Handmade felt for me was something very crafty. I didn’t had knowledge about the material before coming to Canada. I “met” this technique years ago in a design conference in Buenos Aires, where I took a quickly workshop. As I’m crazy about hands-on and new processes I’ve start to try some stuff, but only balls and nests.
On Etsy I was always delighted by dolls, masks and toys made with felt… but not wearable products.
It’s been hard, for me, to see handmade felt as a cloth to be used in couture or fashion because I see it as a “rustic-look” material that is used mainly in craft products, commonly nothing outstanding in this market section.
But this started to change when Kara Dinkins, my colleague in the Graduate Studies Program presented her work and developed her grad pieces, costumes/dresses made with felt and silk, hand dyeing and silk printing.
Meanwhile I’ve found Vilte, a lithuanian brand that develop amazing outfits in handmade felt. It’s delicate, subtle and exquisite.
As the About says: “Revealing the broad versatility of felt, Vilte creates air, light, sensual and sophisticated designs through nuno felting and a combination of various materials, from softest alpaca, fine Australian merino wool, hand-spun Indian silks, gauze and silk chiffon. Each one of the diaphanous and multi-textured wearable art pieces are unique and one of a kind. Natural plants and flowers form the base of the naturally dyed materials, adding another layer to the uniqueness of the work, with no two print, pattern or dyes exactly the same as another.”
Most of these pieces with eco-prints are a collaborative work with Irit Dulman – an artist who also works with felt – she developed the prints and Vilte the garments and felt design.
It gives me new perspectives of what can be made with it and opened my mind of what I was used to think. I can see clearly the power of creation with hands, material, texture and contemporary looks in this production, can you?