Feltmaker from Ukraine
Natalya Brashovetska is a Ukrainian born feltmaker and designer who lives in Cyprus. She creates custom-designed cloths and footwear from handmade felt. Natalya also teaches both individually and in groups as a professional educator.
Reinventing myself with felting and textile design
I am originally from Ukraine, and 20 years ago I moved to Cyprus which has become my second home. My husband and I live in Kampia, a little village in the middle of the island. Several years ago, we constructed my studio nearby. Here I spent most of my time working on designs and conducting private master classes.
Regardless of my main occupation, which was as a nurse in the operating room for many years, I have always been creative. Sewing, knitting, painting, embroidery, fruit carving, and wedding cake making are just a few of the creative activities I have explored. However, my experience with felt in 2010 captivated me. Felting filled not just my free time, but it also took over my regular job.
Since my first workshop at Atelier Fiberfusing in 2014, I’ve started my path as a professional feltmaker. I began to experiment with new techniques and eventually chose to pursue a career as a felting designer and educator. Currently, when I am not teaching workshops, I spend the majority of my time improving and exploring felting potential, along with opportunities to merge techniques.
It was felting that drove me to pursue a second higher degree as a designer. I graduated in 2022 with a refreshed set of knowledge and skills.
I am open to cooperation in conducting workshops for beginners and professionals in felting. In addition, I work on custom felting design orders with focus on clothes and shoes.
When I started felting, my goal was to create not just beautiful shoes, but functional and durable. I have been searching for methods and techniques to create comfortable shoes.
I have created my own methodology after completing countless experiments; it creates a balance between felting and conventional shoemaker craftsmanship. One can make orthopaedic shoes by carrying out all the required steps using my method without a shoemaker's assistance.
"My top priority is quality. Therefore, if I choose felting shoes, they must be long-lasting. This is not an easy process, and many people do not believe my shoes are handcrafted. I spent a long time looking for ways to produce comfy shoes. We now have a method for strengthening the shoe"
I also create felted clothing, bags, shawls, and scarves using a variety of felting techniques. Creating a customized design for a customer enables me to make suggestions for designs that will highlight each person's beauty and assist revealing their individuality.
With each piece, I use a different kind of wool. In order to create shoes, bags, and home décor items, I often use Austrian Bercshaf wool. I prefer lightweight Merino wool for delicate items like clothes. I enjoy mixing wool with various fabrics, such as viscose, silk, and leather, to produce unique patterns and volumes.
'Working on customized design allows me to emphasize the client's uniqueness and develop a product that best matches customer's expectations and aspirations'