Felted Wool Birds Home Decor Valentine Gifts Eco Friendly Height 4″

Felted wool birds are the latest items in my repertoire. I am having lots of fun making them, I use Merino wool roving in a variety of different colours. Sometimes I add silk threads or maybe a little tussah which is a fine silk mixed with wool, it adds a lovely sheen to the item.

I also use some of my knitted UFO’s you know the ones …unfinished objects ! I felt them, then create a small wool bird from the felted fabric. I stuff some of them with polyester fibre fill and others I stuff with pure wool. Many of the wool coats and sweaters that I have purchased from the thrift stores make great birds, I even dye the fabric to make it more interesting.

What I love most about them is that no matter what I use to create them they all have their own character, sort of like our children. But I am not selling my children to-day ! Just wool felted birds. I do hope you will take a look at by bird family on etsy. More will be along soon.

Wishing you happy creating with love, remember Valentines Day is just around the corner and a little bird friendly company maybe the perfect gift.

Thank you

woolbrain

A New Year

Well here we are again another year. I feel as if time flies the older I get! I distinctly remember as a youngin’ that the days where long and I couldn’t wait to be a grown up and now it all flies by in a rush or is that just me? Anyway whatever the time frame I plan to crack on with my new years plans, not resolutions but plans! and always subject to change.

My hope for this year is to perfect my spinning skills, this will involve lessons and the hope of purchasing my own spinning wheel. My intention is to take some lessons and hopefully test run a few different types of wheels and go from there.
I would also like to dye some wool and fabric this year using environmentally safe products. All this of course combined with working, keeping up with household chores, enjoying time with friends and family and staying creative!

I have been working on a small felting project that I started back in the summer! As you may know I do most of my felting outdoors so the summer months are my busiest. I wet felted a large piece onto a grey mesh fabric and added some silk threads and tussah pieces. I really liked the colour combinations but not the overall shape of the design. So I took my scissors and cut it up into smaller bits and stitched them together to create a new piece. I worked some small hand stitched designs onto the project and now I am almost finished. I need to find a way to make some “cool” closures and a collar. Here is a sneak peek at the project.
The reveal will be soon!

Wet felting using mesh fabric base.

I wish you all a very happy and creative year whatever your endeavours.

Thank You

Thank you to all of you that came out to the craft fair last w/e even in the pouring rain. There were lots of booths and over 2,100 people came through the doors. I had a good day and with the help of my daughter I was even able to get around and see some of the other wonderful crafters.
Now it is on with the family and friends Christmas gifts I always like to make as many as I can. I really need to get on and bake my Christmas cake as well. Does anyone have a really good wheat free Christmas cake recipe? if so please drop me a line.
Thanks again and have a happy holiday time with friends and family.

Upcoming Craft Fair

My goodness what a lot of time has passed since my last (confession…) oops! blog post. I have an excuse, really I do …I have a new job and I am making regular money … so I don’t have as much time to felt, knit or blog. But I would like to share with you my upcoming craft fair date.

http://dunbarcentre.ca/special_events/craftfair.htm

I have lots of new items this year as well as some favourites. I look forward to seeing you there and hope you have a lovely day browsing and buying handmade. You will find the most amazing array of crafty wonders with over 140 vendors and all in time for your Christmas shopping. Please come an introduce yourself at the Woolbrain booth.

November 26th Saturday 10am -5pm Dunbar Community Centre, Vancouver, British Columbia. Canada

Gluten Free Bread Machine Recipe

Here is a great recipe for gluten free rice bread to make in your bread machine. Now not all bread machines are the same so I can only speak for the one that I use: Black and Decker All-In-One Horizontal Bread Maker

1 cup of buttermilk (I often use soymilk or Almond Milk and add a tbsp lemon juice.
1/4 cup of butter or oil
1 tsp rice vinegar
1 1/2 tsp salt
2 cups of rice flour ( I change this up every now and again and use one cup of quinoa or cornmeal plus the one cup of rice flour, for a different texture and flavour)
1/3 cup potato starch flour
1/3 cup tapioca flour
1/4 tsp of sugar ( I use brown)
3 1/2 tsp xanthan gum
3 eggs
1 1/2 tbsp bread machine dry yeast

Mix buttermilk,rice,vinegar,butter and salt in the bread pan. Mix all the dry ingredients except the yeast in a bowl and whisk well. In a separate bowl beat the eggs lightly.
Place half the dry ingredients in the bread pan. Add the egg mixture. Add the rest of the dry ingredients; sprinkle the yeast on top. Select Light Crust setting and press Start.

Watch the dough in the kneading cycle and add more flour if needed using a rubber spatula to assist.
I have found that if I change to flour mix sometimes I need to add a little more flour to the kneading cycle.

1/4 cup of strong cheese grated adds good flavour. I like to add a teaspoon of dried mustard with this combination.

I hope you will enjoy the pleasure of making your own gluten free bread. This loaf freezes well if you slice it first.

Happy baking 🙂

Wet Felting

I have been very busy wet felting the weather has been unseasonable warm and so I have been taking the perfect opportunity to wet felt outside. This really saves on clean up time! My latest work has been inspired once again by my natural surroundings, mostly our garden but also the gorgeous coastal areas of the wonderful Westcoast of North America, where I feel very fortunate to live.

I have been using different wools, this time I have been working with polwarth this is a mix of two well known breeds, Merino and Lincoln making for a very versatile and soft wool.

