IF I had to pick out one unique feature of Alecia Edward’s needle felted work, it would be her use of the color wheel, and her flair for whimsy. O.K., that is two features. And it is hard to separate the two when viewing her jewel-like miniature treasures.
Alecia lives in North Central Texas and is not part of ‘The (Bear) Show Circuit’. She came to the teddy bear world through observing a friend needle felt; she had been a polymer clay sculptor and thought “What a neat way to bring a cuddle factor to my creations!”
From her former career, as a computer Business Systems Developer, you can see the stirrings of what speaks loudest in her work; by the very nature of computers and business systems, one must be organized in their thinking, and as a developer be able to think outside that proverbial box.
The overall neatness of her finishing techniques bespeaks the business end, and the whimsy is represented by her free thinking style.
Alecia claims that she has no identifiable style yet, and as a self-described fly-by-the-seat-of-her-pants-girl, she may be mistaking this for a ‘Look’, as after less than 2 years, her ‘style’ definitely apparent.
Barbara Allen of New Zealand was an influential artist/mentor at the time Alecia began needle felting. Now she recommends that “If you see something you would like to do, find a way to try it! I spent a year wondering if I could needle felt before I ever picked up a kit. Which leads me to the second piece of advice, if you are not happy with your first attempt, at least try a second one. I never like my first tries at a craft, but the second always gives me a better feel for it.”
Spending a day working on each piece, she likes to create “whimsical, childlike creatures; bears with extremely small ears, sort of sad eyes and features generally in the lower 50% of the facial plane. ”I like my critters to look as if they have been caught being naughty, and at the same time look happy,” Alecia remarked.
Her biggest reward is that needle felting presents fresh new ideas and challenges every time she picks up her needle and fiber. “That it is what I want to do all of the time. Most people can’t wait to leave work. I figure out ways to take it wherever I go! I get to make something new every day and I get to be home for my family,” said Alecia.
What new styles or directions would Alecia like to pursue in her work? “Maybe here it would be easier to list what I am not pursuing,” she began. “I don’t think I will ever have the patience to hand sew a bear from fabric. It is an entirely different process. I plan to try some realistic looking animals eventually, but right now it is all about making really firmly felted creatures whose feet are the same size. Maybe one day I will measure first!” Alecia chuckled.
For now her wonderful creations can be found on her web site and she also sells on Ebay under the name: thefeltedbear