Friday, October 30, 2009

Fairy-ring necklace and DUNE playscape

I think you have to touch this to get the full effect but clicking on the picture will at least show some of why I love this piece . It is certainly a simple design...a bit of merino roving layered with merino/tencel and a touch of alpaca and silk . I just took a long strand of roving and poked for about 10 hours until I formed this circle . The whole time I was thinking...what the heck am I going to do with it....who would wear such a bold piece of fiber around their neck ? I just couldn't stop, myself ......poke,poke,poke . It just felt so soft and I was loving how the colors were blending . I guess it would make an appropriate nature center piece for a table if you filled it with candles(or fairys ?) or a rock collection . I still think it would make great neck-art that just begged people to pet it...but I think that's just me ?

Although there are fluffy fibers, this is really solidly felted , I just used the technique were you poke the felted fibers out the other side to create a fuzzy halo . I do this with some of my animal sculptures when I want to make them a bit fuzzier .

...and another alien playscape . This one took several full days of needle felting and I still need to fix a few areas that I'm not happy with yet .
This "tree" is a mix of merino, silk, alpaca and Mohair curls .

(Alien riding in the mohair curls of the worm )...sure beats walking and I think I would prefer it to driving my car...I hate driving . As to steering....I'm not a fan of harnesses and it's my I think it is all done telepathically .
As I was creating this, I was thinking about DUNE but with a creature that the aliens had a completely symbiotic relationship . They could pick bits of food (the mohair) from the "tree"
and feed it to the critter and it would let them hitchhike rides and even live inside when the weather was to hot or cold . However, making the mouth open as a cave, gives it such a distorted face that I don't like the end result . I think I will have to redo the face and just have them be hitchhikers, like the original DUNE . I also don't really like the "water look" of the none hill areas and think I will cover them with some greens and copper colors . I like contrasting colors but just don't think this looks pleasing next to the colors of the critter .

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Breaking News.....Aliens have hired Ninja body guards !

Can see the difference that another 12 hours of needle felting make on the flying alien and playscape ? It is now much firmer, contoured and the colors seem to contrast better for a bit more depth . You can see it a bit better if you click on the pictures here and in the last post .

Instead of having the aliens battling the ninjas, I thought they should hire them as body guards against the flying critter that thinks they look delicious . I didn't actually felt him to the structure he is perched on . He can move or be carefully balanced on top .

Fun stuff...I can't wait to make some more .

Friday, October 23, 2009

A birthday present from Gales Art...or...How the post office took a month to deliver a package !

TMI...being an aspie, I am great at making a short story long . If you want the short version just read the last line here....or.... here is the aspie version .

This spring I went to my first Shepherd's Harvest as a vendor and a buyer . I purchased some wonderful fiber from a MPLS based store...The Fiber Studio, and could never seem to find the same product again . It was so shiney, soft and I loved how the colors sat on top of the warm brown color beneath . I believe it was a blend of alpaca and silk but couldn't find the name of the women who made it .

Then I had a brainstorm...look on Etsy for the name of it....But all I could recall was the word Peacock . After much searching, I finally found something that at least looked similiar at Gales Art.... It was a lovely alpaca/silk 70/30 blend .

The above link is another place you can find her gorgious fiber at the Loopy Ewe...(see button at the top of the right hand column .)or you can find her on Etsy when she returns from vacation on Oct 26 .


I order 6 ounces and waited excitedly for it's arrival ....nothing . After about 3 weeks...(thought that was long enough for her to shear the alpaca and gather the silk from the worms) and dye the whole thing .....I contacted her on Etsy to find out if she had lost my order . She said she had sent it weeks ago : O Based on her positive feedback, I realized that it must be a "mail" mistake. She agreed to resend my order and except back the package if it ever arrived . I was pretty leary that it would show up . I had two other packages go missing in the past 6 months and was getting prettty frustrated with the post office .


the second package arrived in a few days and it was just as great as I had hoped . Incredable soft and beautiful colors . The silk adds shine to the fiber that doesn't seem to show up in the photos but tickles your eyes when you see it in person .

Well, today, the original package arrived just in time for my birthday so I can justify buying it and not sending it back...... Yea Gale ! I went to Etsy to ask Gale to write me up an order on Etsy so I could pay for it but she is on vacation, so this is my official IOU to Gale .

The short (NT) version of the story...

I ordered some roving and it took a month to get here...geeeez, post office, what's up with that !

First stage needle felting..Alien Landscape

Now that I have the new Ninjas and aliens, I thought it was time I got busy making some playscapes . This is what I would call the first stage...using a 4 needle poker, I form the basic shape of the valley hills and some small "growths" . Once that is holding together fairly well but before it is fully felted and hard...I lay down the colors that I want the shapes to be...grass, hills, volcanoes, rocks, tree like things and water . This is much more earth like then my last two but I plan on adding the alien touches at the end . Probably a space ship or dwelling .
It's very difficult to tell how well felted something is from a picture . This seems similar to many of the playscapes I have seen on Etsy...still fluffy and will hold together but may not last well through the years . I don't want to lose all the soft texture of the wool but I do want something that will hold up over will be another 5-10 hours to firm this up and the 2' by 1' structure will end up losing about 1/3 it's current size .

