Yumsk! Those colours just make my heart sing!
After a taxing week I was SO looking forward to Saturday’s Felt Making Workshop led by, local artist, Di Pattinson.
There is something soothing and wonderful about a group of women crafting together, and every so often I just have to book a day for myself to have a go at a new textile related skill.
I first came across Di’s work some years ago during Dorset Arts Weeks, an almost overwhelming richness of Dorset Art on show for 2 weeks every 2 years. (It is about to happen again soon, in May, click on link above to go to the website)
The pictures above are of Di’s work – lots of variety to inspire.
The workshop was held in The Old School, Upwey, home to the Upwey Potters and next to Upwey Wishing Well Cafe and Water gardens (which by the way is for sale if any readers are looking for a quaint old English Tea Rooms steeped in history, magic and mystery) from which we could order delicious lunches, which were brought across to us.
Di has a very upbeat and encouraging, relaxed style of demonstrating and supporting her students, so that one does not feel pressured to achieve, anything goes and she has a mass of materials to choose from
ooooo, don’t you just want to go elbow-deep into all that wonderful merino colourful softness
I was going for …bright.
I can’t seem to get enough of the hot pink, turquoise, orange, acid green, yellow combo – this obsession has been going on since the 1960s
Here I am aged 15 (ha!) the colours of the photo have faded a bit – but that dress was BRIGHT!!
note the Dr Scholl sandals – remember those?
I had a brief foray into terracotta and subtle greens in the 80s, but it did not last long.
Back to the felt – We started with a flat piece and I just threw it all together very quickly as I did not really want to think too much or have any finished object in mind – the day, for me, was about pure relaxation. Very much a Process Art approach, be drawn by a colour and go with where it takes you, and this meant I could dash off another piece before we stopped for lunch.
If ‘dash off’ can really describe the 400 rolls, back and forth, you need to do to get the wool fibres to felt together.
Others went for more subtle colouring (mine on the left) and produced some beautiful and fun pieces, which were left to dry on the radiator – some were destined for needle felting and/or other embellishments later.
I was bowled over by this piece inspired by a greetings card
After lunch Di told us how to make vessels, whether for vases, bags or bowls
Here are couple she has decorated with pebblesWe were all amazed at the variety of colours and shapes we produced
I was still going for ..
adding tassels of knitting yarn to decorate
to create a little shoulder bag
I really found it hard to believe that I was able to create 3 pieces in 6 hours with a stop for lunch, as well as being shown several other techniques
Here is my Ta Dah! moment.
I’m not sure what I will do with the flat pieces but no doubt embroidery and beads will be used. The first piece with circles I think I will cut into strips and machine embroider into a collage.
And the second – well I really like this one as it is – I might add a few beads and some simple embroidery but I’m pretty sure this one will go on the wall
Now, I wonder whether it would it sit comfortably next to Summer Flight