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The Wild Table Runner

The Wild Table Runner

I have a bin full of yarn.  A lot of it I’ve either dyed or picked up at garage sales or thrift stores.  A majority of it isn’t wool based.  So I thought it would be fun to make something using a variety of these yarns and see how they felted.

It started out to be a pillow cover, but later when I started to lay it out I changed my mind.  Originally, I had a swerving design in mind.  But thought there was too much empty space and the design would probably distort the whole thing. I used two batts of merino and a prefelt over that as a base.

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I added more yarns and moved them apart so they’d have room to create their own design.

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Here are the yarns I used, not necessarily in this order.  Some I used more than once.

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From left to right:

  1. Synthetic ladder yarn
  2.  Synthetic ladder yarn  second color
  3. Decorative synthetic flag yarn
  4. Mohair/metallic
  5. Bamboo
  6. Acrylic yarn
  7. Wool Boucle
  8. Merino slub yarn
  9. Hand dyed thick and thin yarn
  10. Worsted wool
  11. Novelty yarn with nylon, tactel, cotton and lame
  12. Merino slub yarn
  13. Wool roving sold as yarn
  14. Wool/metallic
  15. Peruvian wool
  16. Thick and thin wool yarn commercial
  17. Mohair/metallic novelty yarn

I had some “Riot Eyelash Yarn” I decided to use as an edging.  Which I sewed on using a zigzag stitch after it was felted.  It is aptly named.

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Here it is laid on a white background to show the eyelash edging.

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A few closeups:

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Strangely enough the only one I had to fix after felting was the multicolored acrylic yarn which I’ve used before without a problem.  I had to needle felt it down.  The Peruvian wool also had a few places to tack down, but I think it was because it was so tightly wound the merino prefelt couldn’t grab it as well.  Even the ladder yarn and synthetics seemed to be fairly firm in place.

Here it is on it’s new home a glass coffee table.

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Its fairly dark here and it seems I got a bit of glare from the flash.  What are you working on in the New Year?

 

New Drum Carder

New Drum Carder

At least once a year I’ve contemplated buying myself a drum carder. But after seeing the wool blends Ann carded a few weeks ago, I seriously considered it, and after looking at a link Judith gave me to ebay, I bought myself a gorgeous handmade Ash drum carder from the Classic Carder company. I wasn’t very good on my first few tries, but I soon got the hang of it 🙂

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI thought I should have an ‘aim’ instead of just going mad and making lots of nice coloured batts, so I decided to  work out roughly how much wool I’d need for one layer if I’m making a piece of felt big enough to make a cover for an A6 notebook. I got my template out, chose a coppery bronze colour theme and then laid out the different coloured wools in different proportions.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI then gathered all the colours up, weighed them and kept notes. I’d usually think to do this after the fifth time of laying out colours, so I’m impressed with myself 🙂

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI added some small amounts of flax and soy top to a couple of the lighter colours, and it’s not very obvious from the photo, but I added black bamboo to the natural brown merino.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI was impressed with how it looked after just one turn through the carder, but I wanted it more subtle than it had turned out, so I put the wool through again. I really like how it turned out the second time. I’m so glad I finally got a carder. It looks gorgeous, is incredibly well made and turns out the most gorgeous batts.

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I’ve been thinking for a long time about making up ‘experimental’ or ‘inspiration’ fibre packs to sell on etsy. Working out what to put in there to make it worthwhile with our postage prices was difficult, but Marilyn recently suggested selling wool as well to make it more of a kit. I had a think about how to do it and came up with the idea of including just enough wool to do one layer, a nice blend for the top. I thought this batt would be perfect for the first one as it’s the same colours I used for my coppery bronze piece that so many people liked. It gave me an excuse to get out my favourite shades of organza too.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI measured and weighed the organza, picked out some matching cotton gauze, novelty art yarns and silk throwster’s waste like I used on my coppery piece, and also made another little batt to make sure there was enough. But I think after lots of weighing and measuring, the pack is finished. I just need to write up the description when I get back later today, but then I’ll list it on etsy.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERALet me know what you think of it, is it a good selection of fabrics and fibers?

Giveaway-Bits and Pieces

Giveaway-Bits and Pieces

I thought it was time I did another Giveaway 🙂  I’ve gone through my stash of embellishment fabrics, fibres and scraps and put together a package that should give you plenty of choices for adding extras to your felt creations. These are some gorgeous metallic novelty yarns/fancy fibres. There are 5 different ones each about 3 metres long.

There are also some shorter lengths of novelty yarns in all different colours and types.

These gorgeous crinkly fibres are from another novelty yarn that I unravelled. I used a lot of them in this piece here.


There are some pieces and scraps of silk:

Organza

Gratuitous supermacro of organza 🙂

and synthetic fabrics

There is also some Cotton Noil

And some natural fibres and top, Top L-R Egyptian Cotton fibre, Crimped Viscose fibre, Bamboo Fibre. Bottom L-R: Flax, Ramie, Banana top.


If you’d like to win this fabric and fibre giveaway, simply comment on this post. I’ll announce the winner Next Sunday, 21st October. Please can the winner comment on the announcement post within 2 days so I can contact you for your postal address, thanks a lot 🙂

FORUM
Most of our readers know about our Forum, but if you don’t, it’s a community of felting and fibre artists from around the world who get together to chat and ask each other questions about anything felt, fabric or fibre related…or chat about the usual things like the weather 🙂  We love reading the comments here on the blog and visiting the blogs of anyone who posts and has a link to theirs, and it’d be nice to be able to keep in touch more and build more community links. We’re all interested in the fibre arts, so if your interests are felting, mixed media, spinning, weaving, freeform crochet or something else we need to know about, come and join us, share photos of what you’re working on, ask for advice, give help to fellow fibre artists, meet friends and have fun!

Blue and Zig Zags

Blue and Zig Zags

I made another piece of felt just for fun recently, this time using blue shades of merino wool and blue, green and purpley shades of fabrics and fibres.

I really love this part, it’s synthetic fibres from a novelty yarn, but looks like curly wool.

For the last 25 years or so, I’ve been using an old Singer sewing machine. The electrics were too dangerous, so I removed them and worked it by hand. It was slow going and gave me Popeye forearms (or ‘arm’, just the one on the right!) but it worked well enough for what I needed it for. When I started felting and the world of fibres and fabrics opened up, I started to covet other people’s fancy machines, especially ones that could do zig-zag stitch. I did occasionally think about buying myself a new one, but it seemed a bit frivolous to spend money on something just to add zig-zags to things occasionally 🙂 And then a couple of weeks ago, my Mum gave me her machine. I was worried that now I had a fancy machine I wouldn’t even be able to thread it, but it was quite easy really. I started off by practising straight stitches and trying to control the speed-I still can’t do that, it seems my foot only has two speeds, full pelt or excrutiatingly slow. But I managed to add stitching to a nuno sample I’d made. Feeling a bit more confident, I added some shapes from scrap felt, and finally used the zig-zag stitch

I’ve got a big collection of felt off cuts, so I cut a few into strips and made some bookmarks too

I know I need to practise a bit more, especially using zig-zags to do edges, but I’m not as scared of it as I was a week ago! Have you tried anything new recently?

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