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finished felt

This autumn, we are offering a chance for you to learn (or re-learn!) about the process of making felt fabric from loose wool roving. In this one-afternoon class (about 2 hours) each student will learn the process of felt-making, and produce their own colourful, soft merino wool scarf.

Afternoon classes are being offered Sunday October 27, Sunday November 10, or Sunday November 17 from 3-5pm each day.

Felt is an amazing material. Real felt is made from wool or other animal fibres. It is compressed, agitated, boiled, and manipulated until it becomes a single piece of fabric. Felt was developed in every culture where herding animals were kept, and used not only for clothing but for housing and industrial purposes too.

Class instructor Natasha Henderson is a visual artist, painter, crafter of wool scarves and other wool objects. She loves making things by hand and teaching others how to do so, too. Join in the fun in a supportive environment. Class is mostly offered in English, however, Natasha has a rudimentary knowledge of French, and Francophone students have enjoyed her classes.

Workshop is located in Fleurbain at 460 St Catherine West, Suite #917, H3B 1A7, Montreal. Registration by email or in person. Email for more info: Fleurbain(at)gmail(dot)com

Cost (materials included) is $50 per class.

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felt wool scarf

felt wool scarf

In time for winter, for holiday giving, and for the relaxation of craft… here is an opportunity to learn about feltmaking, while making a beautiful creation of your own that is a unique piece of usable fashion.

In this workshop, students will learn the technique of making felt fabric from loose wool roving. They will make their own beautiful scarf out of merino wool. Merino is insulating, long-lasting, and buttery-soft. The ultimate in fibre! All materials and instruction (and fun) is provided.

Instructor Natasha Henderson is a visual artist, painter, crafter of wool scarves and other wool objects. She loves making things by hand and teaching others how to do so, too. She has years of experience teaching workshops in painting, felt-making, and other crafts. Her work (including felt scarves) is shown and sold in galleries and shops across Canada.

Workshop is one evening: December 12, 7-9pm $50, with everything included!  There will be different colours of wool, so you have a choice to be as vibrant or subtle with your colours as you choose.

 
Located in Fleurbain at 460 St Catherine West, Suite #917, H3B 1A7, Montreal.
 
Registration by email or in person. Email for more info: Fleurbain@gmail.com
abalonescarf

your seat awaits you in the class

We are happy to announce the next fall felt-making workshop: Make your own felt wool scarf!

during a previous workshop

Felt is an amazing material. Real felt is made from wool or other animal fibres. It is compressed, agitated, boiled, and manipulated until it becomes a single piece of fabric. Felt was developed in every culture where herding animals were kept, and used not only for clothing but for housing and industrial purposes too.

In this workshop, students will learn about the technique of making felt fabric from loose wool roving. They will make their own beautiful scarf out of wool. All materials and instruction (and fun) will be provided!

mixed-media scarf by instructor Natasha Henderson

Instructor Natasha Henderson is a visual artist, painter, crafter of wool scarves, puppets, and cat-toys. She loves making things by hand and teaching others how to do so, too. She has years of experience teaching workshops in painting, felt-making, and other crafts. Her work (including felt scarves) is sold in galleries and shops across Canada.

Workshop is on Sunday October 14, 1-3:30pm $45, all inclusive. Fleurbain is at 460 St Catherine West, Suite #917, H3B 1A7, Montreal.

Registration by email or in person. Email for more info: Fleurbain@gmail.com

Felt sushi... higher in fibre

Wanted to get in on Four Weeks of Felt (aka I Love Felt) last time? Well, here is your opportunity!

cutest credit card holder EVER

In Four Weeks of Felt, students will learn how to make felt in the wet-felting process.

We will make:

* a flat project (the ever-popular scarf!)

* a simple form that can be crafted into a cell-phone case or small purse or other nifty little object

* a larger, more complex form using a resist technique (either a larger purse or a vase/vessel, or a tea-cosy)

* jewelry, practical and decorative shapes and little objects (including felt sushi!)

Classes will be held in Fleurbain Tuesday nights, March 27 to April 17, 6:30-9pm. Cost of the four weeks, including all materials and taxes, is $160.

Instructor Natasha Henderson is a visual artist, painter, crafter of wool scarves, puppets, and cat-toys. She loves making things by hand and teaching others how to do so, too. She has years of experience teaching workshops in painting, felt-making, and other crafts. Her work (including felt scarves) can be seen in various galleries and shops, as well as being available online.

Please note class size is limited, so reserve your space today by emailing fleurbain@gmail.com.

We are close to McGill and Place des Arts metros, with plenty of street and paid parking nearby.

Tea’s on!

We all do it. Don’t be ashamed. If you know how to knit, you have some… FAILED KNITTING.

An anecdote: A friend of mine announced she was pregnant with her second child. In anticipation, I bought a pattern for a cute little sweater. Friend had baby: A girl! So I bought some pink-ish wools and started in.

A year later, it evolved into a first-birthday gift.

Many other years later, it evolved into something for one the child’s dolls, perhaps.

Yet more years later… and I will be incorporating the pieces and bits of knit into some scarves.

I have done something like this a couple of times before. Once I felted an unfinished knit charity quilt-square (I missed the deadline, of course) into the end of a scarf. Here is a photo of the finished scarf:

my scarf!

