Weaving through the trees, first images of felt bag and Wikio ranking

Day two saw everyone moving to the Feltmakers Ireland studio in Phoenix Park for the morning session before heading back to Collins Barracks for the afternoon.  Logistically this meant that we needed to bring all our relevant materials plus our work from day one with us. Because I had worked and felted my bag the previous evening I was free to start developing my theme further as well as have some time to absorb all we learnt on the first day.  Annette had asked friend and workshop helper Cristina to bring some balls of cheap yarn with her and we started the day by having a fun session weaving the yarn through the trees.  For anyone not familiar with Phoenix Park it is the largest park in a Capital city in Europe so we had plenty of trees to choose from!!! 

Weaving through the trees

Sunlight filtering through the threads

Jeanette suggested that we either allow ourselves to  get lost in the weaving and just enjoy the moment or else contemplate the different ways we were all connecting and how the many strands ultimately conntected and became one big web.  Needless to say this was great fun!

Today I am going to show you two detailed images of my bag, the full bag will be revealed in the next post.

Looking into the bag

What lies beneath

Lastly today I want to let everyone know that Wikio are launching a list of the top UK and Irish knitting blogs on Monday and amazingly Clasheen is in the top ten!  Here is a sneak preview of how things are looking …………

1 The Woolly Adventures of a Knitting Kitty  
2 Wendy Knits  
3 Little Cotton Rabbits  
4 Fourth edition  
5 Dyed in the Wool  
6 KnitWit  
7 Yarn Mistrys  
8 Confessions of a YarnAddict  
9 Clasheen by Nicola Brown  
10 Confessions of a Graveyard Gypsy  
11 Cakeyvoice  
12 La Belle Helene  
13 Art Yarn  
14 Dreamcatcher ~knitty in pink~  
15 KnitCave – Ramblings of an Obsessive  
16 Quelle Erqsome  
17 KnitKnack PaddyWack Give a Blog a Home  
18 All Fingers and Thumbs  
19 Frizz  
20 Fiona’s Knitting  
21 Heldasland  
22 Glittyknittykitty  
23 Chopped Tomatoes –  
24 Square One  
25 Witty knitter  
26 My Knitting Machines And Me  
27 Enchilada Sunrise  
28 Woolgathering  
29 I made this  
30 Simply Knitting  
31 The Wildcraft Blog  
32 Dots or stripes  
33 KTOG – ‘Knit TOGether’ group for North Hertfordshire.  
34 Knitting & Other Stuff  
35 MAZZAM AGAIN  
36 Claire knits and crochets  
37 Chang Knits  
38 KathrynsKnitting  
39 Stitchin’ Bints  
40 Carefree KAL  
41 Knitted ramblings  
42 Yarnspider  
43 Girl, Purl and Two Knitting Needles  
44 The mogs blog, the meanderings of a cat through yarn and life  
45 Cheviots  
46 Spinning Against The Tide  
47 KNITMAN  
48 Blueadt_knits  
49 Canny Cat!  
50 Knitting Mummy’s Everyday Life  
51 Daisychains  
52 Thumb gusset  
53 Skein  
54 Fyberspates  
55 Lizzy knits  
56 Lixie Knits It  
57 Mooknits  
58 Musing and doing  
59 Purlpower  
60 Roo Knits  
61 Sajona’s small world  
62 Slippedstitch  
63 Spinning Fishwife  
64 The Virtual Princess and the Pea  
65 Annarella  
66 Carpe diem!  
67 PurlyQueen  
68 BananaKnits.com  
69 Minxxys World  
70 COMING UP BLANK  
71 Emma & Co.  
72 ROR Sitemap for http://www.knitorama.co.uk  
73 Sweetpea Blogs  
74 Knitwise  
75 What Katie Did  
76 Morecambe  

Ranking by Wikio

It is possible to submit your own blog to Wikio for inclusion and I think that it will be interesting to look through some of the above blogs whenever I get a free minute!

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Some more fun and funky felt accessories!

This morning I made some more felt flowers and two cuffs, after lunch (fed five hungry tree planters some home made red Thai curry!) I forced myself to sit down and finish several of the flowers by adding simple brooch backs.  The weather has been wonderfully crisp today so I was able to take some photos of the completed works and have just now uploaded them to my Etsy shop

Funky orange and turquoise felt flower!

This large orange and turquoise flower would look equally at home pinned to an outfit or tying back your hair so I am actually giving the purchaser the option of finishing the flower with either fitting or else I can include both the findings for them to stitch on themselves!  It was actually when Hilary and I were working on Saturday that I thought of this colour combination.  Although I always tell students to either compliment or contrast I have never actually combined turquoise and orange myself before.  The mulberry silk around the outside of the base layer provides a nice highlight to the finished flower.  You can check out some more of the flowers on Etsy and I have also uploaded the cuffs too.

