Use it up

Every so often it’s inevitable that you’ll get a pile of wool tops which are past their best. I either use it up stuffing, chop it smaller for jewellery, use it up in the centre of needle felt or I drag out the drum carder and have a little fun.

Before

IMG_4101

AfterIMG_4103

Look gorgeous and fluffy don’t they. I’ve already used some in the tree picture for Mum and the rest has been made into pre-felts. They store as pre-felts for ages without degrading further and you always have some on hand for when inspiration grabs you.

Carded

What a brilliant weekend we’ve had, so much sun I managed to spend two and a half days in the garden!  I’ve not been entirely idle on the fibre front. There was rather a lot of pale purple in my stash some of which was past it’s best so I’ve done a little carding.

From left to right – blended with navy, koala and dark brown. Of the three, the centre is my favourite, it’s a very delicately coloured mix. Having completed these I thought a Jubilee mix would be a good idea.

Sadly it’s a disappointment to me, I just don’t like it. Oh well, you can’t win them all.

Oh no, not again!

I can be such a drip. Five out of six of the schools wallhangings are now complete and I’ve even returned three of them to the schools for a few weeks before the exhibition. But, I can’t believe it, I’ve forgotten to take photos of them all! I was so busy worrying about finishing and returning them that two have been returned before I’ve photographed them. The only saving grace is that I will get them back later this month and will be able to take photos then. I really must try harder to remember the photography.

June has been an incredibly busy month with two weeks of it seeing me teach every day. It was such a boon to have good weather so that I could dry the equipment each night before repacking it. I don’t know how I’d have managed otherwise. It’s taken me a whole day just to tidy things away so that I could do some felting. The piece below was started at the weekend and finished yesterday.

After all the schools work there were oddments of colours and damaged fibres so I carded them together to make this hanging. The colour theme for this year’s Felt United is yellow, green, blue and I thought I could kill two birds with one stone. My daughter thinks it looks like sea and the beach and even my husband likes it. I designed it with yellow at the top but it could be hung either way or even used as a table runner. I’m contemplating whether to make more like this in other colours. Not sure if they’ll sell, what do you think?

Hubby has also been very busy in the garden witrh some assistance from yours truly. We now have a brand new trellis fence and bench. They look great and he’s now moved on to repairing the old fence which has meant a lot of digging out of old concrete, sweat and a ittle bad language. My contribution was to hang a piece of felt against the garage wall.

It’s on a north facing wall so we shall see how it ages in comparison to the one hanging on a south facing wall. The top half of the garage is a little bare at the moment so it also gives me something to look at. The weather has broken and we’ve had lots of rain, I wonder if they’ll stretch when the fibres are soaking wet?

Felting a tree

You may remember me rambling on about items I find when out walking and I did mention some pine cones I’d found. In addition, I came across some mini cones and these have inspired me to make a tree picture. Ages ago I’d made two of the felted tails below to go in a project and then changed my mind and put them in my bit bag. I thought they’d make the perfect basis for the tree.

Continuing the recycling theme I carded the fibres from my bit bag, using up all the old greens with a little purple, brown and grey added. I was thinking about heather moors when I was doing this. You can see that I’ve chopped the tails up and rearranged them to make the tree.

You can see that in order to join the bits of tree together you need to cut on an angle to enable you to fit them together with no gaps. I’ve joined them quite crudely as I’ll be covering the tree with some more fibres and you won’t see stitching or joins. I had the idea of adding more low relief at the bottom of the picture and chopped up other discarded felt rolls and felt balls which I embedded in the middle of the fibres. You won’t see them but they will give the impression of boulders under the grass.

I carded different browns, grey, black, purple and green fibres to cover the tree. I allowed the original colour to show through in places as I think it adds to the depth. You can see that I’ve also gone over the whole tree with a felting needle to make sure that I really got the definition I was after. I then wet felted again.

The cones are attached by a few couching stitches. As they’re quite brittle and therefore fragile I don’t think they’ll last for ever on this piece but it’ll still look good long after they’ve gone. It’s strange, I wasn’t expecting to like this tree so much but it’s one of the items I like most in my recent work.