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Temporary Art: Rock Pool

I’ve created a new table display in the shop, and as I was making it I thought I’d document what I was doing. This is temporary art. It will be dismantled and the components reused. But if art can be created using forest leaves, flowers, sticks and rocks, with the intention of it disintegrating after weather and time have happened to it, why not this! 😊. Feel free to try this at home, and if you do send me photos!

Decide on your theme or subject

For me it was a rock pool. That meant crocheting sea creatures from Kerry Lord’s Ocean book.


Step 1: gather your materials

For structure I used a flat wicker basket and a box, along with a metal ‘Xmas’ display tree. I used a large hessian sheet, some brown organza, felting fibres, fabric, and shells and driftwood from our recent Isle of Mull trip


Step 2: construct a temporary base

The basket and box were positioned next to each other and covered with the hessian and organza. This gave a rocky impression, especially as both fabrics are quite stiff and they hold their shape quite well, although the colour was wrong so I layered Corriedale batts over to give a rocky look.

step 3: add a background

I had a wet felted picture of a Cornish coast scene, given to me by a friend years ago, which I used to give a little distance to the scene. I pinned this to a frame behind the pool.



Step 4: add design elements for added structure

The Xmas tree was placed on the box and the base covered in more rock fibre. I wrapped most of the tree in green Corriedale top to work as kelp. Strips of Corriedale sliver made great bladderwrack and some hand spun merino worked well as more seaweed. The shells and driftwood were scattered artistically 😁



Step 5: add colour and tactile interest

The crochet creatures were added last and most are quite happy being picked up and handled.


Step 6: photograph and video for posterity



The purpose of this piece of work is to enjoy the process, and know that you don’t have to find a use for it, or that it’ll just end up gathering dust somewhere. It’s quite liberating really. When we’re children we do this naturally. We build and create with no other thought than the fun of creating. It’s only as adults that we start feeling that things need to have a point, a purpose or a destination. It’s good to do something where the action of creating is the point and purpose and the journey is more important than the destination.


This display will probably be around for the summer, and then I’ll reuse the fibre, fabric and shells in textile art, and the critters will all go to good homes. Then we’ll see what Autumn brings!


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