Whidbey Island Felting Retreat

Months have passed since I stepped out with a group of intrepid felters for a weekend retreat on Whidbey Island, two hours from Seattle. We rented a large classroom space at an art school and three bedroom vacation rental a short walk from the classroom. We piled roving, pool noodles, bubble wrap and a sense of adventure into our cars for a weekend of experimenting and hard work.

jean2

This was such an amazing weekend of fun, it is hard to put it into words. Besides the bags and bags of food, snacks and beverages; everyone brought their favorite felting books and bits of eye candy. We shared our personal stories, our dreams and our ideas late into the night, while working very hard during the day.

jeanette

The muse and inspiration for the weekend was Chris White’s book Uniquely Felt. We pored over the projects, dissecting the aesthetics and merits of each, imagining departures from the originals. I’m not sure which was more fertile ground: the evening discussions or the daytime experiments.

We collaborated, critiqued and assisted each other with the projects without getting in the way or interfering. I really can’t imagine how it we managed to assemble such a harmonious group of symbiotic personalities.

paula

Our classroom had lots of space and enough tables that we could each pull two six-foot folding tables together for a larger work surface than any of us had previously used. The classroom had kitchen counters with simmering pots of water and two sinks on one wall, making hot water and rinsing stations easy to access.

linda

With no time constraints, we pulled out all the stops trying ideas that were percolating in the recesses of our imaginations, just waiting for the opportunity to be made into felt.

leah2

Some projects were a raving success, while others were a learning experience. I spent most of a day working on a wrap-around skirt idea that just didn’t work. Now I have a whole lot of felt yardage to show for it, and that idea has been put to bed. Should I ever want to try a felt skirt, I’ll know where to start and what not to do.

uniquefelters

The Unique Felters from left to right: Leah, Jean, Linda, Paula and Jeanette.

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3 Responses to “Whidbey Island Felting Retreat”


  1. 1 Dawn Edwards Sunday, October 25, 2009 at 3:21 am

    Good morning! Love your blog.

    What a wonderful weekend retreat! Looks like there was a lot of creative energy flowing. Beautiful works!

    By the way, I’ve been wanting to make a felt skirt, too. Any tips you could offer on what works/dosn’t work?

    Take care,
    Dawn

  2. 2 Nicola Monday, October 26, 2009 at 10:45 am

    Great post, looks like you all had a wonderful time!

  3. 3 chandi Tuesday, October 27, 2009 at 12:45 am

    Looks like you had a glorius time. Iam glad that I have net up with all of you through your classes Leah. Many Blessings. Please keep me on your mailings for events and classes.


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