Browsed by
Tag: merino wool

More Fingerless Mitts

More Fingerless Mitts

It’s not very exciting and I fear you may be getting bored with me telling you that I am making fingerless mitts again. Unfortunately other than getting ready for Christmas that is what I am doing. I did finish my exchange gifts and get them mailed off but I can’t show you the pictures until they are received.

These are two I finished yesterday. I have four more pairs in versus stages of being made.

red fingerless mitts 2red fingerless mitts

What I am working on

What I am working on

I was sitting here wondering what the post would be today when I realised it was my turn to post.  So you might guess I am running a little behind. It has turned cold her so I thought  better make myself a hat. Normally I can make several hats in a day. Not this one. It is a never ending project. I started the hat on Friday. Now its Wednesday and its not done yet. First I made a larger template than usual because I wanted to make a scrunched up hat.Then I looked for colours. I have nothing I want in large enough quantity to make a hat. That means the first thing is to blend all the purples together to get enough wool to make my hat.

Before Carding
Before Carding
First time through the carder.
First time through the carder.
Third time through the carder
Third time through the carder

Here it is all the wool laid out on Friday.

layout top layout

The yarn on my spindle in the picture will end up on both parts. I also have a similar hand spun yarn in pinks that will go on the hat. I forgot to take pictures of that on Monday. Last night I sewed it up into tight scrunches ready to be steamed and ironed.

sewn up sewn up top

The part that is not sewn will be turned to the inside with the top attached to it.  The top was sewn towards the center. My hands were sore after the sewing do my plan is to do the ironing today and then I have to sew the top on and see if it looks any good on me. I will show you the finished hat in my next post. What have you or are you making for yourself ?

More Fingerless Mitts

More Fingerless Mitts

Can you tell I am on a roll with these. I did this pair a little differently. Instead of doing it around a resist I made a flat piece of black felt and then sewed on some sari waste ribbon.

flat fingerless mitts start

I want them to be sort off raggy looking in the end.

I wanted to put big black buttons to fasten it but I didn’t have enough so I used all different ones. I think it turned out better with the different coloured buttons.flat fingerless mitts finished

And here is what they look like on.

flat fingerless mitts on maegan

I really like the way they turned out and will probably make more this way.






Nuno Felt Experiments for the Studio Challenge

Nuno Felt Experiments for the Studio Challenge

Every quarter on the forum we do a challenge.  I thought I better get on with it myself before the challenge runs out. I challenged people to try nuno felting or to try it on something they hadn’t before. I decided to try some fabrics that I wasn’t sure would work, to see what would happen. There are lots of pictures. I did shrink them so I hope they don’t overwhelm anyone’s computer connection.

For all the pieces I used merino wool in a contrasting colour so I could see how the wool migrated better.

The first is  a polyester knit that is like t-shirt material. It feels a lot like cotton.

poly knit

this is what it finished like. It worked really well. I think because it is a soft knit the fabric fibers could easily move out of the way letting the wool through.

polly knit felted polly knit felted cloce

This one is from a poly knit dress more like the polyester we used to wear in the 70’s.

polyester dress

It worked fairly well but it is heavier material and the wool didn’t come through as much.

poly dress felted poly dress felted close

These next two are different sides of the same silk fabric cut from a woven silk jacket. it was a pretty little jacket but small and out of date. The texture of the fabric is great, quite 3 dimensional. This is the right side.

silk jacket right side

silk jacket right side felted 1silk jacket right side felted close

I think it worked really well.

This is the wrong side.

silk jacket wrong side

It didn’t felt as well, I do not know why the fiber would not travel through fabric as well in this direction but as you can see not nearly as much wool migrated to the top.

silk jacket wrong side felted silk jacket wrong side felted close

Lastly is a mystery fabric. it is cut from a blouse. Both sewn into the seam together. one said 100% silk and the other said 100% polyester.

maybe silk

It did work very well but you can’t see its shine much at all. You do see it more in person.

maybe silk feltedmaybe silk felted close

There is still time to join in the challenge. Try something new or show us something old you tried that worked or didn’t. I think the failures or things that went sideways are sometimes the most interesting.

Bird Houses are Moving Along

Bird Houses are Moving Along

Bird houses are moving along. After I cut the holes I rolled them a little I put them in to some pantyhose tops for a trip through the dryer to get some of the fulling done.

bird houses in pantyhose They have balloons inside them.

They tumble for about 20 minuets without any heat. Then it’s back to hand fulling to finish them. I did some with merino and some with romney. Here you can see the shrinkage difference between the wool. The merino ones are on top.

shrinkage comparison 2 shrinkage comparison

Next is they get rinsed and more balloons inside to get them to dry the right shape.

drying with balloons for shape

You will notice that the green ones are not in this picture, this is why:

bird houses bleeding

This is their 10th soak so the next step is to boil them to see if that stops the bleeding.

I will do the finishing work on the bird houses this weekend. Why is the finishing always the hardest part. I will add the hanging sting and hang them up for one final picture for  you.


Felt bird houses are coming along and a fun demo.

