Friday, August 31, 2012

Madly Stitching

 I'm off to Level 2 Stitch Class next week and I haven't quite gotten all my homework done yet. So today I have been chained to my sewing machine, stitching away. These are the first two pages of a book I'm making in the style of Cas Holmes

The book is about starting over and not worrying about if everything is perfect but just going forward from where you are right now. So I am celebrating my imperfections and actually it was very freeing not worrying about every little stitch. I had a plan for the binding but it didn't work out so now I think I will do it by hand with a blanket stitch and raised chain band. Of course I have plenty of time to do that, NOT.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Felting Retreat

 I've finally got a moment to show you the photos from my felting retreat. There were 7 of us all together including Chef Rhonda. Rhonda joined in on some of the projects we did. Jan showed us how to make key chains by wrapping and making beads from yarn. It was a fun project.
 Here's the start of my key chain. Jan brought all the yarn and the rings. All it takes is yarn, a key ring and a tapestry needle.
 Here's Paula (I think) wrapping her key chain in preparation for making a bead.

 Here's my finished key chain.
 And here's Paula's.
 Here we are after spreading out at the lodge. Everyone worked on their own projects but their was lots of sharing of supplies and equipment and felting ideas.
 Here's Rhonda sitting in the sun working on her key chain. Notice the brown shirt.
 This is one of Paula's projects. She wanted to add cords to a vessel. I already had the yellow cords made so she used those on her vessel.
 Here's Juliane working on her big pod. She hadn't ever felted anything this large before.
 Here's Louise resting after working hard at felting.
 Here's Jan working on her pod/vessel.

 Here we are taking a break for lunch.
 Here's Juliane's pod again after rolling for a while.
 Here's Jan's pod. She had a few holes and was a bit disappointed but I like it!
 Jan was also working on finishing up a needle felted figure she had started in a class two years ago. Now she only has to finish his clothing. His name is Bennie and he's going to be a monk!
 This is Paula's felted landscape.
 And Paula laying out another piece. Paula was the most prolific.
 Here's a felted bag that Louise made.
 Here's Paula's vessel finished. Looks like it belongs in the sea.
 Here's her textured piece.
 And this is what I did all weekend. Washed wool and then worked on carding wool.
 I also taught everyone to make felted beads.
 Here's Julianne's finished pod drying in the sun.
And remember Rhonda's brown shirt. She got bleach on it (no potable water at the lodge so you have to use bleach in the dish washing water). She had come out to show us she ruined her shirt. So I showed her how to discharge with bleach and now she had a cool shirt instead of just plain brown. We had a blast and there are plans in the works for next year.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Book Signings and a Give Away

If you haven't been over to The Felting and Fiber Studio blog lately, I'm hosting a give away for a free book. Just hop over there and leave a comment for a chance to win. You can live anywhere in the world, there are no restrictions for winning. Just click here to go to the give away post.

Also, if you're in the area of NW Montana, you are invited to a book signing at The Purple Pomegranate on August 18th from 3-5pm. The store is located at 222 Central Ave. in Whitefish. I'll be there signing books, showing felted items from the book and snarfing up free refreshments! There's a second book signing in Kalispell at Camas Creek Yarn on Main Street on August 24 from 3-5pm. I'd love for you to stop by and say hello!

Friday, August 10, 2012

Automatic Machine Stitching

I normally don't even look at the automatic machine stitches that are available on my sewing machine. But one of our assignments for class is to explore what the machine stitches can do.
 So I tried on stitch that looked interesting and varied the stitch width and length. This is a close up so you can see the way the stitch changes.
I also tried a little cable stitch as well. This photo shows the entire piece. Have you tried varying your automatic stitches?

In case you haven't noticed, I made a new page on the blog for my book, The Complete Photo Guide to Felting. If you'd like an autographed copy, you can order it directly from that page. I'm not sending them internationally because the postage is $17 and the book only cost $24.99. Didn't seem to make too much sense. If you're from anywhere outside the US or Canada, you can find it online at the regular book venues such as Amazon. I'd love to hear what you think about the book or if you'd do a review on Amazon, I'd really appreciate it.