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Friday, February 22, 2008

It's been that kind of day! I thought it might be helpful to understand the various thought processes and steps involved with creating a piece. I knew my tulip piece needed some more detail but when I'm working so intensely on a piece, sometimes it feels as though I've poured out all my creativity and I need to let it "simmer" for a while and go back to it later with a new perspective. I've added some faded blue "watercolor" flowers in the background and a butterfly in a monochromatic hand-dyed mottled silk which doesn't show up too well in the picture but adds just the right soft touch. I wanted to enhance the tulip which is the main focus and a butterfly with too much color would have caused distraction.

Don't laugh, but I just had to keep "at it" with the Iris -- I think I've finally captured a tiny bit of that gorgeous flower's essence -- not an easy task I've found. The top petals (needle felted/stitched) are added separately and stitched in place. I've also added a butterfly but the piece still needs "something" so I'll post when I finally finish it.
I've always had a penchant for cottages particularly thatched roof cottages. My dear wee friend, Margaret, that I've known since early childhood lived in Corby, England, for a time and when I visited I fell in love and have been obsessed with them ever since. One of the first projects on my Embellisher was a cottage pillow -- you may have seen it on the Baby Lock web site in the past. This cottage is quite large for me (12 x 14) and is needle/wet felted with some stitching details added.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Yesterday and today, we've had ice (never good) so I had a chance to work on this piece while waiting for the temperature to rise enough so I can drive to work -- it actually looks better in real life because you can really see the different textures that don't show up well here.

Monday, February 11, 2008

This past weekend was spent playing. Our daughter, Jenni, visited from SC just to play! For two whole days we felted; the first day we made wool scarves in a soft green with blue accents. Jenni added some mauve and fuchia to hers which created a watercolor effect - it is really gorgeous! My flowers are blue as I plan to add some special accents using my machine!
The next day, Saturday, began by dyeing silk a soft aqua to match some roving in my stash. We each created a nuno felted wrap that is very delicate with soft ruffles. It was worth all the hard work and is such a magical process. Thanks to my friend, Kathy, for teaching me how! No matter what I do, my approach is to begin with a tone-on-tone effect and then add accents. My scarf/wrap is calling me to add some very delicate needle-felted flowers (pansies?). I can see them in my mind's eye but I'm not sure how I'm going to accomplish this -- yet!

Here are two more in the flower series that were needle felted, stitched and then wet felted using a mix of wools, silks and some velvet. The most difficult by far was the Iris. I cut the center of the first piece out as I just didn't like it -- made the mistake of doing the focal point flower first and it just wasn't pretty (got to fix those mistakes) and decided to do a more dimensional piece. To accomplish this I felted a new center piece and felted the three pieces together! The tulips came next and for some reason I became obsessed with the leaves and the shading. Each time I do one of these, it makes me focus on really noticing details that will hopefully improve my skill level.