It was lovely to spend the day with the Inspire Group members in the old rectory of St. Swithin’s church situated south of Solihull in the beautiful village of Barston, Warwickshire at the beginning of February. The day workshop was focused on sharing how to adapt shibori techniques to felt making. We began the day looking at the samples I brought along, illustrating a selection of felted surface reliefs and textures that can be achieved by using stitch, clamping and binding.
The mornings sample making started with the group members choosing to create either a Ripple effect or the Coral Wave peice. The Ripple is similar to smocking, as they are stitched and gathered. It was great to see these samples being made with varying stitch lengths and patterns worked into them before they were gathered. The Coral Wave samples, adapted from the Ori-Nui shibori of stitched and gathered pleats, looked wonderful on both sides.
Next the group members opted to try sampling either the Spikes (Kuno stitch, gathered and bound) or the Pebbles (Kanako, resist bound objects) effect.
Following a well earned lunch rest, in the afternoon we moved on to creating Cracked Mud samples. This involved working with a resist to build layers of wool and then cut back through the layers. This process creates textured edged shapes rising out from the base layer of felt, sometimes revealing contrasting colours beneath.
Finally , those still with some energy left, began to make a Nuno resist sample combining wool, cotton fabric and resist shapes to form a contrasting texture relief surface. it was a highly productive day and everyone came away with new ideas to develop from their samples.
The Inspire Group are celebrating their tenth anniversary this year with an exhibition to display some of the work members have created over the decade. Exhibition details to follow, it should be a good one to visit.
If you or your group would be intrested in participating in a Felt Manipulated Sampling Day or a different Felt making course, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 07753366795.
Cracked mud contrasting colours