Friday, 26 September 2008

woolcraft log week ending 26th September

Last class at the Portal this week for the feltmaking project.
Feverish fun in felting the crochet cords for the bags can be seen above from Anna and Alison, and two last minute projects below: Alex finally getting down to her cushion and Moya (Plantation productions staff member) managed at last to try her hands at felting: a picture for Eva, her two year old.

Menawhile Flora and Naomi were handsewing the stone felt pieces which had escaped the sewing machine.

Well, it might have been the last week for making the felt portal at the Portal in Govan, - it certainly was not the last days or week for the felt portal process:
at Galgael in Ibrox on Thursday and Friday many hands (Flora, Laryna, Mary, Ali, Luis, and who else was there ?) were busy making more details such as plants, leaves and animals, and the tree begun to take shape at last.

The greatest headache was how to get a supporting frame right for the big felt hanging..... As the welded version idea had to be scratched - due to lack of volunteers and overall weight of the iron rods - Flora's glorious idea of using bamboo canes proved the saving grace.

Albeit it was a public holiday on Friday, Galgael was opened for the wool crafters (+ and a couple of saw mill workers) that day to make headway on the portal banner and it's frame.
Luis, who had also taken a liking to needlefelt details (including a Bhirlin boat!), heat-bent the bamboo rods into arches and structures which can support the double layers of the felt portal.

Saturday, 20 September 2008

woolcraft log week ending the 20th of September

This Week saw the first stages of assembling stone felt arch-wall to become the gate for the picture-felt. Flora begun to sew the stone-felt pieces together with the sewing machine, whilst folks needlefelted more tree branches, butterflies and birds as well as wet-felt sheets for similar features,

and Mary transformed a postcard from the outer Hebrideans into a felt for a cushion cover.

Thursday and Friday saw more hill and sky details being needled on the picture felt by Ali, Lynsey, and Naomi, as well as Debbie needling some cute sheep and an even cuter doggie to populate the emerging felt landscape.

It is now waiting for it's stonefelt arch to be assembled properly and for more details to be cut and felted...

Thanks to Martin the bothy now at last has a bookshelf for our books and thanks to Jackie, Lynsey and Anneruth it got all tidied up for the Open Doors day on Saturday, when Flora, Sarah-Jane and Verene took turns to welcome visitors and do craft demonstrations.

Friday, 12 September 2008

week ending the 12th of September

This week, at long last, saw Frances and Innes from Sgioba Luaidh at Galgael. They were rather taken by the vastness that is Galgael, and when we all cramped into the wee bothy, to look at Innes's folders and hear Sarah-Jane sing her latest Gaelic song Norman was also part of the party. You can see him here enjoying a quick waulking song demonstration with Innes using a felted Blackface fleece as cloth. And then we were literally blown away by George, friend of Norman, filling the bothy and all Galgael with the mighty drone of the pipes.

We are looking forward to have the whole bunch of waulking song singers with us in November, on the 21st, where they will entertain and teach everybody on songs and traditions of the Highlands and Islands. As the woolcrafters we are now looking into doing something together with Sgioba Luaidh, combining our love of the lore and our skills for ... well, watch this space!

Meanwhile Sarah-Jane and Flora had started to wetfelt the last light grey stonefelt sheet, so that at the Plantation project it could get finished, and we embarked on sizing the prefelt for the Portal picture felt, and on laying out the contours of the scene to be depicted, as well as getting the tree stuffed:

The prefelt turned out needing a lot of backing with white wool, all needle felted into it, before we dared to lay the wool for the scene, which was decided to be a landscape spanning the 4 seasons.
You can see it here grow in its fourfold bands under Mary's and Alison's hands back in Galgael the next day:

Once the colours were laid out thr needle felting begun, and it was lovely to have Tawny join us, too. Meanwhile Debbie wetfelted her cushion cover in the bothy, listening to a CD of birdsong.

On Friday at the regular woolcraft group time, more folks carried on with the needlefelting of the background colours - quite a big job that, actuall. But many hands (Lynsey, Sarah-Jane, Ali, Naomi and also Anna from Helensburgh) made light work. Laryna and Jackie carried on preparing the dark wool for the mittens (also a big job, it seems!), and were joined by Jeanne, the partner of one of the Galgael volunteers, who finally had managed today to come along with her knitting, too.

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Saturday, 6 September 2008

week ending the 5th of September

It is the last week of our 3 German girls, and Katie had been busy teasing the carding the shetland wool and all 3 were needling away on the hat foam block to create the basis for their hats, and the colours of the hats. But, alas, the clay hat moulds turn out to be too short for the full hat to be shaped on it! So Patricia and Melanie, gracefully are not too phased about it (thanks God!), inspite of the hard detailed work they had put into it, and are content to have their master piece fulled as a flat round piece which will adorn their home made into cushion or bag.
Katie needled a very strong hut material and is taken the dry felt piece home to find a proper hat-mould to finish it off on. Henry the foam-hatmould has his hair stand on end now thinking he is left alone now!

Seeamless bag making at the Plantation project this week, with the action spilling over again into Galgael on Thursday to finish the fulling of the bags. Everybody admiring the bold and beautiful colours.

Lynsey had a go at felting the sheet for the tree (for the Portal), and the washing machine shrunk it considerably to just the right kind of narrow piece of felt a tree needs.

On Friday Mary came with a very nice Sultana cake and Naomi came for a shoulder massage to have the burden of the week being taken of her shoulders. Woolcraft action by Laryna, Jackie, Verene and Lynsey included more preparation of the dark wool ( a blend now of Hebridean and Shetland/Jacob) for Jackie's mitten project, as well as spinning and weaving. Anna from Helensburgh (via the Portal project) also had managed to come along for the first time to Galgael and she enjoyed the wool handling and company.

Friday saw also the farewell party for the German students, who will be missed and who will miss us, as well as visit from Nicola Sturgeon MSP, and a tripple birthday party for Gehan, Heather - and who was the third?
Verene got caught on video spinning and explaining to Nicola our woolcraft project and the very special story of the Hebridean sheep.