Friday, February 22, 2008

Nuno, Nuno

The Weaver's Guild of Buffalo offers day workshops that I am never able to attend. Because we are currently on "winter break", I was finally able to attend a day workshop. Yesterday two of our guild members offered a workshop on Nuno felting...

Step 1:
Choose a piece of open natural fiber. The open weave allows the roving to migrate through the fabric allowing it to adhere. We used silk, the most common choice. Place the silk on a piece of plastic. We used pieces of solar pool cover, but shelf liner, bubble wrap, or plastic table clothes are also acceptable choices.

Step 2:
Layer the roving on the fabric. Think BOLD. Think abstract. All those little bits and bobs I used resulted in something that was not my intention. Our awesome instructors, Linda and Katie, recommend that I add more roving; I was leaving far too much white space on the design. But did I listen?

Step 3:
Wet the entire piece with hot soapy water. Check the saturation of the piece by either placing a large sheet of plastic on top and pushing gently, or checking after your first few minutes into the felting process.

Step 4:
Rolling, rolling, rolling... We rolled the pool cover, silk, and roving around a piece of pipe insulation cover. You could also use PVC pipe as well. Roll it tightly and secure with ties.

Step 4:
Keep rolling. After every 10 minutes or so, unroll your work and check the progress. Be gentle. Each time you move a piece of wool off the silk, you are back to square one on that section. Re-roll from the opposite end.

Step 5:
Once the roving has felted to the silk, move on to the step I call "Aggression Therapy". Gather it into a ball, re-wet with HOT soapy water, and SLAM it for about 5 minutes into a basin. The slamming will continue the felting process and speed up all those cool wrinkles.

This is my NOT final project. At present, it reminds me of what happens when the dog eats the crayons and can't keep them down. See all that white space? Not good. I will eventually dye the piece to balance it out.

Thank goodness for the professionals!

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