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Showing posts from March, 2009

Knitting, Weaving, Love and Lace

Today is Ada Lovelace Day and I must fulfill my pledge to blog about women in science and technology. The brief for this plegde is very general and as a result I've drafted and discarded this post several times. I'm still not sure what I'm writing about but here I go again.

I keeping with the theme of this blog I thought I'd point up some connections between technology and fibre arts and the work of one of the many women I've encountered on my journey.

Having had a scientific education, I never really separated my art and craft from science and technology. A lot of knitting and weaving machinery is controlled by punched cards - so were computers for a long time. Knitting patterns are not unlike computer programmes in their coded language and logical structures. Dyeing and printing fabric requires a knowledge of chemistry. Spinning involves an awareness of physical principles. Many patchworkers have an instinctive grasp of geometry. I could go on - some of you …

Needled whirls and waves in sea of kid mohair and silk

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Spring scarves 2
Originally uploaded by MadeleineS.
This is the needle felted detail on the end of a medium length scarf - or what I hear the Americans call a comforter. I've found a couple of companies making exquisite light weight yarn in kid mohair and silk. The softness of the fibre belies its strength and the colours range from bold to delicate. This is my current working palette


The main part of the scarf is knitted as a tube of stocking stitch in one colourway . The ends of the tube are flattened and sealed by needlefelting complementary colours of roving from both sides. The open structure of the knitting lets the felt show through from both sides and the different textures add depth to the final work.

As with the tentacled pots below, I'll be taking some of these to exhibit at the Arts Market on Saturday. Its at Out of the Blue Drill Hall, Dalmeny Street, Edinburgh from 11am to 7pm on 7 March. Not sure where else they might end up.

Squirmy Felty Things!

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New tentacle pots 4
Originally uploaded by MadeleineS.
Last Saturday was my first full day back in the studio. I've been knitting and machine felting in the interim - working on these felted pots, bowls and bottles with their various appendages. They all needed a little more attention to their details and balance (physical and colour) and that needed the space and some of the tools I only have in the studio.

There was an expression of interest in a green one of these some months ago. Don't know if the person is still interested but his suggestion was inspiring. There are 11 in the collection and probably more to come. The colours range from petrol blue/green marine to autumnal green/brown/yellow shades and the tentacles are created either by felting short lengths of crochet or by creating narrow openings in the main structure and knitting them in later. I'm quite taken with the second technique and have some ideas for more formal structures using it.

I'll be taking so…