Friday, July 19, 2013

Hannah's Felted Hat

I took Hannah and Luke to visit my friend Susanne Farrington in Hamilton for a lesson in wet felting hats.  We've done some wet felting together, but hats take a special expertise and Susanne's got it all figured out.  She welcomed us into her lovely home studio and her friend, Brad, got Luke comfortable with an X box game.  Susanne's studio home is high up on a hill outside of town, sheltered by shade trees.  She had soft classical music playing and I thought I could just move in here.  Every dish in Susanne's kitchen was her own hand thrown pottery.  She built all the beautiful knotty pine kitchen and bathroom cabinets herself, and even made the ceramic drawer pulls.  I don't have to tell you my mind was spinning with plans to copy them at home.  Hannah and I got to work on our hats.  Susanne is very precise about felting and taught us things like how to hold our hands for maximum pressure and effectiveness with felting the fibers.  We laid out the wool, Mother Fiber from Maggie's Farm ofcourse (because Wool is the Mother of All Fibers), and wetted it down with poured water - not sprayed!  It took quite a bit of work, more than Hannah or I realized, but we ended up with a very serviceable hard felted hat.  Susannne made us a lovely lunch half way through, thankfully, as felting is hard work and cannot be done sitting down.  Hannah did have to take a couple of breaks to sit down and check her I-Phone.  A girl's got to do what a girl's got to do.  Maggie was a tad apprehensive as the afternoon wore on, as clouds were forming and hay was being baled back on the farm.  I did think once or twice that I really need to make excuses and say good bye, but I really wanted Hannah to learn this skill.  Nobody embellishes felted things more beautifully than Hannah, and I was determined that she be able to make the accessory itself.  Rain started to fall and I kept telling myself that is might not be raining on the farm.  That's the way it is around here.  You can have a deluge going and ten miles away, not a thing.  We thanked Susanne profusely, and went on her way.  I was so grateful for Hannah, and Luke's, cooperation and perfect behavior over the course of the afternoon that I broke down and bought them the first McD. meal of the vacation.  I secretly did not want to have to cook in 100 F. heat when I was getting hay in the barn.

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