Finished: two felted bags.


wetfelted bag felt pursewetfelted bag felt purse

The shoemaker did a better job. Still a few sharp edges though. Will sand down and treat with leather cream.
As said in my previous post I attached a loose flap onto this bag as its closing because the busy texture matches the texture of the bag. On the top it has two rows of very slow machine stitching:
wetfelted bag felt pursewetfelted bag felt purse

I also stitched around the flap, on the back side, by hand. I’m thinking of cutting a horizontal slit into this because then it will be a secret, easy access pocket on the back of the bag.

On the front is this vintage brooche from Scandinavia, my mother gave it to me when I moved out of the house. I adore it!
wetfelted bag felt purse
Right now it’s just pinned onto the felt but before I start using my bag I will secure it with thread. Multiple strands.

Here are some progress pictures of felting this bag last weekend:

sewed a skirt, wet felted a bagsewed a skirt, wet felted a bag

I took a resist and covered it with locks and pieces of silk, then cover it with white fleece from a good felting breed (mountain sheep/ Bergschaf/ bergschaap). This bag is felted with the outside on the inside.

The whole resist got covered, front and back, and at the top I laid out the flap with the bit of fleece:

sewed a skirt, wet felted a bag

At the end of the day, just as the rain started, I had two felted bags/sacks:
sewed a skirt, wet felted a bag

This is how much the big bag has shrunk during felting:
sewed a skirt, wet felted a bag

40%. Just like the text books say.



Weird Wool Wednesday: sewing with felt

Once upon a time I married in a felt dress.
It was about ten years ago and I bought the dress in a small couture shop in Norway, before I even knew how to “wool” myself. It was white with a salmon pinkish bodice:


Today I’m attaching a new bodice to it because in all those years I’ve never been able to breathe comfortably and it had also exactly the wrong shade of red.

I took a piece of prefelt and threw into the washer for 30 minutes. It’s the piece of the try-out from the wet felted throw for the city. It was never properly felted and I could just pick off the bits of yellow and blue wool and silk. There’s still some colour left which is now thoroughly felted into the wool but I’ll be dyeing this dress afterwards so that’s no problem.
I cut out pattern pieces of a bodice pattern that’s tailor made to my size. I like to breathe.

Now I’m sewing it onto the existing skirt.

On the left is the existing skirt… made by somebody who did not understand wool…

The skirt’s prefelt fabric has not been properly felted. I had noticed this because it pills terrible. Because the fabric was falling apart it has been treated with iron on Vliesofix/Vlieseline on the wrong side. But it’s not everywhere. It’s not at the top, where the bodice is supposed to be attached. (will solve that problem later)

And the seams of the skirt…. they have been overlocked. Because felt frays so terribly, don’t you agree?

Sewing with yarn

I’m sewing together a piece of felt and a piece of weaving, with mohair yarn. The yarn changes colour and I like it so much!
I’m deliberately making small stitches, just to enjoy the colour fest a little longer.

It brings out all the colours of the shiny silk in the weaving. (It is handspun, the bit with the silk)

Weird Wool Wednesday: dressed for the party

I had this wool party last week, it was a wonderful party!

We sat in the shade, spinning wool, talking, eating cake. We gave wool and yarn to the birthday girl. We shared stories. Our wheels kept spinning. One person was spindling and had the most beautiful wooden accessoires which we all admired. We talked about wool, silk and life.

A lovely day.

I had managed to do everything right: drove myself safely to her house; brought a nice gift; brought food; brought spinning wheel, wool and back up knitting; knew the names of all the people who were there; didn’t trip over my toes when I walked to her door; didn’t say anything silly while participating in the conversation. I was doing fine!

It only took me one hour to realize I was wearing my felted dress inside out.

getting a gift

last Saturday I was at a wool gathering and there was a woman with felted fleece rugs. I kneeled down and ran my hands through the locks. We got to talking, celebrating felt and wool and women felting.

I briefly ran away to get my Sheep bag and she was delighted: (pardon the cat)

we talked some more, she zoomed in on my illness and we talked how good wool is for the ill. It soothes, it protects, it warms, it connects you with nature. It was a lovely talk.

Soon afterwards I went to find my friends to go home. The lady came after me and gave me…. on of her rugs. The most beautiful there was! her favourite Ouessant!

