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Posts tagged ‘Sunshine Coast Hinterland’

Christmas felt pebbles, brooch & pic

I fancied a change today.  No scarves today, I wanted to do something different. Something cute. Something small.

Felted Christmas pebbles

Wet felted Christmas pebbles approx 5x3cm

Wet felted Christmas pebbles approx 5x3cm

So I collected some pebbles from the garden and felted them in Christmas colours;

red with green silk,

white with red silk,

green with red silk,

white with purple silk,

purple with white silk and a touch of sparkly gold Angelina fibre.

Yummy!!

I’ve also covered one pebble in dark blue with lighter blue silks and I think I will be embroidering a star on that one.

I think these will make lovely little stocking fillers, or Christmas table decorations.

Then I made a…

15x15cm Felt picture

This is of an evening nature scene, 15x15cm which I will stick onto a canvas of the same size.

Here are a couple of pics of the layout and the picture itself.  The first one is of the layout, mainly of merino wool, with some silk tops, a little Angelina fibre in the sky, some nepps as stars, some silk noile flowers and a little bit of silk sari for patterning in the foreground.  The photo of the layout was taken in daylight and the one of the finished painting was taken in artificial light this evening, so there’s a bit of a difference with the hues.

Layout for nature evening scene

Layout for nature evening scene

Wet felted picture 15x15cm of evening nature scene

Wet felted picture 15x15cm of evening nature scene

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Needle felted brooch – country scene

Then, with time to spare, I got out my felting needle and a large button for sizing, and felted a little nature scene with a poppy in the front, which I stuck onto the button, after I’d attached a brooch clasp to the back.  Here are a couple of photos of this.  It is very cute, and only 4cm in diameter.

I thoroughly enjoyed making these different objects and I’ll make some more smaller, and different items, which I’ll be able to display for my customers at the two pre-Christmas markets that I’ll be attending.

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Two more scarves for the markets

Nov '13 Glasshouse Market stall

Nov ’13 Glasshouse Market stall

Yesterday, along with the Poppy Scarf, I also made a couple more nuno felt scarves using a hand-dyed piece of chiffon that I cut into one thin and one wider strip. I was very industrious as I was working towards today’s Glasshouse Market stall, and the next few markets before Christmas.

Without going into the ins and outs of the whole production, here are some photos of the finished scarves.

Love Poppies! – Nuno felt scarf!

Here’s a lovely lightweight scarf I have just made.  I couldn’t leave the poppies until I had used the theme on at least one other item.

Changing my style slightly, although still keeping the scarf as fine as possible and using the wool mainly to ‘stick’ silk to silk, I laid one end of the scarf out showing a poppy field, and the other with three large poppy heads.

This will be on display over the weekend as well.

Poppies – two felt ‘paintings’

With only 2 sleeps to go to the Art Exhibition at Beerwah Community Hall, my dining area and kitchen look as if there’s been an invasion of the Arty Crafty Brigade!

Not sure that I had enough to display at the exhibition, and spotting a couple of 30x30cm deep canvases locally, then finding some lovely mottled dark grey/black quilting material, I had an idea to make a couple of poppy felt art works.  I have been inspired by stunning poppies on felt dresses by Oprisan Alina who makes beautiful vibrant and incredible works.  Rather than copy what she was doing, which I do not like to do, I took my love of the vibrancy and delicateness of poppies and translated them into my own design.

As you know if you’ve been following my blog, when I do a felt painting, I usually make the whole thing out of wool. However, as I had found the background already, I decided to make the poppies as separate items and stick them to the covered canvases.  Thankfully my handyman neighbour had an industrial staple gun so helped me with the covering.

I won’t even go into my drama on Saturday when I spent five hours felting one of the poppies with some ‘merino wool’ from Spotlight (bought on the spur of the moment in case I didn’t have enough red wool) that is apparently good for needle and wet felting.  After turning the kitchen blue with my swearing and trying all the felting tricks in the book I eventually gave in to the fact that what I was trying to felt may have looked like and felt like red wool rovings must actually be synthetic.

It was originally going to be four petals, two behind separated by a resist.  However, after the felting farce, I got my big sharp scissors and cut the back two off.  These were made solely out of the Spotlight ‘wool’, whereas the top two petals had a large quantity of my other real wool rovings that had been hand dyed in different shades of red, so they had pretty much felted how I wanted them.

