Building a dinosaur armature

We’ve merged our news section with our new, tiny tool library blog, since we also carry needle felting tools to skillshares; however, this is still the best place for a few works-in-progress, and we had the perfect opportunity this month. I’ve been really busy sculpting a few Halloween pieces, so I couldn’t build anything for our monthly needle felting exchange and decided to ask Jeff to make an armature to contribute, so I could still participate in a small way. Jo T., the recipient, left the choice (this month’s theme is dinosaurs) up to Jeff, and he decided to make a triceratops, his first dinosaur armature. As you can see below, he’s designing it as he goes. There just wasn’t enough space and pulled wire for all those ribs 🙂

Triceratops armature work in progress

Needlefelted Autumn Cottage Lantern

We are soon visiting my parents to celebrate my dad’s birthday, and I made a lantern for my mother. We started out using our regular, 14-gauge, aluminum fencing wire, but then Jeff had the idea to use a mini (7.5 oz) soda can. The pre-felt I had on hand turned out to be too thick for the haunted house effect I first had in mind, so I went with a warm, autumn cottage one. The LED candles are perfect for a gentle, glowing effect that can be seen in daylight. I’ll use thinner felt for the haunted house I want to show well in darker areas.

Needlefelt autumn cottage on can armature

Be careful what you wish for…and how you ask for it

Jeff makes giant armatureI’m really happy that some friends from my favorite online needle felting group volunteered to test some new armature designs for us. I’ve also been working on a doll just for fun, to celebrate the season premiere of Jeff’s life-long favorite, Dr. Who.

Jeff, our armature maker, is very precise, and he researches and uses proper proportions when making a frame. We had a giggle this week when I miscommunicated my need for a body frame for (the 10th Doctor) David Tennant’s head.

I told him that Tennant is 6’1″ tall, and I showed him the head I’d already made. Proportionally correct, Jeff returned with a frame quite bigger than I expected!

Fortunately, our new horse prototypes will fit on a crafting table and are on their way to our volunteer needle felting experts for testing. Next test, a Pomeranian! It’s always so interesting to see how each animal has evolved differently or not. I’m saving images of armatures and skeletons on a Pinterest board for our reference and to share with you. Be sure to follow our boards and suggest your favorite needle sculpture pins.

Helping Hands

needle felted hula dancerI tried out one of our people armatures today (it was taller than the one in the photo), needle sculpting my first human. Inspired by the leaf weavers seeking a Kiva loan I wanted to help fund (too late, but that’s good news, as it’s fully funded already), I decided to make a hula dancer with some pre-felt, also a new experience. I rushed a bit, so I am going to make another skirt with narrower fronds. The hardest part was the hands (don’t look closely), for which I really need to practice.

While I was searching for a link to the loan I wanted to fund, I ran across the video below that introduces the field partner, Negros Women for Tomorrow. This is also the group that assists many of the entrepreneurs which Guys Holding Fish help, since the field partner is located in the Philippines, which has a lot of fish-related small businesses.