How to Wet Felt Flowers

A friend asked me to teach a Wet Felting Flower Class. Having never taught this particular felting project before, I thought I better figure out how. What I found is that it is simple, fun, and the flowers come out beautiful!

Here is what you need:

Wet Felting Supplies

Boot Tray (provides a textured surface to aid in the felting process and contain the water) or Towel – to work on
Towel – to dry your hands (dry fiber is sure to stick to wet hands) and roll your flower in when finished
Roving – I use alpaca because that’s what I have, or sometimes an alpaca/wool blend
Other Fiber – small bits of other fibers, scraps from other projects, yarn scraps, thread
Bubble Wrap – two small pieces, about 12″ x 12″
Liquid Soap – I like Dawn but whatever you have will work (if you have skin sensitivities, stay away from anti-bacterial soap)
Hot Water
Sponge (optional) – nice for sopping up extra water on mat
Pool Noodle
Something to Wet Fiber With – empty spray bottle, turkey baster, soup ladle, ball brauser sprinkler, or sponge

Wet Felting Flowers Tutorial

Lay a piece of bubble wrap, bubble side down, on the towel or boot mat. Draft (or pull apart) small pieces of your main color of roving. Do not cut the roving. Thin wispy fibers will felt much better than blunt, cut edges.

Wet Felting Supplies

Lay the roving pieces in a round shape overlapping in the center.

Wet Felting Supplies

Add other bits of color as desired. If using yarn, Suri Locks, or thick pieces of fiber, be sure to lay a very thin piece of roving on top to “scotch tape” these thicker fibers in place, or they will not felt.

Wet Felting Supplies

Add a squirt or two of soap to the hot water. Now wet your fiber with the hot, soapy water. My absolute favorite felting tool for wetting the fiber is a ball brauser sprinkler (a tool used to water bonsai plants), but a spray bottle, turkey baster, soup ladle, sponge, or cup will also work to get water to your fiber.

Wet Felting Flowers Tutorial

If using a ball brauser sprinkler, squeeze the bulb before putting it in the water, drop it into the soapy water, release the bulb, and it fills itself.

IMG_0615 (480x640)

Thoroughly wet the fiber. Lay the second piece of bubble wrap on top of the fiber and press.

Wet Felting Flowers Tutorial

Gently push down on the fiber moving your hands all over pressing the water through the layers of fiber.  You don’t want the fiber to be sopping wet but do make sure the water completely penetrates the fibers.

Wet Felting Flowers Tutorial

Carefully peel back the bubble wrap to check and see that the fiber is thoroughly wet. If not, add more soapy water. Put the bubble wrap back and rub with your hands for five minutes or so.

Wet Felting Flowers Tutorial

Peel back the bubble wrap again, your fiber should be starting to hold together.

Wet Felting Flowers Tutorial

Now, roll up the bubble wrap and fiber.  Wrapping the bubble wrap and fiber around a pool noodle works well too.

Wet Felting Flower Class

Whether using a pool noodle or not, wrap the layers of bubble wrap and fiber snug, and tie in several places with yarn, string, or rubber bands to hold in place.

Wet Felting Flowers Tutorial
Sop up excess water with a sponge, or pour off into a bucket or sink.

Wet Felting Flowers Tutorial
Begin rolling the pool noodle back and forth about 50 times.

Wet Felting Flowers Tutorial
Unroll. Adjust fiber as needed. Wet any dry areas. Turn 90 degrees, roll layers, tie, roll 50 times. Do this a total of four times, turning your piece 90 degrees each time.

Wet Felting Flowers Tutorial

When your flower passes the “pinch test”, you are done. Pinch the fibers between two fingers, there should be no movement! If they still appear a loose, add a little more hot soapy water and continue rolling for a while longer. Repeat the “pinch test”.  If more felting is needed, you can also rub the flower on the boot mat.

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Unroll bubble wrap and fiber.  Warm up your flower with some very hot water.

