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Felt Interiors Summer 2007
A collaboration between Jeanette Sendler & Barbara Ridland

All in itallics: Extract from article written by Hazel Reid, Embroidery magazine March/April 2007
New directions:
Close – Knit Collaborators:

Black & White hanging seen with light from behind. Red fork lightning impacting the floor.
above: 'Lightning Storm' £480
right: 'Quartzite Sun' £720
hover over images for more information

Jeanette’s love of felt took her to Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and to Mongolia to find out how felt was made and used there. Now Jeanette’s feltmaking has taken a new direction in collaboration with Shetland knitwear designer, Barbara Ridland. Together they combine their work to make outstanding interiors.

Combining techniques of knitting, hand felting & the needle punch machine they are typically large scale with lengths up to 5 meters.  

All interiors are hand tooled knitted swathes needle felted onto Shetland fleece soft felt.

Stunning silver distressed muslin on black with red sun

In the Spring of 2005; Jeanette explains, ‘I was in Shetland on a three months textile residency, working in primary schools, using indigenous material and finding new ways of working with woollen fibres in knit and felt work. Barbara came to one of the talks I gave. We liked each other’s work and since then we’ve met three or four times a year. I’ve taught Barbara felt-making techniques and she’s taught me how to use the knitting machines in a creative way. Initially, we were going to work for a short period of time, but gradually the idea grew that we could develop our work into an exhibition.

4m B/W with red ‘thread’ hung horizontally As a theme, Jeanette and Barbara chose the Scord quarry, on the Shetland mainland, not far from Lerwick. They are inspired by the natural rock formations in the quarry and how they are turned into man-made structures. There are such contrasts in quality between sharp pieces of rock and subtly beautiful piles of chippings and while the quarry may be harsh and manmade, it is still in harmony with the natural world and the wildlife population that surrounds it. Jeanette and Barbara hope to capture these elements in their work.

above: 'Shifting Shingle' £510

Black & White themes this collection. Red threads run though many works. Pebble holes reflect quarried items.

Now they are putting together an exhibition for the New Museum of Shetland to be seen in 2008.

‘Not only will they show their work integrating two techniques but they will also celebrate the quarry as part of Shetland’s environment and demonstrate the part it plays for the city streets and roads.’ For me,’ says Barbara,’ the exhibition means that I am putting something back into Shetland.’

Jeanette and Barbara work in completely different environments and styles. Barbara has her studio overlooking the harbour in Lerwick, while Jeanette works in her basement studio in Edinburgh’s Georgian New Town.

right: 'Strata' £280

Black & White spider tyre tracks laid on a table

On a visit to Jeanette’s studio I saw how Barbara’s delicate knitting is incorporated into Jeanette’s felt. Firstly, Jeanette makes some soft felt using fine Shetland wool in muted tones and colours. Then Barbara’s knitting is laid on top and the two are felted together, so that the knitting seems to float in the upper surface of the felt. The colours they use reflect the quarry, dark and light greys, creams, browns and rusts.

'Strata II' £310





'Stack Piles' £420

Tyre tracks from different quarry vehicles inspired these two pieces. B/W. One draped over a table the other rippled – as the quarry mud across the floor.
Red this time is sandwiched between the two contrasting greys. Item laid over table Stone Layers SOLD
  Here a blue track is laid over black & white felt. The voids left by stones are cut into it B/W track felt laid over table
above: 'Road Mettle' £620
above: 'Strata II' £310
5m long hanging hung horizontally. Two red components, the lower half of the underfelt & a bright track shock through the black above: Rock face £560
B/W hanging seen with light from behind. Red fork lightning hitting the ground
'Lightning Storm' £480
A departure in colour. A subtle blend of browns dominate this piece with the black / white & red theme colours underplayed

above: Fallen leaves £760

The corner of a living space transformed by 4 interiors A different angle on the b/w tyre track throw







right: Stone Layers SOLD

Red track with backing felt shaped to accentuate the movement. A rippled tail represents water as it torrents down the tracks & through narrow grooves into a flatter plain. A triple layer throw on the wooden floor
Close up of red rippled tail
left & detail above: Red Rivulet £520
Red & black flames lick this hot / cold interior
above: 'Road Metal' £480
A torrent of water flowing down steps
above: 'Scalped Artery' £820
Sizes & construction details available on request per interior.

3 Clinton Street
Newburgh, Fife

Scotland KY14 6DP

email: Jeanette
landline: 01337 841004
shop: 01738 624213
mobile: 07813 023607
photography & webpage: davejford
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