I have more recently created a similar scarf. This time I used a finished, knitted scarf I wasn’t happy with, and sewed on (by hand!) some ruffly chiffon. I have this for sale on my Etsy page for a few days, and if it doesn’t sell it is MINE.

a knitted scarf and some chiffon find a new life together

Some of us just aren’t true knitters. We can’t find happiness with what we make; however we are continually drawn to trying again and again. The path to peace within the realm of knitting is perhaps in finding a mixed-media outlet for yourself. Sew on knitting. Felt with knitting. Re-purpose knitted bits. Go on, you can do it. Do It Yourself.

knitted bits of pinky wool will find their ways into scarves

Natasha Henderson, Montreal

*note this would work with crochet, too… and there’s nothing stopping you from making something like a cup-cosy out of your little knit and crochet bits. Small is good…

One evening, Tuesday December 6, 6:30-8:30pm $50, everything included!

Felt is an amazing material. Real felt is made from wool or other animal fibres. It is compressed, agitated, boiled, and manipulated until it becomes a single piece of fabric. Felt was developed in every culture where herding animals were kept, and used not only for clothing but for housing and industrial purposes too.

In this workshop, students will learn about the technique of making felt fabric from loose wool roving. They will make their own elegant, warm, snugly, beautiful, handsome, thick, or thin scarf out of wool. All materials and instruction (and fun) will be provided!

Instructor Natasha Henderson is a visual artist, painter, crafter of wool scarves, puppets, and cat-toys. She loves making things by hand and teaching others how to do so, too. She has years of experience teaching workshops in painting, felt-making, and other crafts. Her work (including felt scarves) can be seen in various galleries and shops, as well as being available for purchase online.

Register online: nhen@videotron.ca
Check out Natasha’s scarves at http://HendersonArt.etsy.com/

Workshop is located in Fleurbain at 460 St Catherine West, Suite #917, H3B 1A7, Montreal.

some of my earlier experiments

One of the benefits of teaching to fully engaged students is the challenges that they present to you. I am teaching a weekly course on felt-making; the first class for this new group was last week. All of the students were keen to learn, to do, to make. Outside of the enthusiasm that they brought to the class, they had all done research beforehand on the craft of wet-felt-making.

When we started the class, I gave them a brief run-down on how felting works, what the science is behind it, the basic stuff. Then we talked a little about what we would do over the next twelve weeks. Some of the students were very keen to try out some specific techniques; techniques that I’d seen others do but, admittedly, haven’t done myself. When the internet offers such a wide array of videos, blogs, and instruction manuals, it was a pre-educated group of crafting students who entered my classroom the other day!

a student in the beginning stages of making a hat

This presented a challenge and an opportunity for me to grow. While the class is on, I am “on”. I am engaged fully with the students, I guide and help and demonstrate. Sometimes I must step back and allow them to discover things on their own. During this work-time, they are concentrating and I am quietly watching what they do, or I am preparing for the next step. While this is happening, I think about what we will do in the future, what would serve my clients/students best.

Much of art-making and maintaining a practice in it is about editing. Editing specific works, editing time so that the media of choice fit into one’s life, and editing things that might not seem to fit together until they do. I have, classically, fancied myself to be a bit of a trail-blazer type whenever I’ve started something new. I would quickly learn all I could about it, see what appealed to me, then go off on my tangent to experiment with what I chose. This is normal, I think. However, when I have students who want to try out all the different things that one can do in a chosen medium, I need to be ready to teach them these things I’d seen, not tried, and had previously discarded from my own milieu of work. Because of this, over this weekend I performed some experiments with feltmaking.

there are many ways to make felt, and many potential things to teach

There is a funny thing about this situation. By prescribing myself time to experiment in things that I’d not really been personally interested in before, I have been actively pushed to make use of my new knowledge. An example: felted soap. I make and sell felted soap, now, because I needed a little something to fill in about an hour’s worth of class. Felted soap seemed interesting, sort of cool, and something easily portable for students to make and take home in one day. Now I sell my little bubbly creations in many shops around town, and on my Etsy page. Benefit!

fabric-enriched scarf - the successful experiment

A second example of a recent experiment is building fabric into the layers of wool. A student last week was keen to try this, so I agreed to teach it. I took some time to try it out, and last night I made a very beautiful scarf using this technique. A little back-story is due; as I’ve mentioned before, I once had a job in the fashion industry. While working in a sample-making room I saved scrap pieces of fabric. I prevented good, small bits of fabric from stuffing the landfill. I have many little squares of printed cotton, and I’d been trying to force myself to sew out patchwork bags and skirts out of them. I like sewing from time to time, but not sewing boring things like grid squares. Last night I took two of these squares, and ripped them into strips. I added the fabric into the scarf, and presto! It was a success. I will be making more of them, and adding another aspect to my scarf-making business!

I am looking forward to the next couple of experiments I’m planning… a large vase, and sushi jewelry in felt. Who knows what will be after that! I’ll certainly keep the dialogue open with my students, that’s for sure.

Natasha Henderson is a painter and fibre artist based in Montreal. She teaches art and felt to adults and kids. You can check out her Etsy page and personal website if you’d like to see some of her work.

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