After reading the book, The Art of Felt: inspirational designs, textures and surfaces and from an artist I discovered, Marjorlein Dallinga, I wanted to create my own felt inspired by the colours of fire and ice. Gwyneth, textiles technician, did a demonstration showing me what to do throughout the process of felting, which took about 20 minutes; it is quite a physical process due to how much friction is needed to be applied to ensure that the wools become one. What I needed to do was choose my wools which I would like to use and layer them up, in different directions, to guarantee that they all mould together. In order to get the wools to combine together, I had to have a layer of bubble wrap and a layer of thin material, like organza, which would act as a holder of the yarns. I then added lots of hot soapy water which would allow the wool to combine and knot together; when the hot water is applied you can then begin to scrub the yarns and wools using the organza and bubble wrap to ensure that a lot of friction is applied. Once the wool won’t separate from each other the process is complete.
I decided to create two small felt samples. One which combined fire and ice and another which was just based around ice.
For the fire and ice sample, I made a base layer of red wool and then applied ice coloured wools, yarns and pure cottons on to the top. I feel that this piece work really successfully however, I feel that there isn’t enough ice colours in it to show off both fire and ice, I feel like this would represent ice beginning to invade fire rather than it representing both fire and ice equally. However, I think that it does successfully show off the invasion of fire from ice because the colder, ice colours have ended up being in one area rather than across the whole sample, as well, I added pearl-like beading and sequins which make it look like there is ice trying to invade ice further but the predominant body is invading in one area. If I was to recreate this piece, I would put the cooler colours across all of the sample instead of just one particular main area. I would like to recreate this sample for me to use it in my final piece somehow, which I will look at in more detail when I look further into final outcomes.
For my ice based sample, I used cooler colours like blues, whites and greys. I also used denim blue yarns to create a different shade of ice. Once I had completed the felt making process for the ice sample and it had dried, I embellished it with pearl-like beading and blue and silver sequins, to create another texture on the top. Again I think this is really successful and I would like to remake this on a larger scale to use in my final piece. I would like to investigate ice inspired felt further to see what textures I could create using 3d methods. I would definitely like to incorporate felting in my final major project.