Resumption of Service…..

Hi to anyone reading this….

I had an unexpected halt called to my feltmaking as I had to dash to my hometown of Southport to help look after my Dad who had developed a nasty chest infection (no fun when you are 86!).   No internet connection available in the house and no time to do anything with it if there was….

I took all my feltmaking equipment with me thinking I might get a bit of time to do something and made about half a scarf!!

Now back in London and knackered from lack of sleep – trying to decide whether I have the energy and willpower to do a stall at Lauderdale House on Bank Holiday Monday…

Watch this space

New Wool…….

After the excitements of planning my first market stall time to get back to making again…. I was running low on wool so time to pay a visit to The Handweavers Studio to stock up.  It’s only a short walk / bus ride from where I live which is lucky as I aways seem to end up buyiing twice as much wool as I intended to.

This time I bought quite a few pastels.  I’m not normally a pastels type of person, but with summer and summer craft fairs approaching it seemed like a good idea…I will learn to love the pastels!

Merino Tops in various colours

New wool

 I  bought some curly Wenslydale as I want to experiment with making’Sheep’ shaped badges and it seemed like a possible option to give a real sheep fleece feel.

I  did some carding on Friday while we were sitting on the stall – using up some of the scraps in my bit bag to make ‘rollags’.  I love the way you can use up virtually every scrap of wool doing this, and add flecks of colour to a base colour in a way that brings the finished product to life

Newly carded 'rollags' of wool ready for use

Newly carded rollags of wool ready for use

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Being a Stallholder….

A new experience!!  Setting the stall up worked well – I knew all those years of theatre get-ins and admin for work conferences would come in handy some time.   Unfortunately in my enthusiasm I forgot to get a picture of me with the stall so here is Kim who did the stall with me…..

Kim in front of Spitalfields Stall 15th April

Kim in front of Spitalfields Stall 15th April

According to the other stallholders around us it was a slow day – I got the impression that the people walking past the stall were more interested in buying their breakfast / lunch from the restaurants around us….

Lets just say we weren’t mown down in the rush to buy our products – and I got a lot of wool ends carded together into rollags ready for use in the future!!  But a valuable first experience.  I have another stall booked somewhere else in a month’s time and also a third potential venue to look into for May.

Stall close up April 2010
Stall close up April 2010

Integrated Handles

Grey Bag with Integrated Handle
Grey Bag with Integrated Handle

I’ve been making more bags and I’ve done it – made integrated handles and it really wasn’t difficult.  I don’t know what I was shying away from!!

Here is the finished bag…..

Grey and Pink Bag open to show lining

Grey and Pink Bag open

Grey and Pink Bag closed

Grey and Pink Bag closed

Mauve Bag (no handle yet!)

Mauve Bag (no handle yet!)

‘Henry Moore’ Bag

Yesterday I made a new bag which I think has a 1950s feel to it – perhaps I absorbed ideas from a book I read recently on Henry Moore’s textile designs..

Turquoise Bag laid out before it has been felted

Turquoise Bag laid out before it has been felted

It has pieces of  ‘silk hankie’ between the layers of wool to strengthen it and  to give some extra texture.  The darker patches are silk chiffon so there are elements of nunofelt…. and the inside is a dark greenish turquoise.

Bag being felted around a piece of pipe lagging

Bag being felted around a piece of pipe lagging

Once I had felted and fulled the bag I cut a a oblong of thick polestyrene packing (that I found in a load of packing materials someone was throwing out). I stretched the wet bag  over the block to experiment with shaping it in the same way that I would shape a hat on a hat block.

I’m pleased with the way it has turned out.  Now I just need to make a handle.  I really must get into making integral handles!!   I know how but I hate making felt ropes so I keep avoiding it…..

Turquoise Bag stretched and dried

Turquoise Bag stretched and dried