Sunday, October 4, 2009

Installation for International Day of Felt at the Corvallis Arts Center.

It was a wonderful weekend with the installation of the piece I had planned for the International Day of Felt, which was October 3. The installation looked so good we left it up for one more day.

The project turned out really great. Let me explain how we did it. My 4H kids, family and I went to four different public venues in Albany, Lebanon and Corvallis and taught about 60 people to make felt. They made small units of felt approximately 3 inches square which I then dyed in the theme colors of yellow-red from the color wheel. In addition, I went to the Corvallis Waldorf School and with Shellece Millison, taught the 5th grade and the 6th & 7th combined classes how to make felt. Shellece then taught the 8th grade class: altogether about another 40 people. I taught some friends at my studio as well.

So in total, a little over 100 people learned to make felt. The installation itself was made up of 20 strands of wool yarn which hung down from the trees. Each yarn had 16 squares sewn to it at intervals, so that they looked like leaves hanging down from the trees. The squares flickered as the wind blew, much like the flicker of aspen leaves. The strands themselves also moved with the wind. It really was lovely.

Here is a link to some of the photos from the installation. Some videos are here.
Below is a photo of Shellece and me at the installation.

For more information about the International Day of Felt, go here.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Bellydance T-Shirt Fringe Belt

I have been doing a lot of bellydancing lately and am now going to start teaching a beginner's class. Wearing something on the hips is very important in bellydancing so that the student can see in the mirror how well their hips are moving. It is also important for the teacher to see if their technique needs to be corrected. One of my bellydance buds, Shellece Swafford Millison, was wearing a fringe belt made from a t-shirt. She said that when she assisted at teaching a class for high school students, they made these belts because they were cheap and easy to do.

So I decided to try and make one for myself and then to teach the students in my class how to do so. I searched online for the instructions, and couldn't find any. So here is my version of how to do this.

T-Shirt Fringe Belt for Bellydance Practice
Pat Spark copyright 2009
This is a simple fringe belt for bellydance class or practice. You will need: a t-shirt broad enough to fit across your hips when it is stretched; a table; sharp scissors or rotary cutter (with mat). If the t-shirt is too broad for your hips, you can cut off some of the sides to make it smaller.


1. Turn shirt inside out so that the seams show.

2. Lay the shirt flat on a table and cut off the top seam and neckline.

3. Cut off the arm and side seams.

4. Cut strips up the body of the t-shirt to make the fringes. They are cut up as high as the underarm. The strips can be from 1 ½ -2 inches wide. Or some can be that wide and some can be ¾ inch wide to make a narrow strip that beads can be strung onto for a little more swing.

5. Add beads to the strips if you want.

6. Use the arms as ties to tie on the belt at your hips. Have fun and dance!

Thursday, January 8, 2009

"Tulip 3" is finished!

I am very happy with the way Tulip 3 came out. Unframed, the piece is 7" x 8". Now I just have to find the right frame for it. I really like the piece. Here is the image without frame.

Here is a detail: