By the time you read this I will be part way through my two day workshop with Charlotte Buch at the ‘Felt Naturally’ symposium in Denmark!
I am delighted to say that booking is now open for the two felting workshops I will be facilitating at The Tin Thimble in Loomis, Northern California this Fall! We will be kicking off the fun with a two day Complex Felt Bag workshop on Saturday 25th and Sunday 26th September followed by a Nuno Mosaic workshop on Monday 27th September.
I am really looking forward to meeting owners Emma and her mother as well as blog readers and friends from Ravelry who are hoping to book into one or even both of the workshops! It constantly amazes me how the internet brings us all together in a virtual sense and it is always fascinating to meet up in reality and confirm friendships forged online. Lasy year I had the pleasure of meeting expert nuno felter Nancy Schwab at Urban Fauna Studio in San Fransisco (dates and venues for the general San Fransisco area to follow in a week or so!) and earlier this summer Jamie and Blas from Urban Fauna paid a visit to me here in Clasheen as part of an extended Ireland and England road trip!!! Mosaic nuno felting was actually the topic I covered in San Fransisco last year and if you are wondering what on earth it entails and would like to see some pictures why not check out this post from October 2009?
For anyone wanting to visit me here at Clasheen to attend a felting workshop I am about 1 minute drive from Ballymurphy, Co. Carlow ( extremely rural village with 1 shop, a big church, 2 pubs one of which is also the post office and about 10 houses!), 5 minutes drive from Borris, Co. Carlow (very small country town), 8 minutes from Graiguenamanagh, Co. Kilkenny (another small town) and 10 minutes from Kiltealy, Co. Wexford (another very small rural village with exactly the same services as Ballymurphy!).
I am just up the small road from Kyle Cross on this map Unfortunately none of the above mentioned are on a direct bus or a train line and unless one had a car it would be very difficult to get here by public transport. There is a small ‘Ring-a-link’ bus service to Ballymurphy periodically but I think it is pretty much a ring on demand kind of thing so unfortunately if anyone wants to attend a workshop here they would need to get to one of the above mentioned villages/towns (Borris or Kiltealy would be the easiest) and at a pinch I would be happy to collect them from there. I only have a pick up truck so this offer is for one person at a time!
Off now to start my rug ……….
My mother called over for a coffee earlier this morning and while we were having a chat the postman arrived with my large order of wool from Iceland. At last I can start to get Sylvia’s rug underway but now I am thinking I am not going to get it finished before I head off to the ‘Felt Naturaly’ symposium in Denmark next week, never mind I will finish it in a couple of days after I return home. I am going to finish tidying the studio this afternoon and hopefully get the rug base laid out ready for long days felting on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Tomorrow I will be at a Visiting Captain’s Day at Killerig Golf Club but all work and no play …………. not that I ever look on felting as work but you know what I mean!
I had been planning a simple felt vessel workshop for the afternoon of Thursday 5th August but since Kristi (who will be visiting from America!) really likes the little clutch bag I blogged about on Friday have decided that this is what we will be felting instead!!!
If anyone is interested in joining us we will be starting at 14.00 sharp and working until between 16.00 and 16.30. Basic experience is necessary for this afternoon workshop and the cost will be E25 incl. materials. If anyone has no previous felting experience or is just starting out I am happy to offer the same workshop on another date but taking 3 to 3.5 hours, the cost for this longer session would be E35 incl. materials. Please email me asap if you would like to reserve a place on 5th or are interested in another date and time.
Our weather has deterioriated really badly over the last few days, wet, wild and windy! I think that this must be the reason my internet connection has been and still is appalling. Please forgive me if you have been trying to contact me via email or are waiting for a response to anything, I hope all will be back to speed later today or by the middle of the week in the worst case scenario.
One very welcome spin off from my recent adventures in freestyle knitting has been discovering some of the amazing natural and man made yarns now available online or in specialist shops. I felted myself a little clutch bag (purse for our American friends!) on Thursday afternoon and decided to add various yarns from my Blade scarf into the surface layer as an experiment to see how they would felt. The most amazing revelation was the huge success of some Tilli Tomas beaded silk! This is a very beautiful but expensive yarn and I had a small bit of discarded knitting with some cut threads which I really didn’t know if it would be possible to incorporate successfully into my felt. I laid out the bag around a resist as normal, decorated the surface with the scrap of beaded silk knitting, some artificial sari ribbon and some swirls of a Rowan wool/silk yarn and a silk/cotton combination. Some of the beaded silk I covered with the finest wisps of fibre and other areas I left uncovered. I needn’t have worried, the beaded silk felted beautifully and actually needed no covering wisps at all.
I love the way the knitting has become distorted and the little seed beads gleam and glisten as they catch the light! The sari ribbon also became incorporated really easily and it was actually the silk/wool and silk/cotton combinations that needed a little extra care while rubbing before they felted fully into the wool. I love the effect of all the different yarns in the finished bag and know that it will get lots of use over the coming months, green is after all the colour that I am most often to be seen wearing!
This morning I finished the last of the 36 felt flowers for my sister’s lamp and as the latest batch are drying on the range I thought it would be fun to take a picture of some scattered amongst the leaves of my beautiful purple burning bush!
I didn’t find the flowers as tedious to felt as I had been expecting. Maybe it was the fact that I was only working on 36 and not 450 as previously for Sculpture in Context but anyway I enjoyed playing around with the colours and I hope that Suzanne will be happy with the result. This afternoon I am intending on punching a very small hole in the centre of each flower then unscrew the bulbs and refit them around the felt. I am consistently amazed at how versatile and wondrous a fabric felt is, the fact that wool is fire resistant means that these little lamp shades will be perfectly safe. When the lamp is fully assembled I promise to take some pictures before it wends its way to Suzanne in Dublin!