Lighted Felt Sculpture

Post date: Oct 06, 2009 7:11:16 PM

I recently had the incredible honor of getting a scholarship from the League of NH Craftsmen to take a class from Sharon Costello at the Northeast Fiber Arts Center in Williston, VT. With 20 years of experience as a fiber artist, Sharon is a fantastic teacher and has an incredible wealth of knowledge when it comes to felting. This made the class I took a complete joy.

Wool is naturally fire resistant, making it ideal for making a lighted sculpture. Because I am an engineer at heart, I wouldn't want a sculpture in my living room if it were too "funky". It just isn't me. After being on the hunt for a nice lamp to spruce up, I finally found a standing lamp at a thrift store. It was wrought iron and was then painted green. The original lamp shade was quite appalling, looking like it was dredged out of a barn or old, musty home. Green and gold swirling strips just didn't do the lamp justice. I remedied it by making a new lampshade. I was intending for it to look art nouveau. However it came out looking like an enormous flower. I embraced the floral approach by adding stamen.

The shade consists of five petals made of merino wool and tencel, with silk on the edges. The stamen are made of copper wire and glass beads and are actually the pull cord to turn the light on and off. Up close, the fiber in the petals is stunning and lets off a peaceful glow that allows the lamp to illuminate the whole room. This picture shows the detail of the silk which textures the bottom of the petals.

My daughter absolutely loves the lamp and was even caught sniffing the stamen. Perhaps it will have to be retired to her bedroom.