Super exciting news, continuation of the ‘labels for textiles’ debate and a handful of felt berets!!!

Well, I can almost not speak or write today I am so excited, drumroll please!  The biggest news I am sharing with you today is that super friend and felt hat maker extraordinaire, the wonderful Dawn Edwards will be coming to stay at Clasheen during April 2012, I can’t wait!!!!!  This trip has been a long time in the planning, almost 2 years to be exact.  Finally Dawn has her first ever passport, some provisional dates in mind (the 2nd, 3rd and 4th weeks in April) and as soon her current fairs and events are over Dawn will be booking her tickets.  Watch out Ireland, here she comes!!!  I’m going to be blogging loads about Dawn’s trip over the next few weeks and also revealing news about my own Spring trip across the water, KY are you ready???

For the moment however ‘A Taste of Carlow’ looms on the horizon, I’ve been invited to participate in the Borris Farmers Market over the next 4 weeks, loads of felting needs to be completed to display at these venues and mum is being discharged from hospital today but still has loads of tests, scopes and consultant visits to go through over the course of the next two weeks.  Thanks so much Sonia, Deb, Suzanne, Dawn, Ellen, Margaret, Chrissie, Margo, Lebec EGirl (sorry I can’t work out your actual name!), Shirley and Pam for leaving comments about the ‘labels for textile art’ debate!  I am thrilled to get your input as it really opens up the issue and has given me plenty of food for thought.  It’s interesting that Shirley suggested signing the mount board on the bottom right, I did debate doing that but ended up not, would one use a pen or pencil for this???  Shirley also said about keeping the bottom border about 1/2″ deeper than the others, I didn’t do this unfortunately but it totally makes sense if you are signing the board!  As to stitching directly on the felt or adding initials by either needle felting or sewing, like Suzanne while I can sew if really pushed it doesn’t come naturally and I’m really looking for a simpler solution that totally shouts ‘me’.  Obviously I am stretching myself since I purchased my beautiful straight stitching sewing machine but I don’t feel comfortable or confident enough at the moment to sign with free machine embroidery.  Also for me, the felting is my favourite part of the process so I think I’m going to stick with adding a label onto the back of my work in future coupled with signing the mount as suggested in the front.

Label ironed onto felt

At the moment I am ironing my new basic labels onto the back of my work as opposed to sewing them in and it does seem to be working although I would definitely like a more distinctive label.  I love Margo and Deb’s idea of a metal label, adore the little silver tags that Chrissie makes and uses herself and also love the little wooden tags Heather sews inside her felt bags etc., these are definitely options to consider in the future!

Yesterday evening when I got home from visiting mum I decided I just couldn’t face in to felting more flowers.  I am up to date with the target I set myself of having a minimum of 57 flowers completed in time for Sunday so decided instead to have some fun and start working on a few soft and colourful felt berets!  Below is a picture of the first one I completed, beautiful short fibred merino, a swirl of silk chiffon and loads of hand dyed silk hankies on top to provide sheen and bring the turquoise and green colours together.  I’ll be bringing some of these berets to the farmers market on Friday and also to Carlow on Sunday afternoon if I still have any in stock!  I created an event page on FB this morning to promote ‘A Taste of Carlow’ so do please share this with your friends if you use FB.  We would love a big crowd to support all the wonderful Carlow artisans who will be participating on the day (Sunday 4th December, 2 – 6pm) and I just want to let as many people as possible know that the event will be happening!

The finished turquoise and green beret