Wednesday, 6 May, 2015

Fresh on Felt




We have lovely goods in everything from yarn to timber and even shells, as well as tempting goodies for makers and make-believers. Explore what’s fresh on Felt this week…

designer decor and original art

re-kindle – rejuvenated furniture and sweet accessories
nadal – stylish coffee tables made from upcycled pallet wood
cindo13 – decor items that celebrate the natural and human worlds
katiei – atmospheric original artworks on canvas
copperfox – fine macramé and copper plant hangars
miabella – original artworks and photographic art prints
heartsforyou – decor hearts made with appealing decoupage
stretched – quality customisable stretched artists’ canvases, boards and blocks

children’s clothing, accessories and toys

kiwiloren – gorgeous knitted make-believe food
bibbittybaby – colourful baby bibs and accessories
inspiredbaby – accessories to make life easier for mums
beaubands – pretty hairbands for littlies





clothing, jewellery and accessories

megepop – appealing jewellery and accessories
fleurjardin – lovely vintage style aprons
molt – handmade jute and bead necklaces

gifts and goodies

rosewoodwool – yarns bred, grown, shorn, spun and hand dyed in the Waikato
thelilybug – cheerful and colourful paper creations
haamiscrafts – unique greeting cards


Tuesday, 5 May, 2015

Woolly blues

Hi, my name is Jo and I’m a knitwit. There it is, I’ve said it. I work for New Zealand’s home of handmade and I do not possess the powers of yarn-wrangling. I have not the fibre foo. My knitting is knotted.

I can knit a few basic stitches at an embarrassingly slow speed, but when I really fall over is as soon as a mistake happens. If a stitch glitch befalls me, I’m lost. I’m a goner. I lack the kind of mathematical/puzzle-solving/pattern-recognising brain to sort it out. Such is my crafting shame.


Anyway, woe is me, bring out the tiny fluffy violins, ya de ya de yah. I have the good sense to know when I’m beat (or maybe not, after more than half my lifetime’s trying) and I’ve given away my needles and concentrated on the maker-y skills I do seem to have the brain/co-ordination for.

What I’m trying to say (apart from having a bit of a maker-moan) is that I have the utmost, sincere, awe-filled respect for knitters. Crocheters too. Lucy, my Mum, numerous other acquaintances, all you clever Felt yarnsters… you lot are super-powered, honestly. You’re awesome. Give yourselves a pat on the back. (With your own gorgeous gloves on, probably.)

Thankfully I’m not left to languish in the cold without lovely handcrafted woollies though, because there’s a bevy of awesome knitters and crack-crocheters to be found on Felt. Phew!

The tough bit is choosing among their gorgeous creations – our gloves and armwarmers, scarves and shawls, hats and headwear and socks and legwarmers pages in our new jewellery and fashion category are bursting with candidates.

Be prepared and be warm this winter with lovely local handmade woolly accessories from Felt.


Monday, 4 May, 2015

Happy Star Wars Day!

Star Wars Print by Joe McMenamin

Sometimes it seems like there’s a holiday for everything these days, but here’s one that will be close to the heart of many sci-fi fans. Today, May 4, is Star Wars Day (yes, really!), an unofficial secular holiday celebrating George Lucas’ Star Wars franchise. It is observed by many fans of the movies online, as well as at conventions and celebrations around the world.

At least one of the Felt team is old enough to remember seeing the original films at the movies (not naming any names – cough Jo cough, cough) so we’ve used the Felt Force and found some fabulous handmade Star Wars tributes to mark the day.

Star Wars Kindle Sleeve by Coulter & Coulter

Dark Side Crayons (4 per packet) by Crazy Crayons

'C3PO' computer key dangly earrings by Geeky Bling

While you’re admiring these sci-fi inspired creations, take a moment to check out our brand new pop culture and geekery pages, full of goodies for fans of every flavour.

Have a great Star Wars Day and may the Force be with you. :-)

Yoda Print by Poster Guy

Star Wars Baby Booties by Donna Shaw

Stormtrooper T-shirt by Mark Catley

Remembering ANZAC in stitch

The annual Waikato/BOP Regional Embroiderers’ Exhibition is a special one this year, with a theme of Remembering ANZAC in Stitch 1915-2015.

Hosted by the Tauranga Embroiderers’ Guild, the exhibition will showcase the ANZAC Tapestry, stitched for The Tapestry Trust of New Zealand Inc Project by Whakatane Embroiderers’ Guild members. 43 Guild members worked on this beautiful piece for over 200 hours.

The exhibition also includes several judged sections and a display of memorabilia, alongside many pieces of traditional and contemporary work by Guild members.

The exhibition runs for five days only, May 13-17, at the Baycourt Community and Arts Centre, 38 Durham Street, Tauranga. Gold coin entry.


Thursday, 30 April, 2015

Give handmade this Mother’s Day

Mother’s Day is on Sunday 10 May this year, so there’s still time to be organised about this and make sure Mum gets the spoiling she deserves – right?


So to make sure you’re Mother’s Day-smart and gift-sorted, check out our handy-dandy Mother’s Day Gift Guide and super-stylish online Mother’s Day Catalogue on issuu.

We’ve got your shopping streamlined to make it easy – our gorgeous handcrafted gifts are all sorted by price or by type of mum. (Yes, of course there are types of mums!) We’ve got gifts for domestic goddess mums, outdoorsy mums, glamour mums, mums in need of R&R and even special treats for first time mothers. And if budget is a concern, just head to our under $20, under $50, under $100 or over $100 categories for a price to suit. Here’s a taster to whet your appetite…





Whatever your Mum loves (apart from you of course!) you’re bound to find something she’ll adore on Felt. Don’t leave it too late – get the perfect Mother’s Day gift today, and don’t forget to peruse our online Mother’s Day Catalogue on issuu too!

Wednesday, 29 April, 2015

Fresh on Felt




So many colourful and varied styles to choose from this week – we really do have something to suit everyone!

designer decor and original art

eddieswood – striking wooden decor and furniture items
little1step – original, appealing acrylic paintings and other treasures
cascreations – cheerful and uplifting artworks featuring quirky village scenes
emmelene – amazing chalet clocks
staceymoore – vintage-styled art and decor using recycled components
recyclcrafts – characterful upcycled decor items
neon22 – colourful and creative “art bite” mini artworks

children’s clothing, accessories and toys

mavacreation – snuggly knitted clothes and accessories for wee ones
sunnydaze – sweet toys and wall art
woolncuddles – cute crochet accessories for kids
beadcraft – adorable kitset toy rabbits
flossyscoats – warm winter coats for kids from upcycled blankets
squareroots – intriguing, attractive and hardwearing wooden games
alethia – custom birth announcements
rmcallum – gorgeous wee hand knitted toy bunnies
stitchgirl – fun and colourful accessories for all the family
letterbcraft – attractive and warm winter clothing for kids





clothing, jewellery and accessories

latinchic – gorgeous jewellery featuring Latin American influences
fenetres08 – original, hand-crafted wire jewellery
ruru – warm and snuggly crochet hats
twnz – unique artisan jewellery using gemstones and silver
alanagarland – beautiful garments and accessories for youngsters and grown ups
ktbjewellery – stylish wooden and glass dome jewellery

gifts and goodies

microgreens – memorable wedding favours that grow!
white_dove – lovely wedding accessories including ring cushions and pens
gypsysouls – intricate and colourful dream catchers
lochanside – lovely alpaca and merino yarn products, restored spinning wheels



Monday, 27 April, 2015

Featured seller: Kanuka Glen

For John Jepson of Kanuka Glen, using upcycled timber as the canvas for his beautiful native bird art meets an urgent need to reduce our waste as a society. “For every full rubbish bin that goes to landfill, seventy full rubbish bins were made upstream to make the junk in that one rubbish bin you got rid of. So it’s no surprise that in the past three decades one third of the world’s natural resources have been consumed. Buying locally produced goods and reusing items that can serve a different use is a great way to contribute towards returning the balance.”

kanukaglen falcon

What do you make?
I create rustic renditions of New Zealand’s beautiful native birds.

