Wednesday, 1 April, 2015

Fresh on Felt

reddog

centuri

rubywatson

 
We’re starting with the art this week because we have some striking new artists to bring to you, along with an excellent crop of other goodies. Grab your cuppa and have a browse!

designer decor and original art

reddog – striking prints and tea towels depicting the locality and kiwi icons
rubywatson – beautiful artworks on paper inspired by nature and culture
centuri – intriguing cards with surreal and pop culture inspiration

children’s clothing, accessories and toys

winter_mum – colourful and cute bibs and toddler aprons
beeskneesnz – sweet and pretty children’s clothing
lefthandmade – appealing kids’ clothes and aprons from upcycled materials

 

flutterbys

krea_dko

bonnybunting

clothing, jewellery and accessories

flutterbys – beautiful river stone and glass dome jewellery
krea_dko – stylish causal bags created from upcycled materials
lollipops – super bright and cheerful hand dyed socks

gifts and goodies

bonnybunting – sweet and quirky bunting, homewares and decor
jacreations – gorgeous ceramic tiles suitable for coffee cups and table protectors

 
lollipops

Tuesday, 31 March, 2015

Creative cushion covers

Need a bit more cushioning in your life? We can certainly help with that! Felt has a huge range of cushions and cushion covers to choose from, but today we thought we’d give a shout-out to cushion creators Sabra Jayne and Studio K, for their gorgeous appliqué and crochet work. Just have a look at these…

sabrajayne2

Who can resist such wonderful colours and textures, with the promise of comfort too? Find your perfect cushion match on Felt today, kick back, and relax in style!

studiok 2

Monday, 30 March, 2015

Featured seller: The Quirky Kat

For Kat Rowlands, her Felt shop The Quirky Kat is part of a bigger picture: part of the plan of renovating and living in her over-100 year-old house, “Olive-Tree Cottage” with her husband, growing organic fruits, vegetable and nuts, keeping chooks, preparing delicious, nutritious foods, home-schooling her son – and running a business from home that utilises her creative abilities.

thequirkykat resheep purses

thequirkykat pink resheep bag

What do you make?
Fun stuff that I want to have and think that maybe someone else might like too. Things to wear, to play with, or to have in the home. Clothing accessories and soft toys mostly at the moment: bags, hats, scarves, cuffs, spats and coats, sheep, cats, and dress-up dolls. Things with pockets, buttoned tabs, and hoods. Things with zips, buckles, and black-bound edges. Small, detailed stuff with juxtaposed textures, colours and patterns. Things with appliquéd messages.

I’ve always imagined having my own shop with all the things I make in it, in the front room of the cottage. That may still happen, or maybe not. I was very excited when I discovered Felt!

How did you get into your craft?
I’ve always been arty and crafty. Sewing started with Mum letting me use her machine, and scraps of fabric. I was always fiddling around with fabric that I’d acquired – Dad’s old paisley tie, or Mum’s houndstooth maternity dress – and making my own clothes, and clothes for friends. I insisted on figuring out my own way of doing things, and my unusual fashion sense and garments with unfinished edges, held together with safety pins, was much to my mother’s horror!

Somewhere along the line I started running a business from home, designing and making clothes for people, usually for special occasions like weddings or school balls, as well as doing alterations. I’ve been designing and making clothes for about 15 years now, including a nice wee stint a few years back doing some fun stuff for a friend’s label. Then after the disruption of the Canterbury quakes, and other life difficulties, I’ve moved into doing my own range of stuff – tended away from women’s bespoke clothing, and more into accessories, toys and homewares… for now, anyway.

thequirkykat kathryn 2

thequirkykat resheep keyring

Do you have formal training or qualifications in your craft?
A little bit. I did a few night courses at Polytech about 14 years back, learning how to use industrial sewing machines, and the proper industry ways of pattern drafting and garment construction. That served me well – put a bit of method into the madness, and sped up my processes a little.

