Raw Felted Fleece: A New Approach to the Sheepskin Blanket
Traditional sheepskin blankets with a tanned leather back require that the sheep make the ultimate sacrifice. Yet it doesn’t have to be so! Instructor Becky Utecht has developed a modern approach to an age-old craft. Using felting techniques, students in this course will start with an unwashed sheep fleece and transform it into a luxurious, wooly and warm blanket, all without harming a sheep, but retaining the lovely natural form of the fleece. Shepherds and fiber lovers will appreciate the efficiency of washing and felting a fleece at the same time, and fans of fuzzy blankets and rugs will enjoy discovering the different types of wool available, as there will be ample conversation about the nuances and qualities of different breeds. Note: students will need to bring an unwashed fleece to class, something the instructor can help you track down by prior arrangement.
Students should have previous felting experience and a good understanding of the felting process. They must have the physical ability to roll and full a wet fleece. Students should expect to get dirty.