The Westfield Artisan Market

If there’s one thing that the 2020 pandemic has taught us, it’s that we should support each other, especially small business owners. This was the premise that a local refurbishing furniture company, The Scrap Yard, used to organize the Westfield Artisan Market.

The Westfield Artisan Market was designed to encourage, develop and support entrepreneurs and small businesses in the area. It is held every Sunday, starting in May and closing October 24. They have offered the ability to have a booth there every week, every two weeks or every month.

What I have loved about their mission with the Westfield Artisan Market is that they are encouraging a community within a community. From their website: “We are looking for vendors who understand that we can all grow our businesses together and we encourage vendors to learn about each other to better cross-promote available goods and services available at the market.”

Each week, a local charitable organization is presented center stage at the market. The organization is able to educate attendees about their mission over the microphone, as well as have a booth set up for free. The organizers are definitely more about their community and their potential new friends than making money.

All Wooled Up has chosen to be part of the market every third Sunday of the month. We are able to offer a variety of items at the market, from our lightweight summer coverups to some handknitted shawls to my newest fiber art and my new Bling Pillows. It’s been fun to change up our booth every month, thanks to the outdoor setting!

So far, I have enjoyed scrumptious pizza from one of Westfield’s oldest pizza restaurants, Jan’s Village Pizza and delectable treats from Savage Cake Artistry. My granddaughter has fallen in love with succulents and hand-knotted hangers from Uptown Common. I also chose my newest purse from another vendor.

It’s been a lot of fun to support our local businesses, and to know that I’m not the only one struggling to get back to normal after the hellish year I, and we all, had last year.

If you’re in the area, we invite you to check out the collection of local artisans and small businesses in Hamilton County. You can find the Westfield Artisan Market at The Scrap Yard:

17379 Little Eagle Creek
Westfield, IN 46074
http://scrapyardsurplus.com/westfield-artisan-market

New Product: Bling Pillows

As much as I love working with wool, I also love a little bling. Sometimes, I’ll be walking through the aisles of Goodwill and a little flash will catch my eye. I had to come up with something fun to do these fabrics.

Enter: BLING PILLOWS

While they have plenty of flair, these pillows really are soft and cozy, so they are the perfect way to add a little style to your home–throw them on your couch, love seat or even recliner.

Each pillow measures approximately 2 feet by 2 feet and are available for sale for $22.

We have more styles that are finished almost weekly! We’ll have our Bling Pillows at the Westfield Artisan Market every third Sunday of the month. You can always email us for more details: fiberartist74(at)gmail(dot)com.

I Love Sheep

Fact: I love sheep. But, I don’t own sheep.

I would like to think it’s obvious, if you see my adorable sheep logo and the fact that I love using products from sheep.

I love the uniqueness of the different curls and textures of sheep’s wool, and I love to use it in my needle felting.

And while I love the idea of using their wool to create images far from sheep, I love using their wool to create sheep-related artwork. I love to recreate their personalities with their own product and share that with my customers.

11×14, framed in red wooden frame (no glass), $45

But however much I love sheep, I do not own any. That’s right, I have a farm in Central Indiana, but it’s a horse farm. Instead, I’d rather support small farms in Indiana and surrounding states who breed and raise these marvelous animals and are the real professional sheep lovers.

That’s why I love attending fiber festivals, because it shows the lifecycle of the sheep: from breeding and raising, to shearing and spinning. Attendees can learn about raising sheep and see why this animal is so important to the lifecycle of clothing.

And, I have been known to trade wares with fiber shops–a piece of art for a bag of fiber. It’s a fun gig!

8×10, hunter green wooden frame under glass, $40

Here are some Sheep Facts, courtesy of The Modern Farmer:

  1. One pound of wool can make up to 10 miles of yarn.
  2. Sheep’s wool will grow forever.
  3. The groove in their upper lip is called a philtrum.
  4. Sheep cannot right themselves if they’re on their back.
  5. The United States’ Founding Fathers (George Washington, Thomas Jefferson and James Madison) owned and raised sheep.
11×14, framed with a gray barn wood frame (no glass), $45

Custom Order: Simba from The Lion King

As much as I love to create needle felted artwork from my own imagination, I love to take on custom creations to bring a customer’s vision to life! This holiday season I have had a good handful of custom orders that I’m busily working on, but I wanted to share some orders that I have enjoyed this year:

Simba

This was a first for me: needle felt a portrait of a cartoon character. My customer said that her adorable little boy loves The Lion King and loves Simba, and she had a vision to decorate his room related to the movie and the iconic lion. She requested a Simba portrait on a blue background, and then she’ll frame it in a shadowbox.