I think it would make a fabulous center piece the next time you are hosting an alien/ninja wedding or birthday party....uhm...or any day, if you happen to be as childish as me : )
I haven't decided if I am going to add this bird like alien but I think he would look interesting in the playscape if I can figure out how to perch him .
Obviously, he needs several more hours of felting and a lot more detail , but I thought it would be interesting to show him at this beginning stage of abstract shape . I'm not sure about the face yet, but am thinking something Pterodactyl like...(Just watched the Land of Lost movie last night) .

It will be a long an delicious day of felting for me . I love wool !!!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

one footed cyclops and pup

I worked on this pup for 3 nights and he is still not "perfect" eye is larger then the other and I have yet to decide if this is endearing or needs to be fixed . Symmetry is one of the most difficult things to achieve for me . Wither it's drawing or sculpting, I always seem to end up with one ear higher then the other or one arm thicker . Maybe it's my lopsided brain, but it sure can be frustrating .
It took about 6 hours to make a brown Romney simple body shape and face . Then I covered most of the body in the gray merino and Yak fiber and felted that for another 5 hours . Did seem to take longer then usual to get it to firm up . I added the white merino to the tummy and then spent another 4 hours making the ears and tail and adding more detail to the face and body . Yep, a very long process but I think he's pretty cute, evn if uneven and he sure feels soft with the merino and yak .
The black fuzz at the edge of the picture is my cat, who now seems to think he needs to get into every camera shot .
A little mopey and lots of dopey but he has a very cuddly temperament .
...and this guy is a wee bit silly and a wee bit spooky and is mostly yummy merino/yak with a bit of silk and alpaca in the nose and tail .

This started as an experiment in "carving" . I made a lose ball shape and then just poked at it until I started seeing a shape and then followed those lines to try and accentuate the shape I saw
I think it reminds me a bit of a North American native sculpture but I'm not sure why .

Another abstract in form and color .
Sometimes my BF takes pictures of my critters with his . That is a "devil" I have been working on that needs a new face because I made it to flat . That is one of the advantages of working in wool can go back and cover up mistakes by adding a bit more wool .

Happy crafting !

Saturday, October 17, 2009

aliens and Ninjas have arrived (also, more nuno and wet felted scarves )

Another picture of my majestic fuzzy panther ...Baloo
and here they are.....the new ninjas and aliens in a fight to the death...or perhaps they will work out their differences and share a nice cup of tea ?
This is one of my largest nuno felt scarfs..about 5' by 2' . I would like to do larger ones but am limited by table and bubble wrap sizes . The base material is a silk chiffon print and I used 50/50% , Merino/Tencel for the felting . I think it took about 3 hours to lay out an roll . I still prefer the process of needle felting but like the results of the nuno look .

This is a much smaller scarf of chiffon, Merino/Tencel and a bit of alpaca/silk (70/30 blend)
Inspite of the smaller size, it takes just as long to get to the felted stage and perhaps that is due to the resistance of the alpaca/silk to felt .

The pic below shows the backside detail of the fiber migrating through the chiffon .

Above is my first wet felted scarf with merino/tencel on one side and Yak/merino on the other side .
I'm not sure why but it developed a ridged look when felted which added and interesting texture and almost looks like knitting rows . The only thing different in this is the Yak, so am wondering if that will always result in this effect .
The ridges here are because I needle felted merino/tencel into a merino/angora knitted sweater

This is the other side . If you look in the following post, you can see what these last two scarves looked like in the needle felt stage before I wet-felted them .

Friday, October 16, 2009

Where the Wild Cylcops roam...and other bits of fun

This is a close up of some merino, tencel, and wee bit of silk that I needle felted together before I began the wet felting . This actually takes between 2-3 hours but cuts the wet felting down to about 30 min, so it depends on if you prefer having a needle in your hands or having wet hands .
I'm not a big fan of wet hands, so is worth the extra needle time .
This is the other side...flames on water or fall trees around a stream ?
I absolutely love the feel and look of this at this needle felt stage but it wouldn't be very practical as a scarf...(would work fine as a wall hanging and I may give that a try . Art for the wall that you can pet sounds liema devine idea to me . )

The back layer of this is some of the lovely Yak/merino I just purchased and it is unbelievably soft . I think it feel very similar to alpaca . The other side is a merino.tencel blend and both worked well for both the needle and wet felting stages . (I'll have to show the finished wet felting on the next sunny's been a very dreary fall here ) .
Just one example of the lovly fiber being sold on Etsy by Greenwood Fiberworks . Check her out, lovely blends of color and fibers .
The above is the 12oz of Yak and merino that I purchased from Busybee Fibers . It really was great for felting...I was a bit worried that it would take longer but it worked for both the noses of the "wild cyclops"( pictured in last pics here ) and in the scarf above .
Moonlight and Laughter uses some of my favorite color blends and this merino Tencl blend is a soft as it is gorgious . She also included some milk fiber which is fantastic to soft as the silk and Tencel but with only half the shine , so a much more subtle look .
I added some of the aliens from my alien necklaces. I attached hooks so you can wear them as necklaces when you are done playing with them . I just ordered two different kinds of aliens that arrived today, so need to get busy making more playscapes for them .
The wild cyclops on the left has at least one autistic trait...toe walking . His nose is made of Yak and the rest is merino, tencil and silk .
This wild cyclops looks like he is trying to relax doing a yoga stretch . I can't recall the name of this pose but I do recall that it hurt . He seems to be smiling through the pain .
At the last minute....a head banging monkey joined in the fun and appears to be siding with my hand felted alien against the hatchet wealding alien .


Related Posts with Thumbnails