Learning to Dry and Wet Felt
Learning How to Felt
I have everything I need for learning to felt. I have animals, specifically alpacas, to provide me with fiber. I have hand carders for processing the fiber. I have the dye for adding color to the fiber, and I have resources both online and in print form that show me how to felt. So what is stopping me? Organization and time. I'm hoping that by writing this article, where I will list all my resources as I work toward becoming proficient in making felted crafts, in particular wearable art, I will be one step closer to FELTING. I hope you'll join me in my journey and stop in often to see what new things I've learned along the way.
I've Got My Fiber Source
We bought some Alpacas last Spring. See All About Alpacas. My oldest daughter knits and crochets, and wanted to learn how to make her own yarn by spinning. So we bought these guys for a source of fiber for her to learn. We also purchased five pregnant ewes, so our fiber source will be multiplying soon!
There are simpler ways of getting fiber for felting, but maybe not as enjoyable! It is possible to bypass the whole animal raising part and purchase fiber either raw, picked, carded into batts or roving, or dyed. Many specialty yarn stores will carry fiber for felting. Here are a few of my favorite online sources:
Fiber for Felting
The easiest way to start felting is to purchase roving that is already cleaned, carded and dyed.
Alpaca Fiber Auctions
Sometimes you can find a good deal on fiber on e-bay.
I've Got My Resources!
I love craft books and online resources for art. I find that looking through books and websites spurs ideas for projects not only for the craft I am trying to learn but it enhances my creativity for other projects that are not related. For example, I came across soldered glass jewelry and incorporated that with my own watercolor painting, making mini-framed works of wearable art. See How to Create Soldered Glass Art Jewelry. For felting, after I learn the techniques, I want to be able to "paint with fiber" to make wall hangings and other art forms. Everything that I encounter in life can be used as inspiration for something I am passionate about. The more I learn and seek to learn, the more inspiration and creativity happens.
Listed below are some resources that I've bookmarked or purchased:
Rosie Pink Studio I bought the e-book, Creating Felt Artwork" and have read through it. Very good resource for "painting with felt" and using stitching as well.
Nuno Felting Another source for fiber and nuno felting supplies with some tutorials.
Nuno Scarf Tutorial. Make a Nuno felted scarf following this tutorial.
Pinata Bag Felting Project
Processing Wool for Felting
Needle Felting vs. Nuno Felting
So, there are two different ways to felt. Needle felting and nuno felting. Needle felting requires a barbed needle tool and support. Nuno felting requires water and agitation.
I bought this book for the sole purpose of making scarves. It is filled with great projects each one a little different than the next. Very easy to follow instructions with all the scarves following the same basic instructions and using the same easy to obtain common tools. I can see that I will be able to use this book for more than making scarves. Great resource!
Nuno Felting Tutorials
Very informative videos by Laura McWhorter in three parts explaining the process of nuno felting. View video 1 of 3 for supply list.
Knitted Felted Slippers Pattern
A needle felting tutorial of attaching wool to a wool purse base.