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Sunday, March 01, 2015

Live On-Line Video Workshop - Something New for Me

https://www.craftcast.com/classes/fanciful-felted-cuffs-learn-machine-needle-felt-free-motion-stitch-and-wet-felt-margo-duke

It's official - I'll be teaching my Fanciful Felted Cuffs in a live on-line video workshop on May 27 with Alison Lee.  I've listened to Alison's podcasts for years - she interview artists and has such a clever way about her; I love the format she uses and the interesting artists she finds; check her out on i-tunes to hear them - especially if you are a polymer or metalsmith artist.

Never in a million years, did I think that I would be working with her on CRAFTCAST - such an exciting show, so when she contacted me to teach a workshop, I jumped at the chance!    Both machine-needle and wet felting techniques will be covered along with ideas for free motion stitching that will enable students to achieve the most texture and they will be able to incorporate their new skills.   This is a great way to learn the "how to's" in a small scale - they can be as plain or as fancy as you like and hand stitching and/or beads can be incorporated as well.
 
 
 

 
 
 into their other work as well.  Needless to say I'm excited!

Friday, February 27, 2015

Update! Date Change for Fantasy Beach Felt 101 - Bring your own Sip!

The date for this workshop had to be changed to March 21 due to a conflict at ArtWorks.  Same program and be sure to bring your own sip of wine (since it is not my address and I don't a  license to serve) and I'll be sure to bring mine; it can only add to the fun!

Thursday, February 26, 2015

'Snowy Dreams' I LOVE Making Fancy Nuno Fabric

For the past week, in between physical therapy appointments, I've been doing what I love most - creating very textured nuno fabric, tone-on-tone.  I began with naming them 50 shades of white but the more I thought about it, decided that helping "50 shades" get more notoriety didn't work for me.

I always name my fabrics because creating them is much like my creativity giving birth - so the new name bestowed on these two large nuno pieces is "snowy dreams" in honor of all those affected by the more than usual cold and snow they have been subjected to - all of the lovely textured swirls are exactly what they reminds me of.  I am going to cut these pieces up and stitch a garment, but I will have to take a little time and  think about what would justify the cutting of these gorgeous floaty nuno pieces.  Not to worry, I plan to use every last morsel for something.  At the moment, they call out "wedding" to me.  So on to another project while I ponder.  I've been invited to do a fashion show for a ladies club in April, and am a bit behind because of my accident - but that is all behind me now so I must forge ahead.
 
 


Fantasy Beach Felt - Introduction to Felt

I've been searching for a teaching venue in our hometown of Beaufort; I really want to partner with a B&B and plan some retreats but it takes time to find just the right network. 

Anyway, I will be teaching" Fantasty Beach Felt" at ArtWorks in Beaufort on March 28, from 4 - 7 p.m.    I had grand hopes of  naming it  "Sip of Wine and a Taste of Felt" but OH the complications to be able to serve wine - so that will not work for this time but I WILL work on finding a suitable venue where this will work now that I'm finished with physical therapy.

The purpose of this workshop is to introduce students to felting techniques and to create a small picture from a simple photograph using minimal supplies - of course, this is a teaser because once they find out how fun it is to create something wonderful with simply wool and silk fiber, a little soap and water, they will be (hopefully) be back for more.  I've added a few shell beads and attached it to an interested small branch to make it easy to display.


Saturday, February 14, 2015

Beach Felt Scene

Hunting Island Beach in Beaufort, SC, is 20 minutes from where we live and is truly a natural wonder. It is a state park and is the best kept secret around - no commercialism at all.  A pristine and lovely treasure.  I wanted to capture the essence of it so I used a photograph (I'm going to try to find the name of the photographer to give them credit because it really is lovely).  Anyway, here is my first attempt - I gave it as a gift to some friends who were visiting as a keepsake - hope you get the idea!  It is machine-needle and wet felted.

Gossamer Green



This is a gossamer seafoam green silk scarf - working with color is one of my strong points (unlike my bad habit of taking waaaay to long to get projects done).  Working with color is something that I love; I enjoy using unusual combinations at times and I had my pallet all figured out  (I thought) but it just goes to show you that sometimes things just do not pan out the way you see it in your head.  I had selected peach for the flower petals but by the time I had laid out the first half, it was looking just too washed out.  Not that I dislike pastels; but the value of the green turned out to be just a little to vibrant for the soft peach to enhance it; I then used the deeper peach for the second half - these were naturally dyed colors so I don't know if that had anything to do with it or not.  By the time I had the whole thing laid out, I just left it on the table for a couple of days walking by from time to time to wait for it to "speak" to me.  It definitely didn't please my eye, so I decided to add more green vines/leaves and some blue that is a little more vibrant to give it some oomph.  It is very much like putting a quilt together, you must have light and dark to give it interest and sometimes, just a touch will do it.  I liked the scarf much better once it was felted with the added blue and then I added a few French knots with a variegated silk thread that shades from bright peach to golden peach around the centers which turned out to be just the right touch.

Lost in the Process



I have been slowly getting back to doing what I love best, I can just get lost in the process.  I'm so understanding of my students when they take a while to do the layout of a project because I can so relate, I love it so (although I do have to push myself along as well as those in class or we would never finish!  This is a luxurious alpaca/silk prefelt that I had in my stash for ages - to begin trying to get back to normal, I had to consider standing time as my back still gets tired and helped.  The prefelt was deep grey with a fine layer of black merino on top.  Some of the fabrics I used were interesting bits and pieces that I had dyed with pomegranate wrapped inside and iron water.  The fascinating thing is that two of the pieces were cheesecloth and two others silk; now that they are felted in, I truly cannot tell the difference in quality.  Other materials used were silk velvet burnout, silk hankies and silk carrier rods.  It is very, very soft and warm.