Monday, December 31, 2007

Happy New Year from the Whole Gang!



Well, another year down - and what a great year it was! I can't wait to see what roads my needle felting will take me down in 2008.

In my first year needle felting, I have only been able to part with two characters - sob, sob. The remaining cast members decided to all get together for a group shot to wish all you happy needlers out there a very Wonderful and Healthy New Year.

After the group shot - they persuaded me to video them - it's posted on the home page of my website too. Not only do you get to meet my characters, you get up and close and personal with my knick knacks and family photos they share my shelves with - I'm just glad the camera didn't pick up the dust!





Sunday, December 16, 2007

My New Website

I have been working hard designing my new website and have recently published it to the world wide web! I am very excited to have a venue to not only showcase my art but to promote sculptural needle felting. I hope that my website will become a learning resource for people who are ready to try out this very unique craft. Please check it out! My address is www.feltalive.com

Sunday, December 2, 2007

It's Santa!



This is Santa during his off time. He is wearing his red Union Suit and wool socks. He is about 20 inches tall and is very soft and huggable. I think I captured the twinkle in his eye!!


Little Girl

I think her name is Hazel. She just jumped off my felting pad today. She is really difficult to photograph and is SO much cuter in person. She is another example of a wool soft sculpture - she is so soft and huggable. In her seated position she is about 8 " tall. Make sure to watch the little video of Hazel. The background music is "Way Long Timey Ago" by The Red Clay Ramblers





video

Monday, November 26, 2007

Chieder The Elf


Here is my latest character to leap off my felting pad. His name is Cheider and he is the largest I have made so far. He stands about 20" tall to the tip of his hat. He is made of 100% wool with no wire armature. I wet felted his hat and it is removable. Make sure to watch the video to see him in action.





video

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Superman Underoos??



I just can't help it - these two crazy kids just showed up on my felting pad. I do find it unusual how this old man bears an uncanny resemblance to my late father. I didn't mean for there to be any resemblance but it is striking. My four year old niece who only remembers him from pictures took one look at this guy and said - "Oh - that's my Grandpa Vern" I know it would just crack my dad up so the name stuck!









Dad had a great sense of humor and would love the fact that he gets to wear Superman Underoos.












I don't know, however, if he would appreciate the fact that his girlfriend resembles his late mother (again - not my fault!)






I really don't have any plans when I start needle felting a doll. Funny things always happen which might explain my addiction to this craft.











I made a little video show of Grandpa Vern and his gal enjoying a little music. (Music is "Boogie" by John Hartford)







video

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Grandpa Vern

I find it unusual how this old man has an uncanny resemblance to my late father. I didn't mean for there to be any resemblance but it is striking. Dad had a great sense of humor and would love the fact that I put him in Superman underoos. My four year old niece who only remembers him from pictures took one look at this guy and said - "Oh - that's my Grandpa Vern" I know it would just crack my dad up so the name stuck! Like my Dad, this guy is a little bit naughty so please enjoy the video of Grandpa Vern in action!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Needle Felted Zaftig Doll




This is Cookie! She knows that a curve is the sexiest distance between two points and she is proud of her voluptuous figure. From a Yiddish word meaning ripe and juicy, Zaftig has come to be understood as pleasantly plump.



Cookie is needle felted out of 100% wool. She is very soft and is fun to pose. Her gorgeous red hair is from dyed curly wool.




















Cookie dropped something!!


I created Cookie using soft sculpture techniques that I learned from Birgitte Krag Hansen. She is not totally complete yet as I have to do much needling to create a less fuzzy skin. I just had to share her because she makes me laugh! When I get her done I will post a video of Cookie in motion!

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Workshops with Birgitte Krag Hansen

Hi everyone! I'd like to share my fantastic experience that I recently had. In late August, I learned that my needle felting idol, Birgitte Krag Hansen would be in Alaska in early September putting on needle felting workshops. I was so lucky to be able to take not one but TWO workshops with her. The first workshop was a one day event titled "Funny Theatre Figures. This class was in the tiny, remote community of Kenny Lake; I had to drive 4 hours in each direction to take this one day workshop. It was so worth it! Our class was in a little library with only 9 people in the class.

Birgitte is on the porch and that's Penny Wakefield, her host from the Fairbanks Spinners and Weavers Guild.




There wasn't even running water - we had to use the outhouse out back!















