In the same way that art journalers make stacks of colourful painted and mixed media papers to use in collage in their journals, I like to do the same for feltmaking when i get time. The random colours and patterns of the papers really make something special when they are torn and painted over and that works in feltmaking too when pieces are cut up, pulled apart and stitched over. I've made quite a few felt "collage papers" this week - fairly loose prefelts so they are quite soft and fluffy and delicate but will (hopefully!) look good when felted into new works.
The great thing about this is unless you have a specific final piece in mind you can just pick any colours and any fabrics and make anything you fancy. You don't have to worry about the outcome, in the same way as if you were doodling in a sketchbook, it's about the process, and making supplies and ideas to feed into more work. A couple of them do actually look quite landscapey in an abstract way just as they are (gotta love an accidental landscape!) and some are just colours for cutting up and felting in to give straight edges or layering of colours.
The photo above shows the laying out of the fibres in progress. I laid some out in a more traditional horizontal / vertical layers way, and some I laid out using "clouds" of fibres to give variation in thickness and also to leave holes and really thin bits. It still holds together OK because the fibres are all crisscrossed when pulled out into "clouds" of fibres.
I aim to use some of these if I ever get round to creating my interpretation of some of my coastal holiday photos. Watch this space!
I like to do anything fibre related and you might have previously seen my handspinning attempts. Well I went for another day of spinning with the lovely ladies of Sway on Sunday and one of the ladies had been given a llama fleece - it was lovely and soft and a beautiful grey colour. It did look like there was an actual llama sleeping in the corner until you got up close. I had a go at spinning a few handfuls of the unwashed unprepared fleece and it comes up lovely. I would like a scarf or jumper made from it. Unfortunately I only made a small sample of yarn but it is something I will look out for. I did spin some other bits n bobs including some shetland merino mix. I also knitted up a sample (in the scruffiest worst knitting ever!) of some multicoloured yarn I spun just trying out various things - it came up sort of thick and thin and had a few odd bits of this n that in it, like silk strands and cotton and there might even be some banana fibre in there!
I told my husband it was the first section of arm for a jumper I was knitting for him - he smiled politely enough but I could see he was worried! Luckily for him it's just a test piece - I thought I'd knit it, then block it then the next thing is to wash it to see what happens. I might then cut it up and felt it in to something else if it is not too felted in itself.
I tried to knit it straight from the skein but as it was too overspun for unplied yarn, it was like knitting with a long wriggly worm so I wrapped it around a piece of interfacing to stop it tangling up. It occurred to me that it looked like a huge woolly bead and then that got me thinking about more ideas! I should finish the little samples from my last post first though really.....