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Sunday, March 22, 2009

How to make a piece of felt.

Are you familiar with how to make felt? If not, following is a very basic felt making tutorial for beginners and suitable for adults and children, exited about learning a new technique.

Felt making requires a few tools, already available in most households:

-a table

-plastic to protect your table

-an old towel

-a piece of bubble wrap, at least 40cm x 50cm or a beach mat or bamboo stick window blind

-50g wool slivers merino wool or other good felting wool

-a piece of fly screen at least 40cm x 40cm

-a spray bottle with hot soapy water

-tape measure

-some rags


Put the plastic on the table for protection and put the towel on top of the plastic. Now put the bamboo window blind or the bubble wrap on top of the towel, the nobs facing upwards.

Mark off an area of 30cm x 30cm.






Take the wool sliver and divide into 4 equal parts.

We are now ready to lay down the wool for our piece.

Take the wool sliver into your left hand (left handed people in right hand).










With your right hand, gently pull a piece of wool and put it in a corner of your square, the side that you hold in your hand goes on the edge, except if you want very irregular edges.
















Repeat this with a second piece of wool and put it next to the first one, just overlapping a bit. Repeat until the row is finished.

We are now ready to start a new row. This time we let the loose bits overlap the first row. Every piece we lay down is now overlapping the wool of the first row and the previous piece.










When we have covered the total surface with wool, we spray water over it.













We repeat this whole process in the second layer, which is placed at an angle of 90 degrees on top of the first. We keep going with 2 other layers, each time changing direction and wetting with the spray bottle after each layer.











After wetting the fourth layer, we put the fly screen on top of the wool. Push down the fly screen and make circular movements with your hands over the fly screen until the piece is flat. If you can't get the air out completely, means that the wool isn't wet enough. You can spray on some more water on top of the screen until the wool is wet enough.









If there is water coming through the screen, when you push down the wool means that it is too wet. Now the rags will come in handy, use them to soak up the water.











When the wool is flattened, carefully take off the fly screen and roll the wool in the bubble wrap.












Roll up and down for approx. 5 minutes for a start and than check. If the wool is still very loose, keep rolling. You can test that by carefully lifting the fibers.

Roll again for 5 minutes and do the previous test again. If the wool is still a bit loose, keep rolling. Turn the piece on an angle of 90 degrees and roll again for another 5 minutes.







When the wool has felted enough, this means the whole piece holds well together, we can go over to the next stage, called the filling. This can be done as long or as short as you want. The longer you do it the harder and stronger the felt becomes.

The filling can be done by more rolling in the bubble wrap or the bamboo roll. Another method is by rubbing it over the sink, which goes faster and makes it harder as well.




When you are satisfied with the felt piece, rinse it and dry it flat on a towel.

Happy felting!

3 comments:

TERI REES WANG said...

Thanks for the teaching!

carmel said...

Wonderful tutorial! Thanks fellow duster :)

Rachat de credit said...

Thanks a lot it has been a fantastic guide, now to make a piece of felt. is definitely simple and easy with the help of your guidance. Thank you

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