Although there were many negative sides to “lockdown”, for many of us, there were also lots of positives. On the one hand all of my classes, exhibitions and shows had to be cancelled which was very depressing. One the other hand, it meant I now had unlimited time for walking with Maddie, my staffy boxer cross, which was uplifting. I’m sure a lot of us started to notice things we would otherwise have simply passed by, like these wonderful shadows cast by the trees.
I decided to use these shadows as inspiration for an abstract wet felted Wallhanging. The fibres used are Merino and Viscose and it’s been embellished with free motion stitch, hand spun yarn (my first attempt at spinning!) and Colonial Knots. The finished piece is mounted on board and measures 42cm x 58cm. It will form part of my “Fabric & Fibre of Nature” exhibition at The Quilt & Stitch Show, Uttoxeter in April 2021.
They say the longer you put something off the harder it becomes. Well I definitely find that’s the case when it comes to blogging! I’m not a natural “writer” but even so I can’t believe it’s been more than six months since my last post! Note to self….must try harder!!
Back in April I created two pieces of abstract wall art for the bi-annual Waltham Textiles Exhibition. It should have been happening later this month but, as with so many events, will now be taking place in 2021, fingers crossed!!
This first piece will be mounted onto board measuring 50cm x 100cm. Inspired by sunsets it consists of various wet felted fibres, Viscose fibres and a mix of natural and synthetic fabrics. It’s all held in place using machine free motion stitching onto a painted Lutradur background. I love the textures that can be achieved when using this technique and I particularly like adding synthetic glitzy fabrics for a little bit of bling!
This second piece was constructed in the same way. Rather than mounting it on a board, I think I’m going to mount this one behind glass in a black edged 40cm x 80cm frame.
Inspired by rock pools this Wet felted Abstract Wall Hanging, made from natural shades of Bergschaf fibres punctuated with orange, is very textural and tactile. It’s a mixed media piece combining pebbles, shells and paper with free motion stitching and hand stitched colonial knots. Size approx 54cm diameter x 10cm deep.
I will been exhibiting this piece with textile group Jeudis at the Creative Craft Show in Manchester from January 31st to the 2nd February.
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!
When I’m teaching workshops I get a lot of satisfaction from motivating students and from seeing their finished work, but not everyone gets to finish their project in class. So I get particularly excited when someone takes the time to photograph their finished piece and email it to me. This week I’ve recieved images of Jane and Pams Tyvek Leaves, beautifully executed and framed, which they created at the workshop in Billinghay last week.
Also Deborah sent me this photo of her wonderful Bergschaf wall hanging which was made at the workshop in East Keswick earlier this month.