Wellington illustrator and toymaker Minu Freitag works with a wide variety of materials and techniques to form her whimsical creations. Her engaging, anthropomorphic characters and scenes are based on traditional archetypes: the unwilling (grumpy) and lonely hero, the companion on a journey, and the dangers and shadows of the past, present and future. Yet, even though her characters are often dark and melancholic, they emit something strangely positive and uplifting.
Wellington artist Rebecca A’court, of Little1Step, tells us “Success seemed to begin early for me at the tender age of five, when I won first prize at my school art show. Sadly ‘Cat Surrounded by Blotches’ was a high never to be repeated. But it marked the beginning to a lifelong enthusiasm for creating.” Now a mum to two kids, Rebecca keeps the creative flame burning with the help of the invention of school and locked doors. Currently she enjoys creating delightful and quirky paintings and enchanting miniature seaside scenes.
Heads up! Do you love bronze sculpture? Or coffee, perhaps? Take a look at this great offer from Nick Duval Smith, creator of the wonderful, tactile and ever-popular bronze coffee beans we’ve been delighted to host on Felt for years. Every Baby Bean purchased this month from Nick gives you a chance to win a set of his superb Moving Mountains, worth $575! Yep, just buy a Baby Bean and you’re in to win.
Joe Wright of Bearwood Workshop handcrafts his beautiful wooden homewares and sculpture – all made from sustainable and recycled New Zealand native timber – from a little tractor shed in Glendhu Bay overlooking Lake Wanaka. After years of working as a designer in many different disciplines, running his own consultancy and clocking up the air miles with large corporations as clients, he decided to shed it all and go back to his roots.
These gorgeous fused glass dinky dishes from Clarity Glass are perfect beside the bed or kitchen sink. Each dish contains a heart of silver foil, fused between a layer of coloured glass and transparent glass. Because the silver stretches during fusing, it can develop subtle cracks. Exposure to air can also cause the silver to change colour to more of a gold tone, so no two dishes will ever emerge from the kiln completely alike!
Sculptor and miniaturist Reynold Turner of Old Relic has a passion for local history and the old gold rush-era relics and buildings around Central Otago. He loves to recreate their homes and equipment in miniature, using the same building methods as the early settlers. Working with his bare hands, hammer, chisel, and tin snips, he shapes schist, river stone, slate, and rusty tin into stunning tiny scenes.
Mike Walker of Walker’s Woodturning was born and bred on a sheep and beef farm in the King Country. His passion for woodturning began with many childhood hours spent turning with his grandfather. In 2002 Mike broke his back, and it was this that eventually led him to take up woodturning again in his adult years, this time in a professional capacity. Assisted by his wife Helen on the business front, Mike has worked hard to adapt traditional turning techniques to his needs, and as a result he’s competent at ambidextrous turning, and turning seated or standing.
These gorgeous fused glass fish from Clarity Glass are available in a rainbow of vibrant colours. They are easily mounted on a wall, and because they are offset from the wall they cast colourful shadows if the light hits them. Each fish is slightly different, and has been fused at a lower temperature to retain the texture of the patterns, gill and lateral line. The eye is a fused glass bead – some are iridescent and some are dichroic. Most of the fins are a shimmering iridescent glass.
Four years ago Elizabeth Woollard’s trip to France and Italy inspired her with visions of old architecture, flaking paint, interesting doors and vibrant colours. From this fertile ground her creative outlet Tiny House was born. Why houses? Elizabeth says we often find ourselves pondering “I wonder who lives there, I wonder what they do?” She sees her tiny creations, made from recycled New Zealand timber, as big builders of the imagination.