Monday, January 11, 2010

needle felt , wet felt and needle felted to wet felt

This is the first stage of some flowers that I am experimenting in making . Before I learned wet felting, I had seen felt flowers for sale but never knew how they were made . It didn't seem logical that someone could needle felt something that thin with out having at least some lose fibers . So, I am going on the premise that those felt flowers must actually be wet felted .

Now that I have practiced make wet felt scarves, I thought I would see if I could make some flowers . (One of these days I will have to gooogle how these are done but I thought I would start with what they look like and try and work backwards to "How" ...maybe I would find a new way of doing them that I would never find if I just read how someone else does it <----this is sort of my theory in avoiding art classes in general even if it does waste time by "reinventing the wheel" most of the time it can also lead to new techniques and surprising results .

SO...I started these by needle felting saucer to dinner plate size circles with only two layers of different types of fiber.....merino, tencel, silk, Shetland, alpaca . I wanted to see how they felted so used a large variety . I lightly needled them on one side then gently pulled them away from my felting mat and needled the other side, repeating this twice until it felt almost "prefelt" but with more lose fibers .

I laid out these different size circles on my bubble wrap and then started experiment two .
I wanted to see how different it would be to do these with nuno felting and had a bit more room on the bubble wrap, so I cut out a smaller dinner plate size circle of silk chiffon as well as a rectangle shape to make a nuno cuff . I laid down a very thin wisp layer of merino tencel slightly larger then the chiffon, then placed the chiffon on top of this and added another thin layer of roving on top, mostly covering but leaving a few bare spots on both .

I wet felted and nuno felted as usual ...wet down and rolling for about an hour . I tried to keep turning everything to keep shrinkage even but some of the flowers were uneven perhaps mixing fibers in random way is not helpful as they all shrink a bit differently . The shetland was more reluctant to wet felt then the merino . (The above is the rist cuff with merino/tencel snadwhiched around the silk chiffon . )
I'm not exactly sure how I will finish these but the options are unlimited....needle felting, cutting, sewing, beading ....I want to wait until I have some good pictures of flower shapes before I begin
sculpting these . I added my little spiral buttons as possible centers that could be needle felted into place with the flwer petals coming up their sides .......writing it here so I don't forget : )
This was originally going to be my handmade prefelt but I lost my nerve . I wasn't sure when to stop and afraid that I would not do it enought and end up wasing all this lovely roving so I just full felted this and plan on cutting it up into individual flower shapes that I can needle or sew onto backgrounds for decorative accents . I think I will stick to buying my prefelt .

I'm almost done with my 80 hour work week and hope to work on these flowers next week off .
Happy felting to all .


  1. Love the flowers! Such pretty colors & delicate shapes. Thank for sharing :)



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