Monday, February 23, 2015

Felting experiments, balls, craters, and pebbles

Some more fun felting from Fiona Duthie's surface design class!

Balls and craters:

Pebbles and mirrors:


The balls in the first piece took forever and I don't think I will use them very often just because I am not patient enough for that. I need to iron all these samples as I think they will look even better with a little ironing.

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Dyeing wool with food coloring

 I have some wool. Okay I have 16 ounces of wool, and it is white.  Time for some dyeing! I think I sometimes like dyeing things as much as I like creating things.

I am using McCormick food colorings as my dye.  I soaked my wool in water, then in a water/vinegar mixture. I am dyeing eight pieces of roving that are about 1 ounce each.

I used the microwave method, 2 minutes in the microwave, 5 minutes rest. I did this rotation quite a few times. The color is supposed to get completely absorbed by the wool and that did not happen. I rinsed them a few times and they were still not colorfast.  I ended up putting them in a vinegar water solution and that solved the problem and the water remained clear. I do not think I let the roving soak long enough in the vinegar water during the first soak.

After dyeing these, I was reading online that some of the food colors may not be light fast.  So I plan to do a light fast test on these before putting them in a final project. But they will be fun to play with in my felting class samples. 

Monday, February 16, 2015

Experiments in wet felting

I am taking a 6 week online felting course with Fiona Duthie.  I am almost caught up for the week 1 samples.

Each time I finished a sample, I thought of a similar, but different, one that I wanted to try.  But I am getting very behind already and we are only in week 2.

Here are my week one experiments.

Silk on merino.

The yellow and blue are silk (noil?) on green merino.  I hate the green and the silk looks pretty sad, so plan on over-dyeing this.

Alpaca on merino. My alpaca has a bit of vegetation in it, which drives me crazy.

The alpaca has an interesting feel to it and a soft halo.

Merino on Jacob.

 Merino on Corriedale

Nuno felting silk fabrics

Pleated silks on merino.

I better get working on week 2!

Monday, February 9, 2015

Felted Cuffs and felt baubles

A few months ago (I am very late in posting this), I decided to do some felting experiments.

I thought all my felting supplies were in one large tub and it wouldn't be too big a deal to pull them out for a felt day. Two large tubs, one small tub, and multiple bags later, I had most of my supplies, although there are still a few things missing that are still in moving boxes.

I wanted to make some wrist warmers/cuffs, and also play with doing some three dimensional felting. I thought I'd make the cuffs by nuno felting with silk fabric.
The silk I used was too tightly woven and the wool did not felt into it, so I will need add some free motion stitching for the fabric to stay in place.  I did do some additional felting of the cuffs after this picture.

The blue and red piece is my first piece with resists.  It's not too bad for a first effort, but there is a lot of room for improvement.

I really liked the felt "bubbles" or "baubles" or whatever they are called. I didn't think they were completely felted and set them aside to try and felt them some more later on before cutting their tops off.

Now that it's been a couple months, I really lost my urge to work on them any more. I went ahead and cut their heads off last night.  They look okay, but the orange one had silk fabric on the inside, which did not felt to the wool.  The purple one has dark purple wool as the inner layer, and it could have felted more as well. I don't think they are too bad for a first try.  I had tied the baubles with cotton embroidery thread, thinking they would be permanently felted into the bauble shape. When I removed one of the pieces of embroidery thread, the opening re-opened.  Another sign that it is probably not felted enough. I will sew the bottoms closed on the back side so I can then remove the embroidery floss.

I just started a multi-week online felting class, so will be posting more felting for the next couple months. The week one sample instructions look really interesting and I am looking forward to working on them.  I better get on it, as week 2 instructions come out on Friday.

Monday, February 2, 2015

Painted Wonder Under

I have been experimenting with painted Wonder Under and foils recently. I had some large sheets of painted Wonder Under and decided to iron them onto fabric without adding any foiling. 

I love how it looks once it's been ironed on.  Now I need to decide what to do next. Fabric collage? Stitching? Both? Maybe I should iron some fabric strips to it too? There are lots of options.