Non-felting 'merino' wool from back two petals with finished 2-petal poppy using my wool

Non-felting ‘merino’ wool from back two petals with finished 2-petal poppy using my wool

Leaves and petals all contain high amounts of silk tops and hankies and I liked how they turned out. The second lot of poppies had one flat and one side on flower that opened to see inside.  I sewed in some nice black beads for detail and worked on the layout.

For the buds I used a thicker felt and then fluffed out the felt with a needle to give the fuzzy effect that real buds have.  Actually it was only after researching a good poppy photo, that I discovered how many different varieties of poppy there are, all with different stamen arrangements.

I have finished sticking it all down with good quality fabric glue and have just taken some pics.  Here they are.  Now I’ve got to find some wire and get them ready to hang.

Diptyche of poppies.  Wet felted with beading.

Diptyche of poppies. Wet felted with beading.

Detail of beading inside the smaller poppy.

Detail of beading inside the smaller poppy.

Library Display

This is a quick post to show a couple of pics of a limited variety of my felting that is on display at Beerwah Library for two weeks.

If you aren’t in the area but would like to visit the library, the address is:

Beerwah Library, 25 Peachester Road, Beerwah Qld 4519. Phone for opening hours: 1300 542 727

It is lovely to have the opportunity to display my work locally.  I am a member of the Glasshouse Country Arts Trail and we have several weeks available to display members’ works.  Ilia Starkovsky is also displaying some of his photographic art, and Bronwyn Hill and/or Melanie Gray Augustin will also be bringing showing some of their work this fortnight.

A variety of my work in the display cabinet at Beerwah Library

A variety of my work in the display cabinet at Beerwah Library

Aside

Arts Trail and Library Exhibits!

I’m a bit excited and also a bit spread out in Beerwah this week!

The latest Glasshouse Country Arts Trail is on to coincide with the school holidays and I am exhibiting with fellow Arts Trail member, Sandra Price at her studio this weekend until Wednesday.

At the same time, I am displaying some of my felt at the local library for a couple of weeks in the glass cabinets at the front of the library.  I will also have my Mt. Coonowrin wall hanging displayed there, as an example of the variety of uses of wet felting.

If you aren’t in the area but would like to visit the library, the address is:

Beerwah Library, 25 Peachester Road, Beerwah Qld 4519. Phone for opening hours: 1300 542 727

I must say, it’s heart warming to have these opportunities of sharing what I love with my local community.

 

I had to shave my piece of felt … and eat toast!

I know, that sounds a bit bizarre, but let me explain.

With the upcoming art exhibition to be held in Beerwah in October, the pressure’s on to make more felt wall hangings to exhibit.  I already have Mt. Coonowrin, which I have documented previously on this blog, but one’s just not enough.

Today was the day to make another one.  I’ve been researching my subject, collected my materials and all I needed was a free weekend and when I woke up to the clear bright day this morning I couldn’t wait to go home and get stuck in.  When I say ‘go home’, I’m not a party animal who woke up in a strange house this morning after a drunken rave the night before.  I have recently taken on another part time job dog-walking and pet/house sitting.  It’s great because it is a rewarding job and I can fit it in around my other life commitments.  I’m house sitting at the moment, thus ‘go home’ meant leave the doggie for the day and do my felting at home.  Not to mention spend some brief, welcome time with hubby and son.

The toast incident

Arriving bright eyed and bushy tailed, I breezed in only to meet my teenage son in his pj’s yawning a “Morning Mum” with half-closed eyes.  This was followed by the sound of an electric toothbrush buzzing in the bathroom – hubby was making himself personable!  While I waited for him to finish his ablutions (don’t you love that word?) I hovered in front of my computer noticing a yellow stick it note in the middle of the screen.

“Your dinner for tonight’s in the fridge so you don’t have to eat toast, you touchy thing! … Luv U”

Aw, what a sweetie, he remembered my melt down last week when, stressed at juggling an extra job, trying to organize myself, emotionally detach from hubby, son and my own dog, bring in the washing and get to my next assignment before sun down so I could feed a farmyard of chooks (Australian for ‘chickens’) and ducks, I forgot to take dinner with me and had to revert to toast.  I’m a bit of a foodie, so toast was just not the same as dinner.

The next afternoon while pretty much repeating the previous day’s schedule, I managed to throw a guilt trip at my son who was taking for everrrrrrrr to get some chore done that is his job anyway but which I wanted him to do before I left for the evening.  I had good reason for that at the time, but can’t for the life of me think what it could have been now.  That’s how important it was in the overall scheme of things.

“Oh for goodness sake, hurry up!!!  It’s because I was rushing yesterday getting your uniform ready, that I left my dinner in the fridge and had to survive on toast!”

At which point hubby stuck up for son from his vantage point in the office around the corner…

“Don’t pick on him just because you weren’t organized!”

I was feeling so bereft by that time, because oddly enough, despite loving going on holiday and always wishing to be living in some other, more exotic place – which my assignment was – I was feeling desperately homesick and wanting to hug son, hubby and dog all at the same time and tell them I loved them.  I’d so looked forward to coming home that afternoon, so I could spend some warm and fuzzy time to make up for my transition into Agent Aannsha Dog Sitter.

Only instead of Happy Families, I’d managed to create a minor drama where my son was crotchety for me guilt-tripping him and hubby was rightly taking his side.  A silent tear escaped the corner of my eye and I opened the fridge to take last night’s dinner for tonight with me and escape before I began sobbing.

Too late, I choked one back as I opened the fridge door.

“What’s the matter?” Baz stood behind me quicker than I could take my things and run.

Well, I blurted it all out in a blubbery blobby mess that caused a puzzled look to crease hubby’s face.  He didn’t understand me.  He never does when I melt down.  To me it is perfectly natural and totally understandable that inner tumult can result from a few changes in routine and everything that comes with it.  But to Baz, I had turned into an alien and he couldn’t fix a problem he didn’t have any reference for.  God love him.  I do.

He hugged me warily and I tried to get it together and explain logically what was going on for me.  I couldn’t, so I wiped my salty face on his jumper and pulled away still watery. But I had no time to wallow in self-pity, I had animals to feed.  I left via my son’s room where I sincerely apologised to him for being mean. He is such a forgiving fellow and hugged me with the force of ten men. Then with a lot still hanging mid-sentence, confused and a tiny bit raw between Baz and me, I got in the car and drove off.

Later that night, I texted Baz only to find that Baz – a man whose longest text to me yet had been “ok” – had texted me:

“Still lu ya, U touchy bugger”.

The most adorable thing a bloke could tell his missus.  I melted and in an instant the whole drama dissipated.

…So, the message on my pc was in reference to the toast drama.

What about having to shave my felt?

After Baz came out of the bathroom all squeaky clean, I asked him if that meant I had dinner for tonight.

“You do, it’s chilli con carne.”

“You’re a dream, thank you.”

Big hug.

Half an hour later, Baz off scuba diving, Luke chilling in his room, I set to making my felt painting.

Why I had to shave my felt

The subject of today’s felting is of an entry way north, along Moffat Beach – one of the beaches in Caloundra, on the Sunshine Coast of Queensland, near where I live.

Pic of Moffat Beach thanks to Caloundra Tourism website

The ocean is blue, the sand gleams white in the sunshine, and there are sandy walkways to the beach through sea-grass lined with wooden railings and shaded by trees that are very pleasing to the eye.

At this point, I would like to acknowledge Gusha Visual Media who have inspired my latest work with some of their photos of the Sunshine Coast. In particular, Moffat Beach, which is so beautiful, I wanted to try and capture the scene in felt.

I beganMoffat Beach sky sea layout with a piece of cream pre-felt 60cm x 60cm as the base.  Starting with the sky, I laid several shades of blue, and thin white clouds, then laid the water in deeper turquoises.

Moffatt Beach full layout less treeThen I laid the white strip of beach and followed with the brown-sandy colour of the path, which I underlaid with brown alpaca to add depth.  After that I added the greens of the grasses. Next came the wooden railing and the shading.

Moffat Beach full layout less yarnHappy with the overall background, I put in the tree using black mixed with white and ochre, and short whispy pieces of yarn for the leaves.

Moffat Beach full layoutTo finish the work at this stage, I added the silks and yarns to give interesting detail and lustre to the overall painting.

As my feet were very sore – that’s a story for another day – I laid the work on a 60x60cm canvas on the lounge coffee table so I could sit for the couple of hours it took to do the layout.  I wasn’t sure how much wool would float away as I carried the piece over to the kitchen bench for felting, but I walked slowly and it all remained intact.  Once the canvas was removed it sat on the bubble wrap, on a towel to catch the excess water.

