I love nothing more than the chance to experiment at felting in the company of other makers so an elastic structures event organised by the good folk at the International Feltmaking Association, seemed like the perfect chance to nourish my creativity, drink tea and mingle. Wow, those felters love their thickly-coated chocolate biscuits, but then it is high-energy, intensive work. The workshop was inspired by Annette Quentin-Stoll’s exquisitely concertinaed or coral-like felted objects. Even if some of my own pieces ended up looking like small pink nipples it was great to see what direction others took this project in. We mainly brought along flat pre-felts in various fibres, whilst some, like Cathy, worked on a 3D purse into which she stitched several rows of yarn before drawing the ends in tightly and squeezing the life out of the thing.
The idea is to pleat the pre-felt or tie in objects shibori-style to create 3D effects. You then wet felt the piece, rinse and allow it to dry out, effectively giving it a ‘perm’. This pleating style really does give the felt an elastic quality. This fabulous piece below has dozens of screws tightly sewn in and is rather delectable in its’ own right.
And here are some of mine, pre and post-felting, including the nipple variety!
Hmm, what to do with them now?
Aha! So, plenty of food for thought and I’ll definitely be experimenting further with this technique.