Felted Jewellery & Weddings!

December 5, 2011 at 11:09 am 5 comments

Hey! Happy Monday. I thought you might like something a little different and not paper related. All of this jewellery came about because I bought an oversized cashmere sweater in a charity shop. It was more expensive than I wanted to pay (£8!!) but I knew I’d get a decent amount of felt from it so it would be worth it. Felting sweaters involves agitation, some sort of soap/detergent and heat. The process is really easy- just put into your washing machine at a high heat, add washing powder/liquid, go put your feet up (or not!), come back at the of the cycle, repeat the cycle if its not quite shrunken down enough and then put it into the tumble dryer (which I now have and so am exceddingly happy that my house isnt overrun with wet washing!). It was after the tumble drying that the Eureka moment happened.

You need to clean the lint/fluff out after every dryer cycle and so after doing the felting, I had a really lovely ball of wool ‘fluff’. I wasn’t sure whether it would be any use- particularly as it had already been felted and ‘shrunk’. I wanted to see if I could use it to make some felt beads. This is a really simple process- just a small lump of wool, some hot water and washing up liquid. You put a small amount of hot water onto the wool, and the teeniest blob of detergent and get rolling, like making a plasticine ball. Keep rolling and adding more water  if necessary. If its too wet, it wont roll into a ball and you just need to squeeze it out and keep rolling. After the first one, I got the feel for it and made about 10 of them. The challenge was getting matching sized balls for the jewellery. You know the balls are done when you throw them onto a surface and they bounce! After they’d dried, I used a needle to pierce them and sewed them together using knots to keep them in place. They are incredibly lightweight and you don’t feel like you’re actually wearing them. I wanted to make a necklace or choker and decided to use some of the seam on one of the jumper arms that I twirled and folded and then sewed up to create a make-shift rose. It’s using up every part of the jumper and I wanted to use the other beads too. I had some red beads in my bead drawer that were perfect and some memory wire so that is what I made the choker with. I embroidered a ‘loop’ on the back of the rose and thats how its attached to the memory wire.

The last part of the set is the brooch– this was ridiculously easy thanks to a Sizzix die from SU! that cuts through the felt like a knife through butter! I haven’t quite finished this one- I’m going to pepper the brooch with tiny seed beads but that will probably get done after December! They were all made in about 1 hour and a half- so not bad going and as I’ve got most of thefelted jumper left- it cost about £2 (including the wire and beads) to make. Pretty great value too.

The reason I made them was to go with a dress I’d bought for a wedding I went to on Saturday. I wasn’t intending to buy a new dress but in a charity shop were 3 designer silk dresses, brand new, in my size and only £9.98! I snapped one up, and then realised the age old problem of – what on earth do I put with it! I had a black velvet jacket at home that would go and just needed a pair of shoes. After a lot of searching, I found another charity shop bargain ‘Jasper Conran’ shoes complete with tags! Alas, the shoes were peep toe. It’s December, cold, and I didn’t fancy bare legs! So I then had to hunt for something. Do you go for nude-coloured tights- is it committing a faux-pas showing tights through peep-toes?! Apparently not. The fashion police have recently seemingly approved this with several conditions; 1. Preferably dark tights with dark shoes. 2. If you go with skin-colour- make sure they’re fairly sheer and pull the seam part away from the edge of your toes and under your foot so its not showing! Please- who actually makes up these rules?!!!

Anyhow, I thought I’d scored a winner by accidentaly coming across a pair of tights with a black seam and black toes and heels but skin colour on the actual tights. It came to the evening reception and I actually wanted to make an effort and banished the kids for half an hour. It didnt work- they were all intrigued as to exactly why I wanted to be kid-free. Just shows how little dressing up goes on in my household! I got the tights out- duh- they were actually stockings. Arrggh. A tiny teeny label on the top alerted you to that. Should have read it properly. So I got out the spare tights (phew for being organised) and put the whole outfit on. Have you ever put something on and just not felt like you? I  just didnt really like it. Gorgeous dress, just not me at all. The dress went away. I dug out an old favourite black dress, shoved the jacket on, added my newly created jewellery and felt ok. I went to put my shoes on. I knew they were one size larger but as they were sling backs I thought I could alter them. (I tell this story as a word of caution to not attack your shoes with items designed for crafting. ) I have a crop-a-dile which has come in pretty handy over the years for adding holes to belts etc. No problem , I thought. Just add another hole in each shoe, tighten the back and we’re good to go! I put holes in right places…and the wrong places. The device cuts holes in the opposite side too and I managed to loop the sling back through the opposite hole and cut a hole into another part of the shoe. Not once, but twice. By this point I was rather hacked off- wondering why I’d started this in the first place. Fortunately, it hadn’t pierced anywhere too obvious but by the time I came downstairs, I knew that me and the conrans were never going to be friends. I wear some seriously high heels, but these were just plain uncomfortable. Back upstairs, found another pair and went out. I ask you- why do we do this stuff to ourselves?! Too much like hard work! The wedding had been beautiful, the bride stunning, the family are all completely lovely and it was great once I finally got there.

Moral of the story. You know. It’s fairly obvious. If you’re wanting to create a new look, Do some proper planning. Don’t take your 4 year old whilst you are shopping and possibly secure the help of friend, personal shopper or failing all of that- Gok Wan!

Well- December is rushing by already and I’ve heaps to do. See you when I’ve dug out my Christmas decorations! x

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Crafting Christmas Quickie! Jingle Bells Card & Creating!

5 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Mum  |  December 5, 2011 at 12:06 pm

    Fantastic felting!

    Like

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  • 2. Ros crawford  |  December 5, 2011 at 1:34 pm

    These are gorgeous!!! so clever … and I know what you mean … sometimes you can look a million dollars and feel totally uncomfortable … as for tights / stocking … I once found a perfect pair … so I thought … then realised (small print) they had no feet in!!??!! I mean who wears these and why??
    I guess it’s an age thing … Have a good day my friend

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    Reply
  • 3. Monika  |  December 5, 2011 at 5:15 pm

    Great jewellery!!! I know that feeling … you need to recognize yourself … to feel good. 🙂 x

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    Reply
  • 4. Vicki  |  December 5, 2011 at 7:44 pm

    Stunning, clever you! 🙂

    Hugs xx

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  • 5. Vicki  |  December 5, 2011 at 7:46 pm

    Hahaha, it’s been that long since I blogged I put the wrong blog address in the above post…..sorry 😉

    Like

    Reply

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Welcome to this space, my little place of creative refuge away from the busy-ness of life!
I'm a wife, Mum to 6, crafter, Christian and fortunate to be doing a job that I love!

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