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How to Make a Wet Felted Rose

Updated on May 06, 2016
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Sally Gulbrandsen Feltmaker. Her tutorials & techniques are as individual as she is, unique, experimental and always interesting

A Red Rose

Red rose on a hat
Red rose on a hat | Source

Items required:-

Items required to complete this project
Items required to complete this project | Source

Materials required:-

  • Small quantity merino wool roving in red and green
  • Ronson pipe cleaners (white cotton)
  • Bamboo sushi mat
  • Squeeze bottle
  • Hot soapy water (Fairy liquid soap)
  • A rose template (Your size guide)
  • Bubble wrap if making more than one flower

A template for a rose

A template for a rose
A template for a rose | Source

Trace the template

  • Trace this basic template for a rose which has five petals. Transfer it to a piece of cardboard and cut it out.
  • It will be used as guide for making the right size petals for your rose.

Cut out the template

Cut a cardboard template
Cut a cardboard template | Source

Hint

  • When you transfer the design to bubble wrap, use a complementary color felt tip pen.
  • The ink will likely transfer some of the color from the pen to the wet wool fibers.
  • A white rose for instance, will benefit from this subtle coloration and help to make your rose look more realistic.
  • You could even paint a little acid dye directly onto the front and back of the rose with a paint brush once your rose has been assembled.

More than one rose at a time!

Cut out the template.

If you are making several roses at a time, you may wish to transfer the design for the rose to a sheet of bubble wrap.

Draw around the template on the smooth side of the bubble wrap as many times as desired.

Wet with hot soapy water.

Cover with bubble-wrap, bubble side down and roll in the bubble wrap instead of the Sushi Mat.

For the purpose of this tutorial we will concentrate only one rose.

Use the template just as a guide!

  • Place a fine layer of wool fibers onto the top of the cardboard template. They should be placed evenly but sparingly so that you end up with a rose which not only looks delicate but is realistic.
  • Remember that once you add warm soapy water, the fibers will flatten out and if you do see any large holes in the petal, add a few additional fibers just to these areas before you begin rolling them in the Sushi Mat.


Place fibers down on the sushi mat

Wool fibers laid out on the template and then place them on a sushi mat
Wool fibers laid out on the template and then place them on a sushi mat | Source

Rose petals on a sushi mat

  • Transfer the two petals from the Template to a Sushi Mat.
  • A Sushi Mat helps provide a very simple method to turn wool very quickly into felt. They are invaluable for small projects such as this one.


Wet wool fibers with hot soapy water

Wet fibers with hot soapy water
Wet fibers with hot soapy water | Source

Wet the wool

Wet the wool with hot soapy water. Use a small squeeze bottle to do this.

Roll the petals up in a sushi mat

Roll the fibers up in a sushi mat
Roll the fibers up in a sushi mat | Source

The petals

Carefully roll the petals up in a sushi mat.

Begin rolling

Roll roses in the sushi mat for around a minute
Roll roses in the sushi mat for around a minute | Source

Just for a minute!

  • Roll for a minute and then open the Sushi Mat very carefully.
  • The wool may stuck to the bamboo a little. Gently extract the petals and then turn them so that the direction of the roll has been changed. This will ensure that the fibers shrink evenly on all sides.
  • Repeat this until you are satisfied that all the fibers have fused together.

Turn the rose petals and roll again

Open Mat and turn flowers and roll in the opposite direction
Open Mat and turn flowers and roll in the opposite direction | Source

Rolling the fibers!

  • Changing the direction in which you roll the fibers. The shape of your finished petals will be better maintained if you do this.

Fully felted

Turn the petals and roll again
Turn the petals and roll again | Source

Felted

The fibers have fused together and the petals are ready to be rinsed in hot and then cold water.


