Thursday, 20 November, 2014

Taking pleasure in the ritual of creating

Extra Curricular magazine issue 16 – order yours now!

The summer issue of Extra Curricular comes out on 24 November (that’s Monday!), with cover art by Julia Trybala. Order yours now to get it hot off the press.

In the Ritual & Ceremony issue are stories behind some treasured hand-me-downs and a tour inside a historic bed and breakfast. Learn to slow right down with Gretchen Carroll and Joanna Davies, and hear from artists and artisans who take pleasure in the ritual of creating.

Extra Curricular is 76 pages of full colour, printed with vegetable based inks on 100% FSC Certified stock, and it’s the perfect size to pop in your bag for impulse reading at any opportunity – it even has stylishly rounded corners, so no risk of dog-eared pages!

Order your copy now and it will be on its way to you fresh from the printers next week.

Gifts for culture junkies

Bookworms, wordsmiths, drama enthusiasts, musicians and lovers of all things arty – if you usually find yourself giving up and resorting to book tokens or cold hard cash for the culture junkies in your life, why not go handmade and find them an original cultural treasure this Christmas?

eclecticart

We’ve got treats for lovers of heraldry and history…

frenchlinen

Libraries and literature…

…and music in many forms.

Make your favourite culture junkie smile this season with a handmade piece of cultural gold from Felt, your home of local handcrafted goodness. And don’t forget to have a wander through the rest of our Christmas Gift Guide and our Christmas Catalogue on issuu while you’re there!

ironweed

Wednesday, 19 November, 2014

Fresh on Felt

 
It’s a mixed bag this week, with more fun and fabulous creations from new sellers on Felt. There’s something for everyone, so make sure you check ‘em all out.

designer decor and original art

niccola – exquisite Japanese temari ball decorations
sosewjojo – attractive tree and child-themed textile decor items
cre8ivegeek – one of a kind abstract paintings
georgesand – beautiful, modern animal-themed prints
mildolbaby – bold cushion covers with your choice of embroidered monogram

children’s clothing, accessories and toys

rachyconn – cool kid-friendly dinosaur pillow cases – can be coloured in!
carlyle – colourful children’s crochet accessories
scallywagnz – quirky and humorous nursery art
c_and_a – unique children’s and babies’ clothes using vintage fabrics

 

clothing, jewellery and accessories

sws – gorgeous hand stamped jewellery and stacking rings
helenesch – lush, elegant fabric flower brooches
pettil – delicate and fun necklaces and earrings
bygrace – handcrafted bold beaded jewellery

gifts and goodies

pepetuna – unique Christmas cards from original paintings
testpatern – vintage stationery, postcards and other paper goodies
alejandranz – beautiful mosaic pieces for your home and garden
aoteaembrace – natural soothing calendula balm
sharkknives – hand crafted knives made from recycled saw steel

 
georgesand

Fab Lab XCHC presents: Maker the Movie

Fab Lab XCHC presents: Maker the Movie

At 7.30pm this Sunday, Christchurch’s new creative innovation workshop, Fab Lab XCHC, is hosting a special screening of Maker, a documentary about the maker movement.

The maker movement is sometimes called the third industrial revolution, and subverts traditional manufacturing by building on innovative concepts such as open source, local manufacturing, crowd funding, and digital fabrication. Breaking the hobbyist movement stereotype, “Maker” delves deep into this ecosystem of design and manufacturing in the internet era. The film explores the ideas, tools, and personalities that are driving the maker movement – and returns with a timely snapshot of one of the transforming influences of the current age.

The movie is being screened simultaneously in Auckland and Wellington in association with Mindkits and Makers.org.nz. Auckland tickets have already sold out (sorry guys) but Wellington still has seats. There are only 50 seats available for the Christchurch screening so don’t hesitate – tickets are $10 (including complimentary popcorn and soda, sweet!). Get yours now!

This is also a great chance to see Fab Lab XCHC in action!

Monday, 17 November, 2014

Postable pressies

International mailing dates for Christmas are just around the corner and it’s always hard to find suitable presents for sending to friends and family overseas, so we’ve picked out some small, light and not too breakable gift ideas you can pop in the post this Christmas.

idear

Calendars are a good bet and we have some gorgeous ones to choose from. Or how about some jewellery or accessories?

