Ok, we left the jacket saga on Saturday night with a template encased package and the design being ‘drawn’ on top in merino and silk fibres. After I wrote that post I couldn’t relax (even though time was pushing on and I was tired!) so I just HAD to go back and fill in a bit more of the design. Suddenly it seemed to quickly come into shape and before I knew it I had side one, the front, all ready to wet with warm soap and water and rub. Although I have made 4 rugs now and a couple of bags with these pre-stamped felt bases and love the way they respond to the felting process I had never tried my electric sander with them before but nothing ventured, nothing gained! I wet out the fibres, laid bubble wrap on top and after pressing the water into the wooly package with my hands switched on the floor sander. It really worked a treat but I definitely made a stupid mistake by not wrapping the edging fibres around the resist package and leaving things as they were until the next morning. In the morning I discovered that of course the edges had stiffened and dried out quite a bit overnight so in order for the fibres to overlap around the sides and shoulders of the package I needed to wet both them and the base again with very hot water and press EXTREMELY hard before they made any kind of effort to adhere in the way that I wanted. Not withstanding this I laid out side two, wet out and sanded again making sure to give extra attention to all the edges. Next came the wrapping and rolling dilema, would I try out the massive plastic mat I got from Mehmet (really needed more than one person and I didn’t know if I could manage to roll it up tightly enough by myself) which obviously would be the best method, would I try bubble wrap or would I opt for the large bamboo blind and all the problems that rolling in that would entail? Oh to be another few weeks down the road when the individual plastic mats that Mehmet is sending arrive and there would have been no debate at all! After a couple of false starts I rolled in the bamboo blind but kept opening, rewrapping and rotating the package about every 80 rolls or so. BIG HEAVY WEIGHT! Check back tomorrow for the next installment, can’t believe how my wrists are still aching and I am getting tired just typing and thinking about it all again!!
I can completely relate to this experience, how do I know?
One of the benefits of felt making is the ongoing surprises. Hope your jacket turns out good.