Thursday, December 2, 2010
My knitting posse ventured outside our safe yarn medium, into roving and water and agitation. (Wet felting on fabric backing = Nuno-felting). We made a quick trip to The Fibre Garden in Jordan, where John helped us find the perfect Merino rovings and other yummy fibres. Susan hosted the project in her water-proof basement. We started with scarf sized fabrics. Mine was a synthetic netting in black with silver shimmer on one side. Ruth, Fiona and Lois used silk chiffon in black. Susan supervised and assisted, as she was the "expert" having felted like this once before! (learn then teach... it's the craft version of pass it forward). My fabric is not a natural fibre and will not shrink with heat, nor will it adhere to wool, so I had to layer some merino roving to both sides and rub them to stick it to the netting. First the layering of merino roving in plum... then wetting with warm water and soap, to allow the fibres to lock into each other. Then roll up around a pool noodle and a bubble wrap (pool solar blanket) and tie securely. Then roll and rub and roll and rub..... for a long time (with feet or hands), then eat lunch and roll some more... You can see me knitting while rolling with my feet. Then unwrap and check and roll up again and repeat! The final fabric after rolling, then washing in hot with agitation, is a soft and light weight scarf, with (intentional) holes in the wool where the silver mesh shows through. I had to leave Susan's before the other gals had theirs done, and can't wait to see the finished fabrics. Here are Ruth and Fiona's scarves ready to roll... (and Lois starting to plan hers) Fiona and Ruth's are in a double roll, so they joined forces and did a four foot rolling... they got a good rhythm going! Here, Susan and I show off the final scarf... Thanks for being such a good coach, Susan! The final photo has me wearing the scarf and it is still cold and WET, but I don't care because I made the fabric with my own hands (and feet!).