Tuesday 1 May 2012

SHIBORI Flower Cushion...

With the first 'Felt Cushion' workshop coming up in a couple of weeks time I've been working on a new design.

This cushion is decidedly OTT ! Colourful and bold, the design incorporates some exciting new techniques and can be dressed up or down to compliment any sofa! The flower is constructed with layers of pre-felted petals, some completely felted into the background square, others partially needle-felted together, giving the cushion a real 3-D feel. A separate centre piece was felted using a 'shibori' technique, needle-felted onto the flower and decorated with wooden beads.

'Shibori' is a term used to describe the Japanese techniques of shaping and embellishing fabric by knotting & binding. When applied to pre-felts it can create interesting textures which remain in place after further felting.

The flower centre was created by knotting felt balls into a pre-felted circle. This was fully felted by hand in warm soapy water. After felting the knots were untied and the felt balls were left completely felted together creating the bobbly texture. (This piece would actually make a wonderful felt corsage in itself!)

The centre was needle-felted onto the petals and beads were sewn in place. The finished felt flower square was then sewn to a fabric backing to make the cushion cover.

This has been a really fun project to work on. There couldn't be a greater contrast to all the natural alpaca shades I've been surrounded by recently.  

I'm looking forward to seeing how it works out practically in the classes and seeing all the variations my students will come up with. The 'Felt Cushion' workshops will take place in Freshwater & Newport in June so for dates and booking details follow the links...

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