Your favourite materials, tools and processes?
Favourite materials: textured, recycled and natural-fibre fabrics: blanket wool, natural linen, shaggy fur, furnishing brocade, velvet, quilted nylon, vinyl, hessian, towelling or old candlewick bedspread, vintage printed cottons… and silvery metal accessories/embellishments: large eyelets, chunky zips with dangly pullers, buckles… and black bias binding… and buttons.

Favourite tools: my old, faithful Elna sewing machine. It is a 1960s model that I bought second-hand when I was 18. It just goes and goes and keeps on going. The rotary razor cutter I use these days is fantastic too… saves my hand getting sore from cutting.

Favourite processes: everything! There’s so much variety and detail in between the initial concept and the finished product. Thinking through ideas, drawing and list-making, drafting up patterns, choosing which particular fabrics I want to use and cutting them out, working out how to construct things, putting it all together. I love adding hardware to things too, like hammering the eyelets onto the key-rings, and using the stud-press. I also really enjoy playing around on the computer, making up logos, swing-tags and product booklets.

What inspires you?
Textures. Beautiful fabrics.

thequirkykat shoulder bag

thequirkykat fabrics

Is there a philosophy behind your work?
I like to design things that are fun and funky and I try to keep an eco-conciousness about them as well. I refer to it as “Eco-Funk”. I’m playing around with a few slogans at the moment, that you’ll see online soon as appliqué on scarves and such, that are working with that idea. I also like to incorporate some kind of therapeutic value or educational quality to my products, or to have some thing about them that promotes health and well-being, or that facilitates what I consider is good living.

Describe your workspace:
I’m set up in a room in our house that used to be dark and dingy, but now has white walls and ceiling and new lighting, which is great. There are stacks of plastic storage bins everywhere, full of fabrics, according to colours or fabric type. Old suitcases full of the same. Plus more in the bedroom. And more in the spare room. And in the shed.

Pattern blocks are tied up and hanging off a coat hook on the back of the door. I have an industrial plain sewer, overlocker and domestic machine set up so I can pivot around on my chair from one to the other. An old table, elevated on stilt-like blocks to make it a better working height, and with a sheet of MDF on top to make a larger work-surface, serves me well as a drafting/cutting/work table. More storage bins and pattern blocks on top of them, are under the table. My buttons are kept grouped in colours, in little spice jars lined up along the window sills.

There are lots of other jars of various bits and pieces for use in my work or for inspiration, including a jar of marbles that I like to keep in sight. I don’t like loosing them. And there are a couple of sets of drawers stuffed full, crammed into my space as well.

It’s usually very cluttered and messy, overflowing with stuff yet to be started or finished, and suffering from disorder. I have to move a lot of the excessive mess out, in order to function in there!

thequirkykat workspace

thequirkykat Kathryn

Five words that describe your mind:
Much Like My Work Space.
or
Cluttered. Busy. Divergent. Vague. Disordered. Detailed. Imaginative. Complicated.

Your favourite feedback from a customer:
I love to learn something about who and where an item is going to – like the wee Re-Sheep purse that was a gift for someone’s sister-in-law who was a sheep-farmer. Or a Kat-Cat toy that was being sent overseas for someone’s niece. Or the bag that was going back to Australia, where the two daughters would fight over who would get it in the mother’s will.

What are you currently listening to?
Quietness. I like it that way. Actually at the moment I’m listening to a wee Grey Warbler singing just outside, telling me it’s going to rain soon… and the primary school children playing outside during their lunch break. They’re good sounds. I don’t tend to listen to music much – I usually find it distracting, and irritating.

thequirkykat shoulder bag

thequirkykat findings

What’s your favourite childhood book and why?
One of them was The Very Hungry Caterpillar. I discovered that book when I started school. I was fascinated by the different sized pages, and cut-out holes that peeped through to the next page. I’d never seen a book like that before. All the rest were plain and boring.

What are you reading now?
Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon, and anything else I can find on the internet about the health benefits and making of long-proof wholemeal sourdough bread, home cultured dairy products, meat-bone stocks, lacto-fermented veggies and such. Excellent foods. Love it.

