Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Hanging Small Felted Textiles

hanging tabs and artist label
how to hang textiles
textile art lies flush with wall
It can be challenging to hang textiles in a way that is unobtrusive, conforms to conservation standards and is easy for the typical gallery customer to install when they take the artwork home. This week I tried many different methods before coming up with this simple and very satisfactory solution for hanging a series of 9x20-inch pieces. I cut a tab out of machine felt (100% wool) and hand-stitched it high on the piece using wool thread. I also put a small grommet in the tab for aesthetic reasons and to protect the hole's die cut edges — this was a small but acceptable compromise, in my opinion. Conservationists work hard not to compromise the integrity of museum-quality textiles when making display decisions — but it seems there is always some threat to integrity involved. The same applies with the work I did on my pieces where I picked up a small amount of the felted work with every stitch being careful not to allow the needle to pierce through to the front of the artwork. By making several blanket stitches around the tab, the tension was dispersed and any potential damage from gravity over time greatly minimized. Felt is also less negatively affected by needle pricks than are threads of woven fabrics. Overall, I was pleased with the hanging "hardware's" minimal impact on the artwork and, perhaps more importantly, the way the artwork lies flush with the wall.

Saturday, December 3, 2016

Migration Project

Felted Wool Sculpture by Kim Buchheit
Felted Wool Sculpture (detail) by Kim Buchheit
This winter I am developing an exhibit which addresses immigration issues, oppression and silencing, borders and arbitrary boundaries, migration routes, and allowing and trusting in natural processes. This most recent piece is an 18" x 10" sculpture which will eventually be erected via wire or starch and finished with embroidered lettering on the back side. I'm carding all the wool fibers by hand in order to blend the roving and yield very subtle color shifts. More to come :)

Monday, October 10, 2016

Nuno-Felting Workshop at the Grand Canyon

This past weekend the Grand Canyon Association's Field Institute (GCAFI) hosted our nuno-felting workshop once again. Rachel, Libby and I are so grateful to GCAFI's team for all the hard work they do in making this annual event possible. Also, thanks to our talented class participants for challenging themselves creatively and making some incredible nuno-felted scarves, tech cases, shawls, and purses! Anyone interested in signing up for our workshop at the Grand Canyon in October of 2017, please contact GCAFI… we'd love to have you join us!


Sunday, October 25, 2015

Grand Canyon Fiber Arts Workshop Recap

Group photo of Nuno-Felting class
Wool workshop at Grand Canyon
Fiber Arts workshop at the Grand Canyon
Rachel instructing
Anna working on her nuno-felted scarf
Kim and Sarah scrubbing and fulling a nuno-felted scarf
Thanks to Grand Canyon Field Institute and all the class participants for a successful Fiber Arts & Wool workshop at the Grand Canyon! We had a delightful and creative group that produced beautiful nuno-felted purses, bags, scarves, and wall hangings over the weekend. And we're on the books to do it all over again in October, 2016 with our wonderful hosting organization, the Grand Canyon Association. Check your calendars and reserve your spot (registration begins Nov. 18, 2015) — we'd love to have you join us!

Sunday, May 31, 2015

18th Annual Flag Wool & Fiber Festival

Photos © Mike Buchheit The Flag Wool & Fiber Festival is under new management  partnering with the Arizona Historical Society and Flagstaff Community Markets. And, boy, did they hit the ground running with a record number of booths and visitation this year. Congratulations to festival coordinators Andrea Greene and Heather Babbott! Yesterday at the Festival, I had the pleasure of demonstrating nuno felting with the help of my 10-year-old artist friend, Libby Gdula. If you're interested in nuno felting, consider taking my weekend workshop this October at the Grand Canyon, through the Grand Canyon Field Institute — class details here. We'll be making nuno-felted scarves/runners and purses/carrying cases. Additionally, special guest Jeanne Salt (an incredible fiber artist from the Navajo Nation) will share her deep knowledge of animal fibers' place in regional arts and culture. Join us for a wonderful woolly weekend!

Sunday, June 8, 2014

2014 Flagstaff Fiber & Wool Festival

A darling little Navajo Churro sheep waiting to be sheared.
Great book on crochet by talented and sweet Yumiko Alexander.
Kind and thoughtful Jacque Howell had some lovely mohair, angora, and llama fiber for sale. 
This gentle shearer learned the trade at the age of 8 from watching his grandmother. He shared his wonderful stories with the crowd while taking small breaks from his hard work. 
Photos © Mike Buchheit
This year was truly an exceptional one for Flagstaff's Fiber & Wool Festival. We spent a few hours and lots of dollars at the event: beautiful fiber artist, Yumiko Alexander, autographed her book of original crochet designs for us — and we gobbled up bags of gorgeous mohair roving from Jacque Howell (Arivaca Angora Goats) including some of her award-winning curly mohair locks. My husband and I look forward to this event every year not only to purchase local fiber, but also to meet the wonderful people who work with fiber at various stages in the process: from sheep, llama, alpaca, and goat herders to spinners, weavers, and other artisans. Loretta Flatrock and Vanessa Begay-Lee were just two of the amazing weavers we chatted with, and two artists who may be collaborating with me on future fiber workshops (felting and weaving) — so stay tuned!