Felt bird houses are coming along and a fun demo.

Slowly the bird houses are coming along. They are now decorated, wet down.

birdhouse 1 birdhouse 2 birdhouse 3 birdhouse 4 birdhouse 5 birdhouse 6

They have been rubbed and rolled and stuffed into the tops of pantyhose. They are ready to full. With some luck that will be tomorrows job.

Two days this week I was at the Ottawa Valley Farm Show. I was demonstrating spinning with a few friends. I took some mixed batts I made buy collecting my odd bits together and running them through the carder. They have lots of colour and neps.

spinning batts

On day one I spun up 2 very bulky singles and one medium weight single in pinks.

wheel spun spools

Today I plied the 2 bulkies together. My wheel is not designed for such bulky yarn but with perseverance  and a few choice words under my breath I got it plied.

bulky being plied bulky plied

After that I was tired of pink so I switched to my drop spindle and the blue green batt.

sinndle spun blue spoindle spinning

I am afraid I don’t have anymore pictures that turned out. We were right in front of a big picture window that was a very nice spot but not good for taking pictures as you can see from the picture of me spinning.

I think I’ve done really well with working and playing with fiber this week. I hope I can keep it up.



My Second Entry into the Weather Felting Challenge.

My Second Entry into the Weather Felting Challenge.

I was tidying up after making something else and had a pile of green trimming. With Zed’s felt scraps post still fresh in my mind they looked like branches to me. I think I must be in a tree mood. I used prefelt for the back ground because I didn’t have any scrap black felt and I wanted to get on with making the pictures and not with felt making.


I used the edge of an off cut in very pale blue piece of felt for the snow and a very thin edge piece for the clouds and moon. its hard to see but I layered the snow pieces on  2 of the pictures to see if it would give more depth after felting. i have never had much luck wet felting finished felt to semi felted pieces but after some rubbing and rolling it all went together really well. I am quit pleased with how they turned out.

There is more depth in the layered pieces. It doesn’t show well bit it does make the snow look more dimensional.  They still need ironing to straighten up the edges. They are a bit to big to use on cards. I think they might look nice side by side in a long frame.

So now I have answered Zed question what do you do with your scraps.

My Project for the 4th Quarter Felting Challenge

My Project for the 4th Quarter Felting Challenge

I decided not to wait until the last min to do my challenge piece this time.  The forth quarter challenge is weather. This piece I did on a piece of black silk chiffon. It’ s meant to be framed. I was going to use this for my exchange gift but then thought It wouldn’t be fair so send something they then had to frame.


The picture on the right is of the snowscape and several other things rolled up. I am messy. You can see the water on the table from me wetting down and it pouring off the corner. It’s OK though I have cement floors and a center drain.

Needling on some of the snowflakes that did not stick during rolling. I think I made the little balls to tight.



The finished picture from the front and back. I like both

I have a second entry on the same theme I will show you in a few days.

Changing the Design of a Nuno Felt Shrug

Changing the Design of a Nuno Felt Shrug

In the spring I made some shrug jackets using a pattern I saw in a book about making simple garments with your weaving. I don’t weave but I can felt a rectangle instead of weaving it.  You would think that I would read what to do instead of just going from memory but that would have been too easy. I made some nice looking shrugs.

Orange shrug after over dying

They look nice enough but they didn’t really fit as well as I would have liked. They were to puffy at the back so not very flattering. I think the problem is the rectangle they are made from was to wide making the shrug to long.  I decided to change them. I unpicked them and gave them a wash to get rid of all the thread holes.

I folded the top down about 1/3 to create a kimono sleeve. You end up with something that is more like a shawl that doesn’t fall off as you use you hands and go about your day.

If you would like a larger collar you can wear it the other way up.

You could also just sew a line down the edge or just the other direction to have a larger sleeve opening. I like these much better. I hope other people like them too. I am going to my guild exhibition and sale this weekend and I will have them there.  On that note if you are in Ottawa this weekend  Drop by the Glebe Community Center to see what we are up to.

Making Felted Soap

Making Felted Soap

I have a show coming up soon and I am almost out of felted soap. They are always popular at Christmas time.

Here you can see some of my bins of small amounts of different colours, the pieces of nylon stocking I use for felting in and the first soap wrapped up in wool.

first a wrap a thin strip of wool around the edge of the soap then roll it up in a wider strip of roving. Next I pic a complementary or contrasting colour to wrap around the soap. I usually do a spiral from one side to the other.

I use small pieces of nylon stocking to put the wool in for felting. It’s the only thing I use nylons for these days. The reason I put the soap and wool bundle in a stocking is to keep it under control. the first thing that happens when you wet the wool is it gets bigger and its hard to keep it all in place.

Here is a soap with some silk added. this is silk roving that is teased apart. I also us pieces of silk hanky to give it a marble like appearance.

I managed to get this far yesterday but I didn’t manage to get them felted. so here is a picture of a different batch all finished. there are 2 with silk hanky on them.

That’ s the way I do it. If you have any questions or tales of soap making tell us about it.

%d bloggers like this: