Wednesday, 4 March, 2015

Fresh on Felt

tinkerjewel

orlandolane

fractallic

 
Lots of colour and quirkiness this week, with a nice side-serving of humour. Don’t miss our latest smorgasbord of fresh sellers!

designer decor and original art

cushionco – colourful quilted and pieced cushion covers
orlandolane – retro paper tole art created from 1950s annuals
gemilyse – unique mixed-media artworks

children’s clothing, accessories and toys

littleseed – gorgeous decorative birdhouses for children’s rooms
polepetko – colourful minky dot blankets for babies and toddlers
periwinkles – practical, durable and cute swim bags
anonymous – cute hair ties and adornments
stewlu – adorable handmade baby booties

 
littleseed

stewlu

inspiredsoap

clothing, jewellery and accessories

tinkerjewel – elegant and eye-catching wood and glass earrings
fractallic – quirky polymer clay jewellery, buttons and ornaments and crochet pieces

gifts and goodies

chalkitup – one of a kind chalk boards using vintage frames
joebanz69 – sweet crochet brooches, clips and covers, and other goodies
decorateme – cheeky cards and gifts
inspiredsoap – luscious cold process soaps with high quality oils and fragrances

 
decorateme

Tuesday, 3 March, 2015

A little fall of rain

The poem might say “Rain, rain, go away,” but here in Christchurch it was rather nice to hear the gentle patter of an overnight fall last night. This morning the gardens have been washed and refreshed, showered free of dust and quenched of their late summer thirst.

maisie-moo

Rain refreshes and inspires, and we found that our makers have created some gorgeous work with this muse in mind.

If you too are a fan of listening to the rain on the roof while snuggled up in bed, or of jumping in puddles, have a look at all the lovely things our makers have created to celebrate the rain – check them out here.

florawaycott

Monday, 2 March, 2015

Featured seller: I Feel Natty

I Feel Natty is a collaboration between friends Fiona Gibb and Cat Mckay. With two young boys each, and other jobs as well as running Natty, they were juggling a lot when the business began. At first having their own studio and removing the extensive Natty clutter from their homes felt like a pipe dream, but last year it happened and this year they are dedicating themselves full time to Natty! Although it sometimes feels a little scary, they say it has been a gradual process and they really appreciate how lucky they are that they can work for themselves, doing something they love.

ifeelnatty

Cat and Fiona

What do you make?
Contemporary wooden jewellery, hand printed textiles and illustrated gift cards.

How did you get into your craft?
We are both makers, tinkerers, bakers, sewers, and fiddlers. Natty started when our kids were in the same class at school. We have a shared love of vintage shopping and we originally started out repurposing our vintage finds. Early on we would make jewellery from old books, sheet music and vintage wallpaper. We did a couple of local markets and it started to gain momentum. We reused an old Rimu kitchen that was removed from our house and turned it into jewellery – that wood lasted a year!

Do you have formal training or qualifications in your craft?
The Natty illustrations come from the very talented Cat McKay who for many years used her drawing skills in architecture – hence the strong graphic bent. In terms of what we make we are self-taught and never let lack of experience get in the way of anything. There is so much information online and advice from others that has been useful in helping us work out how to do things. Whenever we do a market we have always benefited from talking to other makers.

Your favourite materials, tools and processes?
At the moment we love beeswax polish. We were using varnish but beeswax smells delicious and brings out the grain of the wood. We only use New Zealand reclaimed rimu. We also love natural fibres, in particular for our screen-printing – natural linen and unbleached cotton. We use only water based ink which means we are able to screen-print at home and everything just wipes off. In the tool department – we love our Dremel! Everything starts with a doodle, so a pencil or a Staedtler fine tip pen is always on hand.

manuka tea towel

Small reversible chevrons

What inspires you?
Old patinas, bold colours, a funny comment, something worn beautifully seen on the street, Pinterest, good music, functional objects, Scandinavian design, Mother Nature… there is so much to be inspired by.

Is there a philosophy behind your work?
We’ve always had a vision to create items that are stylish yet affordable, and to put a smile on someones dial is always a plus. We like to tread lightly and where we are using sourced materials we aim to find out that they are ethically made. We frown upon our consumerist society while quietly encouraging you to buy our wares! We need to do more as a society to keep middle aged, out-moded, decrepit, visually impaired labour forces employed.

