a life of fibre

Will I regret it? December 14th, 2014

Now I finally have some time to sort out the house I really want to have a good sort out of my craft room. I’ve already started painting some furniture which has been on my to do list for a long time. To paint the book shelf necessitated the removal of the books at which point I realised just how many magazines I’ve accumulated.

I never sit and browse through the magazines so I’m considering going through and cutting out and keeping every photo or article that I find inspiring / interesting and throwing the rest in recycling. Will I regret it, what do you think?

Felt for Christmas December 14th, 2014

I don’t know about you but I like a bit of handmade felt at Christmas and with angelina fibre making it sparkle who could resist? Mind you, I’ll be finding the sparkle for weeks, it seems to be on all my felting equipment.

I knew this year that I wanted to make small Christmas trees, what do you think of them?

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They’re very simple shapes to make but I wanted simple and understated with a calm green and white theme. After trying several ways to make these trees stand, including; drilling into wood (too solid), putting the branches in corks (too light) and moulding clay around them (too messy), I had the idea of using vintage glasses and went on a tour of the charity shops for suitable candidates.

No luck on the glass front but I did find a set of six white ???, not quite sure what they were designed for or what to call them so will say they are pots. They were originally from Ikea and a bargain price of £1.50 for 6. To keep the trunks upright and stop the pots falling over I used white stone chippings for ballast in two of them and in the third I used some green and white beach glass. I always said I’d find a use for it someday. I’m so so pleased with how they look although I did stress for a bit that they should have some kind of tree topper but now I like them quite plain.

Here’s a few more photos of felt that I use at Christmas, enjoy.

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Plus you can also see  here the stunning wreaths that were made in a workshop last Christmas. What have you been inspired to make this year?

Table runner workshop December 12th, 2014

This was my second workshop held at Clifton Village Hall in Otley and I’m really liking the venue and it’s location. We had a lovely day making table runners, two of which were turned into very nice scarves. True to form I didn’t get pictures of everything but here’s the ones I did snap.

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This first one is by Viv  and was her first ever piece of felt. Using one of her own photos as inspiration and mading it to size for a specific table Viv learnt a lot during the day and having gone through a period of doubt with her felt, was actually very pleased with the end result. As indeed, she should be.

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I wish the photo did better justice to this one. It’s poppies in a cornfield by Thelma  and the colours just glowed, unfortunately it looks a little flat here which is a shame. Thelma used some of her own hand dyed wool in the runner and carded a lovely blue sky for the centre.

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Gill had carefully thought about the runner and came armed with a photo for inspiration and her colours pre-selected. Again, this was made for a specific table and the colours chosen with the room in mind that it was to be used in. Hopefully, Gill will send us a photo when she finishes it as the intention here was always to use it as a background to stitch on. It needs no further work but I’m sure whatever Gill does it will look super.

It made my week! December 8th, 2014

Sometimes I just feel so lucky. Last week I received such a lovely email from a felter, Amy Driver, who has been following my blog, here’s what Amy had to say

“I’ve been enjoying your blog since I came upon it browsing on the web. One of these days I’ll get round to coming on one of your workshops. I’ve been felting when I get the chance for a few years.

I’m emailing to thank you for inspiration. I made a gift for my brother & his wife at the weekend, which was inspired by a recent post, and I’m really pleased with it. I’ve just got to decide how to frame/hang it now. They have 3 children, hence the 5 birds. I used some silk fibres too, which don’t really show in the photo, but add to the texture. Thanks again”

I know you’ll want to see it so here by kind permission of Amy is the wallhanging.

 

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It’s a great thing to have made for her brother and Amy has such movement in the work that it’s a delight. Most of all though, I’m just chuffed to bits that Amy took the time to contact me, it’s such a nice thing to have done.To know that my work and wafflings have inspired someone is just so wonderful, thanks Amy!  I just danced my way through Friday’s workshop and I’m still smiling now. :-)

Special offer on Santas December 7th, 2014

We’ve got a special offer on Santa kits across at Adelaide Walker. All you need to do is enter the code SANTA at checkout to receive your 20% discount.

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SALE! December 1st, 2014

Sale in my online shop starting now. Everything priced to go so grab a bargain while you can.

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Wreath workshop November 30th, 2014

This is quite late as I’ve been so busy with work and the Knitting and Stitching show at Harrogate. Not until the end of the day did I realise the camera was on the wrong setting  but at least you can see the beautiful wreaths that were made. It’s just a shame that people took them home at the end of the day, they’d have made a nice display on my wall. The beauty below is by Alison.

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We began by covering a half polystyrene ring with carded Merino. Whilst they were drying we made felt in wonderful autumn colours from which we cut various leaf shapes.

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The wreath above is made by Jeni and I love the bountiful feel of it. The purple, yellow and blue wool are needle felted acorns in real acorn caps.

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Lesley made a lovely job of the wreath above with a hand made cord to hang it by.

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The beautiful  wreath above is by Sue. I love that each wreath is different but they’re all so wonderful. I may have to do another wreath workshop, they’re such fun.

Here’s two I made earlier November 28th, 2014

These two wreaths were made as samples for the workshop held earlier in the month. I prefer to base my wreaths on polystyrene half rings which give a good solid base andf once covered with wool, sectionss can be left bare if desired and still look good. They also have the benefit of being able to pin your felt into place prior to glueing them on.

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This first wreath is based on the fab fiery colours we see in Autumn. Carded Merino is wrapped around the ring and then felted into place.

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Needle felted acrons in real acorn caps are attached along with, beech nut shells and pine cones.

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Various leaf shapes were cut from the golden felt, positioned with pins and once I was happy with the design they were glued in place. A mustard ribbon provides the hanging meachanism. My second wreath is based on woodland colours.

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Using various remnants of felt from my stash I used just one leaf shape throughout. The leaves on the right are cut from a felt which had been stitched and where possible I attempted to get the stitching running down the centre of the leaf like a vein.

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Found objects like horse chestnuts, beech shells and pine cones give a lovely contrast to the felt.

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Instead of ribbon to hang this one I used the cord from the skirt that I turned into a bag earlier in the year (post here) and the remainder of the cord has been used up in the wreath workshop. It really pleases me that every little bit is reused. Making these wreaths gives me so much enjoyment that I may just have to do a spring one next.

An autumn walk November 27th, 2014

A stroll early one Sunday morning.

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I love spotting funghi.

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Blue skies and golden leaves.

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The picture below isn’t a great shot but I thought all the lines were interesting.

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Again, it’s a little dark but I just loved the twisted roots.

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The texture of the tree stump above is divine and the light below just wonderful.

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Pleated bags workshop November 18th, 2014

This is the first chance I’ve had to show you what was made. Not every bag has been photographed as a couple of people left early and I forgot to do it before they left. We worked mainly in Blue Faced Leicester with Merino and silks as decoration.

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The trick is not to make your pleats too small or they disappear during felting. The work in progress above is by Sue and was destined to be a tote bag.

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A great tote bag by Jeni using tussah silk for decoration which will shine more once dry. I think this is one of the felt items she’s been most pleased with.

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This beauty was by Wendi and was the only one made with a full width flap. The embellishments is sari silk.

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I loved the shape of this small bag and the contrast handle and button set off the oatmeal BFL very well.

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I thought you might appreciate a closer view of the structure of these pleats.

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This messenger bag with diagonal pleats worked out very well. The partial flap was a later addition and I love the way it echoes the line of the pleats. All in all a very successful day I’d say.

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This workshop was held at Gisburn Festival Hall which as you can see is lovely and light with lots of space. Think I may have to book some more there.