Wet Felting Flowers Tutorial

Wad up fiber and throw it against the boot mat, in a bucket, or in your kitchen sink about 25 times.  Yes throw it!  This causes the fibers to shrink and harden a bit.

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Open up your flower, stretch the edges sideways.  This will help ruffle your edges, (of the flower that is).  Throw against your mat again about 25 times.  Pull on the fiber to create petals, if desired, or cut petals.  If cutting, rub on a textured surface just a little to soften the edges.

Rinse in a vinegar water solution, and then in plain water until the soap has been rinsed out.  Roll in a towel to absorb excess moisture.

Wet Felting Flowers Tutorial

Grab the center of your flower from the back and scrunch it up towards the center.  Use a twist tie or piece of yarn to tie the center.  Shape your flower the way you would like it to look. Allow your flower to dry this way.  I have read where people dry their flowers in egg cartons to help maintain the shape.  I have also used the umbrella hole in my rod iron table.  Your flower will dry quickly outside on a sunny day, or near a fan inside, or close to a heat vent in the winter.

Wet Felting Flowers Tutorial Wet Felting Flowers Tutorial

When dry you could needle felt a center, sew on a button or beads, or leave as is.  Leave the yarn you have tied the flower with in place to give dimension to your flower, or remove it, scrunch up your flower towards the middle again and needle felt around the base for the same effect.

Wet Felting Flowers Tutorial

Just like in nature, there are many kinds of flowers when it comes to felting, along with various techniques.  Be creative, and have fun felting!

Felted Bouquet Wet Felting Kit

Felted Bouquet Wet Felting Kit

This is a kit available through our Online Store or in The Fiber Studio at Alpaca Meadows.  Click on the link or the image above to see videos for wet felting some basic flowers.  Click my board on Pinterest called Felted Flowers to see some favorites from other fiber artists.  You will find a few tutorials there too!

Live nearby?  Get a group together and come take my Wet Felting Fancy Flower Class!

Be sure to check out Knitting and Crocheting Flowers for more flower fun!

 

 

Flowers, Flowers, Flowers

I love hats with flowers, maybe not on me, but a flower just sets off a hat, makes it so much more stylish!  I love flowers, and it is Spring, so thought I would share my Flowers, Flowers, Flowers Pinterest Board.  On it you will find crocheted, knitted, fiber, and felted flowers, some with instructions and some just for inspiration!  Be sure to check out our Classic Alpaca Yarn for many, many pretty colors of 100% alpaca yarn for flower making, and my favorite patterns for Knitting and Crocheting Flowers!

Follow Alpaca Meadows’s board Flowers, Flowers, Flowers on Pinterest.

There are also many FREE flower patterns for knit and crochet, or perhaps you can create your own!  Some of the flowers shown are knit, then felted by throwing them in the washing machine and dryer.  Some have been cut out of felt, others needle felted.  Our Bloomin’ Brites Needle Felted Flowers Kit uses a combination of both cutting flowers from felt and needle felting fiber onto them.

Our Felted Bouquet Kit uses another felting technique called wet felting. Check out How to Make Wet Felted Flowers!

Happy Spring!

 

Felted Rabbits and Bunnies

In preparation to teach another Bunny Felting Class, I thought I would gather pictures of some of my favorite bunnies.  Pinterest was a great place to do that!  Felted rabbits really do come in all different shapes and sizes, some that are very simple designs that would be great for a beginning felter.  Those that have some experience with felting might want to tackle a bunny with more detail, perhaps even with bunny clothes and accessories!

Follow Alpaca Meadows’s board Felted Rabbits on Pinterest.

When it comes to needle felting, there is more than one way to felt a bunny. The following are some tutorials to help you to decide what your preference might be.

