Fellow felters and spinners, I ask you... - Do you have a project that needs a dash of fiber, but not a whole skein?
- Maybe you want to add cocoons or beehives to your handspun for that extra charm?
- Want to wet felt some beads or balls?
Then FELTY BITS
are just the thing for your next project, my dears! I made these especially for small projects or little bits of adornment that Felters, Crafters, and art yarn spinners just like me are always looking for. You don't want a whole skein, but can't find that small colorful amount of what you need. Here I come to save the day!
I've priced these just right so that your project budget won't be taxed. At $5 for hand carded fiber, it's a steal! I've already sold many of these at previous shows to lots of very happy customers.
Every $5 bag of Felty Bits:
- Is stored and shipped in a seal-able plastic bag
- Contains approximately 1/2 oz of fiber
- Is a wool blend. Some contain sparkle, silk, angelina and/or mohair locks.
- All are hand carded to align fibers and create the most loft
- Is a unique batt. If you see another in a similar color, best grab it,
because you may not see it again.
I started by making these for my own projects and have had so much fun carding and using these small bits of fiber that I just had to share. I used one 1/2 oz bag with a needlefelting machine, adding several medium sized leaves and petals to a shirt. I was amazed by how much fiber I had left over.
I hope you love them as much as I do. I love them so much, it's really hard to sell them. But I know they'll be going to good homes and will make many amazing projects and bring happy, joyful color to many lives. And that, makes me happy. :)
Making dingleballs. Some with, some without haircuts.
"Oh what fun
it is to make
Yes, I do make up my own lyrics to songs. It's a family tradition. I was singing about dingleballs to the tune of Jinglebells. Kinda fun, huh? Yeah, I thought so.
I've been saving this bag of yarn scraps for ages. On 4th of July, I blogged about making potholders from my leftover dreadlocks making days (see pics below) and knitting project scraps. That project wasn't enough to satisfy. Besides, I had lots of different colored scraps. I needed a way to pull all the colors together. And they weren't really colors that I typically worked with. I'm a bright and bold color girl normally. But these colors were soft, muted and nature toned. I do love those colors and enjoy working with them, but they're not usually my first grab from the yarn or fiber basket.
Then, my mom found this color work style, ready-to-wear, sweater with some crazy long fringe all round it. When I say long fringe, I mean long... 4". I looked at her like, "Uh, what do you want to wear this for?" She said, "Dingleballs!" Oh. my. goodness. That woman is amazing. The sweater was perfect and already had holes in it, from the fringe, that would be perfect for tying on a few dingleballs.
So I took the sweater home and dug through my bag o scrappy goodness. Wonder of wonders, all these leftovers that didn't have a purpose or a project all of a sudden fit the sweater perfectly. Various shades of blues & purples (dusty to royal), tans and browns, and a variety of olive greens including a few forest green. I even used some of the fringe (it had polyester in it though, ick!) to make itsy bitsy dingleballs.
I made dingleballs using the tool from my kits. But, I wanted to have big and small dingleballs. I thought that would give the sweater some character. I do love the wee kit tool, but, the tools aren't offered in any size smaller than 3/4 inch. I recently learned on Pinterest how to make a dingleball using a fork. Using a fork doesn't give the same uniformity that the pom pom tool does. but the dingleballs are still super cute! Below are a few photos of the finished sweater. I think it would be adorable with a belt and a fun olive colored skirt instead of my amy butler tunic. ;)
Kits will be posted to my etsy shop this weekend. So you too can make your own amazing dingleballs.
Last year I launched 2 handspun yarn kits, only available at shows. I'm now offering a limited quantity of kits in some very fun colorways. I started making kits because I often want a project, but don't have the time to commit to anything major. Plus, with everything else going on in our lives, I think we all appreciate a little instant satisfaction (I know I do).
The kits will be going up in the Etsy shop
this week. Look for an shop status updates on the Facebook page
or sign up for my newsletter
to get an email as soon as the store is updated.
The first kit is for a magical toad. It's magical because it reminds me of the frogs and toads you see or read about in Harry Potter. I love magical things, stories about wizards and witches and other wonderfully fantastical things. Well, with a name that comes from the story of Camelot, how could you not love magical things? Can you guess the queen I'm named after? But I digress...
One day I discovered Brigitte Read
's amigurumi style crochet toys. I fell in love. She designed projects that were small, fun, and had lots of character or were a great base that allowed me to give them further character. It's her amazing pattern (used with her permission of course) that supports the handspun yarn I create for this cute little "Toads!!" kit. I think you'll find her patterns easy to understand and the little toady fun to create. Though, they do need names once they are finished. Send me a photo and your toad's name and I will post him here. I love to see finished projects and loved toys!
