

Can you see the beading?

I keep pulling out my felt scraps and wonder what I can do with them.  I had some prefelt leftover from making business cards covered with throwsters waste to add a little bling and just enough to make two earrings.  I cut out two squares and played around with how to use them.  I like dangling earrings but not too big.  Since it was prefelt I didn’t want to add beads on it and weigh it down.

So, I used a head pin put a few beads on it then attached the prefelt around it just sewing it closed in the back. And finally attached the hooks.  They aren’t perfect but they are handmade.

I started another round pair with beads, but got frustrated and put it aside for another time.

I still have piles of scraps.  I’ll have to play with them some more and figure out what else I can use them for. Unfortunately, many pieces are too small to match and are odd shaped.  What have you done with your scraps lately?

 

Posted in Beading, crochet, Repurpose | Tagged , , , , , | 18 Comments

Bits and Bobs

I made a couple of felt pieces to use as lampshade covers not so long ago, one of them wasn’t nice at all, it looked okay, but it was made with Shetland, and what I think is Corriedale (from a bag of Botany Lap Waste) and now I understand why people shiver at wool! I used that one for the shade, but couldn’t get a decent photo. The other piece I made is going to be a removable ‘skirt’ when I think of how to attach it. It’s a bit crinkled because it ended up under a pile of things!

A while ago we made pouches using resists at the well being centre. I think I might rewet this and reshape it as a bottle cover:

We’re going to start learning some techniques for making felt landscape pictures at the Well Being Centre. After we were talking about it I showed the group the picture Tracey blogged about not so long ago:

I also showed some of Marion/Blyth Whimsies gorgeous floral pieces: https://www.flickr.com/photos/24232165@N03/albums/72157681820827174 I don’t think we’ll be making anything on that scale though! To get started we made some really simple landscapes, I like doing these, they’re usually around postcard size:

I made it clear that landscapes aren’t something I’m particularly good at or experienced with, Mine are usually simple like that above or very abstract like this:

But, I know fibres and effects and techniques, so we’re going to start with those and build up the skills to make more adventurous pieces. We’re going to start with making simple things like wool strands and twists:

Wool kebabs … I recently read something that when small rolags (usually of cotton) are made, they’re called ‘punis’. But I think these are even smaller, and I’ve been calling them ‘kebabs’ – because they’re rolled around a kebab stick-for so long it’s just stuck now!

Handspun yarn, singles, plied, mixed with fibres or commercial yarns etc:

Coils and Spirals:

We’re probably going to buy some prefelt, but we’ll make our own too:

And combine all the things:

And add things like leaves and flowers, nepps, fibres etc. And hopefully, we’ll all be landscape experts before long! Luckily, we have a group member who is amazing at hand-stitching and embroidery and our very own Free Motion Embroidery expert so we can embellish on the sewing machines too 🙂

Posted in Wet Felting | Tagged , , | 15 Comments

A Zed Inspired Book Cover

I bought myself a new sketch pad that is in a book form rather then a flip pad. I decided I wanted to cover it in the way that Zed had last shown us here project-updates-2/

I am lazy and wanted to get to the decorating so I started with a piece of white prefelt. I didn’t take a picture of it but you can see it in the picture of attaching the cord farther down. This is the overall piece just wet down.

Here is a closer look at the flowers and the little resist I put in for a pocket. I want to be able to put a pencil eraser nd pencil sharpener in the cover. I used some of my handspun for the stems.

The area with the pocket will be cut off and sewn in to make the sleeve on one side of the book cover.

I flipped it over and started to layout the purple for the inside when I realised I hadn’t added the cord yet.

I made a hole and stuck it in.

Then I decorated the inside of the flap. I am not sure how this will work out but we will see.

Now all I have to do is find time to do the felting and sewing. Not sure where half the summer has gone already. How much felting have you done this summer?

Posted in Design, Inspiration, Made From Felt, resists, Sketch Book, Wet Felting | Tagged , , , | 10 Comments

3rd Qtr Challenge Part 3 – A Bit of a Disaster

I would like to throw this piece in the recycle bin and never show it to anyone. But since you’ve seen the prior steps, it seems unfair to not show you the ending. It is often the case when you follow someone’s posts that you only see wonderful, beautiful work. You don’t get to see the not so good work or the out and out failures. Most of the time around here, you get to see everything, warts and all. So here come the warts!

Last week I told you that I was planning on stitching my 3rd quarter challenge piece. I started with a heavy Perle cotton thread in either 3 or 5 size. I stitched with stem stitch around the circle and then started on the inner designs. I hated it. It seemed really bulky and just wasn’t what I had envisioned. So I un-stitched it.

Then I tried a thinner thread in a bit brighter green still in stem stitch. Yuck. Because of the way the interfacing had crumpled in the center of the felt, the shapes of the design were hard to follow and just weren’t looking like the original design.