Friday, March 14, 2014

Felting Workshop in Sedona, AZ!

June 28-29, 2014
Wool Workshop in Sedona, Arizona
Learn to nuno felt in beautiful Red Rock Country! Join me and fellow fiber artist/art educator, Jen Marshall, for a wonderful wool workshop in one of the most inspiring venues in the world! This 2-day class will teach you the basics of felting with wool and silk so that you can confidently create even more lovely things when you go back home. Sign up now for this fun and informative workshop hosted by the Sedona Arts Center. Space is limited. Tuition: $300 (+ $30 materials fee). For details or to enroll, go to: here
or, call 928-282-3809.

Saturday, March 9, 2013

Layered Felt Bangles

hand-felted bangles
habd-felted bangles close-up
Design and handcrafted by Kim Buchheit; © 2013
Snowy Saturdays are simply the best days for felting in the studio with good company, fresh coffee, and lots of yummy fibers. These layered-felted bangle sets are the result of today's undertaking. I spent quite a bit of time experimenting with how to cinch the bangles together, and decided on using silk "hankies' tied in single knots. The two natural fibers play nicely off one another and the silk, once tied, made the elegant decision to bow itself up like a flower. Thank you, silk :)

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Felted Rope with Heart Necklace

hand-felted necklace with heart bead
hand-felted heart bead necklace
Design and handcrafted by Kim Buchheit; © 2012
Today is the Autumnal Equinox — the first day of autumn... yippee! I consider this time of year my heart season, as it's the time when I reflect more deeply on all of life's gifts and my heart nearly bursts in gratitude. With a cool breeze rolling in, I'm drawn to wool and to working in the studio designing gifts for the upcoming holiday season. My new design is a simple felted rope that ties in the back and showcases a spatter-glazed porcelain heart bead. I picked up several of these sweet beads while in Sedona, AZ last week... some barn red and some turquoise blue. And since they are exclusive to this particular bead shop, I think I'll be making a trip back to Sedona real soon.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Birthday Scarves

Design and handcrafted by Kim Buchheit; © 2012 
Five dear friends celebrated their respective birthdays this past month and I wanted to make each one of them a special, handmade gift. I decided to make architecturally-inspired, woolly windowpane scarves in their favorite colors. I did end up making an extra one too (above)... for me, perhaps? Or, should I add it to my Etsy shop? Decisions, decisions. 

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Felting Workshop at the Grand Canyon

October 13-14, 2012
Wool Workshop at the Grand Canyon
Learn to nuno felt in the sublime wildness of Grand Canyon National Park! Join me and fellow fiber artist/art educator, Jen Marshall, for a wonderful wool workshop in one of the most inspiring venues anywhere! Enjoy sunrise discussions on the rim and classroom instruction on felting with wool and silk (other techniques will be taught as time permits). Sign up now for this 2-day workshop hosted by the Grand Canyon Field Institute. Space is limited. Course fee: $195 (includes all supplies). For details or to enroll, go to: here
or, call 866-471-4435

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Woolly Woven Boho Bowls

Designed and handcrafted by Kim Buchheit © 2011 and 2012
This summer I was able to complete two more woven boho bowls to add to the collection (the two on the right in above photo). I recently purchased some more strong, course, hand-dyed and handspun Navajo churro from local artisans Loretta Flatrock, Betsy Miller, and Zuni Ishikawa (Wanowa Studios in Flagstaff, AZ) — and, it's these strong fibers which form the firm architecture of the bowls by way of the warp and the edge treatments.

Each bowls is actually two bowls in one: an inner tapestry made on a handcrafted loom with churro, merino, and other wool fiber along with jute, raffia, and some cotton/poly pompom accents; and an outer shell crocheted in wool fiber and custom fitted to the woven work. While it does take quite awhile to create each piece, I love making them. Each vessel is unique and defiantly refuses to adhere to any pattern, no matter how hard I try. Some of my pieces have sold in galleries and some directly to customers via my Etsy shop. If you are interested in a commissioned piece, feel free to contact me by email. Thanks.