Mama Bunny and Three Bunnies Felting Tutorial
DIY Cute Wool Rabbit
Needle Felting a Bunny: A Photo Tutorial
How to Make a Cute Needle Felted Bunny for Easter

Though I don’t have a Bunny Felting Kit available yet, the House Mouse Kit or Needle Felt an Animal Friend Kit both come with instructional DVD’s to help you learn three dimensional felting.

House Mouse Felting Kit

House Mouse Kit

Needle Felt An Animal Friend Kit

Needle Felt An Animal Friend Kit

If you don’t live too far away, and would like to learn how to needle felt a bunny in The Fiber Studio at Alpaca Meadows, click Bunny Felting Class.  Organize a group of friends to come do a class with you, or join a class already scheduled!

 

Needle Felting Ornament Kits and Videos

Needle felting has taken off in our area.  Even those who don’t think they have the skills required or aren’t creative, have been enjoying felting classes in The Fiber Studio here at the farm, and going home with projects they are pleased with.  There is no need to have to pay attention to a pattern, such as with knitting or crocheting, so felting is a fun craft to do with a group of friends or in the evening while watching TV.

Needle Felting Ornament Kits

Just in are some new felting kits!  Among them are a variety of felted ornament kits, with instructional videos to follow.  Keep scrolling to see the videos.  Click on the images below if you’d like to order the kit.

     

Happy felting!

Be sure to check out the pictures from some of our felting classes!

Private Lessons – Knitting and Crochet

Been wanting to come to a class, but your schedule never coincides with mine?  Or you’ve come to a beginner’s class and now you’re ready for more?  Perhaps a private lesson is in order.  Some people learn easier one-on-one.  Schedule the day and time that works best for you.  An hour lesson is just $20 and you get a one-on-one lesson focused on what you need the most.  Or bring a friend and share the cost.  Choose a project you’d like to start on, or I can make suggestions.  Bring your own yarn, or enjoy a 10% discount on any yarn in The Fiber Studio.  Fiber friends ages 7 and over are welcome.

Check your calendar then call or contact us to schedule your private lesson!

Beginner Knitting

Transfix Alpaca Shawl

Knitting is the new yoga!  You will learn to cast-on, knit, purl and bind-off.  Your private lesson also includes an overview of knitting vocabulary, materials, accessories and more.

Beginner Crochet

Bulky Ribbed Crochet Scarf

Crochet is is enjoying a renaissance and is my personal favorite.  This cherished fiber art is faster than knitting, and easier to correct mistakes.  Yes, I make them!  Learn to crochet or refresh your memory.  You will learn to create a foundation chain as well as single, half-double, double, and triple crochet stitches. Your lesson also includes an overview of crochet vocabulary, materials, accessories and more.

Back to Class Schedule.

FREE Knitting Pattern – Suri Art Yarn Cowl

Inspired by Ashley Martineau’s pattern and free video, I’ve created this cowl out of my own hand spun Suri Art Yarn.  Though the bulky, very textured yarn is a bit of a challenge, the results were well worth it!

Suri Art Yarn Cowl

NEEDLE

Circular 16″ Needles US Size 15 – 10.0 mm

MATERIALS

50 Yards of Hand Spun Suri Art Yarn

PATTERN NOTES

Roughly 30 inches around at neck edge, 8 inches wide, and 38 inches around bottom edge depending on how loosely or tightly you knit.

 

DIRECTIONS

 Make a Slip Knot, then cast on 30 stitches.  Knit in the round using the double elongated stitch until you’re reached the desired length.  Bind off loosely.

Very simple!

Fasten off, and weave in ends.

 

How to Make an Alpaca Fiber Wreath

I try to find a use for every grade of alpaca fiber, even short fiber or more robust fiber from older alpacas.   Alpaca Fiber Wreaths are my latest idea.  Find out how!

Peacock

Recently I had a special order for one of these wreaths and the customer wanted “peacock colors”.

Click to Purchase Alpaca Fiber

I started by gathering together small amounts of my previously dyed fiber, in colors that I thought resembled a peacock.

