Tuesday, May 8, 2018

Fiona Duthie Big Ink Felted Workshop on Whidbey Island

When I found out that Fiona Duthie was going to teach her Big Ink Felted Garment Workshop on Whidbey Island, Washington I was probably the first to enroll.  I am a huge fan of Fiona's having taken not only her absolutely fantastic on-line workshops but also had the opportunity to finally meet her and take a terific sumi ink workshop from her at the August 2017 Felter's Fling at Snow Farm, MA.  Fiona is not only one of the most, if not the most, talented and artistic felters in the world but also a kind, generous and patient person and instructor.  I feel blessed to know her and learn from her.

I too am blessed to have my guy Joe in my life and to be about the best pilot around.  I asked him if he would fly me from southern California to Whidbey Island, WA for the workshop.  Not only did he say yes, but suggested we make a vacation out of it and head as far as Tofino, British Columbia, a place that has been on my bucket list for quite a while. While there we stayed and throughly enjoyed the lovely, rustic, upscale Wickaninnish Inn, went bear watching and hiked a few miles to the ocean hot springs which is absolutely amazing.  

Fiona at Pacific NW School of Art on Whidbey Island
The workshop was four days of intense felting but very satisfying and inspiring and fun hanging out with Fiona and 12 other like minded experienced felters who came from as far as Ontario, Canada and as close as taking the ferry over from Port Townsend. 
Fiona taught us how to make a sized up pattern which involves some differences from what I teach in my workshops.  Good to have both tools in my box.  There were no restrictions on what we could make although we had to have the wool layout completely done by the end of the second day which was a challenge in itself especially with the long, wide dress I decided to make which hung over both sides of the two butted up tables.  

My wool matches my hair!
I love the zen of applying sumi ink to prefelt

My finished dress before the sumi ink was applied
My dress after the sumi ink was applied.  See my name on the bottom right.

After the felting workshop, Joe and I flew from Whidbey Island to Brasada Ranch in central Oregon for two nights.  We had the opportunity to swim in their indoor pool, go horseback riding and just kick back.  The setting was lovely and Joe captured some really cool photos of me modeling my new felted dress which I am absolutely thrilled with.  I know I will have many opportunities to wear this classy, comfortable dress that was made for me and by me.  It even has a tag with my name on the back!


I loved this which was on the path to the Tofino hot springs

Sunset at Tofino, BC


Blue Goose Inn B&B on Whidbey Island has the best breakfasts ever.  We stayed in this lovely place for five nights.

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Felted Garment Construction Workshop

Felting Workshop March 2018 from Beth Marx on Vimeo.

The March 2018 nuno felted garment workshop in Southern California was a real hit with lots of camaraderie and sharing.  

The first day was optional but in the past students have said that this day alone was worth the price of the workshop!  We met in Long Beach, CA and took the Metro rail train about 50 minutes to downtown Los Angeles.  It was a cold, rainy day for a change so instead of walking the short 3/4 mile to the fabric district, we opted to take the Dash E bus for $25 (senior rate).  We bought silks, notions and closures at three of my favorite places.  After several hours of shopping, we headed to our reserved lunch, at a local Mediterranean restaurant on a quaint alley street where lots of movies have been made.  The lunch was delicious and everybody enjoyed themselves.  Then back on the Metro to head back to Long Beach.

For the next three days we met in Los Alamitos, California to construct the garment.  The first half of the first day at the workshop, I taught how to size up an existing garment to account for shrinkage.  This is such an easier method to use than taking your measurements and converting them to allow for shrinkage.  With my method, you don't even need to use a calculator just my EASY PEASY SHRINKAGE CALCULATION sheet which I provided to everybody with their handouts.   

Then it was on to felting, fulling, demonstrating and sharing.  I scheduled the work and worked the schedule to keep everyone on task to complete their garment.  And beautiful and unique were each and every garment.


Barabara felted a rectangle and then connected it part way  to make this lovely, airy poncho

Debbie made a beautiful vest with lots of texture

Vana made this gorgeous pull over long poncho with large pocket
Pam felted a trapezoid and cut in the armholes at the end.  Love it!

Susan modeling her beautiful vest
Monica was a brand new felter and look what she made!

Louise made this gorgeous jacket with beads
Renee's vest has locks on the back and cool bling!

Daveen modeling her vest open
Daveen wearing it upside down

Gina modeling the vest upside down and wearing it like a shrug.
Dorothy was new to felting and she made this amazing vest

Lindy's beautiful vest has lots of texture and cord closures
Lindy wearing her amazing vest upside down
The vests can be worn 4 ways:  Right side out, inside out, upside down right side out and upside down and inside out. Here's Lindy showing two ways to wear it.

Thank you ladies for making this workshop such a joy!

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