We read that you have a background in interior design as well as a degree in art. In what ways has your creative background inspired you to make your own felt flowers?
I’m a “feelings” person. I think of creativity and art as a way to express a feeling from the artist or maker or evoke a feeling from the person experiencing the creation. Whether that creation is a choreographed dance, an intentionally designed room, or a pretty handmade flower, your mood can shift both when you create and experience all of these things. Subtle nuances in color, texture, sound, smell—all impact our emotions and memories in different ways. When I started working with felt almost 10 years ago, I hadn’t been “crafty” in a really long time. Something about anticipating the arrival of my first child and the desire to create for her sparked a nostalgic feeling in me. I remembered making things from felt as a child—I loved the colors, the texture, the memories. That all took on the form of flowers because I wanted to make accessories for her that weren’t super frilly. I’ve always had a love for plants and flowers and nature and by making flowers, I really get to appreciate their form and structure and marvel at how mother nature is just so brilliant even in her smallest creations.
Tell us about your process for making felt flowers. What are the steps involved?
The basic steps of creating a felt flower are cutting the individual pieces out of felt and gluing them together with hot glue. The longer answer is to create a flower from scratch, it helps to have a general idea of the basic parts of a flower: petals, center (pistol/stamen), calyx, stem, and leaves. Then, I try to determine what makes a particular flower unique or what its defining characteristics are. Choosing the right colors and making the felt take the shape of a particular flowers’ parts help make the flower identifiable and capture what is recognizable about that flower, even if every single element is not recreated in exact detail. To get the felt to move and form in the ways I want, I use water, heat, fabric stiffener, strategic cuts, and hot glue. Occasionally, I apply color with chalk, paint or markers, and have even used fire to darken the tips of succulent leaves!