Browsed by
Tag: leaves

Inspiration Photos

Inspiration Photos

The photos of the felt piece I was going to blog about today didn’t turn out, so I thought I’d share some photos I took recently for inspiration. I was up early enough to enjoy some morning sunshine in the back garden, so took lots of photos of anything which caught my attention. The first thing was these little wild geranium flowers which grow everywhere in Spring:

They look nice, but they are really invasive and have a pretty unpleasant smell. I know lots of people hate Dandelions, but I’ve always really liked them. I had no idea the centres looked like this until I got a camera with Supermacro settings:

The next thing was this little glass cabochon. I used it as a weight on a stencil a few weeks ago and it got flecks of spray paint on it:

I’m not sure what this plant is or even if it’s something I bought or something which found its own way here, but it’s another thing whose detail is lost (to me, anyway!) without the Supermacro camera setting:

I’ve taken photos like this before, and I’m pretty sure I’ve shared them on here. This is a leaf from a teasel plant. I love the way it looks when it starts to die/decay:

I love the texture of Sage leaves, especially when they are young:

I’m not sure what is clinging to the ‘hairs’, but here’s a cropped close up:

If any botanists know, please enlighten me! The cat who has adopted us joined me in the garden, she enjoyed rolling around in the dust. She has nice patterns and markings anyway, but the sun seemed to make them more obvious. Even though this is really soft, it reminds me of a hedgehog:

I took this photo because I really like the soft hair behind her ears, but when I looked closer at the photo, I noticed that on just one small part of her head she has lots of different types of hair/hairs:

I only took this photo because I think the cat’s chin is really cute:

But when I looked closer, the fur seemed to be in a kind of pattern, kind of like the pattern of Sunflower seeds or a Dandelion seed-head. I’m not imagining it, am I?

I took these last photos a few weeks ago at the park near the well being centre. I wouldn’t be surprised if I’ve shared photos of these trees here too, they’re at the entrance and always make me want to photograph them. I thought it was interesting the way the clouds matched up with the trees.

This tree has a really unusual trunk, it seems really fibrous:

There’s a tree behind it which has really interesting seed pods, at least that’s what I think they are! I thought this might be something which Ruth might find inspiration in:

I don’t often sit down and plan a project directly from the inspiration photos I take, but I’m pretty sure the textures, colours and patterns influence my work anyway. Do you take or collect inspiration photos? What do you do with them? Please feel free to use any of these photos for direct or indirect inspiration.

Green Man – Guest Post by Carole G.

Green Man – Guest Post by Carole G.

This is a guest post by Carole G. one of our forum members. You can follow her here: 

https://www.facebook.com/BagsaLicious/

https://craftybeetle.wordpress.com/

I love forests, the magical paths that lead you through oaks, birch, beech and ash and the faces, there are always faces to be seen in tree trunks.

It is this imaginary along with my curiosity about the ‘Greenman’ and the many ways he is depicted that has taken me along a path of my own. A path of experimenting with leaves, print, shapes to eventually create my own ‘Greenman’.

Part of this journey including using paints, hand dyed fabric, freehand machine stitch, trapping fabrics together with stitch, I even tried trapunto, my final attempt was using merino and bits of fabric with stitch then cutting out shapes. I’m not particularly happy with the final piece but I adored the journey and will revisit this in the future.

First of all I decided to paint paper and print leaf shapes on to it.

Then I decided to use sun dyes to create leaf shapes on fabric ( I haven’t tried this on felt but I think it would work the same way) and highlight the shapes using a freehand machine stitch technique called trapunto.

My next leg of the journey was to explore ways using freehand stitch and trapped merino and other fibres to create leaf like images.

Moving on I decided on the trapped fibre approach and made up a few leaves before trying them out as a Greenman face.

Moving on I needed a backing for this man of the woods, so I painted up some burlap to keep a rustic feel going and hung him from a branch.

You can follow my creative meanderings on both:

https://www.facebook.com/BagsaLicious/

https://craftybeetle.wordpress.com/

 

Finishing a Vase Cover

Finishing a Vase Cover

Last year I made a couple of vase covers using hand dyed Domestic 56 wool from Cathy (Luvswool).  Normally, I like the bright colors, but I really liked these subtle natural colors. Here is front and back.

But it seemed like it needed something. So, it has been sitting in the UFO pile waiting for some inspiration on how to finish it.

A few weeks ago when I wrote about crochet, Lyn provided a link to make a rose. https://feltingandfiberstudio.com/2017/03/19/discovering-textures-in-crochet/

So, I tried it. It was very easy, thanks Lyn!

Then of course, I had to learn to make leaves and a stem.

When I laid it on the vase cover, I really liked it.

Then I sewed it on.  Here it is finished.

What UFOs have you finished recently?

A Peek at Terri Simon’s Eco Printing Class with Nicola Brown

A Peek at Terri Simon’s Eco Printing Class with Nicola Brown

Thanks to Terri Simon aka Meterrilee on the forum for sharing her eco printing experience today.

