Sunday, September 30, 2007


It's done! This is actually my first felting project. I suppose if you're going to try something, go big.

I definitely still need to block this, and figure out a way to hang it (I'm thinking I'll stretch it over a wooden frame, but does anyone have a better idea?).

In order, these are pictures of:
1) The original painting
2) The crocheted, unfelted version (36 x 36 inches)
3) The felted version (26 x 36 inches - I'm not sure if it's normal that the work only shrinks horizontally?)
4) detail of colors
5) side-by-side comparison of before and after

I'm pretty pleased with the overall result. It was a lot of work, but it's going to look great on my living room wall. My only reservation is the felting itself - I'm not sure it's a better work because of the felting? I loved it just as much before. Hmm. I'm going to tackle an ocean scene next.

Friday, September 28, 2007


The crochet phase is done! I'm doing the actual felting tomorrow. Here's a glimpse into my process.

I originally took a jpeg of the painting and overlaid a grid in photoshop. It was good on screen, but not very useful when I was actually working. I couldn't easily print it out, given the number of rows (142 sc across, 180 rows high). Eventually I settled on the two visual aids shown here: one printout of the painting with 16 x 16 stitch squares drawn over, and a second handdrawn version showing where to place the accent colors. I used safety pins on the work itself to show the grid lines (shown in the last photo).

Other specifics: this is worked entirely in single crochet with a 5.5 mm hook. I used Lion Brand Wool and Patons Classic Wool Merino in cream, black, navy blue, blue, gray, purple, and green.

Monday, September 24, 2007


My felting project is almost done! It's huge - almost 4 feet x 4 feet - and within an hour of being completely crocheted. I love the way it looks, and am really afraid to felt it. I've decided to just go for it, though. I'll have pictures by this time next week.

Sunday, September 09, 2007

This art exhibit looks amazing. Artist Jean Arkell has knitted mini reproductions of the homes of female killers - or the houses where they committed the crimes. I love the houses, and am even more drawn to the written descriptions of the crimes. There's a certain awkwardness to the prose that adds to the general oddness of the whole project. It's very straightforward, and yet slightly off. For example:

Christiana Edmunds was a 43 year old spinster who lived with her widowed mother. She had become infatuated with a married man, Dr. Beard. In September 1870 she brought a box of chocolates to the Beard's house and insisted that Mrs. Beard eat some over a pot of tea. Christiana had filled these chocolate creams with strychnine. Immediately after eating one Mrs. Beard became severely ill. As a result Dr. Beard accused her of trying to poison his wife. Christiana denied the charge and set about trying to prove that there was a poisoner at large in Brighton. She would pay children to buy chocolate creams from the same sweet shop that she purchased the box of chocolates for Mrs. Beard from. She would inject these with strychnine, then re-wrap them and pay another child to return them. The innocent shop-keeper sold on these poisoned sweets. On 12 June 1871 this activity resulted in the death of 4-year-old Sidney Barker. Christiana even sent poisoned cakes and fruit through the mail, addressing some to herself, to try to emphasise her innocence. She was eventually caught and sentenced to death but when it transpired that she was mentally ill her sentence was commuted and she was sent to Broadmoor. She died there in 1907 aged 79. It later transpired that no less than four members of her immediate family had died as a result of mental illness

Cute Overload

Do you read Cute Overload? I only read it occasionally, as, well, it generally tends to be an overload of cuteness. A friend forwarded this link on. Yes, it's cute, and I suspect it's actually useful in Japan. When I was there (a long, long time ago), all fruit was carefully packaged individually. It was a nightmare of plastic and cardboard. As silly as it may look, this is an extremely green solution to a major problem.