Stunning, Vibrant Felted Slippers by Irina Ugrinovich

Beautiful pattern (handmade felted) of bullfinch with a branch of rowanberry on a light-blue background.

I was recently stopped in my web browsing tracks by these lively, exotic, magnificent slippers —
and I just had to pause and appreciate their intracies and detail.

Handmade felted slippers with traditional design of Slavic culture- Khokhloma painting

I marveled at the person who would create such gorgeous art on slippers, and tried to decide which pair was for me!
But I couldn’t keep them all to myself, we had to share them with our Felting Friends around the world.

So please, allow me to introduce you to Irina Ugrinovich.

 

Irina lives in Prague, Czech Republic. Since she discovered felting, she says it,
“…became my huge passion and it takes all my time, therefore we can say I am a full-time feltmaker.”

My huge passion for nature, animals, traditon and also my sense of detail led me
to discover this unique technique of wool treatment- felting. 
Since then I am completely in love with it.”

As with many feltmakers, Irina’s felting studio is at her home.
She feels fortunate to have space to create her felting studio there and that it meets her needs.

I am still working on it, slowly find what is necessary for my work and design every piece of furniture in there.
Probably every feltmaker would say that a really big desk is the most important part of any felting studio.
The rest is a question of individual needs, I would say.
I found very useful big pull-out tray under the desk, where I store my wool, silk…”

As if we couldn’t guess from her etsy store, we asked Irina what is her favorite thing to felt?
At this moment I enjoy to felt slippers as It was the original idea I was enthusiastic for and also the reason why I started to learn felting.
But I am so in love with this unique technique – felt and material – wool, that can not help but slowly
discover its endless options and diversify products I do. Slippers, scarves, gloves, low shoes can be find on my e-shop pages,
but hopefully in close future also bags, hats and other clothes.”

 

Do you practice other art as well? If so, what mediums do you enjoy?
Yes, I am very artistic person even though very practical realist.
When I was a child I used to paint a lot, but it was long time ago:) anyway,

last years I started to embroider canvas, in particular Icons.
My grandmother was a professional in embroidering,

she was my big example to follow. Nowadays I do not practice any other art than felting,
at this moment it infuse me all and completely.”

 

Handmade felted slippers with traditional fairy tale creatures design of Slavic culture.

Do you have any tips for other felters to make high quality felt works?
Well, I am still learning, but the most important is not to stop practising – this is the only thing,
which can help you to improve your skills, thus the quality.

Learn to feel the material, make experiments, do not be afraid of making mistakes!”

 

How long has she been felting? …All of 6 months.
I started on October 2011, so it has been almost half a year already.
I learned on my own, mostly through internet (blogs, videos, articles, photos…)”

Wow…6 months and this is what she makes! Truly, Irina is an artist who discovered the versatility and the magic of felting wool.

Thanks so much to Irina for this interview and to her kind daughter Jevgenija for translating and taking the photographs.
We are so happy to know you both and wish you great success, fulfillment and joy in your endeavors!

You can visit Irina’s Etsy store here:
http://www.etsy.com/shop/IrinaU

Please leave some feedback for Irina’s beautiful work!

17 thoughts on “Stunning, Vibrant Felted Slippers by Irina Ugrinovich

  1. Your attention to detail is amazing! Absolutely beautiful work!! On a side note, I’d love to know what breed of dog you have. She/he is magnificent.

    Smiles!

    Like

  2. These slippers are really gorgeous!! I’ve just started welt felting and my first project was a pair of baby booties, I had so much fun doing them. I’m an artist and work in clay, and I think that is why I also like felting because it is very tactile, and you actually are sculpting and forming the wool into an object like clay.

    Like

    • Hi Barbara,

      Thank you very much. Actually my very first experiment was also a pair of baby slippers. I still have them on my work-desk to remember how it all started:)

      My best wishes with your felting!

      Like

  3. Hi:

    I’m 65, retired and just beginning to explore felting in all its variations. The first books I saw on the subject seemed very simple and child-like. I’ve since seen some projects in books that appear much more grown up and that encourages me. I hope to become good enough to enter at least one creation in the Fiber Artists of San Antonio show later this year. And I just have to say that Irina’s slippers are THE FINEST, MOST DETAILED felting I’ve seen to date. The only question not asked is, “Does she wet-, or needle-felt (or some combination) to achieve such fine detail?”

    Like

      • Dear Charlie, thank you very much for your warm comments! Yes, I mix both thechniques – needle felts on the details.
        My best wishes with your felting and fingers crossed for the show!

        Like

  4. These are really lovely. The colors are beautiful and the execution of the design is most skillful. I love the translation of classic Russian motifs into a new media. Irina is very talented and I hope to see more of her work in the near future.

    Like

    • Thank you very much for such a nice comments! Its a great motivation for me! I am working now on a new design (slippers), you can find them on my etsy page very soon, hope you like it!

      Like

  5. O*M*G!!!! Your slippers are breathtaking!!! The color combinations I just love along with the detailing! You are a “natural born” felter and I would LOVE to purchase a pair…….I can’t wait to check out your Etsy shop next. Do you lightly draw out your design on the slippers or is it all freehand? Do you, or are you considering selling the PATTERNS that you needle felt onto the slippers? Thank you for sharing your beautiful work and showing us all what the possibilities of wet/needle felting can go!

    Like

  6. Hi Barb, thank you! I dont draw out the design on slippers, its all freehand. Its actually sort of a surprice for me what the finished product will look like. The patterns are inspired by things I love – nature, traditional design, animals… I realise my ideas/patters during the process, I consider it as a “soul” of slippers:) Sounds quite funny, isnt it? Anyway, I havent thought about selling the patterns and dont think I will. since Its an artistic process.

    Like

    • The slippers are absolutely beautiful. I saw your pictures on Ute Vasina’s Facebook. Do you start by working over a foot shaped form?

      Like

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