Sunday, February 27, 2011

Tote Bag Failure Becomes "Happy Cat" Bed

Wool roving pulled through cotton lace.

 


Bag layout.

 


"It's all mine, now! Mwahahahahaha"...Chloe.

 


Erykah gets a turn, too!

 


This was the first project that I attempted after my lovely week away...

...and boy, did it come out badly. :(

I was trying to integrate some of the new techniques/equipment that I used in Michigan...

...and in my hurry, I also made the layers of wool way too thick!

One other 'issue' is my continuing struggle with getting lace to felt in...

...a feat which my friend, Kim, claims is easy!! Kim, help!! Giggle.

I spent a good deal of time sewing tufts of roving through squares of silk- and cotton- lace...

...a technique that I thought would guarantee their felting in.

Unfortunately, even after felting, the squares kind of 'flap around in the wind'...

...and it's obvious that I haven't yet 'cracked the code' on working with lace!! :)

When I realized (early on) that this bag was doomed...

...I also knew exactly what to do with it.

I stitched up the slit that I made while removing the resist...

...and cut a large hole in the center of the 'felt balloon'.

It now makes a nice spot for my feline daughters to rest...

...and, since then, I've redeemed myself a little by making the bag I'd originally intended...with revisions! (Next time.)

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21 comments:

vilterietje said...

never tell anyone it's a failure, you just felted the most beautiful catbed:)
you can see your cat's are waiting for another "failure"so they don't have to sleep in turns.
Love, riet:)

Heather Woollove said...

Riet-"I calls 'em like I sees 'em".
Giggle.

Zdolność-tworzenia said...

Że też nie wpadłam na pomysł, żeby mojemu Miśkowi tak zrobić. Teraz już nie mam komu.
Wyszło rewelacyjnie.

Heather Woollove said...

Thanks, Zt--I love felt projects, because they can always be useful in some way, even if not in the way you originally intended!

Terrie said...

You thought it's a failure but we see it a nice and cozy home for the cats.

Nancy said...

We're always learning, aren't we.......I know your kiddies are so happy they got a new bed out of your learning experience.....Nothing is wasted when trying new things......Cant wait to see your next one.....

Kelly said...

I love how you rethink some of your original "designs"! I also have that drawer full of "what was I thinking?" creations! I bet you have some happy kitties now!

Heather Woollove said...

Terrie--Thanks for your sweetness!
Nancy--Yes...I think that's why I don't hesitate to show my really terrible projects on this blog...both to remind me what NOT to do, and maybe to spare someone else?!?! :)

Heather Woollove said...

Kelly--Thanks! It's funny, 'cause my drawer of leftover felt bits is nearly empty now. My BF's sister raises horses and just took a bunch to somehow use for horse bedding!?!?! You just never know!:)

WonderWhyGal said...

Your cat really seems to enjoy the new bed...it is very pretty. I am curious what you learn to get the lace to felt in too. Is it because it's made out of washable cotton? I always wonder about that.

narkeymarkey said...

ah well, it was always meant to be a cat bed you were making, rather than a bag, you just didn't realise it when you started out - far too lovely to be called a mistake!

just trying to catch up with my blog reading, my goodness, you have been busy - love your scarf, baby slippers and bags the best :)x

Patty Biermans said...

You're learningproces is good to read!;D I think that lots of people thank you for these lessons. You do great social work here! (gigdle) Hugzz...Peebee

Joei Rhode Island said...

Great Save!! But I agree, you need another so the girls don't have to take turns. HUmmmm I have a couple of faulty purses...I've have to check and see who has cats...LOL

Heather Woollove said...

Andrea--I used both silk and cotton lace in this project, but neither really worked. The only time I've had success is when I've stitched it to pre-felt before felting, like here: http://woollove-functional-fiberart.blogspot.com/2010/07/3-projects-in-one-progress-photos.html ...but I know there must be a better way...
Thanks, Tracy, Peebee (social work...giggle!) and Joei!!

Sandie Knapp said...

I would not call that a failure. And I think the "kitties" would agree with me. The seem perfectly delighted with it, and I'm sure that in their minds, you did that deliberately, just for them. :)

Heather Woollove said...

Sandie--Thanks for all of your kind comments! I think you're right...my cats think everything is about THEM!! "Enough about me, let's talk about me.":)

Ginny Huber said...

I love process blog posts, including ones that are a "learning exoerience" It was obvious that this was meant to be a cat bed..the kitties obviously think so! I usually do OK felting lace in..but I think I rub it a long time, but I am sure you do to..Hmm. I haven't used it for a while, though.

Ginny Huber said...

PS, assuming my other comment wnet through!-I absolutely love the Motherwell quote you use!!

Heather Woollove said...

Ginny--I'm sure you're right that 'more time in the rubbing phase' is the trick to using lace. I find it hard to be certain of end points when working 'inside-out' like this, but I will definitely keep this in mind for next time!! Thanks!
P.S. Yes...I think it's a wonderful quote for felt artists!:)

Jenn said...

I love the idea. I've just been learning to tat so your pictures caught my eye. What if you had someone tat the lace from finely spun wool? Just thinking (typing) out loud. :D

Heather Woollove said...

Jenn--I think that your tatted wool lace idea is genius!!
I know that some people felt in knitted or crocheted sections that have been made from wool yarn.
XXO-