The finished peacock!!!

I’m so pleased to be able to show you the finished peacock at last. It’s such a shame really as 80% of the work was done in the first two weeks but life has been so terribly busy that it’s taken weeks longer to complete the last 20%.

How do I feel about it? I’m thrilled, it’s worked out very well, not perfect but I so enjoyed the making of it that I don’t mind. After all, it is going to a good home too, our daughter Charlotte’s new digs at uni.

Quite a modern interpretation. It was tempting to try and depict it accurately so I began by searching peacock images on the the internet and made my choices from there.

The simplicity of the head and body is a good contrast with the rather much busier tail. I began by fusing crystal organza shapes onto the linen background. For the body I free machined over it working down in the direction that feathers would lay and then went over the whole thing again with holographic thread for the shine. That nearly finished me off! It certainly finished my machine off which refused to sew anything afterwards and is why I chose to hand stitch the tail.

The only time previously that I’ve used shisha mirrors they came with the cotton surround already done. As I couldn’t find the sizes and colour I needed I had to learn to stitch around them myself. It’s not difficult, which was just as well as I decided to use a thread with metallic elements and they can be painful enough to use.

Using the fabric background made the tail look rather blocky but bringing the feathers off and breaking the outline worked well. I had intended to put more feather detailing around the shisha mirrors but decided to leave as is and looking at it now that was the right decision. Hand stitching the tail gave me great pleasure and I’m so pleased with it I might have to do more work without felt!

It made my week!

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.



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. 🙂

2 down 4 to go

It’s been a very busy week as I’ve been out and about working with the six schools in Skipton, to produce felt wallhangings for display at Art in the Pen. This has been my first opportunity all week to blog and I hope you like what you see. First up is the work by year six children of St.Stephen’s Catholic School.

Culture is the theme to reflect that they have children from over ten countries in their school. Each child produced a picture and we made the winning entry as the wallhanging. The background has carded fibres and recycled sari silk fibres. Next up is the work by year five and six children from Ings Community Primary School.

You can probably guess the theme – seaside. The artwork was based on work they’d been doing around seaside and a trip to the beach on the previous day. We’ve incorporated pieces of fishing rope and broken glass found on the beach. Haven’t they all done well.