The tree planting is almost finished, it is amazing what 4 or 5 men can do with 13,000 trees when armed with a simple spade and a bit of will power! 

James with the oak

Rex surveying the lower ash plantation

Combining felt and ribbons, felt Christmas presents and catching up with emails

During the summer I received two balls of a ribbon yarn during one of the Ravelry swaps that I participate in.  As I understand it these would normally be used as quirky additions when knitting, crocheting or weaving but for me they make the perfect yarn to use when stringing fun felt necklaces!  The ribbon that I have is approx 1cm wide and space dyed in hot orange, yellow, pink, red and blue.  This makes it the ideal cord for stringing simple felt beads in a mixture of these colours, the necklaces are fun, light (as well as light hearted!) and look good with pretty much anything you throw them on with.  This morning I just need to finish making a couple of these (hope to take some pictures later) and then I am off to deliver some jewellery and scarves to Earthworks in Thomastown.  

Tomorrow morning I have another felting workshop here at Clasheen and then in the afternoon I intend making my sister Suzanne’s Christmas present!  She has a nice little antique table in her hall and is looking for a simple runner to put on the top as a protection for the phone, keys and accumulated clutter that always seem to gravitate to this spot.  Over the weekend I need to reassess all my other present giving requirements too and make a list of what gifts I need to felt or crochet, these will be worked on starting from next Monday. 

My last major task before the middle of next week is to plough through all my emails and written correspondence that have been accumulating over the last couple of weeks.  With the arrival of my trees and being initiated as the new Lady Captain of Borris Golf Club things have really been slack in the paperwork (and virtual paperwork!) department as there have just not been enough hours in the day to get through everything that needed to be done.

Busy, busy, busy few days!

Since I last posted here on Friday it seems that at least two weeks worth of work has actualy taken place so apologies for my lack of communication over the last few days. 

On Saturday morning as I was preparing for the first of my two planned felting workshops I managed to shear the copper water pipe leading from my well in half with my bare hands (hands made stronger from felting???) leading to no water supply for the day!  Luckliy I have the key to my neighbours farmhouse and was able to let myself in and carry enough water for the felting home in a basin, thanks to Alan the supply was reconnected in the evening and allowed me to have a bath and prepare for Sunday’s craft fair.  I packaged my new felting kits, gathered my felt scarves, jewellery and a couple of vessels, loaded the truck with all these as well as my large folding table, bath bags and tonnes of books which I had assembled during a monsterous house tidying session! 

Sunday dawned dry for a change (my 13,000 decidious trees had not arrived on Friday due to horrendous weather) and I got to Raheen Family Resource Centre with plenty of time to set up before the public was due to arrive.  From a selling point of view the day was not a great success (although I did just about cover my costs) but as regards supporting a good cause, making contacts and promoting my workshops with International artists it definitely helped get the message across about what I am doing.  I do think that Carmen did a great job organising the fair and decorating the hall, people just didn’t seem to have any money to play around with and possibly are holding on to what they have until our Irish Budget which takes place tomorrow!  It was nice however to catch up again with sculptor Gilly Thomas, last December Gilly bought one of my silk and merino neck pieces at an exhibition and was actually photographed wearing it recently and in the paper during the opening of her exhibition for the Wexford Opera Festival!!  I also had a good chat with Gayle Coleman from Palace Gems (our tables were side by side!), visual artist Mary Wallace, excellent holistic therapist Barbara McAteer and textile artist Blanka-Silviane Davare, a new member of the Enniscorthy Knitting Group.  Blanka-Silviane has moved to the Enniscorthy area of Co. Wexford from Switzerland via Dublin and doesn’t have a website at present, if you are interested in viewing her hand knitted and fulled stylish headwear she may be contacted by email.  As well as buying some Christmas presents Barbara and I did a fun swap, one of my cowls in exchange for a half hour head and back massage, a great deal for both of us!

Yesterday morning my trees arrived at last and in the afternoon Alan helped Chris (the forester), Dennis and Paul plant the first of the Ash.  I had to prepare for the Golf Club Ladies AGM and in the evening I officially took over as the new Lady Captain, this is a position I will hold for my sins until the beginning of December 2010.  Today I am trying to organise and collate all the paperwork needed by Chris in order to successfully get my grant cheque for the woodland, I am planting approx 8.5 acres so I need to make sure everything is in order as it does involve quite a lot of money!

Tomorrow morning I am getting my hair cut (newsworthy as it is only the second time this year I will have had time to make the journey!) and then I need to deliver some felt jewellery and scarves to Earthworks, a gallery and studio in Thomastown, Co. Kilkenny.  After that I will make some lunch for the guys planting and then Carmen is arriving for an afternoon of feltmaking, roll on the time because I feel withdrawal symptoms in the air!