So this was a little task I set myself last year; to incorporate Nuno Felting into my weaving and create a combination of textures which would be both tactile and visually pleasing. The plan - to fuse the weight and heft of a chunky hand spun weave (alpaca of course) with the delicate wisp of alpaca fibre felted into silk.
The inspiration for this piece were the beautiful reeds that swathe the Norfolk broads like a curtain, whilst subtly filtering sunlight across the water. This stunning photograph of Burnt Fen Broad, taken by Two Rivers Artist, James Arthur, completely catches this feeling.
The weave would be the reeds, filtered and diffused by a fine covering of alpaca fibre embedded into translucent silk gauze.
Attaching this gossamer fabric to the weave proved interesting, I needed to keep the woven part of the piece dry, as I only wanted the silk and alpaca fibre to felt - not the woven piece. As you can see, some of the weft strands have been left loose to portray the reeds, whilst also helping to catch the wisps of raw alpaca fibre as they embed into the silk gauze.
Nuno felting alpaca fibre with silk creates the most wonderful light, translucent material, The fabric is surprisingly strong for something that looks and feels so delicate and looks fantastic worn as a scarf or as with this project made to hang on a wall or in front of a window to decorate a room.
The beautiful shawls below are made by some of my students last year. If you are interested in learning how to Nuno felt find out more here.
Eight diverse artists living and working between the rivers Ant and Bure.