Today, I would like to share my experience with eco-dyeing. Most, if not all, of our blog hosts and many followers have experience with eco-dyeing, but it was a first for me and I loved it! I decided to take an online class with Nicola Brown from Ireland. She is a wonderful teacher—very thorough in describing the process in an online format, including several videos to illustrate further. She was available daily for six weeks to comment, problem solve, and encourage us as we journeyed through that week’s lesson. Like other online classes, there are “chatroom” areas to post pictures and ask questions, and to comment on one another’s creations. The online environment is available for six months and all of the lessons were downloadable in PDF format. Additionally, Nicola created a Facebook page for us to continue communication. Thanks, Nicola, for a great online experience!

As a dyeing newbie, I had to assemble equipment. At a nearby thrift store, I found an aluminum fish cooker with all kinds of inserts for steaming, an iron stake, and a length of copper pipe which I cut into pieces to fit into the fish cooker. We had an outdoor fire source…a propane tank and hook-up for deep frying a turkey. It worked perfectly on my covered back porch (this is Southern Oregon’s rainy season). Here’s my equipment:

terri-pans

All for $20. Not bad!

I ordered a bunch of silk, silk/wool blend, and 100% wool scarves from Dharma Trading, which had a good selection and reasonable prices. I also made pieces of felt to experiment with. For vegetation, I used rose leaves, loose tea, red and brown onion skins, strawberry and blackberry leaves, Japanese cut leaf maple and eucalyptus, donated to me by a friend who has several trees. The rest came from my garden (and kitchen.) There are lots of different “brews” for obtaining the prints. Some involve rust water, others vinegar water and other things thrown into the cooking pot (different metals, plants…). And of course, there are multiple ways to prepare the fabric for dyeing, none of which use harsh chemicals (the harshest chemical used is vinegar). I really like this aspect of eco dyeing…it’s all very natural. I am amazed that the beauty of a leaf can be imprinted substantively on fabric, right down to the intricate veining.

 

 

Here are some photos of my experiments.pic-2

This turned out sort of dark and muddy. These are Japanese maple leaves. The scarf actually looks good with the right outfit, but the prints are very subtle and not what you want when you are just starting out (at least not what I wanted!).

These are pieces of handmade felt, with eucalyptus (the skinny and bright orange leaves) and strawberry leaves. The purplish looking circles are cut from red onion skins.

pic-3

Next is a blend of wool and silk. You can really see the details of the onion skins on this fabric.

pic4

The scarf below is 100% silk. The print is much softer looking. I like the tie lines produced when wrapping the bundle.

pic5

 

Finally, I made some felt placemats and while they are interesting, I am not a fan of the muddy yellowish background. I found out it was operator error for not keeping the heat up high enough for a long enough time. I had to go out for a bit and turned off the flame under the pot, letting the placemats sit for about an hour until I got home to untie them. My mistake! Had I kept the heat up for the full five hours, I would have produced a much clearer print, such as the example pieces I have included in this picture. But, they are still pretty in a muted way.

pic-6

I highly recommend Nicola’s classes. She is an excellent teacher, very thorough and organized and she has a delightful wit as well.  You can find more information on Nicola and her classes here:   http://www.nicolabrown.ie/

 

 

Sampling

Sampling

On my last post I showed a nuno felt piece I’d made using various wool tops I got in a recent bag of Botany Lap Waste from World of Wool. It became obvious that not all were Merino or even 100% wool, so I thought I’d try some samples. The first one is the kind of Royal Blue from the back of the nuno piece. I’d had a feeling at the time it might not be Merino, but it’s surprising how different various tops can feel and even look when you use lots of different ones together, even when they’re all 23 mic Merino. I know sometimes it’s because they’re old and a bit dry, but I think it has something to do with the dyes too:

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe staple length was really long, and it wasn’t exactly coarse, but wasn’t as soft as Merino, so I’m guessing it’s Corriedale. This is on an angle:

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERASome other tops I got were obviously not Merino or Corriedale. I’m going to guess at Shetland, because WoW don’t do many different breeds of dyed tops, and because it looks similar to some green Shetland I got:

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAIt looks different on a different background:

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAYou can see on the close up it’s coarser and hairier than the previous one:

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI don’t think I used this next one on my nuno piece either, but it was very similar to the turquoise I used on the back (I only got as far as wetting down that sample). It was obvious straight away that this was never going to felt:

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAIt’s just two very loosely holding together layers, holding together more by tangling of a few fibres rather than felting, I think:

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAIt’s not even pretending to hold together at one end, where it started to ‘drip’ when I held it up wet:

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAAnd this is what it looks like at the window:

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI don’t know what it could be, the only similar experience I’ve had to this is trying to felt Suri Alpaca locks. I know Superwash has been suggested, but I don’t think they do dyed Superwash or put it in the Botany Waste.
And inspired by Ruth,  a nice Autumnal photo:

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

%d bloggers like this: