Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Dye your silks before nuno felting

Dharmatrading.com has added a lot of new products to their catalog and this is a great time to try your hand at coloring your own silks for nuno felting projects for the Fall.

As you know, undyed silks can cost about 25% of what dyed and printed silk yardage costs - Tumble Dye Tie Dye is a no      fuss no muss way to start.

In the last year I've created a lot of scarves and wraps on tie dyed silk and my customers love it - it adds one more layer of interest in the finished felted fabric.

Tumble Dye Tie-dye - 2 Oz.



Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Feltmakers North - Dimensional Felt

Feltmakers North



Posted: 02 Aug 2016 01:52 AM PDT


Feltmakers North workshop participants had the most wonderful learning experience last week end, we had Liz Clay over for two days. The workshop was very relaxed and calm, fun filled but at the same time we learnt such a lot!
Everyone produced their own unique pieces which added another dimension to the week end.
Dympna beautiful bag to which she was going to add leather handles.
We came to the workshop with our felt already made. This was a new slant to feltmaking workshops, and was a very pleasant change, it meant the whole time we learning new techniques and being creative, the rolling and rubbing had been done beforehand!!
                     Ann (our Chairperson) sewing her felt bag.
Some of us brought our sewing machine to speed up the construction.
                                    Helen tacking her bag together.
This is Liz's bag, so you can see she has attached lovely fine leather handles.
Another of Liz's design, a cool little bag with uneven handles, so that one handle loops through the other one for carrying!
Liz's scarf.
The room was awash with colour, and it was great to see some people branching out and using colours that they would not normally use!
Sarah decided to go big so she made another piece of felt in the workshop, pretty clever two handed action!

Jane was using fabulous wool she had obtained from etsy, the colours were fantastic.
Deirdre is adding the finishing touches to one of her pieces, a beautiful waterfall scarf in forty shades of green.
                                  Mary hard at work.
Now back to Sarah, I dont usually focus on one person in my blogs but i think everyone at the workshop was impressed with Sarah's work so it seems a shame not to share, the story. So this is the flat felt ready for construction.
This is the bag sewn together, I hope you realise the bag is on its side (sorry I cant turn the photo round?) The bull rushes were amazing with the 3D ripples on the water.
The second side had a water lily using Liz Clay technique , truly original!
Here I am having a wee chat with Dorothy, that is an added bonus in Feltmakers North, everyone is very friendly and helpful to others. A girl told me one time that she had read the blog for a good while before plucking up the courage to come along as we all seemed so good at felting! There are a few excellent felters in the group, but we have mixed abilities but everyone is willing to help and share, so if you are thinking of coming along please do!
This is me modelling Liz's amazing jacket from one of her own patterns, we are hoping we will get Liz back to take this workshop with us! ( I was being directed by the photographer on how to stand!!)
                           A very happy group of Felt makers!

So dont forget our next felt in is on September 17th when we will be using silk in felt making, the meeting starts at 10.00 with Coffee and renewing your membership, or becoming a member, or you can just pay for the morning session. We would love to see you all then. Fiona Harvey.

Saturday, July 30, 2016

NEWS from Fibershed, see new fiber source in San Fran for exotics


slowing fashion

Fibershed Slow Fashion

"We’ve allowed brands to define manufacturing and fiber farming practices by giving them our consumer dollars without question. How to shift this paradigm? There are many ways, including and, most important, by purchasing directly from the maker (like purchasing directly from the food farmer). You can buy one garment per year from a farm or ranch that you know and have visited. You can become familiar with agricultural processes and clothing systems and begin to consume in a way that is simpatico with your values. Businesses depend on demand. It is our time now to develop a conscious and large demand for decentralized, humanely farmed fiber systems.” ~ Rebecca Burgess, Executive Director

Read more about the growing Slow Fashion movement on the Slow Food USA blog
 


soil not oil
August 5-6 in Richmond, CA

Soil not Oil Landscape

The second edition of the Soil Not Oil Coalition Conference focuses on agro-ecological practices to mitigate climate change and restore ecosystems. Learn from leading scientists, grassroots organizers and farmers, including Fibershed founder & Executive Director Rebecca Burgess, who will be speak about Soil Solutions to Climate Change on a panel with David R. Mongomery and Kristin Ohlson, facilitated by Diana Donlon.
Full details on the conference and program can be found here.
 


in case you missed it

From sheep in the field to yarn on the shelf, our latest blog posts showcase the Fibershed member community:

Red Creek Farm blog

“During especially heavy rains, a small creek running through Peggy Agnew and Jonathan Whipple’s parcel of irrigated valley in Mendocino County will turn a burnt red color from a loose patch of red dirt high up in the hills. It is from this phenomenon that the farm, nestled alongside rolling hills at the north end of Potter Valley, derives its name: Red Creek Farm...” ~ Brittany Cole Bush heads out to Mendocino to interview Peggy Agnew on raising fine fleece, cultivating natural dyes, and digging in to the landscape.

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Textured Felt Vases - Dawn Edwards at Feltmakers North

Feltmakers North





Posted: 10 May 2016 07:20 AM PDT
Hello everyone! I am just wondering how I am going to condense all I want to say about this workshop, as there is so much to tell! Those of you who know Dawn will know what I am talking about, Dawn Edwards is a wonderful tutor and person. We had such fun learning from her, with such a lovely relaxed and calm atmosphere!
Before the workshop started I presented her with her prize for our photographic competition!
Of course it was a sheep!
After an informative demonstration, we were all dying to get started, so we selected our wool and prepared our resists!
 Laying out the fibres.
Dorothy was almost submerged under a pile of fibre at one point, but survived and produced a beautiful vessel!
Leah working hard!
As with every group, we have some colourful characters and this is reflected in their work! I wonder can our members work out who made this one??
Hard at work!
Of course a wee coffee break was important!
The completed pieces lined up!
Elaine Mc Combe made this fabulous swirl design on her vessel.

A very happy, creative and fun bunch of felt makers!
Happy Chairperson Ann McCullough at the end of an extremely successful workshop with Dawn Edwards.

Just a wee quick reminder about our AGM which is on Saturday 21st May, for all the members, we will get through the business asap then there will be a talk on Silk by Gail Cooke and Fiona Harvey. Lunch is included and we will also have our first bring and buy!! So you will be able to stock up on the must needs for felting !!



Look forward to seeing you all there!
Fiona Harvey

Friday, April 8, 2016

BOOKS - improve your nuno felting technique & lots of SHORTCUTS

Nuno Felting: NEW TOOLS, TIPS & SPECIAL TECHNIQUES
Create better, more intricate nuno felt faster!


Print COVER
TOPICS include:
Part 1: How to use the new tools including the Palm Washboard, Edge Tool, Felting Stone & Felting Mat
Part 2: Tumbler Dryer Method & Shelf Liner Shortcuts, Rolling Machines - what they do, where to buy
Part 3: Importance of Color in Nuno Felting including How to Work with White, Using Non-Wool Fibers, Using Cotton Base Fabrics, Prefelts & Batts, & What went wrong - my fibers fell off?!
Part 4: How to make an Infinity Loop, add Ruffles to your designs on the edges and inside, make Felt Lace, the Two Layer Technique, Mosaic Nuno Felt, add how to quickly make and add Prefelt Swirls as a design element
Part 5: List of sources for supplies including fibers, tools and fabric

KINDLE EDITION

Kindle COVER
Kindle Digital Edition*:

PRINT Edition on Amazon.com***:
*NOTE: The Kindle digital edition is readable on all Apple and Android devices including tablets and smartphones using free Kindle Reader software.
__________________________________________________


NUNO FELTING TIPS & TRICKS - Second Edition

NFT&T has hundreds of secrets and tips for how to nuno felt better and faster using the newest and latest techniques and tools. It's so popular that it's now available in several bookstores and public libraries in the US and UK. Available in print and digital editions.

TOPICS:
Best Silks for nuno felting with a list of types and weights
Cottons for nuno felting
How to dye your own fabrics with RIT and DYLON powdered dyes
Non-wool fibers and nuno felting
Using a microwave
Using a portable electric sander; detailed directions
How to "water" your nuno felt
Soaps for nuno felting
HOW AND WHEN TO MAKE HOLES & cut-outs
Learn how to make great EDGES and ENDS
Make "ROVING YARN" to create outlines & designs
What to look for when buying custom-dyed/mixed fibers online
Best throwing technique
Using the "ALL COLD WATER" method
TWO LAYER TECHNIQUE
Fix a "mistake" with needle felting
How to make NUNO FELTED CORDS & BEADS
plus many, many more!
PRINT EDITION on Amazon
or you can buy it from my online store at a discounted price

KINDLE
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Sunday, April 3, 2016

Getting the Best COLOR EFFECTS

There have been several posts here about how to vary how you match the colors of your fibers to fabric to get the biggest bang for your efforts as well as what you spend on your supplies.

The cost of fibers, both commercial and hand-painted and the cost of silk yardage has gone up quite a bit in the last 2 years; I estimate that several of my basics have increased in price as much as 40% during that period.

The hand-painted rovings are pricey and you want to get as much out of them as you can - and their versatility is key in using every strand to create beautiful color combinations - it's still worth the price to me and they always inspire me to try new color combinations; I never get tired of them.

I can usually get 4 scarves out of 4 ounces of fiber and more if I combine the hand-painted roving with solid, commercial merino which is not as expensive.

It's also a lot more fun because you can make the colors sing depending on what color(s) you pick for your base fabric.  Different base, totally different results.

The combinations are up to you and your imagination!
merino roving from woolgatherings
same roving, different color effects
The Loop on the left was created with Woolgatherings lovely hand-painted roving on 100% 4.5m silk gauze dyed Tangerine (Rit).

The Long Scarf on the right was created with 20% of these same hand-painted fibers with 70% solid green merino in 2 shades (moss and celery) mixed with 10% lime bamboo and natural bamboo yarn.  The base fabric is tinted with Dylon's Olive Green.