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Topic: Woven AND Knit Fur Scarf  (Read 1351 times)
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naturalcreation
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« on: February 17, 2008 03:26:36 PM »

*** If you are offended by genuine fur, please close this page immediately.***
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Here's a little creation... (these take *forever* to make)
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After Paula Lishman advised me to weave the fur instead of knit with it, for economy, I decided to try it out. I had a spare bobcat pelt, which the tannery caused to be un-useable for it's original purpose. I didn't know what to do with it, so today I decided I would make a gorgeous knit/woven fur scarf out of it.


The base is a sweater. It's made out of pale beige cotton. It is machine knit in a plain style. There were no decorations on the sweater and it was a neutral color, brand new, unworn, and huge, so... ideal for this project!


The special thing is that the fully let out bobcat fur pelt, is woven by hand, tiny strip by strip, in to the knit. It is difficult, to say the least, to get this looking good. The scarf is shown with just a small amount of the fur put in there, maybe 1/6 of the hide?, and it hasn't been brushed up yet, so it looks very short and wierd! Eventually both sides of the scarf will be beautiful. For now, this is the beginning. Pain in the butt, but with good western bobcat pelts being up to $1700 each this year, and this scarf using up a whole pelt, I figured I'd give this one a whirl.


For those who wonder, yes, bobcat fur is legal. It's not legal to re-sell if you are in CA, but every other state in the USA and country in the world, especially China - they are legal, and very warm and desireable. I'm not in CA. They are on CITES but I have the tag # on her. Smiley


From the picture you can kindasorta see how this is done. It acts as it's own tutorial. Smiley
« Last Edit: September 26, 2011 03:24:55 PM by jungrrl - Reason: added working image » THIS ROCKS   Logged
maddiemoos
« Reply #1 on: February 17, 2008 05:26:40 PM »

 :(I know we were warned.  You are doing a good job putting that pelt to use.  I just hate wearing animals that weren't used as food. Sad
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naturalcreation
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« Reply #2 on: February 17, 2008 06:48:19 PM »

Thanks! Smiley
I'm TRYING... it was very difficult to think of something to do with it. It was shredded. Bleepin' tannery! Most of the time spent on this article is being spent re-cutting the pelt to make it workable.

Yuck! Wool tastes hairy and coarse! I would never eat a silkworm. Do you eat silkworms?! (point being, just because it isn't raised for human food - such as Merino sheep or silkworms, doesn't mean it's not good to wear.)

Ah... but bobcat is some of the very best wild game meat (to those who do eat it). It's said to be like very moist pork. I don't eat either (I'm a veggie Smiley, so... I have no idea. LOL. Bobcat is also a very fine meal for coyotes, shrews, voles, vultures, hawks, foxes, porcupines, and any other critter that happens upon the carcass or bones after the harvester returns it to Mother Nature. Plants appreciate the compost tea as the carcass returns to the soil.

Bobcats are protected in my state and they are not legal to be harvested. This pelt came from Oklahoma where there is a legal ''season'' for them.

Furriers appreciate the pelts! Smiley

The knit/woven design was chosen for a good reason: This makes the pelt less subject to "wearing out" and the hairs rubbing or breaking off. The thick, but light, cotton base is something that will outlive the wearer - it's not that cheap acidwash Mexican stuff that dry rots in 2 years, at all. The look is less bulky then a plain pelt, so a wearer who might have issues wearing bulky items would be great in this. The whole scarf is more durable then a plain pelt, and yet very warm, so, it will benefit the wearer for more then 1 season. Knit furs have been worn and utilized by Native peoples for centuries and displayed in non-Native museums since the 1800's; it's not going out of fashion any time soon. Some of those Native-woven, braintanned wild rabbit fur blankets run circles around about anything I've ever seen in boutiques. The woven/knit is a durable choice.

This pelt (and the work in general) has an added bonus: It is very environmentally friendly and low energy use in it's tanning. The tannery did such a quick [hack] job that most of the energy used to make it soft and supple, comes from the currier's knife. The only chemicals used on the pelt are a mild acid, a mild alkali, and a natural oil, similar to cocoa butter. No hydrocarbons, no phosphates, no salt, no fish-harming or plant-harming stuff whatsoever. Because I am hand-weaving this with no machinery (like an Amish woman, but with a computer and an electric light... maybe a Mennonite?), there is no mechanical energy being spent to make this article at all. Just plain elbow grease and TLC. Because I love all critters I have to make sure that everything I utilize, is treated right, and done only to the highest standard: from the naturally-molted feathers, to using only origin assured or tagged legal furs. I feel really good about using and wearing my fur.

