Wednesday 11 July 2018

King Arthur Themed Wallhanging made by Students in a Special School

Finished wallhanging measured 95cm wide by 210cm deep 
As I’m planning ahead to another exciting felting day in a Special School next week I’ve been reminded that I never did write about any of the felted wall-hangings that were made by my students while I was the Textiles Teacher at Brantwood Specialist School in Sheffield. 

So better late than never …

The above Excalibur wallhanging was made in just half a day by four talented 6th form (SEN) students. 

Another thing that made this February morning so special was that OFSTED inspectors 'popped in' to observe while we were making it! 

Their report said...
"Progress in practical subjects including textiles, felt-making, and art based activities is at times exceptional. This is due to the high-quality teaching, the high expectations adults have of the pupils and the wide range of resources available so pupils can freely explore their ideas and interests."

The students had recently moved into a new building and were working on a King Arthur themed project so their class teacher suggested that the wall-hanging also had a King Arthur theme. The Medieval story of the young Arthur pulling Excalibur from the stone was what we settled on. 

The students selected these two images to use as their initial inspiration.

Starting to build up the second layer. R is laying out the outline of the rock.
Here you can see that the design is coming together

J cutting the shape for Excalibur; we made some grey pre-felt first. The cut edges will stay nice and crisp rather than be fuzzy. 

J made an illuminated letter for the word Excalibur. R decorated the hilt of the sword with a gem ... but he whipped it off again before it was felted on! 
Leaves cut from pre-felt. 

We managed to make this wall hanging in just half a day because we had a great team. Here you can see students and staff working together. 

The wool fibres were throughly wetted and soaped with Olivia olive oil soap. But we had to work speedily.

J and J working together to roll the wallhanging.
A lovely close up of the leaves on this large wet-felted wall hanging.

 Quite an achievement; all made in just half a school day.

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