Monday, 29 December 2014

Exciting Workshops in 2015!

     I thought I would get early, and wish everyone a Happy New Year! 
We have two exciting workshops to announce for next year, the first being a residential week end up on the north coast, with Jeanette Sendler. It is a two day hat making workshop, on 6th 7th June and as Jeanette is also a milliner it sounds like an amazing learning experience!

For those of you who think a residential week end sounds scary or that you need to be an expert, well sorry but you are wrong! It is a chance to go away relax, completely switch off from every day stresses etc and indulge yourself being creative and learning new skills! In fact this time with it being only two days you dont need to stay over unless you want too. Although I would advise you to make the most of the fantastic location of Portballintrae. Which is right on the coast, the room for the workshop overlooks the sea, and the scenery is breathtaking! Plus The Bayview Hotel, Portballintrae provides a very comfortable and friendly place to stay!
You will be amazed and delighted with what you are able to produce at the end of the two day workshop!

Nancy Ballesteros will be taking a two day workshop in Hillsborough using her beautiful silk hankies on 31st July1st August, we were so pleased when we invited Nancy, and that she was able to take us up on our offer! Her hand dyed wool, silk and silk fibres are sensational, with colours to suit everyone, this makes it difficult when ordering from her, as everything is so cool!!
When the details are finalised which will be soon I hope. I will let you know that the application forms are available, so keep reading the blog! 

Had to end with a wee sheep photo, although its very frosty outside I hope we dont get too much white stuff, although it does look very pretty!
Take care everyone and see you all in January at the Felt in!
Fiona Harvey

Monday, 15 December 2014

Christmas Celebrations!

No Christmas party is complete without a tree, above is our little felted tree!
After a good show and tell Gail started off the session, explaining two different ways to incorporate Silk paper in to felt. She had made a few more squares for our friendship blanket, which was great! Despite it being a cold and very busy Saturday the turn out was amazing and it brill to see everyone! 

Then I proceeded to demonstrate how to make a small purse adding some silk paper. The festive atmosphere was enhanced, by Gail singing the odd line of a Christmas song at random moments! X factor watch out!!
Mandy decided to make her purse to coordinate with what she was wearing.
A few of the beautiful finished purses.

The silk paper looks really well, as every colour under the rainbow was used!
After all this hard work we were ready for a light Christmas lunch that the Feltmakers North committee had organised, and it was very tasty!
I don't know about you but this year has flown by (may be a sign of getting old?) So that brings Feltmakers North activities for 2014 to an end. However we have a very exciting programme for 2015, including a residential week end in hat making, and another exciting workshop news of which will be released in January so keep checking the blog under the Felt in workshop section! We are also having a brilliant workshop after our felt in, in February and it is suitable for all beginners or those of you who want to refresh your techniques, application forms are available from email
I would thoroughly recommend this workshop its called  "Start from the Start"

Well all that remains for me to say is Happy Christmas and New Year, and we are looking forward to seeing you all in January 2015. Of course I couldn't go without attaching this little photo, how cute is this lamb?

Monday, 24 November 2014

Wall Hanging Workshop

We invited Jeanette Sendler and Alison Mountain back for a one day workshop, it was an interesting and challenging day. We were asked to cut paper and use shape to create a plan for our wall hanging, this enabled us to get in the Zone!!
It was a good idea to have a plan even if it was vague before we started to cut out prefelt and silk fabric!
Jeanette and Alison are lovely tutors who encourage and build the confidence of the students as they progress with their idea. Here Jeanette is giving us ideas on shapes and cutting techniques. 
The girls had brought with them some of their amazing knits, hand dyed silks and prefelts which Feltmakers North participants were able to buy to add to their work. 
The work was the most varied I have seen at one of our workshops in colour, shape and style, which was an added bonus to all that were there.
Even during lunch Sarah couldnt switch off being creative, look what her sandwich wrapper turned in to!
Sarah with her completed piece, which includes some yarn she spun herself!
Dympna beautiful piece reflecting her home down on the peninsula.
Jeanette having a wee chat at the end of a very enjoyable workshop!
Ann and Alison holding up Ann's completed piece!
It was a great day that flew by, full of creativity, fun and friendship what better way could you spend a Saturday in November!
We look forward to seeing you all for our December felt in and Christmas lunch on 13th December, please email Gail if you are attending the lunch

For next month's felt in remember to bring in addition to the normal felting kit, your silk paper and a little merino tops, if you do not have silk paper there will be a little available to buy. You will also need a small piece of resist! Great see you then, take care.
Fiona Harvey

Tuesday, 18 November 2014

Christmas Bowls

There was a great atmosphere on Saturday when Dympna got everyone into the Christmas mood by showing us how to make little bowls decorated with berries and Holly leaves. Most people worked in white, red and green and created some lovely lttle pieces with spots. leaves and the odd little cord. There was the options for surface decoration and also how to cut the top of the bowl when removing the resist.
At times the room was unusually quiet as concentration was needed to remember where to place the leaves or where to cut the opening!Everyone went home promising that they would be making more and Tina later commented that she already had lots of orders from family members!
A big thank you to Dympna for sharing her skills.
Another massive thank you to the girls who brought more sample squares to help towards our blanket project. Many of the squares demonstrated the techniques which members have been perfecting- so lots of hard work there!