How did you get into your craft?
Well to be totally honest, one evening last year I just had a sudden urge to sit down and draw. The feeling had been building up in me over some time and I just had to let it out! I’ve not really stopped since and it feels good.

Do you have formal training or qualifications in your craft?
I don’t have any formal qualifications, but art has always been a big part of my life. My parents must have noticed it was something I enjoyed early on as they sent me off to Saturday morning art classes from quite a young age. This helped me greatly with keeping up with my art studies at school.

kanukaglen John at work

kanukaglen tuke

Your favourite materials, tools and processes?
I recycle pieces of timber that are well past it for their intended purpose by using them as a unique canvas on which to base my art. The wood comes from a number of sources. Some of the wood is left over from old apple bins that are past it, some of it is from old floorboards that have cracked, and other pieces even come from old farm fences that some beast or other has leant on too many times! Chalk and charcoal or high quality coloured pencils are currently my favourite media. I love taking a piece of wood that others might simply burn or leave to rot away and then turning it in to a piece of art for people to enjoy in their home.

What inspires you?
I find inspiration in lots of different places, but mostly in the natural world. I’m lucky enough to live in a beautiful part of New Zealand’s countryside where I can find inspiration around every corner.

Is there a philosophy behind your work?
Absolutely! The world’s resources are finite, yet somehow we as a species keep mass producing more and more stuff cheaper and cheaper. Everything’s designed to either go out of fashion quickly or break at a pre determined moment. It’s all madness and it bothers me greatly. My art work is a reflection of the way I choose to reject the norm. If something is broken I’ll try my best to fix it, if it can’t be fixed then I’ll think of something else it could be used for. My canvases are all made from wood that can no longer be used for anything else, and I take pride in breathing new life into each one.

kanukaglen salvaged timber

kanukaglen John at work 2

kanukaglen kokako

Describe your workspace:
Haha, my workspace is currently a small space on the floor in front of my couch. I haven’t yet got to the stage where I feel the need to create a separate space. Luckily my materials don’t take up too much room!

Five words that describe your mind:
Open. Searching. Loving. Striving. Grateful.

Your favourite feedback from a customer:
I had my first ever market experience as a seller at the Mapua Easter Fair recently. Towards the end of the day a chap came up and said ‘I just wanted you to know that out of all the stalls, your stall has been the stand out for me today. I love what you do!’ I was so stoked to have someone just ‘feel the need’ to say this to me. :-)

What are you currently listening to?
Right this very moment I am listening to the theatrical soundtrack to Disney’s ‘Up’ via Spotify. I have an incredibly eclectic taste in music and when I’m creating I like to listen to music that takes me to a different place. As movie scores tend not to have words and can be quite dramatic they’re great for freeing the mind!

Recommend an album:
One Hot Minute by the Red Hot Chili Peppers. This album and I have a lot of history together. It’s super funky, it’s sad, it’s funny, and I think I know just about every word to every song. :-)

What’s your favourite childhood book and why?
Swallows and Amazons by Arthur Ransome. It created an amazing sense of adventure in my mind. Everything that happened in the book seemed like something I could find myself doing with my mates during the holidays.

What are you reading now?
Right now I am reading The Burning Shore by Wilbur Smith. I like to find cool old books in the ‘Free Book Box’ outside the second hand bookshop in town. It’s a great way to find a good read as you never know what you will find!

kanukaglen morepork

kanukaglen portrait

Who is your hero/heroine?
My Dad. Over the years I have seen him repurpose all sorts of timber in to all sorts of things. I was with him when he rescued piles of timber off a beach after a boat went down, and I’ve watched him turn a stack of old wooden telegraph poles and ladders in to one of the most beautiful pergolas I’ve ever seen. He would often be trawling through demolition yards trying to find treasures. At one point he had most of the timber from an old church sitting under cover at the end of our garden. He has a quiet persistence about him as well as an amazing eye for detail. I definitely wouldn’t be as interested in repurposing pieces of wood had it not been for my Dad.

