With hindsight I’d probably not stagger the bumps on either side (I was hoping for a more twisty shape) as I think they cancelled each other out a bit but I’m reasonably happy with it as a first attempt.
2. I’m planning on trying a starfish using the very helpful book resist tutorial.
I do think that Galina's and Marilyn's suggestions are the way to go. Make the resist fairly simple, give yourself extra room for shaping and then work the felt in the direction you want it to shrink to get your curves etc. You can also change the way the felt reacts by adding more wool or layers in some spots, that area will shrink less. Or change the direction that the wool is laid out on parts of the resist, this will change the final form as well. It takes a lot of samples and experimenting for sure.
Thank you for your ideas Marilyn & Ruth. Love the coral, Marilyn - it captures the colour and shape really well. I did try a book resist starfish today but it did not go at all well. I didn’t really have time to do it justice and could have done with designing a more simple shape and then I didn’t rub it quite enough and holes started to appear and, well, let’s just say when it dries it will form a useful addition to the scrap bag. I will come back to these ideas at some point though as I’m keen to work on some more sculptural pieces.
On the up-side I did buy a lovely new (old) felting tool in the market today. I’ve seen a discussion elsewhere about using darning mushrooms and eggs and I have a whole collection of them which I love both in themselves and to use for fulling things. This one’s originally something to do with lead-work but feels gorgeous and is sure to come in useful for getting inside something! www.ipernity.com/doc/2373440/46372578
I have been trying to think up how to do this as well. I have seen a few on facebook. I was wondering about using a long foam tube twisted into a spiral but I think the tube would want to straiten out. then I thought of your spiral. Once it's all rapped twist it a bit more so it stacks up and let it felt together along where the spiral touches itself. For a star fish I would just make one flat resist like you squashed the starfish flat. and then cut an opening where the starfishes mouth would be to get the resist out.
Thanks, Ann. I see what you mean about the starfish, yes, I think that would work. I’m keen to have another try at a book resist though at some point. Maybe I’ll go for a seed head or something with a more simple shape to start with. I agree about the spiral, if you let it felt together where it touches it will prevent it turning into a spring. Let me know if you ever get round to trying one out!