March 2011


Here is the mermaid fabric sculpture Eleanor and I made recently as part of our school’s Textile and Craft exhibition which I am organising. Each class is making a project based on Nature and the Sea using a variety of materials and crafts. This exhibition marks the Year of Craft as designated by the Crafts council of Ireland. Eleanor’s class are doing an under the water theme and we have already felted  a background for the display. The mermaid will be part of this display as well.  Here are some photos of the progression. The basic form was constructed using florist wire, tinfoil and kitchen paper to bulk it out before adding various fabrics which were dipped in Paverpol first. We sat the mermaid on a brick which was covered in a piece of silk painted another night by a friend at one of our craft nights and left behind forgotten. We collected some seaweed for added effect and I used some old rope dipped in bronze coloured paverpol for the hair. We used a tiny plant pot for the treasure chest and some broken costume jewellery.

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I can’t believe this is the first post  in so many months but life has just been so busy with the new baby.  I’m going to try to get back into it . Here’s a scarf I made recently for my mum to match a lilac tailored jacket. It is made of merino fibres of pinks and lilac, dyed needlepunch fabric, chiffon fabric, silk fibres and dyed silk gauze. The scarf is laid out in mostly linear design with a few cross lattices to add support. Rather than the traditional way of making nuno or fabric felt and laying the fibres over the fabric base or vice versa I am currently enjoying working by laying the various fibres laongside each other overlapping enough to catch. Also I am working more on design and attributing one element of design to each colour fibre or fabric. For example the cerise coloured merino is a circle, the needlepunch is a straight piece with holes torn into the middle of the strips. The chiffon was manipulated by pulling some strings at the side and causing a puckering effect before felting. I am enjoying this new approach to design. I have struggled with holding back on design and not overdoing it to the point of cluttering the effect. This new approach is very satisfying and still just as creative.

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