Saturday, 31 January 2015

Exciting News and a Giveaway

We've been working on a new venture for The Felting and Fiber Studio ... Workshops and Classes!  The first class we're offering is "Wet Felting Workshop for Beginners". The first one starts on Sunday 1st March 2015. It's a 3 week course developed to give absolute beginners a good foundation on which to develop their wet felting skills. Not only are there the expected 'How to Felt' instructions, but there are also simple exercises designed to show what happens when wool felts under different conditions so you can control the outcome. There is also lots of info on using different types of wool and animal fibres, tips for inexpensive tools, alternate techniques etc. For more info on the course, have a look here:

We have lots of ideas in the pipeline and some classes are in development, keep an eye out on our Classes page for further info. We are also hoping other fibre artists will 'hire' the Studio site and the Class support forum as an online venue to teach their own classes from. We haven't figured out the details for this yet, it's still early days, but it won't be expensive, we just want to cover hosting costs and media storage expenses; our aim has always been to support the community,  not make our fortunes :) Feel free to contact us if you're interested.

So, to celebrate the launch of the Workshop, we're giving away 4 free class places. The giveaway is for the 3 week course, you just need the supplies and felting equipment listed on the information page. All you have to do to win is leave a comment in reply to the Giveaway post on The Felting and Fiber Studio site. We would really appreciate it if you would blog about it or share the info on Facebook or other social media. We'll announce the winners on February 6th and contact you with the details. If you'd like to sign up for the course, please use the Contact Form at the bottom of the Class Info page. Good Luck!

Friday, 23 January 2015

Silk Nuno Sample

I bought some silk fabric from a seller on ebay quite a while ago. It was listed as Silk Organza and it felt 'stiff' like some of the thicker synthetic organzas can, but was even stiffer. It kind of 'bent' rather than folded! I mentioned it on the Felting and Fiber forum and after suggestions decided the best thing to do was wash it and see how it turned out. I don't have any photos of it as it comes, I remember trying, but it was acting like patterned shirts do on the telly. This is how it looked after a wash:

It started to crumple up and look like foil, and didn't want to uncrumple. In some places it started to fall to bits:

I googled, and came up with a couple of sites talking about vintage fabrics, and especially how delicate silk taffeta is with its metallic threads and something about how taffeta is prone to disintegration because of the metal salts used to give an opalescent sheen. So, I'm fairly certain it is taffeta and not organza. I did a sample using a piece before washing, at the top, and a piece I'd washed, at the bottom:

The unwashed piece kept its shape better than I thought. Actually, so did the washed piece, I wouldn't have been surprised if it just fell to bits. I did a similar sized sample with just one piece unwashed.

The taffeta still feels stiff after felting, but it does look nice. Angled:

You can really see the sheen and texture on this close up:

A few weeks ago, I made some more drum carded blended batts. I used 18.5 mic primary yellow Merino blended with hand dyed Milk, Silk and Soy fibres; and 18.5 mic Merino blended with black bamboo and hand dyed Milk, Silk and Soy fibres; then I blended them together.

A few people pointed out they fit in well with the Felting and Fiber Studio first quarter colour challenge, making a shade. I'm hoping I get chance to felt a little sample of them soon, I'm curious how the fibres will show through.

Thursday, 15 January 2015


Just before the end of last year, I made a few scarves that I didn't get chance to post about. The first one was a present for my sister's birthday. I took the inspiration for the colours from a previous scarf I made, which was blue and purple. I blended up equal amounts of blue, purple and green 18.5 mic Merino on my drum carder. I can't remember now how many times I put the batts through, I think it was only once because I wanted random variegation. This is the back of the scarf:

I added some silk top to the front:

And I just like the way this photo looks :)

I used what was left of the batts and added some more blue, purple and green, with a lot more green so I could make a scarf for my dad. You might remember the batt. I used some to make a nuno sample (which is now my nuno collar which I wear when I go out, though it looks more like a foppish cravat). When I weighed it, there wasn't enough for a scarf, so I had to blend up some more Merino. Even though I only needed about 10grams to be on the safe side, I had to recreate the stages of the other one to get a similar blend. I think it's my favourite one so far:

Here's a close up:

One thing I noticed while carding the batts, was that the more the wool/batts were carded, or re-carded, the more I got soft little nepps appearing. I did pick a few out, but it wasn't easy so I left them, hoping they wouldn't be a problem since they were so soft. It might be my imagination because I certainly can't feel them, but there definitely seems to be more texture on this scarf. I think the light here caught it just right:

I liked the way this photos looks too, I'd just casually dropped the scarf on the table nd it folded like this:

Thursday, 1 January 2015

EU VAT Rule Change

Just a quick note to EU customers: I won't be adding VAT to any of my e-books, so please just follow the standard payment/download process. If your PayPal details indicate that you reside in an EU country, I will email an additional PDF to you to comply with VAT exemption rules.
If you have any questions, feel free to ask :)