I was recently invited to join the Etsy Plush Team! Of course I accepted and I’ve been having a great time getting to know the other plush artists and creating one of a kind minis for the team’s challenges. Joining me on the Etsy Plush Team are several other needle felt artists, so I am excited to show you some of their work in this month’s column.
Always Sugar Coated is the work of Chrissy Mahuna (you may also know her as Felted Chicken). She holds a BFA from the Maryland Institute College of Art and currently resides in Hollywood, CA. In addition to her wonderful needle felt artwork, she also works as a scenic sculptor for movies, theme parks, and musical performances. You can see more of her work on her website and Etsy shop.
Hine Mizushima originally hails from Japan, where she was trained in traditional painting. She currently lives in Vancouver, BC where she now works as a needle felt sculptor, crafter, and stop-motion puppet animation video artist. Her work has been exhibited in galleries worldwide and she has also produced a number of music video animations, including several for They Might Be Giants. You can see more of her work on her website and Etsy shop.
SquirrelMomma, aka Amy Williams, says “I make stuff to keep from becoming like the confused squirrel in the middle of the road who can’t remember which direction she was heading!” She lives in Grand Rapids, Michigan and is a former metalsmith. She uses needle felt to create one of a kind creatures that each have a story to tell. You can find more of her work in her Etsy shop.
Finally, here’s a peek at one of my own mini sculptures, created especially for the Plush Team shop. “Sugarbunny” was part of the team’s fall Day of the Dead challenge. Check out the Plush Team website and be sure to follow the team shop on Etsy for more one of a kind plush and soft sculpture!
We featured manbroiderer Paul Nosa on our Cutting (& Stitching) Edge column a while back. His latest project is Sewn Stories, a gallery book of his work, which is inspired by conversations with people and stitched on the fly while he’s with them on his pedal powered sewing station.
Pauls’ work is great – pedal powered stitching improvisation. I think it’s terrific and this new book is definitely something I want to enjoy.
All over the country, people have been coming together to commemorate the Centenary of the First World War. Along with Church services, reenactments and flyovers there have been some beautiful and engaging works of art springing up for the public to enjoy and think about. One such project is an art installation at the Tower of London by Paul Cummins called ‘Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red’. Using the iconic poppy, the installation consists of thousands of ceramic poppies which sweep across the dry moat of the historic building. Over the summer, more poppies are added to the piece which will eventually burst over the walls and out the windows as well as across the ground until their number reaches 888,246 poppies on the 11th November which representing all the British or colonial military fatalities in the war. After 11/11/14 the poppies will be sold off individually for £25 each to raise money for charity.
The poppy was first used after the First World War when an american academic, Moina Michael was inspired by McCrae’s poem ‘In Flanders Fields’ to make red silk poppies for Decoration Day. The British Legion first started selling poppies in 1921 with an initial order of 9 million poppies which were sold on the 11th November 1921 raising £106,000. Following the first years success they set up factory on the Old Kent Road in London where five disabled ex-Servicemen began making poppies. 3 years later the Poppy Factory moved to its current site in Richmond, Surrey and today produces millions of poppies each year.
In honour of this, The London Embroidery School is hosting an adaptation of the silk flower making class for poppies. 50% of the profit from the class will be going to be British Legion’s Poppy Appeal so we would love if you could help us to raise some money for them. The class will be taking place on the 29th October in our Islington studio from 6.30-8.30pm. Click here to book your place, spaces will be limited as all our classes are quite intimate.