I was stunned!

it doesn’t take much for my blood presssure to plummet and a nice gift will do that in a heartbeat. So I said: “Excuse me” and flopped down on the floor. I was embarrased of course and I nervously explained a bit about adrenals and blood pressure.

She did the most amazing thing: she put the fleece under my head AND SAT DOWN BESIDE ME. To chat a bit. As if it was totally normal that a person drops to the floor when something nice happens. As if I am not a freak who cannot handle normal life.

It was so heart warming, I could cry. Which didn’t do my blood pressure any good so I had to lay down for a bit longer. We had a lovely chat.

Later I went home with this hug in the form of a handfelted fleece. It lays on my couch now, where I spend lots of time. I feel so encouraged by this tactile gesture by a complete stranger that today I started my search for a specialist who can handle my case of adrenal failure combined with ‘women issues’ aka progesteron shortage. So that I do not have to do this alone any more, wondering every day if I am doing enough or if I’m doing too much and am destroying my body.

It’s amazing to know that I am the sort of person that you can talk to and who is so likeable that you give her something you made with your own two hand and were asking good money for. It is such a boost for me to know I am such a person, even when I am as ill as I am and am white as a sheet, forget my words, stand there trembling, mumbling and confusing myself and others. A shadow of a human most hours of the day but when talking about wool, something shines trough. Something connects.

This lady, she gives felting workshops to do exactly that: celebrate the human connection. thank you Maria, for this gift 🙂

12 in 2012

this year on Ravelry I was part of a group called 12in2012. Each month we would show one project that we finished that month. The only requirement was that it was knitted with yarn that was already in the stash at the beginning of the year.

It was very nice to end each month with highlighting one project. Looking back I see I chose the most orignal project each month. Colourful, strange techniques, improvised designs, they are all here:


If you are on Ravelry you can find them in my projectspage if you look for ’12in2012′.

I was so happy with each of these projects! Even the one mini mitten I made for november (it was all I could muster that month).

These are pretty much all things I never did before: knitting Combined Continental; felting garments; weaving (with a YarnShifter); jogless stripes; bust-darts perfection; follow a pattern to the lettre; improvising from scratch.

Looking back only a few have made it to my use-a-lot area in the closet. The long cardigan from October is there, the Prickly Socks, the Winterberry cowl and the Owly Sweater from Februari.

with the others there’s something not quite good. Two are too tight to wear comfortable, one’s too heavy, two are too weird (the felted dresses although I did wear the blue one to a wool festival) and two are just too impractible. Who would to want capture their upperbody in a nice tube? I can’t use my arms and my lower back is getting cold. I don’t onderstand shoulderwarmers…

(a friend of mine cannot stop making them so some people are very good wearers of shoulder warmers. They look good on her too!)

For all the time I put into each project, often with lots of redesigning and problem solving, I would like to get a better usage rate. Even from special and original and head turning projects like these.

But still, a nice overview and a recording of lots of joy in material, colours, ideas and hopes. 🙂

ps. a lot of handspun is featured in these projects. I LOVE to knit with it.

pps. I’m playing again next year, 12in2013.

December Bliss

Today is a day full of December bliss for me. The little cabin is lovely with a tree and lights and very nice lettre paper I got (myself) for Saint Nicholas. I hope to write two lettres to dear people today.


There is food, no need to cook. Just reheat the organic chickensoup I made earlier from scratch. There’s rice pudding, there are tangarines. Great flavours and colours.

Yesterday I met up with my spinning group, Vluchtgedrag in Zevenaar, and it was lovely. I usually have to take a day of rest the day after so I had nothing planned for today.

Tomorrow my husband will come with our other cat for a two weeks stay. I love them. But I very much like the place to myself and Lillepoes today.

So. Eat, write, knit. That’s the plan.

the yoked sweater is past the arms now and awaits a few hours of some mindless knitting (i.e. especially good for watching films or travelling)

the Advent Shawl is up to yesterdays date:

the socks are…..somewhere.

and I finished this lovely hood and wristwarmers. They’re called Winterberry to the name of the batts I spun the yarn from.

I am wearing them right now! (it’s often a little chilly in the cabin)

I am wearing the felted skirt all the time, it’s warm and the pongé silk has lovely sheen.