We had so much fun learning how to make these funny little theatre figures! The little guy I made is in the video below. His name is Kleebus. He only has one hand (and that is at the end of his neck/body) but really, he needs no more! He is fun to play with and kids absolutely love him. Birgitte taught us how to work the wool so that the characters come to life. I hope you enjoy the video of Kleebus as he hams it up for the camera! Sorry about the backgroud noise - its one of my big dogs having a big drink of water!


video

This is Hailey! (My 4 year old niece is in charge of naming my creations)



I made her in the 3 day workshop I took in Fairbanks with Birgitte. This was so intense and I learned so much. Luckily, I took a flight up there because the 6 hour drive each way would have kicked my butt.








The workshop was called "Figures in Motion" and I had the idea that mine would be sunbathing. The end result was more like she was flying!



The last pictures were taken during the workshops - Birgitte's Workstation is quite interesting. I love the one of the family of characters that were made in the class. There were some fun and talented people there!



Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Alaska State Fair

I entered some of my felted creatures into the Alaska State Fair and was pleasantly surprised at how well they did.


My little Einstein seemed to be a real favorite. He took first place in the category of Fiber Arts - Needled Felted - Three Dimensional. He also won Division Champion in the Needle Felted Division and the real kicker was that he took Best in Show in the entire Fiber Arts department. There were so many beautiful works of art in this department and here is little Einstein just dripping with ribbons!






My dog sled team took a first place ribbon in the category of Fiber Arts - Needle Felted - Other. It also won a special recognition from a sponsor - which I believe means a cash prize - not sure yet though!






The final prize winner was Skye. I decided to enter Skye outside of the Fiber Arts Department and let her compete in the Arts & Crafts Department in the Dollmaking Division. She won a first place ribbon in the Soft Sculpture Category and also won Judges Choice in the Arts and Crafts Department. Pretty Cool!!
I entered a few other pieces but they were eliminated from prize contention as I can only be judged for one piece in each category. All in all - I was thrilled.
I got a lot of attention from the local fiber fanatics - my head swelled a little, I think! I was invited to join the local fiber arts guild which I had been meaning to do, but just never got around to it. I was asked to do a needle felting demonstration at the fair- I did that yesterday afternoon and that went very well -I had fun - people seem to be quite intrigued with this craft. I was also approached to teach a needle felting class at a fiber arts retreat. I will be doing that in April of '08. The theme is funny faces - it should be fun.



Sunday, May 6, 2007

Bjarney The Icelandic Night Troll.



This Bjarney! He is an Icelandic Night Troll.
Icelandic legend has it that these mischievous trolls come out at night. They must be well hidden during the day as even one ray of sun can turn a Night Troll into stone.
Bjarney sits about 7" tall. With the exception of his hair, Bjarney is made from 100% Icelandic Wool. I used three natural colors of wool - black for his body, light brown for his eyes and natural white for his teeth and the whites of his eyes. Icelandic wool is rather coarse and hairy. This gives Bjarney a very primitive look. His hair and beard are made from a course, wool yarn.


Thursday, May 3, 2007

Mush!!










Finally! I finished my little sled dog team.
It's Grandpa Harry out for a Sunday drive with his pups. Grandpa doesn't race anymore but he still loves to train and run his dogs. The pups are just mastering their sport. Grandpa taught them well as they navigate the trail like old pros. They love to run!
Grandpa Harry is a true Alaskan Sourdough. You can tell by the Bunny Boots - that's what we call those big, white, rubber Army issue boots that are insulated with air. He's also wearing his green wool army pants and his trusty old Buffalo Plaid jacket. His fur trapper's hat and mittens keep him warm and cozy. If he gets too hot, the hat comes off!

The pups are made from a variety of wool and even have shading done with Alaskan Husky fur.

Grandpa stands about 6 1/2" tall and the pups stand 2" tall and 3" long.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Jackrabbit Slim





This was a fun little guy to make. I used local wool from a little Shetland sheep that lives in Palmer named Shiska. Her beautiful, course wool gave JR Slim a very primitive feel. I think he looks so proud against his gorgeous background. The photos were taken outside my home studio. I listed JR Slim on eBay and he is now in his new home in Texas where he is the newest member of a rabbit collection. He was my first attempt to sell any of my work on eBay and I was happy to see that I had two people bidding on my creation. I was so nervous sending him off but the new owner loves him! So that was fun and really inspired me to get busy with some new works.

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Life In Pink




This is Sylvie, a lovely French gal who is young at heart. I created her for a felting challenge at feltingforum.com. The challenge is Felt Me a Tune. Her song of inspiration is La Vie En Rose by Edith Piaf.

Friday, February 9, 2007





Here is Einstein!!


Need I say more?

New Felt Creations




This is Queenie!!
Queenie is a gem in the rough. We are still working on her fingers and toes! She has a bit of attitude so I have to be sure to get her right! She still resides on the foam pad, needing some attention. She is the first one that has no wire armature - Not sure which I prefer - wire or no wire.