Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Felting Playtime

Potato soup is bubbling on the stove, Matthew's birthday cake (19 tomorrow) is in the oven, the kids are home early because of snow but we haven't had any snow, and I am getting around to posting a blog- it has been awhile!!
LAtely I ahve been playing around with more felting techniques. Tomorrow I head off to Fredericksburg Academy to work with a fifth grade class to make felted wallhangings. So today I did a test run of a technique for making flowers and leaves and a vine. I want to have samples when I run the plan past the kids. It was a very quick project and I think the kids will be excited to try some new things with the felting process that I taught them before Christmas.

I got some wonderful felting books for Christmas and I decided to try a scarf technique, excepyt I did not have all of the nec`essary supplies. Instead I asked myself 'What if..?" and forged onward into the felting fray. Here you see what I am calling my Dred Locks Scarf. This is a version of Chad Alice Hagan's Airey Fairy Scarf that is made completely out of roving. My problem was that I did not have enough roving. I used the roving that I had for the warp (the pieces that run down the length of the scarf) and I used handspun wool yarn and some wool yarn for felting from the craft store for the weft pieces. The kid's are calling it my worm scarf but I ran into a friend today, when I was wearing it, and she said "your scarf is so cooool, it looks like Dreds!" I said "Thank you very much that is actually what I am calling it!!! I am amazed at how something that is so stringy can be so warm around my neck!! I am going to wear it tomorrow and see what kind of a response I get from the kids!!
My next project began as a needle felting project that I started at a Demo day last month at Artistic Artifacts. I started by needling yellow, red and orange woll and silk fibers and fabrics down onto a piece of orange plaid flannel. I was really inot circles atht day and added some yellow and red mohair yarn down to really pop up the circle design. Once I got home I added some more silk fabrics and started sewing circles on it using yellow thread and my regular sewing machine. this is what it looked like when I was done with the stitiching. I am calling this my Sunspot piece.

Then I wet felted it to shrink the wool and to see if I could get some more texture going on.
You can see a bit of texture difference here on the front but it is most noticable on the back.

Here you see the back of the piece after the wet felting process. I took this photo without the flash so you can really see the texture. The flash really flattens out the texture.

The flannel has really disappeared into the wool that was punched thru with the needles of the felting machine. there is no evidence of the plaid pattern. Perhaps I should have used the yellow thread in the bobbin!!! Live and learn!! I Still like the front but I do think that I like the back a bit more especailly as far as the texture goes!! I am not sure what will happen with this piece but it will become something special. I hope that everyone enjoys their snow storm !! It looks like this one has passed us by!!


Deborah said...

Great colors and textures!

Anna said...

No snow here either. Now we are geting rain and the rain has turned to ice. But 40s tomorrow. Yippee! Love those warm colors. :)

Trina said...

Very cool! We got a little snow ... when's it gonna be our turn?!

Jacky said...

Fun, fun, fun....I love your sunshiny scarf! All of that stitching looks fantastic.

Have fun with the kids....that must be fun and I dare say very rewarding.

Jacky xox

dosfishes said...

I like dreds much better than worms, but I can see how the kids would love to say that! So much texture in your other piece and need those hot colors in this wild and wooly weather. xox Corrine

Diana Trout {Nan.DT@verizon.net} said...

These pieces are beautiful! Felty Goodness. I love the dreadlock scarf. Hilarious name.
Happy New Year!

Ro Bruhn said...

Fabulous work Elizabeth, I'm looking forward to experimenting more now that I have time. I'm having a play day with Elizabeth Armstrong tomorrow so that will be fun have a very creative 2011.

Kathleen McKenna Murphy said...

I love the dreadlox (spelled wrong intentionally) scarf too, I could see it as part of my wardrobe:)

We have 18" of beautiful white snow here in MA everything looks so pretty.

Debrina said...

What an exciting new turn of events! I think the children will just love your scarf and have an absolute ball when you teach them all about felting!

Peggy Beck said...

Liz, these photos are great. I love the dread scarf and I love the colors in the other felted piece. The circles you stiched give it tons of character. Very nice pieces.

Plays with Needles said...

I love that you play with felt and it's so GREAT of you to teach those younger kids how to felt too!!! I would have been so psyched to learn the flower and dread locks from you.

Keep playing. it all looks great!

MosaicMagpie said...

First I want to comment on the fact you are going to school and sharing with the kids. I did this while my children where in school. Quilting, crochet and fabric crayons on Mother's Day pillows were amoung favorite activities. The children loved it and I was blessed as well. Some children have no one at home that can share those things with them. If there is someone there with that knowledge often they are too tired after working all day to add something else to their to-do list. I applaud you and your "sharing yourself" efforts.
Now to the scarfs...fantastic and the dreads "inspired"! Love the fact you used what you had on hand to make them. "Sunspots" is really something, all that visual interest! Thanks for your visit to me, so I could find you. I will be back!

Sharon said...

Love your felting and yes we must call it dreds not "worms"! Great colors. Can't wait to see your sketching. I am challenging myself this year to try new things. LOL

Marilyn Rock said...

Beautiful and lovely colors. Happy Birthday Matthew!


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