Winding down….

Winding down….

It’s been a fun ten years making and selling these wool felt tea cosies — as well as the coffee and mug cosies — and it’s been delightful and marvelous that tea and coffee drinkers from around the world have liked them enough to want them in their homes too.  Thank you!

A flock of tea cozies resting in the afternoon sun 

I am letting the shop drift to its natural end and will (likely) not be making anymore cosies so what you see in the shop is it.  However, there are still mounds of colourful felt ends and off-cuts and, and in the spirit of waste-not-want-not, they will continue to be fashioned into trivets and coasters and hotpads and table mats as the fancy strikes.

The primary reason for stopping is my inability to source the same wonderful high quality 3mm wool felt that originally inspired me a decade ago.  My designs require a dense wool felt with consistent thickness so they stand up on their own and have a sturdy presence and hand-feel, but while the price per yard has increased 50% the felt has, sadly, become limper and less dense.

    Modern minimalist teaware in red wool felt

The quality of many, many things has dropped over the past twenty years or so as production and manufacturing has moved overseas, but still — disappointing.  I gather that, in the case of wool felt, the land the sheep are grazed on, the climate they live in, how they’re cared for and what they eat affects their wool.  And after it’s sheared and cleaned, there are the complications and expense of international shipping.  All elements contribute to the final manufacturer’s overhead and expense margin.  So even though the wool felt I’ve been using continues to be manufactured in Europe, many factors have contributed to the current state of affairs.

The online shop will remain open until the shelves are clear and the last good-quality yardage I’ve been able to source is used up so I hope you’ll have a look and, if you purchase, that you’ll enjoy the cosy for years to come.

Home decor tea cozies

Watercolours, WestofLunch

Watercolours, WestofLunch

A few years ago I took a watercolour class.  Its lightness was very appealing and painters I’ve loved, like Raoul Dufy, make it look so fine, so breezy, so easy.

Raoul Dufy watercolour painting of bouquet of flowers

By Raoul Dufy, 1953 — one of my inspirations

It turns out learning watercolour is not nearly as simple as it looks and small variations in paper, liquidity, humidity, brush size, etc etc affect how things turn out.  But it has completely seduced and intrigued me and so I continue it as a practise, particularly when travelling.  Along the way I leave a trail of little paintings, and some work out okay.

Small watercolour painting cat napping under bush in Girona Spain Small original watercolour painting of a red mango a white gold rimmed limoges china plate.

Now offered in the shop.  Helps pay for more paper and paint.  All originals. Payment is processed through PayPal’s secure site.

Framed cloud watercolor painting in situ

Original watercolour painting of flowering anenomes

The painting practise, for some reason, was dubbed West of Lunch.  Explore on Pinterest or follow on Instagram.

Head-swelling mention on Remodelista

Head-swelling mention on Remodelista

Have you ever been to the Remodelista site?  Everytime I visit I see something I like and the women who run it have “favorite things” listed that I either have or lust after so naturally I think they have exquisite taste.  All to say that when they published something on this flock of tea cosies, well,  (blush) I just thought that was the cat’s pajamas, as my grandmother used to say.

Here’s the link … “Tabletop: Felt Teapot Warmers from a Flock of Tea Cosy



the wirecutter mention

the wirecutter mention

A wee shoutout to for their unexpected mention of FlockofTeaCosy’s wares as a good gift for mom on Mother’s Day.  Chest puffed out, head swelling, generally feeling chuffed.

Wool felt tea cozy for 4cup teapot in Peacock Blue wool felt

Their item from April 30th, written by the clearly lovely Alex Arpaia was titled “A not too twee tea cozy”:

Does your mother’s taste run more to Heath Ceramics than Blue Willow china? Danish modern rather than Louis Quatorze? Assam loose-leaf instead of Hawaiian Kona dark roast? Then she might just be in need of a tea cozy that doesn’t look like it came from Queen Victoria’s drawing room. One of these simple yet colorful wool-felt cozies—handmade in Toronto by Michaelle McLean, a certified tea sommelier—will keep the tea in her teapot warm all morning. (McLean makes cozies for French press coffee makers and mugs too.)

20oz Mug Cozy in wool felt Moss Green  Three modern wool cosies in indigo blue

Thanks et merci!

(Postscript: sadly there’s no more of that lovely Peacock Blue wool felt which I got in Spain, perhaps another year, when travel is back. But other lovely colours can beguile.)

Comet table runner

Comet table runner

Every now and again the growing pile of tea cosy wool felt scraps starts to grumble, so the other day I started on another table runner (aka table topper aka hot pad) and several hours of puzzling the pieces together.

Table topper in progress from a multitude of wool felt scraps

A dark comet with a fiery tail is what I had in mind.  A friend suggested it could also be a volcano, and another thought a fish.

Table topper in wool felt Comet streaking with fiery tale

Over the two following afternoons — while listening to podcasts — it was sewn together with zig-zag.  Far too many hours in its making to be sensible, but looking pretty smart.  Now in the shop.

Table topper wool felt with amaryllis


I was inspired in part to keep all the felt scraps — besides the fact the felt is so dear — by Ray Anderson, CEO of Interface, an American rug manufacturer who, in the seminal 2003 documentary The Corporation, talked about reclaiming the wasted roll ends of carpets to make more beautiful carpets. By doing this they reduced the amount of petroleum that had to be pulled from the earth and saved their company money all at the same time. That’s eco logic. Waste not, want not.

Sydney Morning Herald mention oh la la….

Sydney Morning Herald mention oh la la….

It’s Saturday already on the other side of the planet and (ahem) a couple of the flock are included in a weekend photo round-up of cutting edge felt-ware in The Sydney Morning Herald, which was reprinted in the Art & Design section of the Canberra Times.  Très flattering.

The article is called “Fuzzy Logic Makes Perfect Sense” and is timed for the opening of exhibitions by two artists’  who work in felt — Anita Larkin and the late Joseph Beuys.  But the writer, Megan Johnston, has included a photo gallery of some 20 other contemporary pieces to accompany the article and that’s where these two can be found.

It’s a terrific and eclectic collection all round, a great snapshot of modern wool felt design — Megan has a lovely eye.