Describe your workspace:
After a year or so of working from the kitchen table and the ensuing mess we are fortunate enough to have got ourselves to the point now where we have a studio space in Berhampore, Wellington. It is in an old butcher’s shop. We have a changing room in an old meat safe. People do a double-take when we tell them that’s where they can get changed. It’s a corner shop so it has great light. We share our space with our friend Christina from Scooter and Pearl so for most of the day we chatter. We are surrounded by sources of great coffee and food. It’s sometimes a bit too convivial. Our latest dilemma is whether we get a panini maker this winter…

Printing

Your favourite feedback from a customer:
We get lots of great feedback but over Christmas a number of people who were buying to send to friends and family overseas were saying our presents are a little bit of Aotearoa, without being overtly so.

What are you currently listening to?
Lake Street Dive who are coming to NZ for WOMAD.

What’s your favourite childhood book and why?
A Book of Milliganimals by Spike Milligan – such brilliant nonsense!

Who is your hero/heroine?
Bookhau… aaaah visual… calm.

A favourite quote?
Julia Child was full of useful quotes that can transcend cooking:
“Every woman should own a blowtorch.”
“A party without a cake is really just a meeting.”
“Always start out with a larger pot than you’ll think you need.”

Cards

earrings

If you were a crafty superhero, what would your name and superpower be?
Ink Winker. I’d like to be able to get objects to change colour with the blink of an eye. Handy!

What was the last handmade item you bought and what attracted you to it?
I bought a plane tree chopping board at the Martinborough Fair. I’ve always admired these trees, that are often planted along main streets – lovely wood.

You can meet Natty at the second Martinborough Fair on Saturday the 7th March and Newtown Fair in Wellington on Sunday the 8th March, or check out their gorgeous creations anytime in their Felt shop.

Fiona and Cat have very kindly offered a Natty prize for one lucky Felt blog reader: a fantastic Mr Fox and Frida Fox pillow case set worth $56. To win this lovely prize just leave a comment telling us what you like about Natty’s story and Fiona and Cat’s work. The draw will be made on Friday 13 March and is open to New Zealand residents only.

Give away Pillowcases

Thursday, 26 February, 2015

Stacks of beautiful rings

Rings on her fingers, bells on her toes… stacks of new jewellery ready to go!

From Zazing, we have these ingenious and intriguing double finger rings, in elegant swooping silver loops. Nikki assures us they are very comfortable and allow the full range of movement. She’s even tested them out typing, doing the dishes, cooking and driving, just to make sure!

zazing

zazing 2

And these wee copper lovelies from Ply caught our eye too – what beautiful hammered detail! Kate likes to work in simple hammered textures, as well as using stamped designs like dandelion motifs. She then treats them with patina to bring out the pattern. She reckons it’s so much fun she has to resist doing it to all of them!

ply

ply 2

There are so many beautiful rings on Felt to choose from, made here in New Zealand by our talented jewellers, you can have gorgeous jewellery wherever you go. Have a browse!

Wednesday, 25 February, 2015

Fresh on Felt

rainbowsheep

littlelaneco

littlepoppy

 
Lots of cute fresh finds for babies and youngsters this week, as well as some treats for the grown-ups. Have a browse!

designer decor and original art

dootie – fabulous vintage paper bunting
hunnybunny – sweet, appealing mixed media art
lucitapeek – striking limited edition prints and original art

children’s clothing, accessories and toys

headboardart – awesome, bright and funky headboards for kids’ beds
littlepoppy – gorgeous accessories for mums and babies
littlelaneco – sweet soft soled shoes for babies
withlovenz – practical goods for mums and little ones
rainbowsheep – colourful needle felted characters, creatures, mobiles and jewellery
kirstsgroove – cute and quirky bibs and baby accessories

 
headboardart

justbe

lunasoul

clothing, jewellery and accessories

peartreedesigns – simple and elegant earrings
nzjewelry – eye-catching jewellery, handmade with quality materials

gifts and goodies

justbe – all natural, vegan artisan soaps, created with love and care
charmingnz – lovely quilts and items of comfort and joy
lunasoul – luxurious natural scented products for body and home
poki – cute handcrafted needle feltings
neathwillow – great DIY craft kits

 
lucitapeek

Monday, 23 February, 2015

Making the most of summer

We may still be feeling the heat most days, but you’ll have noticed our mornings are getting just that little bit cooler and crisper, with a touch of dew on the ground.

Yep, the seasons are starting to turn even if the leaves aren’t yet. We’re determined to enjoy the summer weather while it lasts though, so we went looking for some of our newer makers of gorgeous fashion who feel the same way.

Up first is Vintage Madge, with this beautiful lightweight cotton tunic dress with vintage embellishments.

vintagemadge

We’ve still got the weather for sleeveless dresses, and Ulala and The Dressmaker’s Wardrobe have got something to suit, whether you like things retro or modern.

tdw

ulala

These lovely tees from August Stitch and My Little Kiwi make the most of the warm weather with a breezy smart-casual feel and lovely floral embellishments.