A favourite quote:
‘Hello. My name is Inigo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die.’ This comes straight from the 1987 movie The Princess Bride, pure old school awesomeness! I also like ‘Minds are like parachutes, they work best when they’re open’, but I don’t know who said that first.

Do you have any pets?
As far as actual pets go, we have a dog called Mosko who’s a loveable rogue. But then we also have our chooks, two ducks called Quackers and Ducky, and four goats called Simon, Penny, Stella and Gabby. We’re very fond of our animals and they almost all seem like pets sometimes.

If you were a crafty superhero, what would your name and superpower be?
I would be ‘The Glimpse!’ My superpower would be to have the ability to show someone in an instant the amount of good they do for the world and it’s inhabitants by purchasing something handmade over something mass produced.

kanukaglen kiwi

kanukaglen John and Mosko

What would your advice be for those starting out in a crafty business?
I don’t quite feel like I’m in the position to be giving advice, but if you’ve found something you can feel passionate about, and it puts a smile on your face, then there can be no harm in giving it a crack. :-)

What was the last handmade item you bought and what attracted you to it?
My wife and I bought a handmade mounted fox’s head. It’s not a real fox head, but a cool cartoony replica made from felt. It sits happily in our lounge.

What’s in store for 2015?
My New Year’s resolution this year was to pursue my art work further and have a go at selling it. I’m now entering what I call ‘Phase 2′. I’ve sold a lot of my original work and it’s now time to look at how I can share my work with people in different ways. I am currently experimenting with printing my work and I’m really pleased with the results. Over the next few months I will start selling some limited edition prints of select works. I also have my first exhibition coming up at The Little Beehive Co-op in Nelson.

To see more of John’s unique artworks on upcycled timber, visit his Felt shop.

John has generously offered a prize for one lucky Felt blog reader: a beautiful giclée print of one of his works on timber, pictured below. This print features a detailed portrait of a tui and is one of John’s favourite creations so far. John tells us the original was on a very rough piece of timber from an old apple bin, from one of the orchards just down the road from his home. To win this print, leave a comment telling us what you like about John’s story and his art. The draw will be made on Friday 8 May and is open to New Zealand residents only.

kanukaglen prizedraw

kanukaglen John with salvaged timber

Saturday, 25 April, 2015

Lest we forget

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.

John McCrae, May 1915


Wednesday, 22 April, 2015

Fresh on Felt




I couldn’t help but notice the lovely shapes and textures in this week’s line up of fresh new sellers. All sorts of goodies with tactile appeal!

designer decor and original art

pslill – atmospheric lino-cut artworks
themacrameroom – unique and stylish macramé wall art
rubycat – beautiful and practical quilts and kitchen towels
foxhole – stylish dipped concrete planter pots

children’s clothing, accessories and toys

toerag – fun toys and games for active kids
littlebands – funky headbands for little ones
knittingann – gorgeous classic knitwear for babies and toddlers
bellabeau – sweet knit hats for babies
upsydaisy – repainted and rejuvenated op-shop dolls
lisadolls – hand knitted dolls with colour and personality





clothing, jewellery and accessories

sonjatees – screenprinted tees inspired by New Zealand and the outdoors
harumedo – sweet bracelets, earrings and pendants
victorianrse – intricate jewellery with a steampunk theme

gifts and goodies

artisanface – handmade cosmetics: no parabens, lead, lake dyes or nasties
arkadianz – strong and colourful tuggy toys for dogs
hobdid – diverse and creative art and craft items
simply_sweet – detailed, papercrafted art and cards



Monday, 20 April, 2015

May’s craft forecast for Devonport

The next Devonport Craft and Fine Food Market isn’t far away, Aucklanders, so mark your calenders for this fix of fine food and crafty goodness.

There’s a crowd of great Felt sellers present at this North Shore institution – so if you can’t make it to the market, find them here on Felt any time, any day. Here’s a selection of what’s on offer…


The next The Devonport Craft and Fine Food Market is on Sunday 3 May, 10am – 2pm at the Devonport Community House, 32 Clarence Street.