A little bit of dyeing

In the good weather this week I’ve managed to get a little dyeing of Blue Faced Leicester fleece done.


I used a spinner to drain a lot of the water off and the sun and wind undertook the majority of the drying work.


A final drying overnight.


Waves is the title of this finished book. It’s hand dyed BFL with hand dyed rug yarn, silk fibres and crystal organza.



I love hand stitching the organic edges and this one has a little stitching on the front and back too. The colours are very subtle.


Snow Inspiration

I love snow, especially when we get a good decent downfall and not just a light sprinkling. It feels like winter should, everything is quiet and looks wonderful under it’s white blanket. Once the thaw begins I’m less keen, grey, slushy, dirty snow has no appeal whatsoever. So here’s what the fresh snow inspired me to make.


I’ve used BlFL for the background and Black Welsh for the tree as it has a naturally darker brown colour than the BFL.


The colour you can see in the background is from hand dyed BF and the white flecks of snow were created by using wool nepps.


Fully felted and ready for finishing.


I’m really rather pleased with this one, it makes me smile each time I look at it.


The blanket stitch edging is in purple embroidery thread and picks up on the purple tones which I added to the trunk of the tree. There’s also a little dark green on the tree but the camera doesn’t seem to have picked it up.


You might be able to pick out the wiggly bits on the tree branches, this is bamboo fibres adding a little lustre.


Wish I could keep it but this is destined for my shop.

BFL notebook

For those of you who aren’t fibre nuts I perhaps need to explain that BFL is Blue Faced Leicester and its what today’s notebook is made from. I hand dyed oatmeal  BFL in shades of pink  and blue and laid out a background.

Then I laid on strips of crystal organza wich I love for the texture they give.

Next on was small pieces of sari silk and mulberry silk fibres in red and turquoise.

Followed by short lengths of grey and turquoise  roving (part spun yarn).

You can see I’ve part untwisted the roving to create open areas and decided it needed a few extra pieces of yarn twisted into loops. Next time, the finished item.

There’s still time

If you’d like to make a cushion to be donated to an Olympic athlete there is still time. Woolsack are still receiving requests from athletes for cushions and we have until 22nd August to get out completed cushions to Woolsack. This means they’ll still be in time for the paralympic athletes.

I thought I’d crochet a cushion and sent for some British yarn from woolsack but it’s quite rough to work with and I decided I just wouldn’t be quick enough to finish it in time. So I decided instead to use the yarn in more felted cushions. It’s plum, olive and gold – really lovely colours and I’ve laid out sufficient BFL for 2 cushions. I’ll show you the finished cushions soon.

Olympic cushion

Have any of you heard of Woolsack? It has a project running to take British wool to the olympics by donating a wool cushion to every athlete that requests one. I’ve considered making one a few times but failed to actually do it – until now.

The whole cushion is made from Blue Faced Leicester wool. Looks real fun laid out. On the reverse I thought I’d write the type of wool and where and when it was given out.

I thought I’d checked all the regulations but it seems I’m not allowed to have the words London 2012 on there. so after obliterating London, here’s the finished item,

I’ve machine stitched the two sides together with a free hand wavy zig zag seam.

This has gone with me to Woolfest, where it’ll be stuffed and stitched up ready to be donated to an athlete. If you fancy getting involved there’s still time and the next big stuffing event is at Fibre East.

2013 Diary

I actually have a teaching date agreed for September 2013 plus all the wool shows have announced dates for next year so, I thought it about time that I sourced a diary for next year. Bright and colourful would suit me I thought, unfortunately bright and colourful was not what I found. Black and boring was what I found so I had a hunt through my stash.

What I found in my stash was a piece of nuno felted fabric which I’d tie dyed and left waiting
for a “project”. Makes a nice diary cover doesn’t it?

The front is my favourite, it has light, dark and movement.

The back is definitely colourful.

Of course, I couldn’t resist adding a little stitch, in bright pink! Little pleasures are a wonderful
thing and it does indeed provide me with a little pleasure each time I catch sight
of it in my bag or have need to use it 🙂

Masham rug

I’m teaching a felt rug workshop tomorrow and thought it a good idea to make a rug in the size we’ll be using. After sampling English, Cheviot, Jacob and Masham I decided to use the Masham wool this time. The idea for the design came from a doodle of my daughter’s.

Onto fawn Masham I laid brown BFL pencil roving. I tried out some white roving too but decided I preferred the rug just in brown. The image below shows it once I’ve finished the laying out.

I’m so pleased with how this has turned out, it was definitely worth taking the time on the laying out and being so careful during the wet and set stage.

This is now destined for the living room (when it’s dry). I wonder what  people will make tomorrow.


Finished present

Before I show the finished present here it is under construction.

I filled the body of the sheep with washed but uncombed BFL fleece – yum.

The face and horns were filled with fleece but no curly pieces of fleece as I wanted a textural contrast between the  body and head.

Complete with facial features. Not the prettiest of sheep but sufficiently like the Adelaide Walker logo to pass muster.

Framing is such a personal thing I hope I’ve done right with this but I always think a framed picture looks better when it’s for a present. I hope they like it, fingers crossed for Tuesday.


Present update

I decided the best way to do the sheep would be to use a print out  and needle felt an outline onto the background.

I cut the paper down and pinned on ready to start. The intention was to needle felt straight through the paper.

Unfortunately this didn’t work as the paper was tougher than expected and wouldn’t break easily enough. The wool was being needle felted onto it. I’d thought repeated needling would tear the paper and mean I woudn’t have to cut the image out.

With the excess paper completely removed I tried again by needling round the edge, this worked much better.

Working round the paper feet proved a little tricky so I decided to leave them until later.

By cutting the image into parts I was able to finish the outline. It needs some work but it’s coming along.

It’s looking quite good now but I won’t fill in the facial details until I’ve completed the next stage which is to fill in the body of the sheep with white BFL fleece. I hope to finish this quickly now as it needs to be framed ready for next Tuesday.