A favourite quote:
“Life is what happens to you when you’re busy making other plans.” – John Lennon.
I learned of this apt quote from the lovely woman who ran my exhibition in Nelson last year. I have it pinned up in my workroom, with some other quotes that are good to remind myself of at times.

thequirkykat oogliedoll hottie

What was the last handmade item you bought and what attracted you to it?
I can’t remember what I last bought, but I’m always on the lookout for beautiful wooden homewares and toys, unbleached homespun and hand-woven wool or linen fibres, and gorgeously packaged and yummy-smelling natural skin care and healing remedies – all things that I’d love to make myself, but don’t have the time, skills or resources to do so. I love the way these things look, feel and smell, and the evocation of a sense of well-being, “rightness” and connectedness to natural created order and to ancient traditions.

What’s in store for 2015?
I’ve got so many things that I’m working on, and haven’t got into the shop yet. I hope to have my appliquéd-word scarves from my “Clean Green NZ” range online soon, and one of my “Molly-Dolls” with her winter clothing. Then some recycled blanket wool ear-flap hats, that I haven’t perfected yet, and later on, my ultra-cool interactive texture fabric books, hopefully. And more after that.

Love Kat’s personality-filled pieces? Make sure you visit her Felt shop.

Kat has very kindly offered a prize for one lucky Felt blog reader: this adorable wee Re-Sheep keyring (below). To win this cutie, leave a comment telling us what you like about Kat’s story and her creations. The draw will be made on Friday 10 April and is open to New Zealand residents only.

thequirkykat resheep keyring prize

Devonport Craft Market – now with bonus food!

The market formerly known as The Devonport Craft Market has had a name change, and it’s one which is sure to please. It’s now (drumroll please) The Devonport Craft and Fine Food Market – who could find fault with that? They’ve still got all your favourite local makers, but now you can be sure you won’t starve while you roam the stalls. ;-)

There are, of course, a bevy of fine Felt sellers present as well – so if you can’t make it to the market, find them here on Felt any time, any day. Here’s a tempting taster…

cutecuddles

whatnots

The next The Devonport Craft and Fine Food Market is on Sunday 12 April, 10am – 2pm at the Devonport Community House, 32 Clarence Street.

Friday, 27 March, 2015

Get the Mad Men look in your home

Here at Felt we’re in love with the mid-century aesthetic, so we’ve topped off the week by picking out our favourite furniture inspired by this stylish design period.

dsdesign

rdfurniture

ownedoperated

cmcdesign

New or lovingly restored, Felt has some stunning, fashionable and functional furniture to tempt you. Have a wander though our furniture listings today!

rbdesign

Thursday, 26 March, 2015

Study in scarlet

yhodesign

tutus2

bigbunny

piccalilli

Wednesday, 25 March, 2015

Fresh on Felt

artistnz

praktis

treegiftsnz

 
We’ve got Kiwi themes headlining our fresh sellers this week, but we also have everything from stylish LED lighting to gorgeous dolls’ houses, so make sure you check them all out!

designer decor and original art

appledrop – innovative lighting products and homewares
artistnz – stunningly detailed artwork featuring native birds
hannajayne – highly textured artworks featuring appealing animals

children’s clothing, accessories and toys

cr8ivityplus – gorgeously detailed laser cut dolls’ houses and toys

 

cr8ivityplus

appledrop

baglady

clothing, jewellery and accessories

praktis – beautiful artisan silver and copper jewellery
theiamania – lovely drop earrings featuring semiprecious stones
jotigerlover – fun and colourful ruffle scarves
dani – elegant jewellery with geometric inspirations
stellagrey – steampunk inspired necklaces
baglady – appealingly adorned crochet cotton shoulder bags
whitepeony – sweet handmade glass dome earrings
ileanamm – colourful small bags in crochet and cotton fabrics

gifts and goodies

fortheloveof – luxurious handmade skincare
treegiftsnz – unique, eco friendly and stunning live tree gifts
oftheflowerz – seductive perfumes, oils, bath products and herbal remedies
journey – beautiful stationery and gift ware featuring gorgeous photography
melhunger – Pure Freedom Skincare, free from harmful chemicals

 
SONY DSC

Thursday, 19 March, 2015

Cooler nights made warm and snuggly

Brrr! There’s been a distinct drop in overnight temperatures around here of late. In our household, this means that the extra duvet has been dragged out, the “cat-o-meter” has gone off (the cat starts trying to get under the covers at night) and hotties are being eyed-up speculatively.

