Thursday, September 10, 2009

Fashioning Felt at the Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum

The Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum in New York just finished an exquisite exhibit "Fashioning Felt' and you can view some of the work here.  Spend a little time on the site and you will see how traditional felting has been done in the fields of Mongolia as well as the creation of a stunning Palace Yurt by Janice Arnold.  Felt has a huge range of applications, fashion, industrial, architectural it's just fantastic. I so wanted to see this exhibit but it wasn't to be. BUT, Martha Stewart did a segment on the exhibit which you can see here.  The felting process is explained as well as the production process for the Palace Yurt. Also, the exhibition catalog is available from and looks like it's on sale now. Enjoy! 
Central Library, Amsterdam, the Netherlands, 2007. Architect: Jo-Coenen & Co. Architecten. Felt walls designed and made by Claudy Jongstra. Wool, silk.
Photo: Peter Cuypers

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Pumpkin Racer

This blanket is currently my favorite.  I made it a year ago and have been unable to part with it.  One doesn't often find 4 sweaters the exact same color already shrunk so I bought them - I wasn't even that keen on the color. They were all merino wool which has such a beautiful hand after felting and is so soft against your skin.
 I had done something earlier in the year using red, black, grey and ivory and used a similar design for this one.  It took forever though before I could start sewing as the sweaters had shrunk to be so small that I had to really think through how to cut them and not waste anything.  What you can't see in the pictures is that the pumpkin sections aren't one big piece but three or four pieces sewn together.  However, it's very symmetrical. Sometimes I cut pieces up then resewed them together just so it would have matching seams in the pattern. Click on the picture and you'll see how many seams are really in the pumpkin section. The blue accents came from a great sweater a friend of mine gave me - loved the color but I only had one sweater and it was very tiny so it could only be used for accents.  I've saved every bit of scrap because the color is so beautiful.  That's one of the challenges - you have to work with what is available.  If you like doing jigsaw puzzles this might appeal to you also.