Tyvek Leaf…..

Today’s workshop was for four lovely ladies from the Nottingham area.  Freda and her friends had seen my Tyvek Leaf on Pinterest and got in touch to say they fancied having a go at making one for themselves.

Trisha and Carol

Freda and Pat

Non of them had used Tyvek previously so we looked at the various colouring mediums that can be applied, discussed the difference between the paper and fabric versions and saw how each reacted to heat.

With lots of chatting and laughter (hearing us from the hallway my other half swears I put something illegal in the homemade soup!) the day was gone before we knew it!

Work in progress

Each of the ladies produced some wonderful work which they will mount on their chosen papers and put in a box frame once they get home.

Thanks to all for being such eager students….I’m already looking forward to hosting you again on your return visit for Feltmaking!


Wall Hangings and Vessels…..

A quick catch up on the past week’s workshops which included wall hangings and vessels…..


Wednesday saw me driving back down to Podehole for the second session of my Wet Felted Wall Hanging workshop with the Spalding Embroiderers.  Last month the ladies created their wet felted backgrounds and added some needle felted flowers.  This week they concentrated on embellishing their work with hand stitching…..unfortunately they are not permitted to use their sewing machines in this particular hall which is something I’ve never come across before!

One or two  of the ladies had done some homework since we last met and added free machine stitching.  This is just a small sample of the wonderful work being produced…..

Once again it was a pleasure to work with such an enthusiastic bunch of ladies and as you can see from the photos the standard of work is terrific!  I’m already looking forward to my return visit in September when we will be experimenting with Lutradur and Tyvek to produce a forest floor themed 3D picture.


In the studio this week I had a visit from Annie and Marisa.   Neither of these ladies had ever felted around a resist before but both were keen to have a go.   They certainly rose to the challenge and produced two wonderful wet felted Merino bowls with multicoloured necks and embellished surfaces……

On Saturday I was given even more of a challenge when Sue, with daughters Adele and Sharon, visited the studio.  They had said they wanted to make 3D vessels but made it very clear from the outset that they weren’t prepared to settle for something straight forward or easy.  They were only interested in making complex 3D shapes, the sort that require a book resist or differential shrinkage.  When you consider that none of these ladies had ever done Wet Felting, either 2D or 3D, prior to this visit what they achieved in 6 hours was pretty amazing!


Bergschaf Clutch Bag…..

Today I was back at the Simply Stitch studio in East Keswick to deliver a wet felting workshop for owner Nicola Hulme and ten ladies who were there to make their version of my Irit Dulman inspired Bergschaf Clutch Bag.

Mottled Irit Dulman inspired clutch bag

Two-tone Irit Dulman inspired clutch bag.

For at least two of the ladies this would be their first introduction to Felting around a resist.

I know that if I chose the colours and put together specific kits and made students follow my instructions to the letter we would all be done in the time allowed and be taking home a finished item………..but I can’t do that!  The last thing I want is for everyone to take home the same item!

When I deliver a workshop I like to encourage students to make the piece their own and this means allowing time to think, discuss options and take risks…..this morning was no exception!

As a result the ladies have all worked flat-out and produced a bag which is unique to them.  They are almost but not quite finished.  When I get photos of the completed work I will post an update.

Thanks to Nicola for hosting the workshop and keeping us all in coffee and biscuits and to all the ladies who took part….including Janet who managed to run away and hide when I took the final photo!  Hope to see you all again.

Wet Felted Fish…..

Last week I did a one-one Workshop for Alison who wanted to learn how to make a wet felted fish.  This wasn’t to be any old fish, Alison made it quite clear that she was on a mission to create a Wrasse as part of a local community project.  I’d never heard of a Wrasse so immediately turned to Google to see what it was we were aiming for.  I discovered that there are over six hundred species of this fish with two being native to the British Isles, the Ballan Wrasse and it’s more colourful cousin, the Cuckoo Wrasse.