Be prepared! There’s nothing worse than facing the first cold night of autumn and realising your hottie has sprung a leak, or its old worn cover hasn’t magically regrown over the summer. Check that hottie over now and make sure it has a lovely cover you’ll want to hug.

Our makers have some really gorgeous hottie covers to choose from, so take your pick and snuggle up in style in the cold months ahead…

realhotties

First up we have Dean from hot water bottle specialists Real Hotties. Dean’s a handsome devil to snuggle up with of a evening, and he’s even been upcycled from a woollen jumper, so you know he’s got heart.

Or how about one of these snuggly characters from Zippitydoodah? Made from 100% wool vintage blankets, they’re sure to make the heat last.

The Adventures of Alex O & Co have some real beauties to check out too. These covers combine lasting warmth with real style – and aren’t the colours gorgeous?

alexoandco

There’s a lovely variety of hot hottie styles available from our talented makers, so have a browse and find your one true hottie on Felt! (You never knew we were a dating service did you?)

Remember folks: get ready, get through – sort your hottie situation now and get through winter in comfort.

thequirkykat

Wednesday, 18 March, 2015

Fresh on Felt

nesting

raewynpope

fotographie

 
Awesome art, elegant homewares and some lovely things for the kids this week – as well as an eclectic range of other goodies to explore. Check out our latest crop of fresh sellers!

designer decor and original art

fotografie – simple, elegant and restful photographic art
juanodellair – inspiring Argentinean-influenced art and art products
elsiebee – modern and bold cushion covers
dgdesigns – beautiful and unique cushions in an elegant colour palette
raewynpope – sweet and appealing prints of animal watercolours
locoloco – beautiful quilts made from quality fabrics
nzfabrics – bold and colourful cushion covers, something to suit every room
soulciety – intricate, spiritual and inspirational art on paper

children’s clothing, accessories and toys

littlelinks – sweet hats an dress-ups in crochet for wee ones
funworxx – picture books designed to teach children about emotions and life skills
dja – cute, bright and cuddly toy owls
megsdesigns – baby singlets with hand appliquéd designs
mysclothing – gorgeous clothing for children and sweet dolls’ clothes
nesting – toys and dress-ups for open-ended play and exploration

 
juanodellair

littlelinks

karkt

clothing, jewellery and accessories

novo – modern, contemporary jewellery
thenightjar – elegant, wearable, beautiful rings
karkt – gutsy and functional bags made from strong recycled materials

gifts and goodies

bohemianblue – quirky prints and silverware with historical and sci-fi themes
rhinoandco – on-trend digital prints, photographic pieces, invitations, and more
handmade4you – personalised wire coathangers for that special occasion
ckootdesign – limited edition letterpress prints and greeting cards
jalbc – whimsical miniatures for fairy gardens, miniature gardens and terrariums

 
bohemianblue

Monday, 16 March, 2015

Featured Seller: Julia Marin Jewellery

Julia Marin hails from Buenos Aires, Argentina. She came here travelling seven years ago and fell in love with New Zealand, the people and a more laid back way of living. She soon decided to change the city life in Buenos Aires for a more relaxed existence in beautiful Piha, near the Waitakere Ranges.

Designing and making jewellery is Julia’s passion. The themes of her jewellery mix traditional techniques and styles learned in Argentina with the experiences of her New Zealand life and the inspiration of New Zealand flora and fauna.

julmarin aroha ring

julmarin hoop earrings

What do you make?
I design and hand make custom jewellery in silver and gold, delicately crafted in traditional jewellery techniques – from my work bench to you!

