Welcome to my Blog! Hello, my name is MaryLouise and I am a Special Education Language Arts Teacher. I have utilized my lesson plans and other original teaching material to create picture books, workbooks, nonfiction and fiction articles and teacher's guides for educational resources.

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Today's Topic: Fine Fiber Art

Today's interview is with Nelly Kouzmina, Fine Fiber Artist of Fine Felt Handmade Wearable Art and Unique Accessories and owner of Feltinelli LLC. Some of her pieces include eco friendly wraps, shawls, collars, mufflers and mittens, flower necklaces, dresses, blouses, table runners, tablecloths, wall hangings and home goods. Nelly has a background in Engineering and Graphic Design and for the past two years has utilized her talents to create beautiful and unique, one of a kind felt items.
MLAC: What exactly is felt?
NK: Felt is a material or cloth made by compressing loose fibers such as sheep hair, animal fur, bamboo, silk, and vegetable fibers with water and soap, then rolling and manipulating with your hands, then throwing it on a hard surface to merge the fibers together. In general hand made felt doesn't have synthetic fibers.......      industrial made-yes, and it is done with machines. The technique of hand made Feltmaking can be simply described but requires skills and patience. There are several varieties of felt such as Nuno felt - fabric felt with a very small amount of wool. Light material. Cobweb felt - very thin, light felt, with self incurred holes. Clipped felt - is mechanically made holes or shapes on thick felt. Tracery felt or open work - is mechanically made holes on thin light felt.
MLAC: How did you get involved with Felt Making?
NK: I am a self taught fiber artist and Feltmaker. I started learning Feltmaking after visiting exhibit of one of my Tango friends at local state art and crafts shows in October 2011 and seeing one artist with handmade felt hats and other accessories. I fell in love with the texture of fabric, softness and unique look. The same day I started learning about Feltmaking. Ever since, I have never stopped. The first year I worked and experimented with fibers in absolute isolation without knowing any other Feltmakers, then I started corresponding with a couple of my favorite and unique artists - Polly Stirling and Sachiko Kotaka (Australia). In July of 2013, I took my first workshop with Polly Stirling and Sylvia Watt (Australia) who were teaching in Wiawaka (retreat center on Lake George). It was an amazing experience. I always learn something new and experiment. There are so many new things in Feltmaking I still need to explore. I participate in Art and Craft Shows including NYC, NJ, PA.  I am a member of the International Association of Feltmakers (U.K.), and the North East Guild of Feltmakers (U.S.A.)
MLAC: How do you apply the color to the pieces?
NK: It's called Eco Printing and I use all natural things such as eucalyptus leaves, Japanese maple leaves, plum leaves. I experiment with everything ...nothing can be wasted or spoiled in Feltmaking. To prove this concept...you will take one of your most beautiful pieces and cut it up ...to show that the process is the most enjoyable thing. You can use the cut up pieces ...by combining mixed media, stitches, another felt with the cut up pieces to create something new. It is a mesmerizing process, very fulfilling and very much reflects your personality. I like to experiment, use different techniques and fibers.
To see Nelly's work go to: http://feltinelli.blogspot.com and to contact her: feltinelli@gmail.com and 609-422-0474 

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