We decided to work with a combination of Bergschaf and Merino fibres.  This was the first time Alison has Felted around a resist but she took to it like a fish to water (I had to get that in somewhere!)


This is how he looked once Alison had got him home and dried out, prior to embellishing…..


…..and this is the finished Wrasse complete with hand embroidery and an impressive set of dentures!  Isn’t he handsome!  Well done Alison, can’t wait to see what you make next!


Textural Necklace…..


This is my latest “Ullapool/Ardmair” inspired piece.  I wanted this textural necklace to capture the atmospheric beauty of the monochromatic grey days and the grey pebble beaches, punctuated by the yellow/green of the seaweed and the lichen on the rocks.

The necklace is made from grey, taupe and white Merino with just a hint of yellow added.  It was embellished with Colonial knots made using Madeira metallic threads.




Felted Mushroom Workshop…..

I’ve just been informed that we still have spaces left on my Needle Felted  Mushroom Workshop which will be held in Alford on the 9th February.  This workshop is suitable for absolute beginners as well as those who have experience of felting.  If you would like to book please contact the Alford Craft Market via their website http://www.alfordcraftmarket.co.uk or call Lynne on 01507 463341.




Child’s Elf Hat…..

A few months ago I came across a tutorial on making a Child’s Elf Hat.  It was written in Russian but the photographs were self-explanatory and I’ve had it in mind to make one ever since seeing it, and here it is.  If ever I get inspired by someone else’s work I will always credit them with a mention but unfortunately, at the time, I didn’t make a note of this persons website and I haven’t been able to find it since!  If you happen to know where I might have seen this please let me know so I can add a credit.

In the tutorial the hat was made in a solid colour using a yellow or orange Merino.  I wanted a mottled effect so decided to make the hat in white and colour it afterwards.

Normally you would colour wool using acid dyes but for this hat I experimented with a combination of Inktense and acrylic paint, both of which are colourfast once they have dried.  I found that when the acrylic paint is sufficiently watered down it will not clog the wool and it retains its soft handle.  The only area where I painted it on thickly was at the base of the top “tail”…..I wanted this to be stiffened and the paint certainly did the trick!  The Inktense didn’t seem to affect the handle of the wool at all.

The two leaves and stalk were made from green Merino and copper coloured Tussah silk and stitched in place.  I’ve started adding Colonial knots……I love Colonial knots so there could be a lot more of these added before I consider the hat finished!


Merino & Silk Hat…..

This is a hat I made last weekend in Ipswich where I attended a wonderful wet felting workshop with international feltmaker Annemie Koenen.  Annemie had come over to the UK from her home in the Netherlands to deliver a three-day workshop for Region 7 of the IFA and I wasn’t going to miss it as it’s always a real pleasure to work with her.

The wool I used was a beautiful Merino and silk blend which Annemie dyes in her studio.  This is only my third hat and it’s been fascinating making them as each one has involved a different technique, learnt from different tutors.  This design is by far the most flamboyant and I’m looking forward to showing it at the Big Textile Show at the end of the month.


Tyvek Leaves at Alford….

Today saw the first of my workshops at the Alford Craft Market Centre.  Alford Craft Market is a not for profit organisation promoting quality Lincolnshire Crafts run entirely by volunteers.  The shop is stocked with a wide variety of hand-made items including ceramics, felting, textiles and jewellery to name just a few.  There are always a variety of classes and workshops to choose from including pottery and glass, felting, textiles, etc.  Classes are held in the Big Lottery funded studio at the rear of the Craft Market Shop.

I had five ladies in the studio today making Tyvek Leaves.  It was a lovely group and a relaxing day, this is how they got on…..

Annie’s leaf

Jo’s leaf

Rose’s leaf

Allison’s leaf

Molly’s leaf

Next month we may be using some Tyvek again along with various other materials including Lutradur, Vilene, cellophane, fabric, paper and found objects when we spend the day creating with mixed media.