Northeast Fiber Arts Center

2020 Fiber Challenge Creations

"Primaries" was the theme.

In the midst of this political season I decided to give participants a range of "primary" colors to work with.

The first pictures below show the materials (yarn,fiber, locks, prefelts, etc) that I provided to each of them.

Below the photos of the starting materials, and in no particular order, you can see what some of the finished creations turned out to be.

Each customer who participated was allowed to "add" one thing of their own, but they had to use some of every yarn and fiber I gave them.

The Fiber Challenge is a great excuse for knitters, weavers, felters and spinners to throw aside the need to "make something" (and all the pressure and limitations we place on ourselves when we are making something to wear or fit) and just "play" and "explore" without a care. I tried to summarize a bit about each of the creations below so you could appreciate what each participant put into their project!

Based on the lively conversation and smiling faces at the "Reveal Party" on Saturday, I think I can confidently say everyone enjoyed the challenge!

Be sure to click on the photos to enlarge them so you can appreciate the subtleties in each design. i tried to provide an overall photo and then a closeup or two to give you more of a sense of the piece.


The first photo here shows the three sets of primaries I gave each participant. The Corriedale fiber (in roving form) are the "crayola crayon" primaries. The three skeins of Vermont raised Border Leceister I gave them each all have 10% black added to them. And the 3 skeins of Debbie Bliss Rialto are the "ink cartridge" primaries. Looks challenging, right?

Add in the packet of "zingers" I gave them - including an ink cartridge yellow sheet of "pre-felt", a green skein of yarn (some got a packet with a bright green instead of this darker green), a skein of a chunky variegated yarn by Katia, a package of hot pink novelty yarns, a handful of blue/green locks, and a bit of a Noro pin drafted roving! Whew!

They had to incorporate some of every element I gave them....and then could add 1 thing (not counting a substructure like wire armature or stuffing!

These first three pictures are of Seduca. This headressed goddess and younger sibling to Medusa has serpent arms and used them compassionately to knit hats for the men her sister turned to stones! This participant also knit the letters of his creations name so the letters could be rearranged to spell additional words - all of which he came up with clever definitions for 2 pages worth - but here are a few as samplers!

seacud - a rare variety of Salmon

seaduc - a decoy

edusac - filled with knowledge

These four photos show an overview and then close ups of an underwater themed mobile knit and crocheted, with guidance from a 5 year old about what colors should go where! From anemones to octopus with colorful fish in between. What my overview photo didn't capture is the felted seaweed up top!

This participant actually cut up and carded each of the yarns back into its original "fiber" state and then felted them together (second picture over) for a mug-rug or trivet and then made a wall hanging (pictured left) by felting stones and then applying the "fluff" to the plank surface using velcro! Be sure to click on the photos to enlarge and see the fluff and felted stones better!

This participant spun the fibers I included on a drop spindle and then blended them into this weaving - be sure to click on the photos to enlarge the details and see how incredible the shading is in this tapestry because of the blended yarns. Texture was added by weavint the locks into the sky. And also by felting the "pre-felt" piece I provided with the red corriedale fiber and then cutting the felt up into zig-zag pieces to weave into a P. Or a Tree - we had some discussion about this - I saw both P for primary and a tree!

This participant hated this bright green color. And because of the "tricky" way I handed out the "zingers", she actually ended up with 2 skeins of it, instead of 1 green and 1 of the Katia chunky yarns. But she knit this sweater for her granddaughter and learned to needle felt to use the remaining colors in the yolk design! By the end, she said she actually liked the color!

This felter used black fiber as a base to felt this 2 sided trivet using the Fiber Challenge yarns and fibers for embellishment (or lining! You probably can't see it but she left the center open on the back side (left photo) to prove that she did in fact use the chunky Katia yarn as a filler inside!

This customer rug hooked the base to create a pond in the field and then wrapped a wire armature with some of the yarns to create the tree. The swing, napping fox, mushrooms, pond greens and tree foliage were all needle felted! We all agreed that this customer could continue to add all sorts of features and that knowing when to call it "done" will be hard! She is a teacher and apparently the kids in her class have been offering all kinds of suggestions about what to add to the scene. And they are so excited, now, to do a creative challenge of their own! How great is that!?

This "meditation cushion" was knit by another participant. She is still trying to figure out how to stuff it (the second photo shows it is not yet closed as whe figures this out), but you can see how she used the green zinger to knit along with the 3 "ink cartridge" primaries fo rhte back side (second photo) and she spun the three "crayola primaries) to knit the center of the front side. And the chunky zinger forms the wedge shaped side. I can see some of the "10% black primaries" worked into the top, as well.