This year was a very busy one for me.
In response to a request from VAScotland, I led a creative activity at their Conference in Glasgow, ‘Making Matters’, when assisted by Ann Ross, Maureen Macallister, and Mairi Campbell, we enabled 130 delegates express their ideas and notions through Needle-felting. There were 13 tables with 10 delegates, and each table had only 20 minutes to organise themselves and create a visual representation of their thoughts; after which each table in turn showed their panel and explained them. During the interval that followed, Ann and I demonstrated the next stage of felting, ie wet-felting the needled panels.
Afterwards, Ann and I joined the panels to form a triptych, and felted them together for a smooth finish. Once they were dry, I treated the surfaces with fabric medium, so that I could write on each the words that each group used. Ann helped me sew the panels on to the background fabric, and once that was completed, I wrote the poetry written during the day, on to it. Thus making the whole an expression of the whole experience by everyone concerned. The proposition is that the finished triptych will be displayed at the ‘Platform’ Centre, Glasgow, where it was first conceived.
Saw me participating in my last showing as a Stand-holder at the ICHF ‘Creative Stitches’ Show at the SECC, Glasgow.
It was also the last time I put on an additional display, ‘Once Upon a Time’, inspired by Fairy Tales and Myths, with costumes in the Fashion Show. The stand featured my Alice in Wonderland and Alice through the Looking Glass characters, while on the catwalk, I showed my costume for ‘Lorelei’.
April – June
I was very much involved in the ‘Felt Fantastic’ Scottish Felters Group Exhibition at the Barony Centre, West Kilbride, during which time I ran several felting workshops, including ones for the creation of 2 Community Felt Panels, based on the local heritage of the Coast and Town.
As part of Refugee Week organised by the Scottish Refugee Council, I took felting into the streets of Glasgow. On the Wednesday afternoon we set up a gazebo in Argyle Street (centre of Glasgow), and I invited passers-by to needle-felt portraits of themselves.
At the end of the afternoon I had 20 portraits, but some spaces remained to be filled, so I needled portraits of my neighbours, my husband, and a social worker to complete the picture. Once that was done, I wet-felted the whole panel and stitched it on to a background fabric – thus created ‘The People Of Scotland’ panel which I then presented to the organisers so that it could be used at future events. What fun we all had!
Saw me setting up the ‘Cloud Felts’ Exhibition at Birnam Arts Centre, Dunkeld,
and the ‘Felt Fest’ Exhibition at the Tower House Gallery and Museum in Hawick, showing also the 24 panels made by Scottish Felters celebrating Scotland’s Heritage, History and Culture – a project that took 2 years to complete.
I participated in the Official Launch of ‘Felt Fest’, when I led a drop-in needle-felting session during the afternoon on the Saturday, followed by a Talk at 5.00pm ‘Contemporary Trends in Fibre Art’.
On the Sunday, I ran a Day-workshop, ‘Drawing and Painting with Fibres’, which involved needle-felting pictures in the morning, and wet-felting them in the afternoon for a smooth finish.
March at the SECC Hobby Craft and Sewing Show saw the debut of my Solo Exhibition, ‘With My Head in the Clouds’, the culmination of over 2 years work that involved laser designs and a public interactive installation, whereby visitors added their thoughts and dreams on to ‘clouds’
During Science Week at Dynamic Earth, Edinburgh, with the help of Ann Ross, volunteers from the Scottish Felters, and myself, we invited youngsters and members of the public to become involved in the making of 2 large felt panels depicting a) Oceans, and b) The Rain Forest. Children, mothers, fathers, and anyone who showed an interest helped their creation over a period of 6 days! Once I brought the panels home, I finished them off, and presented them to Dynamic Earth for public display.
Monday 3rd – Friday 7th August: Scottish Felters Summer School at the Braeport Community Centre, Dunblane, when I ran a 5-day Workshop, ‘Fashion Felts with Flair’, as an opportunity to develop and create imaginative Wearables. What wonder were created then in my workshop and in the Shibori class run by Christine Sinclair, as well as Ann Ross’s Plant Magic workshop!!!!
Saw me teaching at Birnam Arts Centre – 13th September: ‘Fancy Feet and Magic Mitts’ Workshop
7th October: ‘Drawing and Painting with Fibres’, I gave an afternoon Illustrated Talk to the Ayrshire Embroiderers’ Guild, which was warmly received. So much so, that they have asked me to return in the future to give them workshops! Great fun! So much so, that I have been invited back to run some more felting workshops for them in 2016/17. I’m looking forward to it!
This year will see me being involved in the following activities:
January – end of March: Art Sessions at fortnightly intervals at Braeport Community Centre,have now ended. Future plans are being discussed
January – end of March: 12 afternoon sessions with Upward Mobility group at Dynamic Earth, running Felt and Art activities inspired by the displays, with the first project completed. Early Life on Earth
Second project was completed successfully last Friday, Tropical Rain Forest What a brilliant session that was!!! We even had an East Egg Hunt in the Rain Forest, and finished off the afternoon with a visit to the Space Dome, when Sean and Marcello dressed up as astronauts!! What fun! I'm looking forward to seeing all their projects on display next Friday at the Upward Mobility Centre! Well done everyone!!!!
February – On Saturday, 27th: I ran a ‘Felt Bags for Divas’ workshop at Birnam Arts Centre, Dunkeld,, with these colourful and witty results. What a laugh we had too!
April 28th – May 1st : at the Knitting and Stitching Show, Ingliston, Exhibition Centre: daily 1-hour workshops, ‘Drawing and Painting with Wool’ and ‘Colour Magic with Wet Felting’
July 2nd – 31st: Exhibition of Scottish Heritage Panels at the Dunblane Museum + display of small items by the Scottish Felters
July 23rd – 17th September: ‘Sky Felts’ Exhibition at the Towerhouse, Hawick – an exhibition of contemporary Fibre Art by me, Ann Ross, Mairi Campbell, and Jenny Mackay (more details on Events page)
July 25th - 28th Dynamic Earth Space Community Project, when I worked with members of the Public creating felt Planets!
August 1st - 5th The 3rd Scottish Felters Summer School took place at Braeport Community Centre, when we offered 9 different workshops. Our biggest yet!!! What fun we all had, and what brilliant things were created!!!! Already planning next year's!
2017 - July
Two of my felt panels are being hung at the beautiful. newly opened Ripple Retreat (nr Callendar, Scotland), on the shores of Loch Venachar. What a privilege to know that they will be appreciated and enjoyed by others during their stay! Ann Ross and I plan to run some art and craft activities there in the future.
2016 April News Flash
After waiting a year, the Tropical Rain Forest felt Panel made at Dynamic Earth by members of the public during the Science event, has finally been installed on public display at the entrance to the Centre's Shop. I am thrilled to see it so beautifully displayed, and I would like to thank all who helped it become the success it so obviously is! So much so, that I have been asked to lead another Community project for Dynamic Earth. Great stuff!!! But, I could not do it without the assistance of my trusty Scottish Felters. It always is a team effort, so thank you again!!!