Materials and equipment 10
Adding texture and detail 36
Essential flower forms 64
Flower study 86
Flowers in still life 94
Flowers in the landscape 112
Since graduating from the Glasgow School of Art in 1990 with a degree in Design specialising in printed textiles, Moy Mackay has gone on to develop an innovative felting style. Using merino fleece fibres in the same way that a painter uses brushstrokes, she then embellishes them with machine and hand embroidery. She has exhibited her work at numerous venues throughout the UK and also in the US, and she has built up a steadily increasing fan base. Moy works from her studio in the Tweed Valley as well as running The Moy Mackay Gallery in Peebles. Since her first bestselling book Art in Felt & Stitch was published in April 2012, followed by Flowers in Felt & Stitch in 2014, Moy's work has gained worldwide exposure and she now teaches classes both at home and abroad. In 2013 she won Silver in the category of Textiles and Needlecraft, judged by Kaffe Fassett at the British Craft & Design Selected Awards. In 2016 Moy was a contestant on Sky Arts' Landscape Artist of the Year where she was shortlisted to the final three in her heat.
Moy's 'felt paintings' blend traditional felting techniques using fleece, threads and fibres with hand and free-machine embroidery to create dynamic, tactile images. Colour guru Kaffe Fassett describes Moy's style as 'very free' with a 'passionate use of colour and deep texture'. As Kaffe says, Moy 'concentrates on her surroundings for her subject matter'. Indeed, in this especially, Moy's fine art training shines through. Flowers are not outlined and separated from their backgrounds, but interpreted as part of their environment whether in their natural habitat or in bouquet form in a still-life. Although outlines and details may be emphasised by stitch, the flowers are always completely integrated with the ground. In 'Summer Meadow', for example, suggestions of individual blooms are created using additional stitch in the foreground, diminishing subtly in size and quantity tumbling around a house at the picture's centre. The landscape is then interpreted more loosely, the horizon and skyscape melding as naturally as if real. Full-page images of Moy's jewel-like pictures are invitingly textural, encouraging further experimentation. Full instructions are given for creating both individual flower forms and landscapes. Introductory chapters cover not only basic techniques and materials but are also a guide to developing your own design style.* Stitch *
Subtitled 'Creating Floral Works Using Fleece, Fibres and Threads'. Moy Mackay's 'felt paintings' are works of art. This book contains many images of her work. You can discover how to create a 'felt painting' with the four step-by-step projects. See the in-depth techniques used, learn what equipment is needed, be inspired and discover how to add detail with machine or hand stitching. Marvellous colourful and imaginative work. Highly recommended.* Karen Platt Yarnsandfabrics.co.uk/crafts *
Moy Mackay's previous book 'Art in Felt and Stitch' (reviewed in WOW in September 2012)
looked at felting a variety of subjects. In this follow-on book, flowers are the focus.
From the outset, the author sets out her more unconventional approach to felting. Using felt
fibres to 'paint' a picture, she talks of how to use these and other silks and threads to include as
much detail as possible. She also uses scissors as an integral part of her process to achieve
clear lines and angles.
She takes us through the felting techniques from placement of fibres, wet felting, followed by
needle felting and then embellishing through stitch. As a book geared towards flowers, the
different flower forms are explored and felting techniques explained to achieve the shape and
look of flowers as diverse as daisies, thistles and lavender. This is a particularly good section,
providing enough different shapes for the reader to be able to tackle most flowers. The author's
reworking of a Victorian-style flower study is a work of art before it's felted, and to see the
project explained from start to finish puts the different stages into context.
The book covers three main areas of flowers in art and adapts them to felting. In addition to the
'Victorian Study', there are 'Flowers in Still Life' and 'Flowers in Landscape'. Each of these
contains a sample project, fully illustrated with step-by-step instructions and photographs,
together with a large variety of finished pieces for each section.
This is a very bright and colourful book, full of beautiful felted pieces that show you how to felt
flowers in a variety of artistic styles.* Workshop On The Web *
Textile artist Moy Mackay's book Art in Felt and Stitch was a huge success, and this follow-up volume delves a little deeper into her methods and inspirations, Moy's paintings are a vivid fusion of felting and stitching techniques with fine art; what really sings from these pages is the tremendous sense of energy her work contains, and this is an exuberance that extends to the reader. When you see what the author achieves with carding felt and hand stitching, you can't help but want to give these methods a try yourself. With a complete lack of any kind of pretension, Moy helps the reader construct their own works of art with ease, breaking down her techniques in a very understandable way, and encouraging experimentation. The images and illustrations are sumptuous, and the book provides a rich seam of inspiration which anybody with even a vaguely creative notion will want to follow. Whether you're looking for something different to do in between heavy quilting projects, or want to supplement your existing skill set, then you should give this book a try; its dreamlike images and good advice will stay with you.* Popular Patchwork *