Two artists that have piqued my interest lately.

Does everyone here know what needle-felting is? Basically, needle-felting is taking fluffy wool (before it’s spun into yarn) and stabbing it repeatedly with a big needle until it forms the desired shape. Wool does that because the fibers have microscopic hooks and these hooks get tangled when the stabbery occurs. It’s a very versatile art. You can build things over a metal or wood sub-structure, you can do a flat piece, add stitches and beads, etc. Here are some pictures I found on Pinterest (most of these track back to Etsy, if you like these pieces, go to Etsy and buy them – support artists!):

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By the way, needle-felting doesn’t have to be about animals, it just so happens that I love animals so those are the samples I chose. The two artists that have caught my eye recently are both textile artists. One was brought to my attention by my friend Gem (thank you Gem). I love these soft insect sculptures by Yumi Okita. She uses a combination of a canvas-like material, wire, fake fur, fabric paint and sewing to make these moths and butterflies. If you go to her Etsy shop she also made a flower that is stunning. Big fan.

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And the other artist is a woman named Steph Laberis. She does animal illustrations in a charming 1950s/1060s style. I think she really captures the essence of the beasties she’s rendering. I own her potoo and momonga prints (got them at Shana Logic if you want them).

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But she has many other works that if I could find them for sale I would snap them up. I mean, the three armadillos (the small one is called a Pink Fairy Armadillo, that’s why it has a wand) is amazing, is it not? And the penguins? And the maned wolf mama? There’s very few pieces I do not adore.

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Ms. Laberis has a blog you can visit to find out what she’s up to AND the header has a grumpy dung beetle, so, you know, best header for anything ever.


Now you may be wondering, we were talking about needle-felting, what the hell happened? Look at me bring it all together. In addition to drawing wonderful things, Steph needle-felts sculptures of some of her drawings so they can exist in a three-dimensional space, which is awesome. I may have to explore the wonderful world of needle-felting.

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