We started the felting process by gently wetting and working the fibres around the edges of the various components before wetting out the whole piece and rolling, rubbing and working the felt as normal. The biggest difference in the way that Annette works compared to how all of us had learnt was that she lays out all her fibre and works everything on a towel instead of a piece of bubble wrap or a bamboo blind. This is one of the most interesting aspects of any workshop, seeing how every visiting tutor preferrs to work and then adapting aspects of their practice to suit your own. I did start all my work on my towel but then changed to work with the bamboo blind as soon as my fibres were holding together well. Because I had no chair at Alan’s house (a long story!) I worked the piece for a couple more hours on Wednesday evening, pulling at the sides to get a sharp edge, rolling and throwing, here is the result.
Putting what we had learnt on day one to the test everyone had the oportunity of making either a felt bag or a hat incorporating bumps, tubes, points or flowers. Obviously I decided to go down the hat route, a great opportunity to have a successful experience after all my previous failed attempts!! Green being one of my favourite colours I planned out a simple beanie style with loads of felt dreadlocks emerging from the top of the crown. Here is an image of the hat being laid out, more details to follow in my next post.