Grapevine Wreath

I used both huacaya and suri fiber.  The huacaya was a good filler, as well as added color.  The suri added color in wisps and curls.

Dipping Fiber in Glue

Using glue in a shallow plastic dish, I dipped small bunches of fiber into the glue.

IMG_2404

With a nail punch (any pokey thing would work, a pencil for instance), I poked the fiber down into the grapevine wreath.  Very easy to make!

Suri Fiber Wreath

 Voila’, the finished project!

FREE Crochet Pattern – Snuggle Hat with Cuff

This is a very simple hat crochet pattern that I have used over and over again.  It has been adapted from the pattern called Crochet Head Hugger by Christine Marie Way Tyler & John Wesley Tyler for use with our bulky Snuggle Yarn by The Alpaca Yarn Company.

Snuggle Hat with Cuff - Group of Greens

 For this hat, I used the colorway, A Group of Greens.

Snuggle-Alpaca-Yarn-Group-of-Greens-Bulky-Yarn

Here’s the pattern:

HOOK

US Size J

MATERIALS

1 Skein of Snuggle Hand-Dyed
1 Skein of Snuggle Solids

Body of hat requires about 90 yards, brim takes about 15 yards.

FINISHED MEASUREMENTS

This hat measures 21″ around at the widest point and is 8″ from the top to the bottom of the turned up brim.

PATTERN NOTES

CH 2 always counts as 1 DC.

DIRECTIONS

CH 4 or 5 (which ever you usually like to use to make a ring). SL ST in first ST to form a ring.
Round 1 – CH 2, 11 DC in ring. SL ST in top of CH 2. (12 DC)
Round 2 – CH 2, DC in the same ST. 2 DC in each ST around. SL ST in top of CH 2. (24 DC)
Round 3 – CH 2, *2 DC in next ST, DC in next ST*; Repeat around. SL ST in top of CH 2. (36 DC)
Round 4 – CH 2, DC in next ST. *2 DC in next ST, DC in next 2 ST*; Repeat around. SL ST in top of CH 2. (48 DC)

Round 5 – *CH 2, skip 1 DC, SC in next DC*; Repeat around. SL ST in top of CH 2.
Round 6 – SL ST into CH, CH 2, DC in same CH 2 space, *2 DC in each CH 2 space around*. SL ST in top of CH 2.
Round 7 – CH 2, skip the first 2 DC, SC in space between 2ND & 3RD DC, *CH 2, skip 2 DC, SC in space between DC’S of previous round*;
Repeat around. SL ST in top of CH 2.
Rounds 8 thru 13 –  Repeat rounds 5 & 6 until cap is the length that you want, ending with either round. Finish off here or add brim.

Round 14 – Change colors for brim.  Repeat rounds 5 & 6 until brim is the width you want.  Finish off.

Snuggle Hat - A Plethora of Pinks

Here is the same hat using A Plethora of Pinks.

See more patterns using our Snuggle Yarn:

CROCHET PATTERNS

Basic Chunky Cowl

Fingerless Mittens

Color Block Scarf

Simple Ear Warmer Pattern

KNIT PATTERNS

Easy Mistake Stitch Scarf

 

FREE Knit and Crochet Patterns – Go Green!

In the spirit of Saint Patrick’s Day I’ve made a few items out of the colorway Group of Greens – Snuggle Yarn by The Alpaca Yarn Company.  There are two FREE patterns below, one a crochet pattern and the other a knit pattern.

Snuggle-Alpaca-Yarn-Group-of-Greens-Bulky-Yarn

KNIT

 The pattern used for this scarf was adapted from Purl Soho’s Easy Mistake Stitch Scarf.

Knit Scarf - Group of Greens Snuggle Yarn

  Ribs do pull in and will make this scarf narrower than you might anticipate.  If you want to add additional stitches for a wider scarf,  just make sure your cast on is in multiples of four stitches.

