Monday, October 31, 2011

Raw Fleece Rug Redux- Part 2 of 2

Rolling the project in a rubber 'non-slip' rug mat.

The cotton gauze backing is starting to ruche...and that means we're finally getting somewhere!

A close up of the finished rug...

...with light and dark areas...

...and shorter and 'more boingy' bits...

...for lots of texture on your toesies! :)

The finished rug, drying on a large plastic bucket...

...a rug this large and heavy takes days to dry!

The finished rug.

I like to use black roving in these projects, because when it migrates to the front... really highlights the crevices between the fleece tufts.

You can see that some of the locks are a glorious gold color with a long staple length...

...and others are more 'moss-like' in appearance after felting.

When visitors see this rug for the first time...

...they almost always pull off their shoes and socks for a little 'feel'! :)

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Saturday, October 29, 2011

Raw Fleece Rug Redux- Part 1 of 2

Laying out raw locks.

Note the differences in fleece quality and color...
...this was a 'mixed bag' of fleece from several different breeds.

Covering it with a layer of black wool roving...

...until the fleece disappears from view.

Covering the whole shebang with a layer of cotton gauze.

Using an electric sander atop a bamboo blind...

...for extra vibration!

My daughter, L, taking a turn with the sander.

Time to start rolling!

Just days before my daughter, L, left for graduate school in August...

...she helped me to make a 'fleece-in-the-grease' rug for myself!

You may remember that we made one for her earlier this year, here...

...when we knew that she was heading to Minnesota...and her first really cold winter!!

We used the same mixed bag of fleece that I had gotten from an area farmer...

...and exactly the same technique.

It was a little bittersweet, though, working on this project...

...since I knew that she would be so far away for so long this time. :(

The good news is that I have this lovely rug in 'pride of place' in my living room...

...and the wonderful memories of another long and hard, but mostly fun day spent working together!!

Next time: the finished rug.

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Thursday, October 27, 2011

Bag With 'Resist-Dyed' Accent- Part 2 of 2

Sewing the floral pocket lining to the inner bag flap.

The finished inside pocket.

Sewing on the resist-dyed accent piece.

The finished bag from the back...

...and in close-up (I think you can really see the purple/blue color blend here).

The bag front with tagua nut button...

...and up close.

When I returned home from the Creative Felt Gathering this year...

...with several lovely but modestly-sized resist-dyed felt pieces...

...I wasn't sure what I wanted to do with them!

Certainly, they would be delightful as framed art pieces...

...and some might even be large enough to use in fashioning a zippered change purse or two.

So far, however, this is the only one that I've used...

...because it seemed clear to me that this bag (in these colors)...

...was just meant for this particular piece of patterned felt! :)

I machine stitched it to the flap of the bag...

...sewing very close to the edges of the resist-dyed piece...

...and placing it in such a way as to allow for a centered button closure.

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Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Bag With 'Resist-Dyed' Accent- Part 1 of 2

Blue wool roving layer.


                                             Adding light- and dark-purple layers.

                                             Next, a pale lavender layer with blue tussah silk accents.

                                            Stuffing the handle with a core of wool roving to round it out.

                                           The finished bag front (as yet unadorned)...

                                                        ...with the flap 'up'...

                                                          ...and from the back.


This messenger bag is one that I made for a swap recently...

                           ...and I used layers of different colored roving to build depth in the finished felt.

I wanted the strap to be quite round and firm this time... I stuffed the cut out handle with a 'filling' of wool roving.

Next time: the resist-dyed addition... another tagua nut button!

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Sunday, October 23, 2011

Chad Alice Hagen's Bark Scarf

Dyes and table preparation.


Some of Chad's sample scarves in different colourways.


'Our' dyepot. :)


Stitching the 'once dyed' scarf.


Pulling the strings tight.


After overdyeing and removing the strings...


...the finished scarf...


...both visually and texturally bark-like!


At the Creative Felt Gathering this year...

...I was lucky enough to take two dyeing classes with the amazing Chad Alice Hagen.

In this class, we made one of her famous bark scarves...

...using Japanese shaped resist dyeing techniques (Shibori).

Our group used chestnut dye for our first 'dip'...

...a notorious 'splitter' which, interestingly, turned into many colors after dyeing.

Then, after an afternoon of quite daunting hand-stitching...

...we were ready for the second dye pot.

As you can see...

...I used a lovely red for my second 'dip'.

The fun thing about this scarf is that it both looks and feels like bark when you're through...

...making it a special addition to any fall or winter wardrobe!

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Friday, October 21, 2011

Banana Bread Recipe..Plus Bag Winner

Banana bread...


...a fall treat that's easy and satisfying.


Well, the winner of my 2 Year Bag-i-versary bag is Riet...

(Riet...please send your mailing address to me at heather(dot)woollove(at)

...and for the rest of you, here's a sweet recipe to try!


1/2 c butter
1 c sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
3 very ripe bananas
2 eggs
1 &  1/4 c flour
1/2 c chopped pecans or walnuts

Cream butter and sugar.
Add remaining ingredients and mix until smooth.
Spread into greased 10 X 13-inch pan.
Bake at 350 degrees F for 20 to 25 minutes.

Note:I buy extra bananas and let them get overly ripe, then pop them into the freezer for later use.
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Wednesday, October 19, 2011

2 Year Bag-i-versary- Part 3 of 3

The felted silk squares...


...and after stitching.


Inner pleats sewn into the body of the bag.


The bag exterior with handles and leather button loops.


The back of the bag.


The bag front with Moroccan buttons.


The completed bag. Finally! :)


As you can see...

...this bag underwent extensive 'surgery' to become its final 'self'! :)

I narrowed the bag flap...

...and sewed panels into it as well.

I stitched seams in the bottom of the bag to make it more roomy...

...and pleats along the opening for shaping.

I removed the wonky handle and cut it in half...

...then doubled it and sewed it together again, lengthwise...

...attaching it to the bag back for a more 'pocketbook' kind of look.

I cut strips of brown leather...

...and attached them to the asymmetrical flap points for button loops...

...then sewed on buttons that my daughter brought me from one of her trips to Morocco.

Remember that if you haven't yet commented on any of the three
'2 Year Bag-i-versary' posts... is the time!

I will be closing the drawing at Midnight tonight (October 19th) E.S.T...

...and posting the name of the winner on Friday.

Good luck!

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