And of course a summery skirt never goes amiss. The versatile Poppy Jane has some sweet styles in gorgeous vintage prints.

poppyjane

Tempted? Don’t forget to have a browse through all our womenswear listings for more gorgeous summery fashion while the good weather lasts!

Friday, 20 February, 2015

Knack’s back for autumn

It’s always hard to say goodbye to summer, but the good news for Wellingtonians is that a change in season means that Berhampore’s Autumn Knack is just around the corner. Showcasing a wide range of handcrafted items made right here in New Zealand, Knack has something for everyone.

There’ll be jewellery, natural beauty products, homewares, art, bespoke clothing and accessories, repurposed treasures and much more – and with every purchase you’re supporting local crafters and Berhampore Primary School at the same time.

The Knack magic happens twice: Friday 13 March 6pm-8pm, for a more grown-up vibe or Saturday 14 March 9.30am – 1.30pm, for all the craft goodies plus activities for the kids.

There’ll also be music, coffee, cakes and hot food, EFTPOS available and ample free parking on-site. For more information check out the Knack Facebook page.

supervery

A-tisket, a-tasket

A-tisket, a-tasket,
A green and yellow basket.

papermoon

I wrote a letter to my love
And on the way I dropped it.

needleandnail

I dropped it!
I dropped it!
Yes, on the way I dropped it.

elephantbird

A little boy he picked it up
and put it in his pocket.

honeycakes

A-tisket, a-tasket,
A green and yellow basket.

coochycoo

empire

Wednesday, 18 February, 2015

Fresh on Felt

speedfox

etchie

kanukaglenn

 
There’s an awesome array of art from our fresh sellers this week, amongst a bumper batch of new makers with all sorts of talents. Make sure you check them all out!

designer decor and original art

real_steel – stylish seating using upcycled steel drums
moniqueking – striking art made with Central Otago antlers
speedfox – quirky screen and letterpress prints
madeup – bright, modern patchwork cushion covers
jilliansart – beautiful and unique mosaic art
djuki – gorgeous screen and digital prints of original art, lovely homewares
oneacrewood – delightful original paintings and graphite portraits
theoac – unique prints on paper and pillowcases
kanukaglenn – beautiful rustic art work on canvases of recycled materials
scollective – stylish stencil art on vinyl records
helenjoy – quality cushions in a variety of fabrics and patterns

children’s clothing, accessories and toys

nzremade – upcycled treasures with Chinese and Brazilian influences
maryjane – colourful storage solution for toy car collections
tdmy – cute crochet flower hair clips

 
djuki

woodenjeff

real_steel

clothing, jewellery and accessories

geekybling – unique, quirky jewellery with geek appeal
marjorie1 – practical, capacious and colourful tote bags
wrapturegems – beautiful silver wearable art jewellery pieces
changetogreen – lovely bags and pouches made from pure, organic and ethically sourced cotton

gifts and goodies

woodenjeff – beautiful utensils and homewares made from up-cycled wood
etchie – modern and appealing lasercut keyrings and mobiles
fatquarter – snuggly chunky knit blankets
prettyvintge – lovely fragranced soy candles in vintage and re-purposed vessels
terrariums – DIY terrarium kits featuring cute signature shrooms
happyskinnz – natural and healthy handcrafted soaps and lotions

 
wrapturegems

happyskinnz

Monday, 16 February, 2015

Featured seller: Wrapt Weaving

Jenni Shah’s love for yarn came about as a result of sitting at her Nan’s knitting machine as a child – and the absolute certainty that she needed a football scarf made by her own hand. A lot goes into her Wrapt Weaving creations: there is more than half a kilometre of yarn in a scarf or runner, a blanket has 800 metres, and a whole kilometre of yarn goes into one of her gorgeous wraps!

Wrapt Weaving iPad cover

What do you make?
I make hand woven objects to wear and for the home. Everything from blankets and scarves to bags and table runners, pillows… you name it!

If it is made from a fabric then it has been woven. I use rigid heddle looms to weave on – a loom has the job of keeping a whole lot of long threads under tension, while the rigid heddle makes the job of going under-and-over those threads easier.

How did you get into your craft?
I started to weave when I lived in the Cook Islands, on a beautiful island called Aitutaki. We were living there with our three small children and I had some time on my hands. I wanted a floor mat as a souvenir, but none were available for sale, so I decided to learn.

I had help from a group of craft ladies, led by the formidable ‘Auntie’ Josie. She guided me through the process, and the best fun was learning the techniques and at the same time reintroducing them to the craft group as it was uncommon to see mat weaving.

