Hair of the Dog


Many years ago during my first “back to nature” stint I took up spinning and weaving. I raised a couple of sheep and angora rabbits and have not a single picture of any of it. Oh well.  Fast forward some years to about 1989 when I got my first poodle. His name was Pooh and he changed my life in many ways.

Having had experience with many different wools I had to play with his hair.  There is only one remnant of those experiments, a little knitted swatch that has been washed many times now and is partially felted as a result:

Poodle hair makes beautiful yarn, as I was sure it would.

A few years ago I got an urge to felt. I don’t know how these things happen to me. I am just suddenly overcome with the compulsion to do something…generally something really messy that takes tremendous amounts of time and could not possibly make any money.  This was one of those compulsions.

Poodles do not shed so there is not much poodle hair around the house however to do felting (or spinning or any other fiber work) longer hair is better so I had to grow out some hair then cut and comb and card and make “batts” and make all kinds of messes with poodle hair floating around until I thought I’d choke.

The results were interesting.  The first picture is just a few pieces of felt, some very tight, some more loose.

The darkest brown is actually from my little Java who is a much lighter color now.

I experimented with making felted pockets. The first was a little weak and had some holes.

The next one I felted onto muslin. I think I may have planned to remove the muslin but it got too enmeshed in the felt, which was fine.

This is about 5 or 6 inches wide and is largely a product of Panama Red (my “other” soul mate and love of my life)

There were various other items that were fun to play with. Felted rolls can make beads or buttons. The ones pictured here are not solid/stiff enough for buttons but I did have some rolls that were and they made Great buttons.

Here’s a close up: (The largest ones here are slightly smaller than a dime)

And finally this “sculpture” that was built over a tennis ball.

I was reminded of these things today by my friend Alaina who had sent me a link to a page of pictures of people who are wearing clothes made from their dogs’ hair.  It’s here and fun to see.  I have had some pieces of clothing made from animals I’ve had though more from sheep than dogs.  Unfortunately no pictures of those exist. Remember to take pictures of everything!! Now picture taking (and sharing) is so easy!

Create something and have fun!!