Sooooo, what did you do over the long holiday weekend?? Yippie....I had so much fun.....
In part, I need to thank my friend Nancy Bruce, an original Fiber Junkie member. Nancy introduced me to the thrills of felting from wool roving..... She's a confident and experienced felter whose work I admire greatly.
Well...that led me to this current project. I saw some faux felted river rocks in a gallery and was totally drawn to them, except for the price tag. I couldn't quite get them out of my head.....so I figured...how hard could it be to try to make some myself?
As it turns out.....not so difficult, but a tad time consuming.....I'm still experimenting but here's the process I've adapted so far.
Some internet searching led me to several different directions....one of which was to use an actual river rock as the base....or filler if you will. OR....using yarn. I decided to try two approaches, one was some wool batting and the other was scraps of thickly felted and hand dyed felt I'd previously created.
The equipment is simple.....a bowl of hot (or as hot as you can stand it) soapy water & lots of towels to soak up the spills.
began by wrapping some felt scraps into a small ball (ignore the batting in this photo.....it was just there for a higher contrast.)
I'd prepared some roving by arranging wisps of it vertically and horizontally, using different colors.
The 'filler' was centered on the roving, which was wrapped over the 'filler'.
Holding the mass tightly, it was dipped into the water.....pinching, squeezing, massaging the fibers until it began to stick together. (meaning the invisible barbs on the wool fibers get hopelessly tangled and become one)
This process takes TIME..... The biggest issue I continue having is how to achieve a tiny 'vein' in the rock. When added with all the fibers it disappears, adding afterwards I find it often won't adhere properly.
This one is better. Notice that a bit of the green filler is peaking out.....I needed to have more roving around that area. I'm learning little tricks as I go. I'll provide some hints in my next post.