Saturday, March 31, 2007


The previous tutorial came about as I was busy working out a project for a small group at a local day centre, so I thought I would photograph the stages and put it up as a tutorial for Whipup. I have enjoyed reading tutorials on there in the past. I have been enjoying just stitching and choosing colours this week

I also had some fun with the Flickr toy site. I made the cube and played with some other ideas. Have a look but be careful it is really time consuming. It is my first craft fair since Christmas tomorrow, so I have been finding a few new things to try to tempt people with. I hope it will not be a too depressing day!

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Painted papers.

Painting various types of papers is great fun in itself, it also helps with design ideas and the end results can be used in a number of ways. I often use them to cover sketch or scrapbooks. You can also make some lovely paper beads. Here I have used both recycled brown paper from carrier bags and a roll of brown wrapping paper. I think the recycled paper gives the best results as it tends to be stronger, and will stand more scrunching; this is an essential stage, and gets out some feelings, but if you get too worked up you may find your paper in tatters!

Firstly scrunch up the paper and paint the top of the crinkles. I have used “Brusho”, which is a form of water colour powder. You may use inks, watercolours, just try out the paints you have.
You need to let the paper dry between coats, or hurry it up with a hairdryer or hot air gun. Next repeat the first step with a second colour.You can add some marks with your paint at this point.
Colour in the rest of the paper. For this you do need to have a transparent wash which will not hide the first marks.
Iron the back of your paper; remember you are ironing in the crinkles which help to make the texture.

If you have Markal Paint Sticks they are really useful at this stage; if not use wax crayons. You can gently rub over the crinkles with the paint stick or rub it onto a bit of scrap paper and brush off onto your brown paper with an old toothbrush. Lightly touch the top of the folds with gold acrylic.
Give the paper another iron, I used the cotton setting.
Now you use what I think is a wonderful product Acrylic Wax, if you don’t have that I would use PVA glue. The wax is nice because it gives a soft texture to the paper which begins to feel and look like leather. Now you are ready to use the paper to cover a book or just admire your handywork.


Sunday, March 18, 2007

Felt course

It was the last session at the felt making course on Saturday. You can see from the picture that we had a really productive and good humoured day

It is hard work rubbing the felt by hand to get it to take shape, but really satisfying. I have learned how to card wool now to blend colours. A really confusing process, which looks so simple when somebody else does it. I think it is well worth the trouble. I also learned how to dye wool using acid dyes. A really exciting course and I will miss it next Saturday, especially as I have now worked out the buses to Waterloo.

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Felt course

I would highly recommend the felt making course at The Mary Ward Centre for anyone living near to London. As you can see we learnt a 3d felting method, and also were give information on different types of wool. There was time to make a few samples from wools such as Blue Faced Leicester, and to try out Camel Fleece.

Next Saturday we are going to learn how to make flaps and pockets which should be fun, I have to say that it was hard work as well.

This little construction was felted in three layers around a sort of 'flint' that you find on the beach in England. It was hard waiting for it to dry so that I could cut it open.

Friday, March 02, 2007

Workshop on the Web

Not much time to post this weekend as I go up to London tomorrow to start the felt course. I have packed silks and lace to include in the felt as instructed and bought myself a new notebook.
I have been excited now it’s finally March as I have written an ‘article’ for Workshop On the Web. If you are signed up you can read it in this months issue, or if not I can recommend having a look at the site where there is a free back issue to see what it is all about. There are a number of workshops and lots of information about new products, books etc... Have a look in my links.

I have been making some printing blocks this week. I used the cord from the blind I bought for rolling my felt. I liked the shapes etc. just in their own right.
I should also mention Downunderdale from Thread Studio in Australia who has become my most appreciated first customer on Etsy.
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