Blue Wool Background
The chosen blue background for Simba.
  1. I started by choosing a selection of blue backgrounds (the requested color by the customer) and asking her which she would prefer.

2. I searched for images of Simba that I think would look good transformed in fibers. At this point, I may or may not consult with the customer, it just depends on the subject of the artwork.

Work in progress…or Trump’s hair? We may never know!

3. Then I dig through my inventory of natural fibers to find the right colors. I use variances of colors to help with shading and adding depth to the image. While I know the needle felting adds a more three-dimensional affect to a typically two-dimensional portrait, shading really brings out the subject.

4. The beautiful thing with needle felting and working with fibers is that I can easily move lines, remove colors, change shapes with the pull of a needle. So while I may think a piece is complete, I’ll let it sit for a couple of days and then come back to compare the portrait with the original image and edit as needed.

5. The artwork is complete! With most pieces, it will be put in a frame, made into a pillow or the edges finished for a wall hanging. This piece, however, will be finished by the customer because she will put it in a shadowbox to hang in her little boy’s room. I can’t wait to see how it looks!

Simba Needle Felt
The finished product!

Thank you for your order, Chelle! It was a fun experiment (I’ve never done a cartoon character before). You’ve taken beautiful photos of my granddaughter, so I was proud to be able to share my art with you for your family!

If you’re interested in a custom piece of art, please email me and let’s discuss: fiberartist74@gmail.com

Support Small Business: Order Custom Gifts from All Wooled Up

When I started All Wooled Up, it was because I wanted to share my unique art with my friends and family. What became a hobby is now a passion of mine, and I love to see the smiles on people’s faces when they see what kind of magic fiber can do.

I love to do images I’m inspired by, whether it be by watching the birds outside my patio door or dreaming of the most colorful wild mustang roaming the range. However, what I’m most inspired by is my customer’s love of their pets.

That is why I love to do custom commissions.

Custom Gift Pillows

Whether it’s a custom knitted scarf or shawl or custom piece of fiber art, they make the best gifts, no matter the season.

Why?

Because, a custom piece means you took the time to think about the gift receiver. You know who or what is important to that person, and you know their style. Once you have your ideas together, that’s when I go to work, and I work with you to create a one-of-a-kind piece that may be the most precious gift someone could give.

The timing for commissioned pieces vary between a week to a couple of months, depending on the scope of the project. It’s never too late to reach out to me to discuss the best gift you can give to your loved ones this holiday season. Reach out to me via my Facebook page or by emailing FiberArtist74@gmail.com.

Dog Hair in Art!?

One of the funniest expressions I tend to get from viewers of my fiber art comes from when I tell them that sometimes I use dog hair in my needle felting.

You use what?

Yep!

After all, what’s the best way to make sure that the unique color and texture of your beloved canine’s fur is captured than by using his own fur!?

I’ve had owners request to have custom portraits needlefelted of their dogs, and if it is a unique breed or has a unique coloring, I’ll ask if they mind sending some of the fur so I can incorporate it into my all-natural fibers. All it takes is a few minutes of brushing to get the undercoat (note: this is more successful with dogs that have a dual coat versus those such as a Parson Russell Terrier), place it in a baggie and mail away!

Grooming Day! Does this look familiar?

Some questions you might have:

Q: Do I need to bathe my dog first?
A: While it’s not necessary, it is appreciated, especially if your dog prefers to roll in a new “cologne” on a daily basis.

Q: Can I cut the fur?
A: Please no! First of all, that would not look good on your pup, second of all it may not set well into the fabric. A simple brushing should do the trick, especially during shedding season.

Q: Does it matter where I get the hair from my dog? Back? Stomach?
A: It does, but usually if you just do a general full body brushing and include all that hair, it’ll get mixed up just fine.

Q: Is this a requirement for a custom portrait?
A: Not at all! It’s just something fun I like to do every once in a while. Like I said, it offers a more unique color and texture, plus it can be your own secret that within this portrait is your own pup’s fur.

Feel free to reach out to me if you have any further questions!

Horses in the Morning Radio Show

It’s so important for small businesses to support one another, especially in special niches such as the equine industry. So, when the online radio show, Horses in the Morning, invited me to speak as part of their equine artist spotlight last week, I was excited.

If you haven’t heard of Horses in the Morning, and you’re a horse lover, I highly recommend tuning into Glenn and Jamie. They have comfortable, carefree chats and cover a plethora of equine related topics from horse health to events to the people working with horses.

