Well I did a lot this week. Attempted to make felt again and decided that Alpaca is a great medium to use. It felted easily. Still need some work with a pro and hope that I will be taking a class the beginning of May.
Small felted pouch made with natural Alpaca and wool
I also got the hang at least the basics with the bloom loom. I am going to use the flowers to embellish the little bag I made this week for my granddaughter.
Grand Daughters bag with flowers from bloom loom
I made some smaller flowers which I am going to add to the vest that I made the grand daughter.
smaller flowers from bloom loom
I also made a small pouch with Poem yarn that I intend to full and use as a business card holder.
Okay I am still learning to make felt and I still haven’t had the opportunity to take a class from a “professional” yet. So today I used my Alpaca from North Star Alpaca. I added some embellishments with felt I purchased from one of the big “arts & crafts” stores. The Alpaca felted like a dream! It was like magic. The little designs however really didn’t adhere to the main bag. I tried to put them on at the beginning of the process and took them off. I put them on after the main fabric began to felt. Some of them felted some didn’t.
small felted pouch
Then I made a jelly roll with multiple layers of wool felt and the alpaca. Ultimately I am going to cut it into circles and maybe make jewelry, I’m not sure.
okay so it looks more like a felted snake
Anyway baby steps at this time. I will continue to experiment on my own and I am hoping to take a class soon. I will be ordering more Alpaca in the near future.
I am so excited. I received my first order of Alpaca fiber today. I ordered it from Maple at North Star Alpacas. The package was waiting for me when I came home this evening and I can’t wait to do something with it. The package smelled good and the natural colors of the fiber have me thinking of things to do. Much more to follow!
For the last few Saturdays I have talked about the process of taking wool from sheep to felt. We have covered some of the basics of cleaning and combing the fibers. I will get back to some of the basic information but today I want to talk about felting soap. This is supposed to be a simple project that gives you a bar of soap encased in a scrubby. Great for dirty hands or for exfoliating other areas of the body. All of the things that I’ve read say that the wool will continue to felt as you run the bar of soap through hot water. When the soap is used up you can keep the little scrubby for personal or cleaning use. Halcyon Yarns actually sells a kit and made a video on felted soap rocks. The kit provides fiber in blends of gray that looks like rock. They shave bars of soap into rock shapes and felt them. Cute idea! Anyway I think that I will try this and let you know how it comes out. If you want to see the video click on this link Halcyon Yarns.
Another busy week! I don’t have a lot to show for it though. Part of what I do every week lately is research. I stated earlier that I have barely broken the seal on the book Uniquely Felt by Christine White. There is so much to learn from this book. I will find the time this week to do some more reading.
I finished my fulled make-up clutch bag but now I think I’ll find some other use for it.
Fulled clutch bag
Last fall I got a pattern that some ladies from my lys KnitKnack had used to knit and full a purse. I bought the yarn and never got to it. I started it this week with some alterations on my part. I added rows to the base of the bag which meant I had to pick up lots more stitches than the pattern called for. I was using my Denise interchangeable knitting needle and because I was using Malabrigo Rasta super bulky yarn and a needle that was too small, I had to keep tugging my stitches. Anyway around ten rows into the body of the bag I heard the unmistakable snap and realized that I had snapped the end off of the cable. I cannot find a cable long enough to slip into place and I don’t have another circular that I can use. Stalled! In the past this would have caused me to obsess and not be able to do anything until I could replace the cable. So I’ve grown some. I am venting about it now but I have moved on for the time being. Hopefully I can get a new circular in the next few days and pick up where I left off. I really love the Malabrigo Rasta yarn.
Malabrigo Rasta in Arco Iris coloway
Think I’m going to try to felt some soap this week. Stay tuned.
I have been going step by step through the fleece to felt process. At this juncture the yarn is clean and carded so the next step would be to dye the fiber if you want different colors. Personally, I will probably be a buyer not a dyer. It sounds very glamorous but if I allow my mind and more importantly my body to lead me in too many directions something is bound to suffer. I was “gung-ho” about dyeing yarn for a brief minute. I did one hank of yarn and realized that this could be a full time job.
Yarn hand dyed using natural dyes
I understand the fiber artists that do the whole thing themselves and if I was supporting myself with my art maybe I would do this. For me now buying dyed fiber is the way to go. There are things that could change my mind, we’ll see.
So I did try to wait for the Library to find this book but I got tired and ordered it on Amazon. Everything that I read about it was true! This will definitely be my felting bible. There are so many things in it that I’ve only read a few chapters. Little by little I will read and absorb whats inside. It was a great $17.00 investment and since I was ordering some material for school, I got free shipping. Best of all for someone who is impatient, I ordered it on Saturday night and it was delivered on Monday! OMG! More to follow.
You know that I love felted and fulled objects. This week I worked on two little bags that are fulled crochet. No reason they are crochet other than I was in the mood. Each item was done in single crochet. The purple one is two strands of worsted weight wool held together. The other is one strand of pink and maroon worsted weight wool. I actually like the way that they looked before the fulling process. Single crochet is a really nice looking stitch and by holding two strands of the purple together it created a really sturdy fabric that could hold up to a lot of wear and tear.
In the end however I fulled the purple bag in the washer (it took three times) and attempted to needle felt flowers with wool and mohair locks that I got in a kit from my lys Knitknack. Well I am a needle felting work in progress. Anyway try crocheting a bag and fulling it. You might be surprised at the results.
Hi everyone this is a special post aimed at those in New York and New Jersey. Linda Hirschman studio fiber artist is oferingf a one day studion workshop on Feltimaking at the Bergen County YJCC in Washington, NJ. The cost to non-members is $95.00 and includes all necessary supplies. The course is from 10:00 to 3:00 on Sunday April, 15, 2012. If you have interest there are just a few spaces left. Contact Jill Brown for a flyer. Please visit Ms. Hirschman’s website to see her beautiful work.
What the heck have I been up to this week? Well I finished fulling a bag and it is drying. I am thinking about how I will embellish it and have lots of ideas. It is maroon and pink as you will see and I am thinking of a shocking pink lining. I think it will be great for a little girl. I took some pictures of the fulling process. For you to see
Preparing bag for fulling process
Beginning to full by agitating in hot soapy water. Using a pan that has ridges on the bottom.
Bag is currently drying. Notice textural difference from original picture
So an idea has circulated in my brain for weeks. I showed you all the beautiful lining that Debra put in my bag.
My Bag, Debra's Lining
It made me start to wonder if I could learn to do this myself. So I went back in time to my one foray into the world of sewing. What a disaster. I don’t seem to have the genetic material to draw or sew a straight line. When my college friend Sadie tried to teach me to use a sewing machine and make an outfit she suggested that I continue buying my clothes. Anyway I am undaunted at 60 and yesterday I signed up for an “absolute beginners” course at Fabricland. We’ll see if there is any crying at the end of the class and who’s doing it, me or the instructor.
I started a small clutch bag which I intend to full also. I am already visualizing the ability to line it myself
Beginnings of a fulled crocheted bag. More pictures to follow.
Saturday I did part four of my Sheep to Felt postings and set up a page for my future felt gallery.