Needle Felted Wool Dolls and Other Sculptural Works of Fiber Art

My soft sculptured character dolls were inspired by real people that I have either known personally or simply noticed from afar. They are not meant to be exact replicas but are instead altered egos of "familiar others".

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Latest Find...Funky Old Hickory Nut Head Doll

It's no secret, my friends all know it, I am very addicted to "junk'n." Do I need help? Maybe an intervention? No, no, no. I can control this thing on my own, thank you. No, really I can!
It's true, I do love prowling through thrift stores, yard sales, and flea markets. And I used to buy anything and everything that caught my interest and "might be of use sometime." And that's exactly why I have a storage building full of stuff...some good old stuff and some not so good newer junk.
But in recent months I've narrowed my purchases down to only buying things I will actually use like kitchen gadgets, leftover bits of yarn, lace and ribbon, buttons and beads, etc. I also still have an affinity for old and small oddities and collectables. And of course I am always scouting for doll chairs and other props to use when displaying or photographing my needle felted characters.
Last week I paid just one dollar for this funky old hickory nut head doll in our local Habitat For Humanity thrift store.
She's about 6 inches tall and is really quite a study in contrasts - elegant in her beautiful lace and satin dress but quite haggard  and witchy in her face and stance.
One has to wonder why she is dressed to the ninths and if she made it to the ball (or her wedding) on time?

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Kindred's Dye-In: Oh the Beautiful Colors!

A dozen or so "Kindred Spirits" met for our annual Dye-In at Ms. Peggy's house this past Thursday. We brought fibers of all sorts (mostly wool) and our hostess provided dyes of many colors. We had a great time - playing like little girls - painting, dunking, steaming and even microwaving until at last a rainbow of colored roving, batting and yarn hung on the clothes line drying. Lunch was potluck style and boy can we gals cook!
What a great and beautiful day it was down in the country on the Cumberland Plateau...good friends, good food, and beautiful fiber to work with...who could ask for more?
Thanks Peggy, for having us!

In The Top Photo: These silk caps, wool locks and wool/mohair yarn have been handdyed to coordinate with each other. My plan is to use them, along with C-1 and Merino, in making felted vessels. I will use the beads and buttons for embellishments.
Barb Keyes, of Lancing, TN, custom dyed the silk caps for me. I ordered a blend of turquoise, copper, rust, etc. and she nailed the colors beautifully. My goal at the Dye In was to dye small amounts of wool locks and yarn in a variety of coordinating colors to also use as embellishments on my pots. With the help of fellow Kindred Spirits I was able to pick the right colors and they will work perfectly, don’t you think? I am so excited to get started!

Applying dye to fiber...
Brewing fiber in a dye kettle...
Rolling painted fiber up in plastic wrap for steaming or microwaving...
Rinsing fiber...
Draining and inspecting the dyed fiber...
Hanging dyed fiber out to dry...
Relaxing and chatting with friends...
Having loads of fun!!!