It is that time of year when the dust from my wool begins to cloud up the breathable air, everything I touch seems to be covered in a thin layer of rainbow colored wool dust, the lint roller gets a work out, our vacuum just stays put in my studio getting used every couple of hours to clear paths on my studio floor, but I am in design heaven. I do acquire wool here and there even throughout the summer months when I come upon it, but I do not create with it much until the fall and winter. So pulling it out these past few weeks is like opening Christmas presents you have waited months for. Those plump shelves of colorful wool start to rapidly decline as the mittens making piles begin to pile up. This past week consisted almost entirely for prepping for new mittens. Here are some of the pictures from the process...
I began by cutting out 32 front mitten panels in a variety of colors, then I pulled the scrap baskets out for the applique designs I needed to create on each of the panels. That is the fun part!!
Each pair of mittens are one of a kind, even if I use the same design and colors, there are always at least small shade differences that make them different from the last. Working in color families has me completely fascinated whether it be using colors that compliment one another or colors that actually seem to clash, each has it's own personality.
Can I say again how much I am loving this table!! But after this week, I need to seriously start saving to get some better lighting, it was a bit difficult to work in the dim light. I unfortunately have no windows in my studio, which is killing me, but I opted for the kids play room to need the light more than me. I may just be surprised at the actual color of the mittens when I take them outside to be photographed:)
After I get the panels designed, I begin appliqueing them at my machine using my opening toe stippling foot that typically I would use for quilting. But then, I tend to stray for the production line style work a bit. I cannot just sit at my machine for hours on end appliqueing all of the 32 panels. Over the weekend I managed to get only half finished, but then I take a break from the applique part and start cutting out the wool and fleece lining for the rest of the mitten.
I also use recycled fleece from pjs, fleece blankets, robes, etc to line the inside of the mittens. I think it is actually more difficult to find fleece in good second hand condition than it is to find good wool. But I think that is because wool is a natural, organic material where as fleece is man made. Kind of goes to show just how good God's creation really is!!
The cuffs for the mittens come right from the sweaters I recycle. I cut off all of the cuffs and hems off the sweaters before I store them and store the cuffs in a separate crate.
These mittens have been completely designed and all the parts are cut and ready to be finished by machine.
And these are the front panels I have left needing to be appliqued. I can work on these here and there when time allows. I usually sew whenever my family watches a movie or TV show, or when the kids are playing or reading or sleeping:) haha you get the picture.
Here is the lone pair that has been completely finished and added to the shop. I absolutely love green, so I had a hard time not keeping these for myself. But my first pair I made for myself two years ago is still going strong and I am going to continue to resist my impulse to acquire more:)
So if you are looking for mittens and the shop seems a bit sparse, have no fear, there are whole bunch of woolies about to descend upon the shop! Let me know if there is one in particular you would like me to reserve for you-I would be happy to do so! I will be taking custom orders as well from now until the end of November. However, if you are needing larger amounts, I will need to know before the end of Oct in order to see if I have the time available.