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Oceanic Texture Surface Form

date. 2020

In this surface form study, a collection of 'Playtype' material investigations were developed based on the inspiration I experience when walking around my beach-town's Broulee Island (NSW) and the objects/sensations revealed through this experience. My overall goal was to become a Feltologist and an Embroiderologist, whilst practicing with sustainable awareness.

The vision was to incorporate no new materials sourced from my personal stash, buy-nothing pages, or friends and family. I also developed a focus on conscious energy usage and waste minimization.

This project was realized though a ‘process-led’ approach, limited by materials, techniques and colour palette. Influenced by the materials I had available; wool roving and fabric and yarn scraps, I limited myself to felting and machine/hand embroidery methods to allow deeper exploration and combinations of the techniques. The colour palette was ocean inspired and restricted to a monotonal gradient of blue and neutral shades.

Nine oceanic Playtypes were produced. Through material investigation, felting and embroidery created a variety of outcomes including interactive Playtypes requiring viewer manipulation, and static Playtypes where visual information communicates the concept. Diverse material qualities were revealed, creating rough, scratchy surfaces as well as using the natural softness of the materials.

This project revealed that in order to produce refined pieces, both limitations and accountability are integral to my process. I had a technique breakthrough with machine embroidery over roving. This technique creates delicate and intricate embroidery with a thin non-woven surface. Prior to this project, I had never attempted machine embroidery or used soluble material. Starting from zero knowledge ensured an open mind and exploration of shapes, texture and surface with varying degrees of success!

Upon reflection, this project cultivated my interest in the dynamic combination of felting and embroidery, highlighting how tacit knowledge influences making. I developed a deeper understanding of wool roving, soluble material and machine embroidery properties.

Key Words: Delicate, Oceanic, Tactile, Explorative, Malleable

Collection of Playtypes

IMG_9299 edited shadows.jpg


Paper Nautilus


Tumble and Crumble