NEEDLES

US Size 11

FINISHED MEASUREMENTS

60-inches long by approximately 6-inches wide

PATTERN NOTE

Mistake rib is a multiple of 4+3

THE PATTERN

Cast on 29 stitches.

K2, p2, repeat to last 3 stitches, k2, p1.

Repeat this row until desired length. So easy!

Weave in ends, hand wash, block and let dry.

______________________________________________________

CROCHET

 

Ear Warmer Headband - Snuggle Yarn

FREE Simple Ear Warmer Pattern

Crocheted Ear Warmer Headband

 

——————————————————————————————————————

Found this recipe on Pinterest posted by Spoonful, so simple just had to share , in the spirit of Saint Patrick’s Day!

Ingredients

Canned refrigerated bread stick dough
Colored sugar
Cinnamon

Directions

1.  Line a cookie sheet with aluminum foil and lightly coat it with cooking spray.
2.  To create the clover shape, mold 3 sections of bread sticks into hearts and press them together as shown. Attach a small stem, decorate, bake according to the package directions, and serve them up to your lucky guests.

Wet Felting Purse Tips

I taught two wet felting purse classes recently, and promised I’d share some information, so here it is.  The pictures below are felted purses that I have made.  Almost any size or shape purse can be made this way, love the magic of wet felting!

There are some good tutorials out there, though there are different techniques, and sometimes different tools.

Rosiepink is a wonderful felting site by a mother daughter team, Annie and Lynn, that live on the South Coast of England.  Their instructions on How to Make a Seamless Wet Felted Purse are very good, with pictures too! Urban Stitch Studio also has a Free Felted Purse Tutorial in which they use a baggie to create a resist.

I use a pool noodle cut to a shorter length that is easier to handle, in place of the bamboo mat, but I would guess the bamboo mat works just as well.  I work on a boot mat that I purchased at the Dollar Store, which provides friction to rub your felted piece on enabling the fibers to tangle together.  It also contains the water, which beats laying towels all around my work area like I used to do.  A sponge to sop up excess water on your piece is also a great idea!

For another method of felted purses, see How to Make a Felted Pouch from a Flat Piece of Felt.

If you’re ambitious and want to add a zipper pocket, see How to Make a Felt Purse With an Inside Zipper Pocket.

Felted Purse LiningFelted Purse with Lining

Adding a lining is not difficult.  Many times I use discontinued upholstery samples that I get from a local furniture store.  The following tutorial has some great pictures and can be adapted to felted purses.

Tutorial: Sew A Lining Into A Crocheted Bag

Purse with Bamboo Handles

Purse Handle Idea Braided Handbag Handle

How to Line a Felted Bag

Ideas for adding a strap or handles are many.  Felting a cord is one idea, see Felt Cord/Purse Handle Tutorial.  Making Felt Ropes is a good video if you’re wanting a rope type strap. There even is a board on Pinterest full of purse handle ideas and instructions.  SkaMama’s Bone Hook (I’m sure there’s a good reason for that name) did a blog post with a list of sources for Bag Handles, Straps, and Supplies.  Locally, JoAnn Fabrics has a selection of purse handles.  Purse Straps – Handles for Knit Felt Purses has a number of different options for attaching straps to purses.  And here are directions for How to Install Grommets on a Purse to put a strap through.

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Many times I just cut a small slit in each side of the purse, maybe 3/4″ down from the top, thread an I-cord through the slit, and knot  the cord on the inside of the purse.

Felted Alpaca Purse

I-cords can be knit, or even crocheted.

How to Crochet an I-Cord (right and left handed directions)

How To Knit an I-Cord

                           

 Double Thick Crochet Stitch Makes Great Handbag Handle

And one more little nugget for you.

Recycled Bag Handles Made From Tupperware Plastic Lids

Recycled Bag Handles Made From Tupperware Plastic Lids

Take the Wet Felting Purse Class at Alpaca Meadows!

 

 



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