Whoever you’re sending to this Christmas, you’re sure to find the perfect postable pressie here on Felt. Make Felt your one stop shop and get your Christmas mailing sorted – don’t forget you can even ask our sellers if they’ll send direct for you!

florawaycott

For a whole santa sack of gorgeous handmade goodies make sure you check out our Christmas Gift Guide and our Christmas Catalogue on issuu.

nativecre8ve

Thursday, 13 November, 2014

Super secret Santa gifts

Looking for a super secret Santa present and all out of ideas? Feeling the pressure? Put your feet up and have a browse through our handpicked selection of quality gifts for under $20 – what workmate wouldn’t be delighted with a handmade, original secret Santa surprise?

If there’s a bit of wildlife in your workplace how about some of these goodies? We’ve got some personality-filled creatures in wall-friendly form that are sure to delight.

onetrickpony

tinch

Or perhaps you’ve drawn that workmate who could do with a bit of subtle (or not-so-subtle) workplace etiquette education? If you’re feeling evil you could try these… (Mwa ha ha ha!)

Our Christmas Gift Guide and Christmas Catalogue are brimming with original handmade gift ideas, and with all the great under-$20 gift ideas on our Super secret Santas page, you’re bound to find something that will make that Christmas workplace “do” a fun one. Cheers!

wink

Wednesday, 12 November, 2014

Christmas Encraftment returns to Christchurch

This year’s Christmas Encraftment Market is going to be be a corker, Christchurch. With 111 stalls of locally designed and made goodness, there’s heaps on offer. There’ll be jewellery, homewares, skincare, food, prints, toys, clothing… something for everyone!

There are just some of the fabulous Felt sellers you’ll be able to meet in person there:

gallery

brightonmine

The Christmas Encraftment Market 2014 is being held on Saturday 29 November 10am – 4pm at The Foundry Bar, 90 Ilam Road (that’s at the University). Open to all ages.

jokidd

Fresh on Felt

 
Spotlight’s on the kids this week – we have a whole bunch of beautiful creations for your children to love. Of course, there’s something for everyone too, so put yer feet up and have a gander…

designer decor and original art

nzsurfquest – cool NZ map detailing the search for the perfect wave
melodyanncre – gorgeous vintage-style Christmas stockings
cyanmare – original handcrafted driftwood lamps
yhodesign – attractive art, illustrations and typography
themacrameroom – modern macrame design pieces in fun and vibrant colours
sewinghome – gorgeous Japanese-inspired homewares and children’s clothing
auguststitch – cute screenprinted cushion critters
eleahramos – bold and striking typography and illustrations
miss_molly – handcrafted wooden home decor art

children’s clothing, accessories and toys

alittlelove – high quality girls and boys clothes, toys and accessories
samandlila – contemporary and colourful heirloom quilts for babies
nixquilts – quilt kits from the creators of samandlila quilts
juleslove – sweet art for little ones
kiwi_decor – colourful baby shower wreaths
milaandco – gorgeous handmade moccasins for your little one
katharper – supportive children’s stories and character dolls
leebees – cute accessories for little ones

 

clothing, jewellery and accessories

maggie664 – pretty crochet barefoot sandals
faithsdesign – striking designer evening bags
threadneedle – hand sewn and hand knitted accessories for young and old

gifts and goodies

whacknblite – practical and interesting aprons featuring iconic Kiwi design
iwishcraft – hand-poured soy candles
cardsbylinda – fun cards, decorations, favours and gift ideas
kindnz – lush scented soy candles and wall art

 
milaandco

nzsurfquest

Monday, 10 November, 2014

Featured Seller: C E M Adams

Charlotte Adams, who sells as C E M Adams on Felt, is an artist and film technician based in Wellington, New Zealand. As a contractor at Weta Workshop, she paints props, costumes, and prosthetic make up. Her personal practice is angled more towards sculpture and jewellery, with a particular interest in the beauty and elegance of animal skulls.

cemadams big penguin 1

cemadams penguin 2

What do you make?

Hand sculpted skull jewellery, cast in pewter and Sterling silver. I also sculpt, and paint sculptures/figurines on commission, although my Felt shop is strictly jewellery at this stage.


How did you get into your craft?
I had this idea for some jewellery I wanted, but I couldn’t find anything that quite matched what I had in mind, so I figured I’d just have to make it myself. Not having access to the particular skulls I wanted, I sculpted them from scratch using photos. (Cheers, Google image search!)