Wrapt Weaving aitutaki mat weaving

Wrapt Weaving pacifica motifs on a scarf

After a few years in the tropics we moved to Melbourne where materials were scarce and the climate was very different. I thought about mat and basket weaving using plastics, but stumbled across rigid heddle weaving instead and got the tingle. Suddenly we were inundated with scarves and blankets and I had more ideas in my head than I knew what to do with!

Do you have formal training or qualifications in your craft?
No. I have always taught myself, learning and discovering as I go. The internet is also full of teachers, with many different methods of doing things so it is like being a part of a giant world-wide cooperative group.

Your favourite materials, tools and processes?
My first loom was made from a picture frame and some ice-block sticks! It was actually quite effective, but I caught the bug pretty badly and now I have two Ashford rigid heddle looms of different sizes. My newest toy is a yarn winder that my Nana has just given me.

Wrapt Weaving my first home made loom

Wrapt Weaving table runner

What inspires you?
Yarn inspires me! Usually my project inspiration comes from seeing an amazing yarn online or in a store and thinking “I have to do something with that!” Having said that, working with a range of materials inspires me too. I have worked with jute twine and cotton, supermarket shopping bags, linen, wool, alpaca, silk, raw fleece, cashmere, possum… there are no limits to the materials that can be used in weaving and that is really exciting.

Texture and weight also inspires me – from super thick wool roving to gauze-like merino, coarse jute twine to super smooth silk.

Also, I am currently working on a range of wraps and scarves based on the colours and textures of New Zealand birds. I am fizzing about the possibilities with this.

Describe your workspace:
I would love to say that it is harmonious and peaceful but it is not! I have a corner of our dining room to weave in, do business in and run the family in. I try to stay neat and tidy but things regularly get out of control – sounds like a new year’s resolution!

Five words that describe your mind:
Overflowing, fizzing, bouncing, impatient, wistful.

Your favourite feedback from a customer:
A customer that ordered a large custom set of linen napkins and described them as “such a treat.” I really liked that.

wraptweaving linen napkins

Wrapt Weaving key fob bracelet

What are you currently listening to?
If I need calming and focusing, a brilliant piece by Arvo Part called Spiegel Im Spiegel. Search it up in YouTube if you want to see the most amazing, moving ballet. We were lucky enough to watch the Royal Australian Ballet perform it, to this music, on Hamilton Island as the sun set. It was an experience that will stay with me for a lifetime. On the other hand, if I want to get going I listen to OneRepublic – I love their song “I lived”

Recommend an album:
OneRepublicNative and Emelie Sande – Our Version of Events.

What are you reading now?
I am re-reading (for the 20th time) the Diana Gabaldon Outlander series. I love historical fiction.

Who is your hero/heroine?
My mum is my heroine – she is indefatigable, ever moving forward, ever positive, ever focused on the next thing. My husband deserves a shout out too for supporting me as I go through the journey of being a small business owner (and for putting up with the mess!).

Wrapt Weaving lace weight merino scarf

A favourite quote:
We have a fridge magnet that has lived with us in three countries now: “Everything will be okay in the end. If it’s not okay, it’s not the end.” I always feel reassured when I see it – it’s a bit of a talisman!

Do you have any pets?
Our handsome grey cat called Smudge came from Melbourne with us when we moved home. We adopted him from the RSPCA in Oz and couldn’t leave him behind. He is such a mummy’s boy.

If you were a crafty superhero, what would your name and superpower be?
I would be the Systemiser! My power would be to organise at the flick of an eyebrow, and find exactly what I want at a wink! And I would wear a hot red dress!

What was the last handmade item you bought and what attracted you to it?
I went on a handmade splurge in December and bought an apron from Rose Rouge for my mother-in-law, a vintage fabric bag from Oaktree Mama for my girlfriend’s 40th and a print from Varvar2076 of Mt Tongariro for my husband. In all cases it was the colours that grabbed me.

You can meet Jenni at the Devonport Craft Market (first Sunday of the month) and Parnell’s Craft Harvest Market (4th Saturday of the month) or check out her beautiful work anytime in her Felt shop.

Wrapt Weaving tote bag made from reused supermarket bags

Jenni has very kindly offered a prize for one lucky Felt blog reader: this clever and smart-looking tote bag worth $39, handwoven by her using supermarket shopping bags. To make these bags plastic supermarket bags are cut up and used as a yarn, which Jenni calls plarn (plastic yarn). Strong and stylish, they are fantastic recycling as twenty supermarket bags are used to weave the fabric for one tote. Great for a reusable shopping bag, at the beach or the pool, they will also be available soon at Wrapt Weaving.

To win this marvellous prize just leave a comment telling us what you like about Jenni’s story and her work. The draw will be made on Friday 27 February and is open to New Zealand residents only.

Supermarket Bags Cut Up For Weaving