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  • Claire Dunnett

Captured in Merino Wool


After a couple of weeks of working on, dare I say it Christmas stock, I've at last managed to finish something special that I've been working on this week. So what is it?

Well, it seems that there are more people out there than I ever imagined who appreciate the art of bespoke and handmade and this particular project that I'm going to share with you has been no exception. After all, it's an exciting prospect when you at last make the decision to make that call or write that initial email to someone who you hope will bring your ideas and memories to life as an art form. It's something very personal and special, particularly when it comes to having something made especially for you that is a 'one off' unique item that nobody else will have. A memory to treasure forever.

As each day, week and month passes by, I am gradually being asked questions that start with "Would you by any chance be able to make........" more and more. Most of the time the answer is happily a 'Yes' and then the discussions begin and the good old sketch book is put to good use once again. These projects are so exciting for a designer/ maker. Don't get me wrong, it can be terrifying too. After all you're being paid to make something for someone who has an image in their head that you are trying emulate. So what have I been working on that has been so exciting?

A couple of months ago now some friends of ours went on a holiday of a life time to Costa Rica. I won't go into all of the details of their holiday and it's not really my place to share them but it really did turn out to be an amazing trip with memories and they will treasure forever.

So imagine how honoured I felt when they got back and asked me to capture their favourite view of their trip in Merino Wool. They had seen some of my landscape work previously and loved it so I was given the challenge to transpose this beautiful photograph into Merino.


So I set to work using my artistic licence to capture an amazing memory onto a cropped 13cm x 18cm image. Mmm yes it was a challenge. I wanted to frame the view with the stunning greenery but still retain the colours and ambiance of the breath taking view.

I decided to use a jasmine white felt background and in one long stint I made a start.


It's a very slow process working with wool. Every few strands are painstakingly pinned into place with a giant felting needle and gradually the image begins to take shape. It's a very therapeutic process that takes bucket loads of patience.


Now jump to many hours later and several broken needles later and this is where I got up to. I was beginning to really feel like I was in Costa Rica looking at this view by this stage as I'd been staring and analysing the colours of the scene for so long.

Next came the rocks in the foreground to give a sense of place. Feet firmly on terra firma, whilst looking across the water. Plus it was time to introduce some greenery to frame the picture too. Not too much as to take away from the view but just enough to invite you in to the beautiful setting. I like to use the mounting board to start framing the picture at this stage as it gives me a better idea as to how the final image will look.


At last, with a few minor tweaks here and there the work could finally be lifted from the easel and framed in a lovely deep double mounted frame to show off the texture and depth of the work.


And here we have the finished piece. I'm being a bit naughty really as I've not handed this piece over to it's new owners yet but they have seen photographs. If I'm really honest, I'll be sorry to see it go. When you spend so much time working on a piece as any designer/ maker will know, it's a strange feeling letting go of something you love.

You can't beat making memories though, and what a lovely way of capturing them in a unique piece of Merino Wool Artwork. It's certainly not something you see that often and it's been an absolute pleasure to work on this piece and share the process with you all now that it's finished.

Now I'm off for a well earned G&T that's waiting for me, then we're off to make some more memories at another rowing event tomorrow.

So until next time,

Enjoy your weekend!

Claire xx


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