The second kit I currently offer is D.I.Y. Dingleballs. These are also known as pom poms to the the misinformed. Why call 'em dingleballs? Well, I am a bit of a clown and I love funny things. To some, the name may bring about nasty bits and icky thoughts. But, to me, they are like the pom pom trim seen adorning the top-edge of the windows
in a VW Bus just dingle dangling
away, bobbling along, as the vehicle hits bumps in the road. Dingleball makes me think of dancing. I love trim that dances. It's a ball that dingles and so... dingleballs. They also make me think of big fat cherries ripe on the tree. There are so many fun, happy visuals to imagine, so get your minds out of the gutter. ;)
This pom pom maker in this kit is fabulous. When I first ordered them for kits, I was in the middle of a big knitting project and needed a mental and hand-resting brake. So, I sat down and made like 50 dingleballs in a single Saturday afternoon. I could barely tear myself away from them. I was floored by how much fun it was to watch them evolve into these gorgeous spheres. I'd made many dingleballs before with lots of other tricks, tools, etc. but none compared to this one. Then, after practicing on commercially spun yarn, I "bit the bullet" and dared to cut my handspun. OH it was scary let me tell you. But it was glorifying. Never have I seen such amazing color than when using the handspun I had spun up specially for dingleballs. I was in awe. My mouth began to water. And on I went to make more, and more, and more, and ... well, you get the idea.
Then, I observed that many indie knit designers were creating scarves with knit or crocheted pom pom like trims. Oh God, the thought of having to knit all that trim makes my eyes roll into the back of my head. Too much work! It's beautiful, but not something I like to spend my time doing. So I made kits that would allow a knitter to work up a simple scarf or shawl, then adorn the edge with dingleballs. You'd get the same happy dancing effect like in the VW Bus, but you could wear it everywhere. After I created the kits, I discovered more and more ideas and uses for dingleballs. I will be sharing another post that will show off the sweater my mom & I trimmed with dingleballs. It's gorgeous and super fun (and comfortable) to wear.
Gwen here introducing my alter ego clown self, Birtha, as today's guest blogger. She's going to tell you about the wicked pants I made her. I've actually allowed myself to go into character to write this. Birtha is unpredictable, brash, mocking, and self serving. I think you'll really love her when you get to know her better. Without further ado, I give you Birtha.
| || |
I. Am. Birtha!
I'm Birtha the clown.
Yes. I spell my name with an "i" because I was birthed in a clown class.
That's all you get today, because I don't feel like telling stories. Today, I'm showin off.
See those glowing things in the pictures below? Those are my happy pants. Yup! They make me happy because they scream loud with color. And, they're most comfortable. >_<
These pictures I took my own self. I used me a barbie-Q and the help of a nice little iPhone app that has a self timer. Self timers are good when you want to take your own pictures. Plus, I could set it up so that it took my picture every 4 seconds. How wonderful is it to fill the world with Birtha pitchers? Wwwwonderful! I'll have you know tho... I iz not in nose above and below. So, I'm not fully in Birtha mode. But, you can suspect that I'll be back to parade my new pants more one of these dayz.
Feets are good to photograph.
My feets like to be free and nekked. Specially when it's summery. I likey that. A lots.
Do you see how I have red dots on pink? That makes me happy cause I glow and offend your sweet wittle eye balls. Get used to it. Cause there's more to offend where that came from. :P
This year, I returned to sculpting in polymer clay. As a kid, I spent many, many hours sculpting. Then, about 6 years ago I picked up some clay to make some fairies for one box in "The Take-Out Box Project", an art challenge I was part of with 16 other artists, and haven't played with it again until this year.
In my elementary years I created a lot of art. Sculpting was just one of the many mediums I was blessed to play in (thank's mom
!). I made wee figurines and stuff for my dolls and toys. I loved dolls. But, I think I loved making things for them more. I used to make vingnettes all over the house (and get yelled at to clean them up - sorry Mom
, creative muse and all!). I collected blocks, dolls, and then I figured out how to make doll furniture out of paper with origami techniques. A doll or faerie home always seemed better when made in a fresh corner. Still makes me giggle. I made food, plates, and cups. I sculpted heads. It was great fun, then I didn't know where else to go with it.
Dragon sculpted by Gwen Gyldenege. Norman says, "Hi! My name is Norman Rockswell. Wanna play 'melt the glass ball'? Cause I just figured out I can burp fire when I drink sparkling mountain lake water."
