Friday, December 30, 2011

New Project, New Year

Well, it's that time again.  Out with the old, and in with the new.  I've been reading lots of posts on Facebook and other sites to which I belong, talking about the year past.  This has put me in the frame of mind to do my own annual reckoning.  However, when I try to think back on the year my head just feels fuzzy.  I'm so busy I can barely remember what I was doing last week never mind last January!  OY! As I look back, I'll leave out the children's milestones, the many adventures upon horseback, back pain, doggy exploits, vacations, work, and the loss of dear ones.  To remain sane, and avoid reader boredom, I'll concentrate on my current passion for felting.

One year ago, I hadn't given felting any thought.  I'd heard of wet felting, but gave it no notice.  I certainly had never heard of needle felting, and if someone had told me I'd have started a small business and be washing poopy fleece by hand in 2011, I'd have told them to get some better medication.  All that has come to pass however, and I find my most relaxing moments now, aside from riding my horse, to be those when I am creating something from wool.  It's quite soothing and satisfying.  Today, just in time for the new year, I tried some wet felting.  I'm planning some Nuno felting in 2012, but thought it might not be a bad idea to give traditional and somewhat simpler wet felting a go first.  I used some wonderful icelandic lambswool that I washed and carded by hand, enhanced with some very fine lama down procured at the New Engand Fiber Festival.

So, here we go!

Here you see 5 layers of icelandic wool decorated with the soft brown lama down.

The off side, showing the lama fibers beginning to migrate to the back.  Almost time to roll.

Nice little package to be rolled, and rolled, and rolled.  You get the idea.

After rinsing thoroughly, the piece is soaked in vinegar and water for 15 minutes, then rinsed again.

The final product after steaming now needs to dry flat. 

All in all, I am fairly satisfied with the end result.  There are a few thinner spots, particularly around the edges, but I believe I will be able to make a passable pillow out of it. Hurray!  I have many exciting projects to look forward to in 2012.  Happy New Year, and happy crafting!

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