Sunday Session November 6th 2022 in the CIE Social Club Inchicore!
On Sunday 6th November Feltmakers Ireland Committee and 25 members took part in a `hands-on` practical Feltmaking session. There was great excitement, as a Nationwide film team was coming to film our efforts and interview some key members of our Feltmakers Ireland community.
The session was led by Tamzen Lundy, a former Committee member. She had designed a really charming Christmas project for us, a felted Nordic style Santa Claus in 3D. You can use the Santa Claus as a tree decoration, as a bottle topper, or as a stand alone ornament.
Feltmaking is a craft that allows you to easily produce items in 3D without any sewing at all. The committee had prepared a kit bag for each participant, containing all we required for this session.
Tamzen then took us all very clearly through the process, which involved laying merino wool in 3 alternate layers on a triangular shaped resist.
For Santa’s face, Tamzen showed us 2 ways of making and attaching a felt nose,(a felt bead, cut in two) by fluffing it up with a wire (or pet) brush, then had an ingenious method of using a small piece of prefelt (sometimes called Needlepunch) to create the face, and then cutting a teeny hole in the prefelt to reveal the nose. Later we would use needle felting to add eyes and beard.
The main learning points I took from Tamzen`s were:
- To use no soap in your wetting down process, (and generally very little soap overall) a bit controversial for me as soap tends to be my `comfort blanket`.
- No rolling, (not a roller in sight! ), use bubblewrap as a rubbing tool , and generally keep on rubbing, and massaging with your bare hands, or bubblewrap, on the surface of your piece until any sign of `cellulite` is gone! (Of course that meant that a big discussion on what cellulite was, ensued!)
At the end of the very happy and enjoyable session, it was really interesting how all the Santas looked very individual, taking on their own personalities!
While we participants were concentrating on our project, RTE`S Nationwide crew were filming a wonderful and varied display of members’ work at the end of the room. They interviewed Deirdre Crofts from our Committee, who spoke of the different pieces on display and explained the different felting skills.
Founding member of Feltmakers Ireland, Elizabeth Bonnar was interviewed about our Guild’s history in Ireland. Also interviewed was Astrid Tomrop-Hofman another important person who helped bring felt making to Ireland.
Our current research project on Irish breeds of sheep and their fleeces, was explained to Nationwide interviewer Zainab, by the leader of the research group, our Treasurer, Annika Berglund. The group hopes to publish a book in the near future with their findings.
Fiona Leech and Deirdre Croft told of our monthly Sunday Sessions, and of our Annual Art Felt Exhibition.
Zainab, interviewer, had her first go at Feltmaking!
For me, a member for many years, and formerly on committee, it was lovely to see old felting friends, like Helene Dooley, who has been working with the IFA , (the International Feltmakers Association, with which we are affiliated .)
Session leader, Tamzen, was interviewed, as she has turned her feltimaking into a successful business, and has an Etsy shop, Tamzenlundydesigns.
A very big thank you to Breda Fay, our Guild Chairperson, who was the person RTE contacted, and who made the film crew so welcome. Thanks to Lorna Cady, Committee member, who secured our venue, and to all our Committee members who baked tasty goodies, and made tea and coffee for us all, and made us all so welcome.
Clodagh Mac Donagh.
- Our Feltmakers Ireland Annual Exhibition will open on Dec3rd in the Ashtown visitor Centre, in the Phoenix Park and will run for the whole of December
- From 12th November until 23rd of December, Tamzen Lundy has an exhibition of her work at the Newbridge Arts Theatre Centre, Riverbank, Co. Kildare.
NEXT SUNDAY SESSION
venue: CIE sports hall, Inchicore
time : 10.15-12.30
Leader: Carmen Draghici, coming specially from Constanza in southern Romania for the weekend. Her work can be viewed online at FELT JOY and on Facebook & You Tube. She has an ETSY shop and she will bring some of her work to show us.
She will demonstrate some of her unique skills, making a small Christmas Cushion (as time is so limited )
It will be practical session. Some kits may be available to purchase (€4) for those who have materials (old towel, soap, bubble wrap etc) needed to felt with Carmen.
Materials needed: (exactly as last session)
Old towel, bubble wrap, resist, soap, and water bottle, needed.
70 grams red roving, embellishments (including, if you have any, old lace or finest crochet)
All members are welcome.
Tea coffee and Xmas goodies for all!
(Non-members also welcome €10)