So I decided I would try cutting the interfacing out like you do with the cracked mud technique as several followers had suggested. It took me over 30 minutes to get this quarter portion cut out. The interfacing was partially felted and it was difficult to find where to cut and to make the design even and as originally planned. I was getting really frustrated with the entire piece.

So I have decided to throw in the towel and start over. I am not sure how I will use my design, I’m keeping that, but will mull over a better way to showcase the design on felt. Perhaps screen printing. I know that I could continue with cutting it out and it would be OK. But I don’t like anything about it. I’m not sure why I chose yellow because I don’t really like a piece with that much yellow in it and I don’t think it’s worth my time to continue with a piece that I will be completely disappointed in the results.

What do you think? Do you abandon pieces or do you just keep working on them until you’re happy with the results?

 

 

Posted in Challenges, Stitching, Wet Felting | Tagged , | 26 Comments

Funky Vase Cover

I had purchased a ball of yarn at a clearance sale. It’s a combination of wool, acrylic and nylon and has a bit of sparkle to it. I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do with it until I found an orange vase I had laying around.

I made a resist then covered it with with two layers of odds and end batts with similar colors.

Then came the fun – wrapping the yarn around the resist in lines.

It was a bit fiddly flipping from side to side and then at the top and bottom to keep the yarn from falling off.

When I was satisfied I was ready to felt it, I went slow and easy checking frequently to make sure it was all staying together.  I purposely didn’t leave spaces between the lines thinking the yarn would felt to the backing and itself.

As you can see it’s a bit lumpy in spots and didn’t shink as much in height, so it’s a little taller than the vase.

I did a little needle felting to straighten things out and attach a few stray yarns.  But I was happy with the wavy texture.  I did also have to shave it a bit.  Then I had to decide what to do with it.  Here is one use:

I’m sure I could also use it for flowers, paint brushes or a number of other things. What would you use it for?

Posted in Wet Felting | Tagged , , , | 22 Comments

Small Nuno Pieces

I thought some of the recent scarves I’ve bought might make nice panels for the front of bags. I usually do a few samples when I get new fabrics, see how they felt at various sizes with different thicknesses of wool. This first piece attached ‘better’ at this size than it had when I tried a narrower strip. I think it’s viscose:

It has a nice texture:

These next 4 pieces are all silk. I wasn’t sure which colour of Merino to use with this, it was a toss up between ‘Mink’ and ‘Catkin’–a pale yellow. On its own it looks beige, so I chose ‘Mink’ , but now it looks more cream in colour so I might try a sample with the pale yellow 🙂

This was a difficult one to colour match too. I wasn’t sure whether to go for green or pinky purple. I decided on green, I didn’t have quite the right shade, but got as close as possible:

I used another piece from the same scarf, it might have been a panel from the bottom of the previous sample, this part definitely seemed like it’d be better with a pinky/purple shade. I chose the closest light purple I had, ‘Orchid’ I think, and used a bright pink underneath:

It’s funny how something looks a certain colour until you match it with something, then you see different colours more. This looked very pink, so I used a Salmon base, after felting, the beige seems very similar to the first piece and the lilac/pink/purples look similar to the previous piece. Maybe they’d work together in strips?

This is one of my favourite pieces. I think the scarf I tore it from is Polyester. This attached better than a narrower sample I tried too, it turned out much better than I thought. I tried to match the colours of Merino to the colours of the stripes on the scarf so they werent dulled by migration:

It has a really nice texture too:

Have you bought or tried out any new fabrics lately?

Posted in Nuno Felting | Tagged , , , , | 16 Comments

Tidying up Treasure.

In an attempt to find more storage I had to clear out some junk that should never been stored in the first place. I am sure everyone has some of this. While I was rummaging I found my old tiny needle felting machine. Its a small converted sewing machine. I had forgotten I even had it.

I used to have a larger one but I sold it when I moved more into wet felting hats and scarves.   Instead of having a sponge pad for the needles to poke down into it had a plate with a hole for each needle. I really didn’t enjoy using it. You could hear the needles hitting the edges of the holes as you tried to move the fabric around.  You need to move the fibers and base around slowly while needling to cover an area. I was always sure the needles were going to break and either jam the machine or fly. I didn’t want to have to wear safety glasses as I worked.

I have the big cityscape I made with the little machine framed and for sale.  It has almost sold several times.  With someone trying to decide between it and another piece and the other always went instead. One day it will find the right home. Today I would do more wet felting and less needle felting but all the little machine would probably still be the easiest way to place with the little windows. Not the best shot of it  but I have no place to hang it or even lean it properly to take its picture. framed it is about 36 inches by 24 inches.

 

Anyway I am glad I found it . I think it will be useful for tacking things down and adding smaller pieces that tend to move around to much in the wet felting process. Of course part of that problem is me being impatient. I think I am going to see if I can make a better guard.  I wonder if anyone I know works with clear plastic and I could maybe commission a clear guard attachment.

Posted in Needle Felting, Uncategorized, Wool | Tagged , , , | 15 Comments