You can listen to my show from May 13 here: https://www.horsesinthemorning.com/do-horses-grimace-douwe-the-friesian-and-a-fiber-artist-on-may-13-2020-by-state-line-tack/

And you can check some of my current equine art offerings by seeing my page: Needle Felted Wall Art – Horses

Thank you, Glenn and Jamie, for having me on! My first time on the radio!!

COVID-19 Cancelling Fiber Events

We are all aware of the devastating effects the COVID-19 pandemic had had on the health of the world. It’s also affecting the economy in crippling ways.

All Wooled Up has seen firsthand the effects of the government’s “Stay at Home” orders. First, our booth at The Farmhouse Market in Greenwood, Ind., has been closed when the shop closed in March. It was our one stable location where we had hoped to offer many items to Hoosiers throughout the year.

Second, two of our favorite festivals that we attend yearly have been canceled.

The Kentucky Sheep and Fiber Festival in Lexington has always been one of my favorite events. I’ve been a vendor ever since it started, 11 years ago. It’s a festival done in partnership with the Bluegrass Stock Dog Trials held at Masterson Station Park. And while the weather was never 100% the best, we always had great crowds.

image
The All Wooled Up booth at the Kentucky Sheep & Fiber Festival in 2019.

The Hoosier Hills Fiber Festival in Franklin, Ind., in June has also been cancelled. This was another event I never missed, despite the heat that comes with June in Indiana.

The loss of these two events are a huge hit to small businesses such as All Wooled Up. For my business, I do primarily all my sales in person–whether it’s at a festival or in a shop booth. My needlefelting I something that is mostly appreciated if you can see it in person and touch the medium. My shawls draw you in by their texture and warmth as you wrap them around your shoulders.

I am hoping to offer more ways to purchase my items online, whether it’s the new Yarn Kits, custom needlefelting projects, hand knitted items, etc. I’ll post on my Facebook page as well as this website. I hope to kickstart my Etsy store back up again, as well.

image

All of this is in hopes you’ll continue to support small businesses, especially the ones that rely on events and festivals for their sales, a lot like my friends at the Kentucky Sheep and Fiber Festival and Hoosier Hills.

Stay safe! Stay healthy!

Now Selling: Yarn Kits

All Wooled Up is very excited to share its newest offering: Yarn Kits

After hearing from fans at events how they love my shawls, love the color combinations and how well I choose complimenting textures, I had an idea: why not help my fellow fiber artists and knitters by offering kits so you can create the hand knitted item of your dreams?

All Wooled Up Yarn KitI spent the winter going through my extensive stash of yarn and start putting together these yarn kits. Each kit was hand-picked by me with complimenting colors and textures. Each kit contains enough yarn for a shawl or scarf, or any other small project you might have in mind.

I’ll be debuting my Yarn Kits at the Arts & Crafts Destash Event in Lafayette, Indiana, March 21. I invite you to join me and fellow artists who are looking to cleaning out their collections and help budding artists on a budget. I’ll start listing these kits online, as well, so if you can’t attend any event I’m at this year, you can shop my stash!

Destash Yarn
An example of one Yarn Kit.

Lafayette Destash Event

I’ll also have some of my felted wool and fiber available!

 

Now Showing at Farmhouse Market

All Wooled Up is so excited about our next venture! This winter, we have a presence at the Farmhouse Market in Greenwood! This is a cute shop, located conveniently just south of Greenwood Mall, and the owner is very supportive of entrepreneurs.

Farmhouse Market Greenwood ShopDue to my husband’s declining health, I have not been able to be on the road as much as I used to be, so we’ve been looking for places that I could exhibit my hand knitted shawls and needle felting. I feel that having a physical presence somewhere is the best way to market and sell my items. While I love interacting with everyone on social media and Etsy, my medium is hard to market in a two-dimensional way–you need to be able to feel the textures, see the depth of the curls of the fibers.

If you’re ever near Greenwood, Indiana, I ask that you swing by the Farmhouse Market! I’m offering some hand knitted shawls, new precious stone necklaces and a few needle felted pieces of artwork.

20191129_140510.jpg

I’m also still looking for other locations to showcase my items, and would appreciate any suggestions in the Central Indiana area!

20191129_141233.jpgUntil then, I hope you stay cozy and have a great holiday season!

UPDATE (March 30, 2020): Unfortunately, our time in Greenwood was cut short. The Farmhouse Market location in Greenwood closed in mid-March. All Wooled Up is still looking for places in Central Indiana where we can set up a semi-permanent booth. Please let us know any recommendations.