Pulling the petals into shape

Pull the petals into shape by gently tugging with at the wool with your fingers.
Pull the petals into shape by gently tugging with at the wool with your fingers. | Source

Making the stem of the rose

Place a cotton pipe cleaner of top a thin layer of green fibers
Place a cotton pipe cleaner of top a thin layer of green fibers | Source

Hint

Only cotton pipe cleaners should be used. Synthetic pipe cleaners will not allow the wool fibers to attach to them.

The stem

Lay down a thin green strip of wool fibers and place the pipe cleaner on the top.

Rolling the pipe cleaner

Roll the pipe cleaner until the fibers are firmly attached to it.
Roll the pipe cleaner until the fibers are firmly attached to it. | Source

Roll the pipe cleaner

Roll the wet wool covered pipe cleaner on the sushi mat. Use your fingers to do this. You will soon start to to feel the fibers tighten under your fingers as you roll.

Make the center for the rose

Place down a fine layer of wool fibers which are approximately 2 inches in length.
Place down a fine layer of wool fibers which are approximately 2 inches in length. | Source

The central bud

  • Pluck a few fibers from a piece of wool roving. These should be about two inches in length and about an inch in width.
  • This size and width does depend very much on the size of the flower you have chosen to make. Larger flowers will require a slightly bigger bud in the middle to look realistic. Sometimes they may require a further layer of petals too.
  • Measure the distance between the middle of the flower to the edge of the rose and use this measurement to gauge the size of your central bud.

Wet the fibers

Wet the fibers which will soon become the center for your rose
Wet the fibers which will soon become the center for your rose | Source

Roll in a sushi mat

Roll but avoid the top section of the wool.  These fibers must not be rolled yet.
Roll but avoid the top section of the wool. These fibers must not be rolled yet. | Source

Don't roll the whole way yet!

  • The fibers shown here should not be rolled yet. They must only be rolled once the fabric for the bud in the middle of the rose has been felted. The loose fibers can then be turned over the green stem.

Stop!

Leave the top unrolled for now but continue felting the lower part.
Leave the top unrolled for now but continue felting the lower part. | Source

Attach the red fibers to the stem.

Roll the loose fibers over the top of the pipe cleaner.
Roll the loose fibers over the top of the pipe cleaner. | Source

Attach the stem now

  • Attach the stem of the rose to the central bud.
  • Do this by folding over the loose fibers and only then roll up the Sushi Mat the whole way to include the stem.
  • Roll for a minute and check to see if the stem is attached. If not, continue rolling for a little longer.

Roll the central bud of the rose between the sushi mat

Roll the center bud of the rose in the Sushi Mat, Include the pipe cleaner once the lower end has been felted.
Roll the center bud of the rose in the Sushi Mat, Include the pipe cleaner once the lower end has been felted. | Source

Roll and enclose the central bud

Roll up in the Sushi Mat and begin rolling until the stem is attached and the red fibers have felted together.
Roll up in the Sushi Mat and begin rolling until the stem is attached and the red fibers have felted together. | Source

Hot and cold water.

  • Plunge the petals and the stem first into hot water.then cold water, repeat twice.
  • Rinse carefully.
  • Make the central bud of the rose by twisting the small piece of red felt around the stem.
  • Needle felt or sew a few stitches at the lower so that it does not unravel.
  • Make a hole in each of the petal layers.
  • Push the stem of the rose up into the center of each petal..
  • Now arrange the petals around the central bud and shape the rose as desired.
  • Complete the rose by adding a few of stitches below the petals.

