Stepping into the studio space of Judith Colvin Designs is akin to entering a kaleidoscope display of fanciful textures and jewel tone colors. Every available space is taken to organize and store the materials Judith uses to create her one-of-a-kind felted hats, shawls, scarves and home décor items.
Situated in Montana’s scenic Mission Valley, the Colvin’s Bitterroot Ranch property hosts a variety of farm animals, including the Bluefaced Leicester and Gotland sheep that Judith raises to provide her with the wool used in her products. Her interest in fiber arts goes back about 25 years, when she acquired her first animals and took one of her first classes in felting. Since that time, Judith has honed her skills by attending workshops and classes around the U.S., and through years of experimenting on her own.
About eight years ago, hats became her passion, and it shows. From sweet little cloches, to wild dreadlocked stocking caps, she has a design for any taste, age, or interest. Judith says that her inspiration for her creations comes from the materials themselves. The beauty and tactile quality of the wool and silk she uses often guide her designs into something different than her original plan. Mixing exotic fibers, such as yak down and superfine merino, give a luxurious feel to her garments making them comfortable to wear and beautiful to look at. The addition of these materials gives her scarves and shawls an elegant drape, flattering the wearer. Selecting color combinations and deciding how to embellish her work, so that no two pieces are the same, is an enjoyable part of the design process for Judith. Beads, feathers, antique jewelry and her own felted flower designs give her garments that perfect finished touch.
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