• Claire Dunnett

Going back to my roots!

I didn't mention it in last week's blog, but for those of you who kindly follow Dunnknit Designs on Instagram and Facebook you'll know that I've been away for a few days doing a Textile Landscape picture a day challenge in not so sunny Wales. It was a lovely break with my Sister, 3 kids and 3 dogs. Despite the mixed weather, which lets face it, you'd expect for Wales, we had a fantastic week of work and play!

I promise I'm not going to bore you with my weather diary for the week but we couldn't believe it, the rain set in on our first night. This was the view from our window on Day 1.

My Textile Landscape challenge which has been on the cards for a while now was to do a needle felting picture a day for a whole week using Felt, Merino Wool and my old college favourite the felting needle. Why? did I hear you say? Well, from the very beginning of Dunnknit Designs I've had the intention of producing not only bespoke giant knitted items (which is now established and continuing to grow) but unique Fibre Art works too! After studying Fine Art and Textile Design what feels like light years ago now at University, I simply adore working with colour and texture, features which un-spun Merino wool oozes in all shapes and forms. The colours are amazing and the textures that can be produced with this medium are just beautiful.

I think I've mentioned it before but I'm a bit of a sketch book freak, particularly when I go on holiday. Let's face it, it's not exactly practical for me to take my gigantic knitting needles and giant wool anywhere with me when I'm wanting to be creative. But it is possible for me to take away a selection of Merino colour swatches, a handful of felting needles and my trusty felting kit which I put together years ago when I was studying Textile Art at college.

So I set to work on my challenge to produce a picture a day. After all, anyone who is arty will know that the best time to feel inspired by colour, shape and form is often when you have the opportunity to visit beautiful places. To find myself waking up, literally in the middle of what felt like nowhere looking at amazing views was indescribable.

Anyway I thought you might like a glimpse of my creations. The colours we saw were stunning, and although I managed to snap a few needles, thankfully I'd taken lots of spares plus a huge palette of Merino colour with me which I definitely needed.

I literally could have done a sky diary in Merino Wool over the last week. I think because it was so windy the sky was constantly changing. Lucky for me I took my trusty camera and took hundreds of photographs which I then worked on in the evenings over a glass of wine or in the early morning with a good cuppa.

I've done my best to capture the colours of Wales in Merino Wool. I think we had everything from glorious blue sky to 40mph windy storms all within a week. Talk about unpredictable UK weather!

This was the evening when we saw lots of bats. It was a beautiful clear evening sky with lots of spooky shadowy trees nearby. Great for story telling to the children that's for sure.

Then at last it was time to capture blue skies and a pebble beach that was full of shells. It was beautiful!

Ok, so a big thank you if you're still with me and reading on, but by now you might have gathered that I can't count. Well the colours were so lovely and the photos that I'd taken on the many places that we visited were too good not to put down onto my favourite felt. I certainly worked on a few more pictures than I'd expected and have had lots of late nights. After all that's the best time to be creative, right, when the children and dogs are all tucked up in their beds and it's super quiet. It is for me anyway!

Then came the best evening of colour of all. Talk about saving the best until last. The night before we left this was our view across the fields to the mountains. I put in a late night that night I can tell you. And then it seemed to open up yet another world of colour on our final day which I had a final morning to work on. Bliss!

A stunning sea and beach with a background of beautiful mountains. What more could you ask for?

Well I hope you've enjoyed sharing my creations with me from my jaunt away. I've loved every minute and although these are the raw images before any of my work has been framed, which will now be a mammoth task, watch this space as they may be appearing on the website soon.

However, I'll let you into a secret......I'm off on my hols again on Friday for a week travelling on a narrow boat with family who are joining us from the USA. Call it 'doing something completely different'. Well it is for us anyway!

I'm thinking I might just have to replenish my felting kit though and sneak it into my bag for the trip. What do you think? Hopefully I might just get time to get creative in between opening lock gates and the G&T's.

All we need now is some good old British sunshine!

Until 2 weeks time when hopefully I'll have more creations to share (no pressure!) For now it's back to the giant knitting this week. Wow, I've missed my giant needles and have orders to catch up on.

Happy Holidays folks!

Claire xx

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