The wet felted octopus is finished and there’s just enough of the afternoon left to get outside with the dog and enjoy the weather.
The body and tentacles are joined and work started on the eyes
The body had been felted so hard I broke 5 needles working on him this afternoon!
Five broken needles later…….
All washed up……..if only we lived at the coast!
Which way to the sea?
A few weeks back I read Ruth’s review on the Felting and Fibre Studio about the fascinating wet felted items that members had created using a “book resist”. I’d never heard this term before but when I read the Book Resist Tutorial by Teri it all made sense and I realised how a lot of the 3D items I had seen previously in exhibitions and on-line had been made. Wet felting with a book resist opens up new possibilities allowing you to create seamless complex shapes in one piece.
I was particularly interested in the amazing octopod. I am planning to make an explorers outfit for the Asylum Steam Punk Festival in August and a felted octopus could be one of my accessories…..maybe draped over a shoulder or clinging to the skirt!
Unfortunately I got so carried away with the felting I forgot to photograph the resist before covering it. It had to be cut to remove it but this shows you roughly how it looked. It was made from 4 sheets of A4 acetate, cut into 8 sections and sewn together in the centre as a “book”.
resist made from A4 acetate sheets
Each section was covered in turn with three layers of varying shades of yellow Merino and gently rubbed.
covering the resist with Merino
prior to removing the resist
resisit removed and rolling complete
After removing the resist the octopod was rolled, rubbed and thrown around to finish the felting process. The tentacles are now done but I will add a wet felted body later in the week to take him from octopod to octopus.
the finished octopod waitng for a body
I’ve just completed two pieces of work in response to the first quarter challenge from the Felt and Fibre Studio. The challenge was to make a felted piece using resists in a way you wouldn’t normally use them. If you check out the F&F site here you will see some amazing work which has been made with “book” resists and my first reaction was to have a go at one of those. It then occurred to me that maybe I should go back to basics first and have a play at making craters and holes before getting too adventurous!
This was the first one I did, a flat wall hanging with machine and hand embroidered surface design. The craters are filled with red satin fabric and hand embroidered knots.
The second piece is a pod, very similar to the one I made with Jenny Pepper at the advanced pod workshop up in Hutton Buscle.
I am on a mission now to try to create an octopus using the book resist technique……….
Today I joined 8 other felting enthusiasts at the Village Hall in Hutton Buscle near Scarborough for Jenny Peppers “Avanced Pods” workshop. I love Jenny’s classes, she’s a great tutor and explains/demonstrates every step very clearly as we work through our creations.
Two examples of Jenny’s work displayed with the shells which were her inspiration.
We all started out with the same size/shape resist and selected our colours from the huge stash of Merino wool on offer. We began by making a sheet of prefect using three different colours and this would be used to make “craters” in our pods. Working with our prefelts and resists we started with our inner layer and worked outwards, layering our wool tops before adding the spikes and tails.
My resist is wrapped in white Merino and the spikes attached at either end.
The top craters and embellishments are added to my piece.
The next stage was to place our outer craters where we wanted them and add silks, wools, snippets of prefelt, etc as embellishment before felting our spikes.
After lots of rubbing the dreaded rolling begins……and Jenny sees to it that her students don’t skint on the rolling!
Rolling, rolling and more rolling…..
Once again the company was great and day past very quickly with Jenny on hand to encourage, inform and see to it that we all manage to complete our work on time.
Two of the ladies had to leave early and unfortunately I didn’t get pictures of their finished work but here are the other seven.
Detail of my finished pod.