I set out to make a scarf. An easy one – big needles, a ball of fancy fluffy yarn and a simple triangular scarf pattern from the web, where you just increase one stitch at the beginning of each row.

As it grew, I realised I hadn’t paid enough attention to the shape – with only a single ball of wool I should have been increasing at a much faster rate to end up with a shallow isosceles triangle that would be wide enough to go round my neck, instead of one like this…

knitted triangle

I looked at the ball band and the yarn was 30% wool – I can felt into this, I thought.

So, I cut it up …

cut up knitting

… chose some fleece …

fleece

… laid it out …

layers

… wetted and soaped and rubbed it for a while. It looked promising …

prefelt

… but what I actually ended up with was a ribbon of prefelt and a bit of felted knitting, loosely attached to each other in about three places. I think I was too lavish with the soap.

With nothing to lose I decided to sling the whole lot in the washing machine. I tied strips of calico round it at intervals to hold the felt and the knitting together, and put it in on a 60 degree quick wash with a pair of jeans.

The result was a nice uneven felted rope, joined firmly to the knitting wherever there was a calico strip. I snipped off the calico, added some wrapping highlights along the length with just a little lovely shiny embroidery thread, and here it is… a scarf, tousled rather than fluffy, and surprisingly warm.

scarf

The calico was quite well entangled and would happily have stayed where it was – another time I’d use a nice space dyed piece instead of white, or maybe sari ribbon or a yarn wrapping, and make it an integral part.

On another note, I’ve just joined an exciting new challenge – Today’s Title Is… – set up by Helen Suzanne of Heb-Art Journal. The challenge is to start from a given title and capture the first image it sparks off in the mind’s eye, in any visual medium. This week’s title is Blue Chair. Do visit to see all the wonderfully varied interpretations and maybe you’ll be tempted to join in too 🙂

blue chair

the story of a scarf
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8 thoughts on “the story of a scarf

  • January 29, 2009 at 7:30 am
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    This is such a wonderful solution to a problem. I love that you didn’t give up. I like then result more than the original idea. I really like the idea of incorporating different fabrics as part of the felting process.

  • January 29, 2009 at 9:46 am
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    What a great soloution. Well done. I could do with one of those big armchairs today as I have a poorly child.

  • January 29, 2009 at 12:34 pm
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    an interesting detour.you could standardize the process to be able to reproduce it in a controlled way.ah!what freedom would it give you!

    neki desu

  • January 29, 2009 at 6:25 pm
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    I love the way you never give up! And the final “scarf” is really great – much more interesting than the original design!

  • January 31, 2009 at 8:38 pm
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    Your scarf is really lovely Fiona. Well worth all the hard effort.
    I keep seeing blue chairs and other objects popping up on various blogs – I must take a look at the site.

  • February 5, 2009 at 8:58 am
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    I like the sound of the challange.

    Wow look what a fascinating material you created! Gorgeous!

  • February 10, 2009 at 11:06 am
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    ps, I tagged you, feel free to join in, but only if you want to! 😉

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