After the success (or lack of success!) with my last attempt to insert wire within my felt I decided to try a small sample as before but insert the wire as soon as I removed the laminate underlay resists. It worked!! I laid out a small landscape in Bheda wool using the mountains and fields surrounding me as inspiration. I inserted the wire, finished the felting and fulling process and voila. It was possible to manipulate the wire to create interesting shapes within the finished felted piece. I can’t wait to try this out on a much more ambitious project but will have to wait until my work for the Green Energy Fair is over.
Over the last few days I have been thinking of ways to add an extra dimension to my work. Yesterday I created a sample piece that incorporated some strips of laminate underlay as resists. For those of you who have never felted before a resist is just a piece of something (eg. supple plastic, laminate floor underlay or oilcloth) that the wool fibres will not adhere to during the felting process. This means that where ever you position the resist a pocket within the finished piece will be created. I decided yesterday to make a two tiered piece of felt with a darker background and a light wool and linen foreground. Within the top layer I also incorporated three strips of resist, the idea being that when I removed them at the end I wanted to insert either wire or some other thin items. My intention had been to play around with the final insertion and possibly try twisting the wire into some interesting combinations. Even though I thought that my piece was fully shrunk and felted before I removed these strips, the ends of these hollow tubes bonded together slightly when I did the final rinse and throwing. Today I am going to try to open up the tubes but I actually think that next time I will insert the wire or whatever as soon as I remove the laminite resist. Will update you on progress as soon as I get the next piece finished.