How did you get into your craft?
I am not quite sure to be honest… I’ve always been interested in creative activities, from sewing and knitting to ceramics, drawing and painting. My mum and dad are both artists and I guess since I’ve always been around “the making of things” I fell into it while looking for ways of expressing myself, but I am not completely sure! All I know is that it started over ten years ago…

Do you have formal training or qualifications in your craft?
I studied fashion design at university in Buenos Aires (where I am originally from) and I studied traditional jewellery techniques at the National Jewellers Association, in Buenos Aires as well. In New Zealand I trained in stone setting.

Your favourite materials, tools and processes?
Silver and gold are my favourite materials and I buy them from New Zealand’s most trusted silver and gold bullion retailer, which is warranty of good stuff! Whenever I incorporate copper or brass in my designs, it is recycled piping or scrap metal from old building materials. (I love doing little hunts for hidden treasures!)

My favourite process is hand making from scratch. Hammering, sawing, soldering, using my hands along with my tools, bending and curving the metals, creating a piece from zero.

julmarin at work 2

julmarin poppy rings

julmarin diamond ring

julmarin desk

What inspires you?
Anything can inspire me. Sometimes is a particular situation or a life experience I am going through; sometimes is all the beautiful things around. It could be anything, although I would confidently venture to say that being active is the most inspiring thing, the more you make the most creative you become and ideas just flow. You no longer have to look for them, because they come to you.

Is there a philosophy behind your work?
I am not sure really, I would say that maybe more than a “philosophy” there is an “idea” behind my work, that is more like the essence of what I make. I think in my case it has to do with simplicity, femininity, minimalism and passion for creativity. I think a little bit of all these things can be seen in all my pieces.

Describe your workspace:
I have a little studio room at home in Piha, where I live. In it I have my work bench with all my tools. I have some images on the walls and more tools, plants and books as well as my sewing machine. Piles of fabric and boxes with metal, work in process everywhere.

julmarin studio love

julmarin at work

julmarin black oyster ring

Five words that describe your mind:
Restless and a bit complicated.

Your favourite feedback from a customer:
The feedback from customers is one of the most rewarding things about being a maker. Any feedback is always very encouraging.

What are you currently listening to?
Kool And The Gang, I am feeling funky!

What’s your favourite childhood book and why?
My dad used to read us Roald Dahl stories, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and The Witches were my favourites, they are crazy amazing adventures!

What are you reading now?
A book about Yoga.

Who is your hero/heroine?
Anyone that is humble and does things for others without expecting something back is a “hero” or someone I‘d admire for sure. Currently I feel mind-blown by the Sea Shepherd volunteers risking their lives fighting for animal rights.

A favourite quote:
“No dejes para mañana lo que puedes hacer hoy.” It means “Don’t leave it for tomorrow if you can do it today.” It motivates me when I am feeling not very active!

julmarin woven ring

julmarin the jewellers office

If you were a crafty superhero, what would your name and superpower be?
I would love to be able to turn things into metal with a wiggle of my nose, haha! I‘d be Silverella.

What was the last handmade item you bought and what attracted you to it?
Mmmm, this is a hard one because 90% of my purchases are either handmade things or op-shop finds. I can’t remember but it was probably a card Illustrated by my friend Eloise White (Crafty Love Studio), or a stamp from Sandra Waine. Both incredibly creative and talented!

Julia is currently working towards an exhibition exploring New Zealand native flowers, together with Eloise White of Crafty Love Studio. The exhibition will be held at the West Coast Gallery in Piha in December. And she’s just featured on TVNZ’s latest episode of Neighbourhood (series 4, episode 2), about folk from all over the world who call New Zealand home (Julia’s interview starts at 15:30).

Julia has also very kindly offered a prize for one lucky Felt blog reader: a gorgeous sterling silver little triangle knuckle ring worth $50 (below). To win this sweet ring, leave a comment telling us what you like about Julia’s story and her silverwork. The draw will be made on Friday 27 March and is open to New Zealand residents only.

julmarin triangle knuckle ring