Somehow we all got the idea that felting together would be fun! Sheep, maybe, or… an entire nativity scene! Once dreamed up, there was no going back. Here are the results of hours and hours of needle felting labour (and a few stabbed fingers) completed by five of us:
Judy had a large black scarf made of a filmy material with velveteen roses overlaid (Judy should be writing this because she’d probably get better marks for correct terminology). She added wool to it, probably alpaca and definitely sheep or alpaca, and gave it 7000 rolls in her Gentle Roller to Nuno felt the layers together. That means the wool got stuck to the synthetic fibres by matting all the little hairs through the holes in the filmy stuff. It came out looking very rich and soft – definitely a step up from the plain black. Here the (almost) finished blanket scar (shawl or wrap) is modelled on the manikin (there’s a special name for that too but I can’t remember what she said it was).
Judy has been hard at work wet felting two new hats. It took a lot of hours and a lot of attention to detail to produce these two newest hats. The hats themselves are made of merino wool and were made by wet felting a hood which was then formed on a commercial hat form. This takes a lot of time and muscle power. (Stiff muscles guaranteed the next day!) The brown hat has a layer of dark brown alpaca wool making it a little softer but both feel soft and luxurious. The hat band on the green tones hat is a nuno felted scarf made with merino wool on silk. The green flower was wet felted in one piece while the flower on the brown hat was felted from three layers of merino wool separated by a resist an wet felted. Both hats are size small (21-23 or so inches) head size.
We had a great afternoon felting with a fun bunch of Dawson Creek artists! They came up with these great sheep (and a pig, and an owl/penguin, and a cat). Hopefully these will be much loved decorations for the artists or anyone who receives these as gifts. They are quite endearing.
Our fabulous young artists handled needle felting very well. It’s a long, slow process to build up the basics before getting to the creative and colourful part. But it paid off! Here are the felted creations from the six to nine year olds: bird decorations for the Christmas tree or wherever they want to live. They would make a great gift too!
With Christmas craft sale season approaching Judy decided to try to make a felted poinsettia scarf. This was a lot of fun but turned out to be a long process. She shaped each petal, leaf and stamen individually and arranged them meticulously on the haboti silk carrier fabric.
The green and red looked terrific against the white silk. Different shades of green and red added depth.
Just the red border left!
Finally finished the layout. Then the scarf was carefully wet down, a piece of plastic laid on top and the first gently rubbing by hand. Four or five thousand rolls later and the scarf was ready for a little fulling. Luckily Judy is the proud owner of a gentle roller and all she had to do was roll the piece onto the large soft roller, put it on the machine, press a button and let the Gentle Roller do its work. What a nice way to avoid sore muscles. Rolling is not easy! There was still lots of opportunity for hands on work as Judy checked for “soft spots” and gave them a little more work, smoothed edges and generally kept an eye on the felting process.