The assembled rose

Assemble the rose and shape the petals.
Assemble the rose and shape the petals. | Source

The back of the hat

Place the rose where desired.
Place the rose where desired. | Source

A close up of the rose

Close up of the rose
Close up of the rose | Source

Delicate filigree petals

The rose is enhanced by the use of very fine layers of wool.
The rose is enhanced by the use of very fine layers of wool. | Source

Bud detail

Bud detail
Bud detail | Source

Another 3D Flower Tutorials in this Series

Comments

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    • sallybea profile image
      Author

      Sally Gulbrandsen 2 years ago from Norfolk

      Hello Jo,

      You are one special lady! Yes, I definitely have some ideas for an outdated umbrella - watch this space Jo - that is, if you don't beat me to it:)

      Sally

    • Jo_Goldsmith11 profile image

      Jo_Goldsmith11 2 years ago

      Hi there :-)

      I so have to try this one too. It looks so much fun. You know, you have allowed me to enjoy some quiet alone time trying some of your amazing and fun projects. :-) Shared, tweet and up she goes.

      Any ideas for an outdated umbrella?

    • sallybea profile image
      Author

      Sally Gulbrandsen 2 years ago from Norfolk

      imtii

      I appreciate the thumbs up and my thanks to you for helping to guide your craft loving sister to my pages. I appreciate the very kind comment too.

      Thank you.

      Sally

    • imtii profile image

      Imtiaz Ahmed 2 years ago from Dhaka, Bangladesh

      Ok this is not my thing but My like these things very much. This a hub for my sister she is good in doing stuff like this. So, I am going to show it to my sister. But I am giving you a thumbs up ;)

    • sallybea profile image
      Author

      Sally Gulbrandsen 2 years ago from Norfolk

      The Dirt Farmer,

      Enjoy! Check out all my felting tutorials, this one is probably one of the easiest so you are at a good starting place. Thanks for you comment and the visit, both are much appreciated.

      Sally

    • The Dirt Farmer profile image

      Jill Spencer 2 years ago from United States

      What a great finished product! I love wearing hats. I'd have to buy a sushi mat, but I'd love to try it.

    • sallybea profile image
      Author

      Sally Gulbrandsen 2 years ago from Norfolk

      teaches12345

      The Wet Felting Project really is very easy - especially once you realize that the only thing that you can do wrong - is not apply enough friction to the item before you drop it into hot water. You should always use the pinch test to see if any of the fibers come away in your fingers before rinsing the project in hot and then cold water.

      This advice would apply to any felting project you do, whether you use a tumble dryer, a sander, bubble wrap, or a sushi mat as a means to apply friction to the wool roving. I am glad you thought the project was sufficiently well explained.

      Thanks for your continued support.

      I love the red color too:)

      Sally

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 2 years ago

      You make it look so easy! Love that red color. Thanks for the tips.

    • sallybea profile image
      Author

      Sally Gulbrandsen 2 years ago from Norfolk

      Suzanne Day

      I do hope that you find some free time to take up wet felting very soon. Thank you for the vote up and awesome.

      Sally

    • Suzanne Day profile image

      Suzanne Day 2 years ago from Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

      Another very useful felting hub that I'll be referring to when I finally am free to take up felting! Bookmarked for future use and voted awesome!

    • sallybea profile image
      Author

      Sally Gulbrandsen 2 years ago from Norfolk

      FlourishAnyway

      It is always a pleasure to have you come and visit my Hubs.

      Thank you very much.

      Sally

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 2 years ago from USA

      This is beautiful. Even though I am not a wet felter, I enjoy seeing the magic you lay out before us.

    • sallybea profile image
      Author

      Sally Gulbrandsen 3 years ago from Norfolk

      Glimmer Twin Fan

      You are very welcome - enjoy! I am confident that you can do it.

      Sally

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image

      Glimmer Twin Fan 3 years ago

      Ok Sally - I think I'm ready to give this a shot. Now I just have to go out and buy some supplies. Thanks for another beautiful hub.

    • sallybea profile image
      Author

      Sally Gulbrandsen 3 years ago from Norfolk

      tirelesstraveler

      No, it does not have to be Merino Wool though I do find it easier to work with as the fibers tend to be a little shorter and easier to felt. It may just take a little longer but it will work. Let me know how it goes. I would love to hear how you get on.

      Thanks for the visit.