Other things in my life schedule have changed and I will not have has much time to felt and knit has I have had in this past year. So I am rushing on to fit in as much outdoor work as possible. I must make felt while the sun shines ! I hope you are having fun being creative.

From Felt To Friendship: A Great Little Book

I have been meaning to write about this wonderful book for weeks now but somehow time seems to get away on me perhaps it is the beautiful summer weather that has me lulled into a stupor!

The book is by Chrissie Day and Nicola Brown both very creative felting artists. There is lots to chose from here from basic flat felting to more detailed works including nuno felt, clothing, vessels and bags to name a few. The instructions are easy to follow and there are lovely photos showing the steps along the way plus many helpful hints and ideas. Each of these talented artists gives a little insight into their felting experiences and their inspiration with lovely photos of their home area. Both Chrissie and Nicola have on-line sites; Feltingfibres and Clasheen respectively.

I have wanted to wet felt for sometime now and have played around with different types of wool. As some of you may know I have even washed and picked some of my own fleece, which by the way I am having professionally carded as I write! I am very excited about having beautifully carded batts of Romney and Merino.

I have been busy making flat felt pieces plus a few vessels and now I have more ideas for felted jewellery. I love this book and the fact that it is a delightful size and fits easily in my bag for shopping and doesn’t take up lots of space on the felting table. All in all I think this is one of the nicest felting books on the market especially if you are just starting out on the grand adventure of wet felting.

Wheat And Gluten Free Recipe For Sponge Cake

I love this recipe and for the life of me I cannot tell you the name of the book from whence it came 😦 my sincere apologies.

3/4 cup sugar ( I use brown sugar)
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp glycerin
1 1/4 cups of flour mix * see below for flour mix combo
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp xanthan gum
1/2 cup of oil plus whatever you use to coat your cake pans!
1/2 cup of milk ( I use rice milk)

* flour mix
Make this up and store in an air tight container.
5 1/2 cups of rice flour ( I use brown rice flour)
1 cup of potato flour NOT STARCH
1 cup of tapioca flour

*This mix works well for any cakes or muffins

Mix sugar, eggs,vanilla,and glycerine into a bowl and beat with electric hand mixer at high speed for approx four minutes. meanwhile combine flour,baking powder and gum sift a couple of times. Once the egg mixture is nice and thick add the flour and oil and milk blend slowly and DO NOT OVER BEAT just enough to blend it all together. Divide mixture between two oiled pans (I use a round 8 inch pan)
Bake @ 350 F 20-25 minutes or until done. This cake works well with fresh fruit and cream. Always better eaten the same day…lucky you if you have leftovers for another day !
Share with friends and family and a good cup of tea.

Enjoy the recipe and your cake.
Happy summer to you and yours, hope it is a good one.

Wheat and Gluten Free Victoria Sponge Cake

Yes, this really is the best sponge cake I have made that is wheat and gluten free. I filled it with homemade strawberry jam and Devonshire cream ( clotted cream !) decadent I know …but so worth it.
I will post the recipe this week.

Sewing A Skirt

Here I am making another attempt at the Alabama Stitch project skirt. I have made one in plain oatmeal coloured jersey…but the waistline was a little big, I know that is a good thing !!! but to unpick all that hand stitching and re-do each seam, six in total seemed (pardon the pun!) daunting.

I had another skirt cut and ready to sew, this time I thought I would do the leaves stencil from the aforementioned book. No problem, I used my sewing machine to baste each seam plus the waistline to prevent bagging or stretching while working on the appliqué stencil work. Each panel was laid out to start the stencil, I then realized I had stitched each panel (gore) to the backing fabric. So I decided to draw around the leaf stencil with a Sharpie pen.

At some point along the way I made a decision to appliqué all the leaves. I started out with the creamy coloured fabric on the grey, but I wasn’t sure I really liked it. So I had some cream fabric that I had done some practice stencils on and so I cut out the shapes from this and placed them on the drawn leaves to see if that made it better or worse. I liked it and so began the process you see now.

My creamy fabric has been painted on with a mix of green and cream fabric paint and I used real ferns from the garden to get some leafy designs. I just painted onto the backside of the fern with a sponge and then lay it onto the cream fabric and pressed down gently. Pull off the fern and you have a very delicate imprint of the ferns leaves. Remember to heat set your painted fabric BEFORE cutting out you pieces. I cut my appliqué leaves out of this fabric, some have more defined leaf designs than others, I just went with what I liked the look of at the time!

As usual I cannot follow the basic design….my mind goes off at a tangent…I believe that is called being creative !!!

If you like let me know what you are working on that gives you pleasure, happy summer sewing to you 🙂

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FeltUnited

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dyefeltsool

documenting the process

tremblinginsidethecocoon

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The Procrastinator Dyer's Diary

A Journal of Observations

rosiepink

Adventures with Felting, Dyeing, Knitting and other stuff

The Creative's Tribulations

From the perspective of a frustrated creative.

Adventures with Felting, Dyeing, Knitting and other stuff

lil fish studios

Adventures with Felting, Dyeing, Knitting and other stuff

Attic24

Adventures with Felting, Dyeing, Knitting and other stuff

FeltUnited

Uniting the world wide felt community

feltingandfiberstudio

An international collective of felt and fiber artists

dyefeltsool

documenting the process

tremblinginsidethecocoon

Just another WordPress.com site