Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Fall Felting Retreat- October 12-14th, 2012

 The dates and details are set for a relaxing, revitilizing, energizing fall felting retreat - I am so looking forward to this event! 
The retreat will run on October 12th, 13th, and 14th, 2012.
All of the details are described below, including class descriptions, location, costs....please just contact me if you have any questions. 

Day 1: Dyeing for Feltmaking
We’ll explore many different dyeing methods and timing your dyeing to influence your finished results. Primarily we will use low impact acid dyes and work through techniques such as immersion dyeing, clamp resists and shibori stitching, using colour and planning for overdyeing, painting with dyes, and depending on what’s in garden, some natural dyeing and ecoprinting. We’ll look at examples of these techniques when used on materials before felting, at the prefelt stage, and after felting.  Lots of fun with the dyepots simmering!
Each participant will leave with a good selection of materials that can be used in the following two retreat days, or for use at home later. 

This class is suitable for beginner to advanced feltmakers, and also of interest to fibre artists working in other mediums like ArtQuilting. The dyes used are only appropriate for protein fibres, such as silk and wool.

Day 2: Surface Design in Feltmaking
A study in as many combinations of felting and surface design as we can fit in to the time we have together! Layering different wool breeds for effect, Nuno patches in silks and cottons, plain and printed, protrusions, spikes, locks, shibori shaping, slashes and holes, carving, pencil rovings, prefelts, pockets, resists, clamping, wire, printed text, stitching during and after…… We’ll each create our own wet felted art cloth sampler that can be later made into a great book cover, needle case, bag front, or further embellished and mounted as a felt tapestry.  This is a very dynamic, explorative class- full of energy, ideas and inspiration. 

This class is suitable for beginner to advanced feltmakers…there will surely be something new for everyone!  The techniques used in this class can be incorporated into the project chosen for the last day of the felting retreat.

Day 3:  Dimensional Felting with Resists
 Dimensional felting involves using resists to create seamless hollow forms, in any shape you desire. This technique is commonly used to make vessels, slippers, hats, clothing, sculptural works as well as one of our favourites – bags! Beautiful, unique, and durable. A bag can be created in any size or shape and is a great canvas for experimenting with new surface techniques.  Participants may choose to make a three dimensional vessel other than a bag such as slippers, art vessels, or cushion covers. The techniques will be the same.  We will cover resist making, measuring, shaping, thinking in 2-D forms to create 3-D shapes and felting on a form. We’ll be using the best sculptural wools and adding all sorts of individual ornamentation; silks and cottons, ruffles, protrusions and prefelts, all while making your own personalized, functional art.   Leather handles, as well as all other supplies, are included in the retreat fee.

General Information:
We will be working together in a very beautiful and peaceful setting….encouraging the feeling of a true retreat time, with immersion in our environment and craft.  In the evenings we can continue felting, talking fibre and creativity, or simply enjoy the quiet space.  There is onsite accommodation for up to five people, plus workspace for five people to attend on a day basis. All participants are welcome to stay or join in for the evening free felting time.  Please contact me for more information if you would like accommodation.
Retreat fee is $125.00 per day, with a 15% discount for those attending all three days.
All materials are included in each class, with additional materials available to purchase at the end of each day.
Also included is a hearty, local Fall lunch on each day.  We’ll do our best to accommodate special dietary requests- just let us know and we’ll see what we can do! 

About the space:
The retreat will be held at a beautiful cottage set on three forested acres on Meech Lake in Gatineau Park. There is plenty of room for people to work comfortably, and to find a quiet space as they desire. The Fall colours will be at their peak (hopefully!) and we’ll be able to work either indoors or out, with a lake and forest view to inspire us.  As time permits, participants can walk along the lake, go canoeing, or take a hike up the hill beside the creek on the hundreds of kilometres of trails than run from the trailhead next door. This is a place that is very special to me, and it is my favourite time of year to be there- I am looking forward to sharing it with you!  The cottage is only 10 minutes from Chelsea, which has some very nice restaurants and café’s, and 20 minutes from Ottawa.

About the retreat schedule:
The retreat is designed so that each day can build on the next, but each day can also be taken independently of the others.  The class time will be from 10:00am- 4:00pm. A  full, dynamic and energetic session,  balanced by some slow time through the day to enjoy the surroundings, journal, stretch, and relax.  Free felting time in the evenings are often a very rich part of the retreat experience;  to deepen our relationships, discuss the technique shared through the day as well as our own fibre experiences, or just chat over a bottle of wine.  Evenings are open to everyone participating.

Please email me  if you would like to reserve a space.   Your space will be confirmed on receipt of the full fee via PayPal or cheque.  The retreat will run with a minimum of 6 participants, and a maximum of 10. 
Registration is required by September 1st, 2012.  
If you find you are not able to attend, full refunds will be offered up until September 1st, 2012. After that date no refunds will be available unless we are able to fill your space.

I look forward to felting with you this Fall!
Warm wishes,


  1. Ohhh, how I wish I could go! If I somehow can get my finances in order before then, I am there!
    Sounds like a great workshop, Fiona! I know everyone will have a beautiful time.

    1. Thanks Nicole- I would love to meet you! I hope to do a west coast version in late October also...details coming! I am so looking forward to this! Yay!