Fast forward to 2012. I had the great fortune to take classes from Patricia Hedegaard
. She taught us how to make goblins and dragons. The flood gates just opened up and sculpting what ever I wanted became so much easier. I learned about fingers, toes, bodies, horns, and more. Above is a picture of my little dragon. Isn't he cute-a-full!?
Now when I pick up the clay, I just allowed myself to play. I find my greatest success comes when I don't try to create a vision or think long and hard on what I want the clay to become. Rather, I pick up the clay and start with a shape and let the clay tell me what it wants to be. I just fall in to my creative trance state (natural people, natural) and allow my hands to work. Think of it like walking meditation.
That's how Bald Mermaid was born. I started with a head and no eyes. Then, I decided to make a torso. The hands - oh gosh, they ended up being as big as her hips. Guess we all need to be a little handy. Lastly, I just created a simple tale. I decided that clamshells would be funny for a "bra". And who had the best cartooned clamshells that are easy to sculpt? The Flinstones
. They're not an exact of clam bucks, but they're my idea of funny clam shells.
Bald Mermaid by Gwen Gyldenege
I didn't add any hair. In fact, it took me a while to settle on eyes. She's still a work in progress, but I'm not sure I'll add hair. There are many women who don't have hair by choice and not. Why not support a unique standard of beauty. For, how many bald mermaids really exist? At least 1 in my wonderland! Ya like her?
On a total whim I decided I'd whip out the embellishment on round 3 of Pass the Paper
(Lisa's). Then, a few minutes into the process of drawing on Lisa's paper, I decided to video the process of me updating the paper 30 min before I needed to leave for our annual Guild Retreat. Why does inspiration strike at the last minute like a lightning bolt that you cannot escape?
From start to finish, recording and doing the work on the paper took 10 min. Now that may seem insufficient or haphazard, but the intent and the work were done with full focus. I think it more amazes me what we can create in a short period of time given constraints and decent tools. What took me longer was finding a video editor that could handle my video (removed from iphone and in .mov format). I settled on this great software called PhotoStage Slideshow Producer
after reading the CNET Editor's review
. I loved working wiht it. Intuitive and easy.
I've really enjoyed working with Oil Pastels and I like the process of creating a quick something on paper. Until this art challenge, I haven't been inspired to use the oil pastels that have been in my stash for, oh... say 10 years? In fact, I've been a little unsure of how to best use them since they seem to gum up so many things. But, these papers are perfect and we'll all learn what the pastels will do when combined with other things like gel medium, glues, acrylics, fabric, etc. Fun!
I'm working on a video for a new blog post that is a few minutes long and was trying to decide where to post it...
I have accounts with both. Videos on both. But, There's something magical about the way vimeo
works - it's clean, it's pretty, it's simple and functional. If I had to guess, the most traffic is likely on YouTube
, so that is it's big advantage. And likely YouTube
videos come up 10x more often (that's a S.W.A.G. stat) in a Google
search than YouTube for popular subjects.
So, I thought I'd observe and take my own notes by doing a little discovery on Vimeo. And look at the cutest lil video I found from Kilogramme
. Doesn't that music make you want to get up and dance?
I did a quick search on YouTube for something of similar interest and caliber. I found two things of interest. The first, a movie clip about Fred Astaire in Easter Parade. Wow, how long has it been since Easter Parades stopped happening? Wouldn't it have been cool to go to a store and have them give you a personal fashion show? Wowie. That'd of been something. Listening to this chorus of singers so happy and melodious is uplifting. I wonder if there really were moments like this in the 40's or if they were just glamorized by Hollywood.
And that tap dance bit near the end?! Amazing. I've watched a lot of really good drummers play in my day, and I'd take a guess that he did most if not nearly all of the percussion himself. That kind of drumming is not for the faint of heart. And just because someone can dance
, doesn't mean they can be a good percussionist
, even if their dance is percussive the way tap is
. I'm really glad this was on YouTube. Because I don't recall ever watching this movie of Fred Estaire
's and now I want to look up Easter Parade
, and Amazon
to see who will offer me a download or streamed version to watch.
The second, is a stop motion video about the Smurfs having Easter fun. Is this cute or what?! This person who calls themself Smurf on YouTube
has gone to a lot of trouble to create some cute stop-motion videos. I got to see more of this. I love that they're quick and simple, but I know there were likely hours of work creating and editing!
How about you? Do you have a preferred video posting or viewing site?
Getcha some of these basketball sized Florida grapefruits before there're gone. And think, you'll also be supporting US Farming. I bought grapefruits like these at one of the citrus stands in Florida. (queue alligator sauntering across the sidewalk during that visit!). They are juicy, tasty, and their scent is amazing.
Fresh Florida Grapefruits