It was great to see how many members brought their infinity scarves from Fiona's workshop to the show n tell and to see that lots had made at least one other scarf!
There was free felting in the afternoon and it is such a great opportunity to simply felt together and enjoy a bit of craic which was aplenty!
Some happy girls bowled over!

Gail Cooke

Monday, 10 November 2014

Christmas Felt in

On Saturday 15th November we will be having our seasonal Felt in, Dympna will taking the felt in and making a seasonal themed bowl! Please bring your usual felting kit, including some white merino wool, scissors and green and or red prefelts, do not worry if you do not have these items as Dympna will have little kits to buy at £5. you will also need a resist so please bring a small piece with you! 
In the afternoon we will be having free felting, which means you can bring a pack lunch and carry on felting until 4pm, for non members there is a small additional fee. 
Don't forget we are also at Wallace High School Craft Fair on Saturday 15th November, which we hope will be a 
successful venture for us!
Hope to see you on Saturday 15th November Hillsborough Village Centre, at 10.15!
Fiona Harvey

Sunday, 26 October 2014

Infinity Nuno Scarf

On Saturday we had a workshop using the fabulous wool, silk fabric and fibres from Treetops Colour Harmonies in Australia, as you can see from the photo the colours are amazing and very inspiring!
I did wonder how to approach writing this post, as I was the tutor for the workshop, so I can hardly say it was a great workshop, without sounding big headed! So I decided to write it from the tutor side and then finish off with some comments from the evaluation sheets, to give both points of view!
Here I am giving some instruction before the work commenced, I was so engrossed than I never realised the photo had been taken! The girls in Feltmakers North are great, all so keen and interested, asking good questions which made my job easier! I could tell they were all dying to start, and get their hands on the lovely materials pack that is included in the price of the workshop! We are very lucky in that we get funding from the Island Arts Advisory Committee and the lottery fund, which makes the price of our workshops such good value. We hope this will continue,as we rely heavily on the funding!
The photo above shows my sample scarves!
Top Mary getting organised!
Deirdre decided to make a stunning scarf and quite a wide one too!

Top Gail's scarf laid out.
Gail finishing her scarf, the colours are beautiful!
Dympna wearing (slightly damp)finished scarf!
Barbara's beautiful tonal grey scarf!
Another Barbara, another fabulous scarf!

Some of the comments received after the workshop;
"Materials beautiful"
"New technique and idea for scarf which will be worn!!"
"Kit included in price was excellent!"

In conclusion all I can say is that I really enjoyed taking this workshop, the girls were a delight, and I cant wait to see the finished scarves, dry and being worn!
Next Felt in Saturday 15th November, remember to keep checking the workshop section of blog so you don't miss out!
Fiona Harvey

Sunday, 19 October 2014

Silk Paper Making.

Gail Cooke, one of the founder members of Feltmakers North, showed us how to make Silk paper! The morning was packed with information and fun, we were shown three different ways to make Silk paper, which then can be added in the felt making process! Above are some of the many samples which Gail had made to show us all the options available!
Gail gave us good instructions on how to proceed with the three methods. the room was set up with a special area for each method of silk paper making which enabled everyone to move round and have a go at each one!
Small kits had been made up by Gail, the kits included tussah silk, mulberry silk, rods, silk hankies, throwster waste, and other types of silk, so we were able to experiment using different types in our paper!
An iron was used to set the paper, the heat activates the natural glue in the fibres.
                                The wall paper paste method!
The Felt in was an informative and interesting morning of fun and friendship, which I would highly recommend!
In the afternoon we had free felting and some of us carried on making more silk paper, while others used the chance of the big tables and laid out scarves. The afternoon was lovely and relaxed with the opportunity to browse through felting books people had brought along!
We will be at Wallace School Craft 
fair on Saturday 15th November, however we will still be having our Felt in that morning at Hillsborough Village Centre. Dympna Curran will be making Christmas Felt!! 
I look forward to seeing you all soon at Feltmakers North!
Fiona Harvey

Tuesday, 14 October 2014

October Felt in

Beautiful Ram, which has nothing to do with today's post but I just thought you might like this photo!? I love it!

October's Felt in is on this Saturday, Gail Cooke will be showing us different ways of making silk paper, which can be added to our felt with stunning results. It proves to be a very interesting and informative morning, as we will shown three different methods. There will be packs of silk fibres available to buy at £6 a bag, but if you have silk fibres, or rods etc bring them along, and you can use them. If you have never used silk paper in your felt you are in for a treat, this is an eye opening morning and not to be missed! You will not need a felting kit for the morning, however if you are staying for the free felting in the afternoon you will need your kit for then!

The free felting in the afternoon is the opportunity to felt whatever you like in the company of like minded creative people, while having a good old chat! Its very casual but fun, so hope to see you there!

We will be having our Show and Tell so please bring along what you have made recently, we love seeing what everyone has made! 

Also if you would like to try and sell some of your felted items bring them and give them to Deirdre who will be manning our stand, Wallace High School Craft Fair in November. 

Look forward to seeing you all on Saturday at 10.15am!
Fiona Harvey