After soaping, rubbing, rubbing, squeezing, heating, rubbing, heating and rubbing some more, the picture was finally felted to my liking.  I rinsed the soap out, final rinsed with a bit of vinegar and spun it in the washing machine.

As I ironed it flat, I noticed that where the brown alpaca had been laid down, it had migrated through the other colours and the long fuzzy wool filaments covered the bottom half of the painting obscuring the other colours and details!  I forgot to take a photo at this point, because I was concentrating on fixing the furry mess!  After trying to snip it away with scissors and realising that would take all afternoon, I got a fresh disposable razor from my hubby’s stash and proceeded to shave the wool off the painting!

Despite being worried about losing the underlying detail, and messing up the finish of the felt that was left, I knew I couldn’t leave it furry, so shaved away.  I removed a very large handful of alpaca and was happy to see the rest of the painting was intact!

Re-ironed, I was satisfied that the painting was pretty good and after hanging it out to dry overnight, I’m looking forward to adding the finer details with needle felting and embroidery tomorrow.

However – Note To Self – only use alpaca in a felt painting if the painting is of a teddy bear or something else that requires a fuzzy finish!

That’s definitely a tip I’m going to put in a Felting Book when I get round to writing one!

Anyway, here’s the felted wall hanging of Moffat Beach, awaiting embroidery and needle felting.  Felted size is approximately 50cm x 50xm.

Moffat Beach felted

Goodbye felt scarf ‘babies’

I had a lovely day at the Glasshouse Markets today: friendly atmosphere, warm company, good coffee and tasty brownies.

At the market today, I said goodbye to most of my felt scarf ‘babies’ who all went to good homes. Thank you ladies for finding the scarves that were meant for you – some of them are travelling as far as Melbourne and also New Zealand!

Another great day at Glasshouse Markets

Another great day at Glasshouse Markets

Market Stall, Art Exhibition and Auction … and Arts Trail all in October!

We’re all starting to get excited about the Glasshouse Country Festival that is being held in October.  There will be a twilight Glasshouse Market on Friday the 18th October.  Also as part of the festival, the Glasshouse Country Arts Trail that I belong to is having an art exhibition over the weekend 19th/20th October, with an art auction on the Saturday evening.

Immediately following this weekend for two weeks, the members of the Arts Trail will have our open studios, so anyone interested can come and see our work and meet the artists in person.

Felting workshop for children

I have also been asked to run a fun felting workshop for the local primary school children.

I’ve got my work cut out for me now!

NOTE TO SELF:

> Create more scarves for the twilight market stall,

> Make several more wall hangings for display at the exhibition

> Organise workshop to felt pens with the primary school kids

Real 'felt pens' drying - pens, felted with wool.

Real ‘felt pens’ drying – pens, felted with wool.

> Get some multi-vitamins!

One Day Felting Workshop – for beginners

During the first Open Studio weekend I made a small piece of felt to demonstrate the wet felting technique for four lovely ladies who had come along to Sandra Price’s studio where I was fortunate enough to show my felt art alongside her beautiful and colourful artwork.

Last week, Sandy let me know that a couple of these ladies were interested in making a nuno felt scarf, so I surprised myself by being very proactive and organised a workshop for Saturday the 3rd of August.

I have all the information at my other website, including what you receive in your Funtastic Felt Pack which you use during the workshop and which you also get to take home so you are all set to make another piece of felt if you wish.

Places are very limited, so if you would like to come along, please visit the following link  and follow the prompts.  One Day Felting Workshop

If you can’t make the 3rd August but would love to learn to make a beautiful lightweight nuno felt scarf, contact me and I’ll put you into another workshop.

Alternatively, if you and 2 or 3 friends would like to learn to make a scarf on a different date, contact me and we can work out a day that suits everyone. 🙂

Open Studio Weekend 2

Despite it being a wet wintry weekend, Sandra and I enjoyed another shared studio experience.  While I think the weather put a lot of people from coming out so we only had a handful of visitors over the two days, we were very creative.

Sandra’s painting

On Saturday Sandra worked on a calla lily:

Sandra’s Calla Lily

Yesterday, she painted two in a series of three intuitive paintings, plus several beautiful bright birds and trees on small canvases.  I love how Sandy can change style according to what she’s painting, so she has a variety of work that can be appreciated by many. Sandy drying her artHere’s Sandra drying one of her intuitive paintings.  Let’s face it, with the cool and damp weather, rather than sit around watching paint dry, you’ve gotta love technology and a handy hair dryer. Don’t you love the colours she’s using?