    • tirelesstraveler profile image

      Judy Specht 3 years ago from California

      Now this may be felting I can handle. Does it have to be Merino wool. I have alpaca and lama wool available.

    • sallybea profile image
      Author

      Sally Gulbrandsen 3 years ago from Norfolk

      BNadyn

      This project really is designed for people starting out with wet felting. It really is very simple . I promise you that the Sushi mats will have that wool felted in no time. I am happy to answer any questions you may have.

      Have a go - so little wool is required to make this felt flower - you will lose nothing by attempting this easy project except a little time.

      Have a fun time

      Sally

    • BNadyn profile image

      Bernadyn 3 years ago from Jacksonville, Florida

      What a creative idea and it came out beautifully! I have a couple sushi mats that rarely get used and I've been crafting my own flowers to add to pillow décor and other things around the house, usually just using cotton fabric. You laid out such nice instructions but I am a bit intimidated to try this project! I would love to make a couple of those flower for projects for Mother's Day, though, so maybe I'll give it a try. Great job on this. :)

    • sallybea profile image
      Author

      Sally Gulbrandsen 3 years ago from Norfolk

      MsDora

      Interesting that you mentioned my writing a book about wet felting. I have begun to think that this might be a very interesting project for me to tackle in the future. I don't have the experience of doing so but I imagine it is just a matter of putting ones mind to it.

      I appreciate your input as always.

      Thank you

      Sally

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Isaac Weithers 3 years ago from The Caribbean

      Great tutorial. I hope that you intend to write book, or make some videos. Your work has such great quality. Thank you for sharing.

    • sallybea profile image
      Author

      Sally Gulbrandsen 3 years ago from Norfolk

      DDE

      Thanks for the congratulations. I am delighted to have won one of the prizes for my Pansy Tutorial. Thanks for the vote up, beautiful interesting and useful.

      Best wishes

      Sally

    • DDE profile image

      Devika Primić 3 years ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

      Congratulations on : How to use a Wire Frame to make a 3D Wet Felted Pansy a superb achievement. Now you have got me with another of your great hubs. Your ideas are amazing. Voted up, interesting useful, and beautiful.

    • sallybea profile image
      Author

      Sally Gulbrandsen 3 years ago from Norfolk

      Beth Eaglescliffe

      Thank you so much! I appreciate the feedback.

      Sally

    • Beth Eaglescliffe profile image

      Beth Eaglescliffe 3 years ago from UK

      This is so pretty. You have so many creative ideas. Thanks for an enjoyable article.

    • sallybea profile image
      Author

      Sally Gulbrandsen 3 years ago from Norfolk

      Faith Reaper

      I am quite sure anyone could pull this one off - even a child under instruction from an Adult. Thanks for the tweet, pin and the blessing.

      Many thanks

      Sally

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      I just love your beautiful rose you have created, Sally!!! It looks amazing on the black hat. As always, great job with clear and concise instructions. I can just picture my granddaughters wearing such a hat with this rose but I am not sure I can pull it off as well as you have here. Up and more, tweeting and pinning. Blessings, Faith Reaper

    • sallybea profile image
      Author

      Sally Gulbrandsen 3 years ago from Norfolk

      Billy

      That complement about my writing means more to me than does the idea of my seeing you busy making a felt flower - everyone to their own! It is just very nice to be appreciated for who we are!

      Thank you

      Sally

    • sallybea profile image
      Author

      Sally Gulbrandsen 3 years ago from Norfolk

      tobusiness

      I appreciate your visit and your comment regarding my work. I am sure even a youngster could be taught how to make the flower.

      Sally

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      As you know, Sally, I know nothing about wet felting, but I do know something about quality writing...and for that I give you an A+. :)

      bill

    • tobusiness profile image

      Jo Alexis-Hagues 3 years ago from Bedfordshire, U.K

      Very creative. I simply loved that hat, but I wouldn't even pretend that I might be able to attempt it. Beautiful work.

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