Just spent a lovely day at Meadowbrook doing some wet felting. This is the second year we have had summer workshops to develop crafting ideas for our Holiday Faire. Uli Brahmst who chairs the Holiday Faire committee organizes these creative sessions, preparing the conceptual ideas and providing the materials. The feeling when one arrives is of adventure, freedom to explore. Uli shares her deep understanding of artistic expression and her professional experience of technique with grace so that one feels almost anything might be possible.
On this first day of summer parents and children gathered under the shade trees with wool, rocks and buckets of hot, soapy water to experiment with color and form. We began by making wishing stones. The younger children particularly enjoyed wrapping the smooth, palm sized rocks in layers of colorful wool which they then rubbed into cheery, felt overcoats. Something mysteriously transformative happens in this work; the lightness of wool meets the heft of rock, airy wool firms to soften unyielding stone. As I hold a wishing stone in my hand, I feel there is something of a ‘wolf in sheep’s clothing’ about it, a wishing stone that reminds me to weigh my choices wisely before I wish.
Afternoon, and the parents and high schoolers have moved on to shaping vessels using the forms of larger stones or flat cardboard shapes. This time a small hole is snipped in the wool coat and the stone is eased out (birthed the mothers decided), revealing an inner surface and a different function. Wet felting is a very forgiving medium, the unexpected happens joyfully often and everyone easily produces pieces that are beautiful.
The next workshop will be on July 20th, everyone is welcome. Leave a comment below if you would like more details, or if you have ideas or stories to share.