I was working as a prosthetics painter at Weta Workshop at the time, and was surrounded by some very talented and knowledgable people who kindly taught me the basics of mould-making. From there I was able to work out how to make pewter casts of my work, and pretty soon I was getting orders and commissions.


Do you have formal training or qualifications in your craft?

Traditionally I’m a painter, and I majored in painting at Ilam School of Fine Arts. I’ve always had a soft spot for sculpting though, and since graduating I’ve enjoyed pursuing a more 3D direction. Most of the jewellery techniques I’ve picked up from co-workers, Mum, You Tube, and good old trial and error.


Your favourite materials, tools and processes?

For the initial sculpt, definitely Plasticine. A good chunk of my childhood was spent playing with plasticine, making hoards of tiny horses (while my brother took care of robot construction!), so working with it is like second nature. I also work with wax, for the sterling silver pieces I do.

For moulding, I love silicone because it is flexible, and allows me to prise pieces out of the mould easily despite the complexity of the skulls.

Sterling silver is my favourite for the finished piece, but since I don’t have the necessary equipment, I send waxes up to Auckland to be cast. Pewter however is a fairly easy to work with at home, since it has a relatively low melting point. It polishes up very nicely, or can be left to develop a soft patina over time.

Pouring the molten metal into the moulds is one of my favourite parts of the whole process, closely followed by opening the moulds and easing out the completed piece (hopefully with no casting flaws in it!) Polishing the pieces is not quite so exciting, but there is a certain satisfaction in seeing the metal transform from dull and lumpy to shining glory.

What inspires you?

Big books with lots of glossy photos of skulls! Walks on the beach gathering bits of shell and bones. Walking in general, preferably somewhere far away from civilisation.

Is there a philosophy behind your work?

I like to show the beauty of skulls. Too often skulls are seen as dark, evil things, whereas I like to concentrate on their elegance and sophistocated design. There is nothing frivilous about a skull, every curve or indent is there for a reason, and put together in a way that is beautiful.

Describe your workspace:
I don’t have a dedicated studio, so it tends to be a cramped and chaotic ever-expanding corner of my bedroom, or the kitchen bench.

What are you currently listening to?

Gil Scott-Heron, I’m New Here.


Recommend an album:
The latest album by kiwi band Jakob, Sines.


What’s your favourite childhood book and why?
The Velveteen Rabbit. Melancholic but with a great ending, and beautiful illustrations.

Who is your hero/heroine?

Gromit, of Wallace and Gromit fame.

A favourite quote:

“Never half-ass two things. Whole-ass one thing.”
Ron Swanson, Parks and Recreation.


Do you have any pets?

No. But there’s a lovely Tui that hangs out on the flax bush by my bedroom window a lot.

What was the last handmade item you bought and what attracted you to it?
A beautiful poster of NZ fish, each hand painted in water colour, by the talented Giselle Clarkson!

cemadams big triceratops

You can see more of Charlotte’s intriguing, beautifully detailed work in her Felt shop here.

Charlotte has generously offered a prize of one of her gorgeous small penguin skull pendants (below) to one lucky Felt blog reader. If you’d like to be in the prize draw, just leave a comment below telling us what inspires you about C E M Adams and Charlotte’s story. The draw will be made on Friday 21 November and is open to New Zealand residents only.

cemadams small penguin skull pendant

A Kiwi-flavoured Christmas

So you’re looking for the perfect gift that says “From New Zealand, with love”? Look no further – Felt has the largest selection of handcrafted gifts in New Zealand, and we’ve picked out these little Kiwi-flavoured beauts to make your loved ones go, “Sweet as, bro!”

hstarnesart

bycoulter

With our Christmas Gift Guide and new Christmas Catalogue launched and bursting with gorgeous handmade gifts, we thought we’d start off our blogging tour of the categories with these great gifts inspired by Aotearoa.

A tea towel never goes amiss and we’ve got some gorgeous classic and contemporary Kiwi-flavoured ones to choose from. They make great postable prezzies too.

Jewellery’s never a bad bet either, and these beautiful pieces in pounamu, glass and silver are sure to suit a loved one.

There are so many more Godzone-inspired goodies to choose from in the Felt Christmas Gift Guide, so put on yer jandals and take a stroll. Don’t forget to check out our lovely new online Christmas catalogue too!

pepindesign