Yes, I'll have posted a new pic - from before I brush it out or line it, but when the bulk of the weaving is done.
« Last Edit: February 21, 2008 03:46:41 AM by naturalcreation - Reason: - » THIS ROCKS   Logged
naturalcreation
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« Reply #3 on: February 19, 2008 11:06:38 PM »

Eleventy jillion strands of bobcat fur later...

OK, here's a new picture for the curious.


It is 640px wide, but Craftster only allows 500px, so... if it's hard to see, sorry in advance.

It has not been brushed out or tacked down yet. That's why it still looks ratty. The picture is showing how the fur is woven through the knitted base. The weaving-through took at least 12 hours. It was a major pain!

Once it's finished, one of these weeks, it's going to be superb. Smiley.
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naturalcreation
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« Reply #4 on: February 22, 2008 01:07:09 PM »

Here is another one, done in fox!

Showing how the weaving through the knit is done:


Half brushed out, already looking great:


The back side, showing (kind of!) how the leather is barely visible through the woven cotton base:


These take *days* to complete. I haven't finished either one. They are far more labor intensive then I thought they would be. The results are nice, but I could be making full coats in the time it takes me to do one of these. LOL. Hopefully the pics show how it's done.
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naturalcreation
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« Reply #5 on: February 25, 2008 08:42:26 AM »

Here's the fox one, coming along, still have plenty of weaving to do on the side not shown... This is more complete and more brushed out then before, but still - after another couple days - not done!


On the bobcat one, you can sometimes see the cotton base when the scarf moves, but with fox, being as fluffy, long-haired, and dense as it is, the base is not visible on this at all  Smiley
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Eliea
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« Reply #6 on: February 25, 2008 11:11:43 AM »

I think it's lovely and would love to see it modeled. It's hard to get an idea of what you are doing from the close up pictures. I love to appreciate hard work. and I do like the fact that you are sort of recycling. Smiley
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naturalcreation
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« Reply #7 on: February 25, 2008 11:31:53 AM »

You're welcome! Thanks so much for the compliments Smiley
None of it is being actually recycled. The hides, and the base, are all new materials.
What I was doing is more like "salvage" work on the bobcat, and just having fun with the fox.
This was also prototyping work to see how long the designs would take.
I just got finished with the weaving portion on the fox. 14 hours actual weaving time (over 8 days). LOL. These are WAY, way too tough for these to be a production item. Smiley
« Last Edit: February 25, 2008 11:33:41 AM by naturalcreation - Reason: - » THIS ROCKS   Logged
Eliea
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« Reply #8 on: February 25, 2008 12:51:07 PM »

You're welcome! Thanks so much for the compliments Smiley
None of it is being actually recycled. The hides, and the base, are all new materials.
What I was doing is more like "salvage" work on the bobcat, and just having fun with the fox.
This was also prototyping work to see how long the designs would take.
I just got finished with the weaving portion on the fox. 14 hours actual weaving time (over 8 days). LOL. These are WAY, way too tough for these to be a production item. Smiley
"salvage" is a better term I suppose. lol. Can't wait to see the finished item.
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« Reply #9 on: March 02, 2008 10:59:51 AM »

Beautiful!  Ooooo, and fox is amazing stuff!! So thick and floofy and warm, mmmm!

I agree.  I have one fur coat, it is older than I am, and in WONDERFUL condition.  I bought it to use for an art car, but the car died, so I have a beautiful sable coat that I got for $10!!!

It's been dead for longer than I've been alive.  Why shouldn't we wear the vintage furs, instead of farming and then killing more animals for only their fur?  I never understood why some 'activists' would go to antique stores and cut the furs up.   Cry  That dishonors the animal which died so long ago, instead of allowing it to continue to warm bodies for many years!  I wish I could wear my fur, but in LA it could be dangerous because of the stupidity of the PETA people who think it's 'wrong'.  Angry  Thankfully, I get to England on occasion, and they don't have so many hang-ups about this sort of thing.  Probably because it's COLD there!!

I also have friends who do tanning and sell furry bits and skulls and whatnot, I admire the art form!!!
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