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Jumping rabbits

The idea, how to represent verdures and tapestry in wool, came to me, when I was thinking of Russian traditional felted boots - valenki.

These boots were made of gray wool and were very warm and comfortable to wear in winter. I decided to take the form of a boot and modify it in medieval style. I added long curved toes and decorated the upper part with trees and leaves. Part of the trees were layed with wool while they were wet felted, part needle felted after they was dry, to make a relief. Also I used pre-felted wool, that I made from different shades of green, to cut out the leaves and place them using needle felting. For these boots I used two types of wool: rough uncolored wool from Inner Mongolia for the inner layer and fine colored wool from Russia for outer layers and for needle felting. Mongolian wool was coarse and hairy, giving very natural look, while fine wool gave the opportunity to mix colors.

I used traditional tapestry colors for the boots - green, brown, gray and yellow. But later I decided to add something bright to make the work look more interesting. Two red rabbits, jumping out of the lush greenery, represented colorful life of the nature. As rabbits were considered as symbols of vitality and resurrection, they were used as Easter symbols in Christian countries. Red color was also popular, showing renewal of life in springtime. So, the idea of this work was not only to bring the tapestry scene into a felted piece, but also to show flourishing trees with funny creatures living there, as a piece of a marvelous garden, the garden of fairy tales, mystery and joy.

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