You can read more about Sandy’s painting at her blog: Hearts Landscapes.

Aannsha’s Felting

On Saturday I made a small ‘earthenware’ coloured round bowl about 13cm in diameter.  I used a muted pale blue with maroon wool and a splash of orange wool, then accentuated it with maroon sari silk threads and mulberry hand-dyed silk rovings. I then created a cobweb scarf using pale blue and pinks, a nice combination that I haven’t tried before. I was happy with how I laid out the wool rovings as the resulting scarf had a good structure that was semi-translucent and having small holes across the work which is a mark of cobweb felt.

Felt 'earthenware' vase and pinkblue scarf

My felt bowl and scarf in front of Sandra’s painting

The experimental vase that looks like an upturned hat!

On the Sunday I gave myself a large project, wanting to experiment with a vase/vessel using a flat resist. The two round bowls I’ve made so far have been made using a circular resist.

Vessel making is a new avenue for me in felting, so when I decided to make a taller vessel, more like a vase, I wasn’t sure how to start.  I went for a flat resist and threw myself into the project giving myself permission to like any outcome however outlandish, as this was an Experiment.  It was actually a very big project and in order for the ‘vase’ to be sturdy enough to support its own weight, I had to work it very hard.  So this baby took all day to create!

I started with bright green, followed by a muted, earthy blue and did four layers alternating these colours one for each layer.  When I got to the decorative layer I went mad with orange, lime green, maroon sari silk, brown alpaca and red/grey silk hankies. When I finished laying out the top layer, it looked like something the dog had thrown up on to be honest.  But I was out on a limb and determined to see it through.

Decorative top layer of vessel - aka dog's dinner

Decorative top layer of vessel – aka dog’s dinner

At first, it wanted to become a handbag and I struggled to go beyond a hesitant decision to stop at that point, knowing that a bag would be a good outcome.  But no.  I wanted a vase or a vessel of some kind and that was what I was determined to make. I worked on it some more until I had gone beyond the handbag stiffness, and knew at that point I was on the other side.  Where the vessel resided.

We stopped for lunch and had a salad.

Once more into the fray dear friend.

Occasionally I surfaced over the green brown thing it was becoming, to look enviously at Sandra who was producing beautiful work after beautiful work – she really is industrious!  I noticed that she too though was questioning her own colour choices and was surprised at how her own intuitive paintings were developing.

Eventually, when it was way past cup of tea time, we both stopped.  Sandra was all out of paintings, and I had finally mastered the beast!

The final result was totally different to what I’d pictured when I started, and certainly a world away from a handbag, but quirky though it is, I love it.  It’s a vessel that could be an upturned hat, as my son proved when I brought it home, but I reckon it works.

In my attempt to flatten the bottom and create an even oval base, I used a plastic bowl that was shorter than the vessel.  By the time I’d pushed the base into shape, I noticed I’d inadvertently pushed down the sides, creating deep wrinkles.  Wow, that was a great accidental serendipity!  I turned the top over by about four centimetres to  contrast the lovely lime inside with the now muted and gorgeous autumn shades of the outside.

Stepping back, I noticed the brown alpaca fleece fuzzing out in places, that adds interest. It stands about 20cm  tall and 18cm wide. Here are some pictures showing the process and finished vessel.

What would you use it for?

Did Sandy and I morph artistic styles? (Cue Twilight Zone music)

One thing Sandra and I noticed was that we’d both apparently switched colouring styles.  Most of my paintings and felt carry bold, warm colours, while usually Sandra’s work tends towards blues and pastel tones – well some, not all of her work.  This weekend though, I was favouring earthy colouring and using muddy browns and blues for the top layers of my work, while Sandra found herself painting in bright vibrant hues.

We’re both intuitive by nature and as we worked, both occasionally uttering, “Wow, this is an odd choice of colour for my work”, we also both came to a vague conclusion that we were possibly somehow ‘tapping into’ each others’ brains and morphing our artistic palettes!  There’s no proof of that of course, but it’s not out of the realm of possibility. So, that was our weekend.  I am looking forward to next weekend when Open Studio weekend 3 gets underway.  What will we create next?

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