Saturday, March 26, 2011

Handfelted Jewellery Workshop with Carol Cyper

APRIL  2 & 3 (Sat & Sun) 2011
All skill levels                                                           
Ccost $180 members/$200 non members

From her 2002 VISIT  which was so much fun.
We immersed ourselves in a magical weekend of felt making.  Flowers as big as pizzas, and the skewer method, not to mention suchi rolls.  This sounds more like a foodie weekend than felting.

Carol created a room full of fellow felt magicians, and introduced us to many traditional, as well as alternative ways of creating sculptural shapes and profiles.
Many dimensional and beautiful flowers were created using a plastic bag as a resist. This resist allowed us to create a flower with a calyx separated from the petals and incorporating the ‘Skewer Method’ to create colourful layers within the petals.  Very soon our outside drying table resembled a creative flower garden and captured the likeness of the real thing in wool. Some very busy souls added stamens and stems, which were further embellished with the option of beading.

We moved on to discover felts sculptural capability within the making of a lariat.
Starting with the ‘felt a rope’ method, we rolled, and bashed and shocked our wool into a carved sculpted necklace.  To our horror, Carol showed us a use for that razor blade. By making shallow slashes, so that a V-piece of wool could be removed, this revealed the layers of colour within.  This method we also applied to making a sculptural carved beaded bangle.

Our felt obsession was led further into an encounter with Swirled Felt Beads.  This is the best explanation of what I called suchi earlier on. Layers of wool are rolled up using the ‘Skewer Method’, then felted, and finally sliced diagonally or straight to produce swirled-felt beads.  Carol is no shrinking violet when it comes to colour as we found out. The more Brights, the better.

The effect of glass beads on felt is very pleasing, and we were introduced to bead it and enhance it. Carol shared her small collection of beads between us all, resembling sharing the bread and fish from the bible. She sang the praises of Magatama beads and Power Pro thread, and demonstrated a South African, Xhosa, beadwork technique that creates a double series of intertwined swags along an edge.  We happily beaded our way around our flowers with a picot edge, reflecting the definition of glass beads against the warm and fuzzy light absorbing felt. 

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