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Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Woolly Gathering - knitting & crochet & handwork get together

Woolly Gathering on Saturday, 2nd of July - 10.30am - 12.30pm

Caherhurley, Tuamgraney, Co. Clare

Your are all invited to join us for a two hour social session!
Please bring your knitting, crochet or other handworks you are working on!
Children are very welcome, but please bring a little snack along.
This session is great for people to see the shop and to get an idea of what
we are up to every Thursday or simply to join a social handwork session.
There will be NO teaching on this day; but plenty of exchange possibility!

For more info & directions phone Jennifer 087 0911275

Friday, June 10, 2011

Farewell to Spring

Farewell to Spring

Before it feels like Spring has finally bowed her head to Summer, I wanted to share some felted pieces that I made in honour of springtime.

I recall having a nature table in primary school and I clearly remember being captivated by the birds nest it held. The value of bringing the outside in, to the classroom or home is significant, particularly in more urban environments. Children love to gather natural treasures and put them in a special place, like a seasonal table, to remind them of that special walk, what's currently growing or changing in nature and the colours or creatures we associate with that time of year.

 Symbolic figures such as these reflect the changing seasons outside and welcome in the new. The figures have real presence, are sturdy enough for gentle play by older children and are ideal as central figures in puppet plays and storytelling.

Lady Spring's basket I made from hemp, I felted with undyed and plant-dyed wool. I tell you, working with plant-dyed is a whole other level of experience as a feltmaker. Every time I use it I swear I don't want to work with any other kind of wool. It is quite literallyalive and you can feel the energy of that in your hands as you work with it. It's also to do with the very subtle qualities of the colours.

Jenny of Woollygathering kindly photographed these locally in East Clare. They were the preliminary shots for a series of Spring cards, taken with the thought of making a collection of greeting cards that celebrate or mark each season. The seed of an idea to be further developed...

 These needle felted figures are made without any sewing, gluing or patterns, I work from my head. And why I love it..? They are100% Wool. I can take it absolutely anywhere when I'm working on it, (and I do!)without having to think about access to water. There's no clean-up after a work session and I can put it down and pick it up at will. In other words, it's perfect if you have a family, small children. I find I can do it right there at my kitchen table, in between getting up to stir the soup, or soothing my small boy's latest injury ; ) And I love the sound of it, of the fibres entangling with every stroke of the needle. Three-dimensional work was not a strength for me at art college and as I have mostly worked in two dimensions, I've found that the soft sculpture work really has developed my sense of that, and brought me on in ways I didn't expect. 

I cherish the way handwork can make you feel like you're making something (quite special) out of nothing. It is just so with this process, you start out with tufts of coloured fluff and end up with a figure you can hold and place, and look to. Enchanting, no? 

Written by Mia Foley -

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Next workshop - Spinning with the drop spindle - An introduction

                                        SPINNING - With the drop spindle - An Introduction

 Dates:  June 23rd Thursday
            June 29th Wednesday

Learn the basics of spinning wool into yarn using a drop spindle. This workshop is an introduction and essential for going on to the advance level - spinning Art-yarns, plying etc.
Early booking is advisable, due to limited space.

 Looking forward to seeing you there!

Duration:     10am - 12.30pm
Teacher:      Jennifer Lienhard
Costs:          €25
Materials:    €18 approx. incl. Spindle