Isabelle walked into my “man cave” this weekend… looked at me while scrunching up her face and finally asked… “Are you felting now?”. I couldn’t tell if she was surprised or frustrated. (I am always starting something new and it often either comes with a cost or a big mess) I affirmed that she was correct and told here that I was pleased that she recognized what I was doing. (I wouldn’t have known what I was doing had I not been YouTubing felting… I probably would have thought it was some weird voodoo thing.)
I decided to start my felting experiments with a kit and I purchased one from Etsy- FeltHoppy (kind of a good get ready for Easter project). After having finished this kit… I don’t believe it is necessary to purchase a kit to start felting. With that said, it is nice to have some instructions and I found that the “pre-measured” amounts of felt and drawings that were “actual” size helped to make this felting novice much more successful. (I will let you judge how well I succeeded)
I started with the head and for those who are not familiar with felting it starts with wool fibers (I am not sure what other fibers work for felting… I do know human hair will not work). You will also note that there is a felting needle and some foam. The felting needle is specialized and I am not sure if you can use something else… (don’t just get a normal needle it will not work) Felting this rabbit is a lot like sculpting. What is interesting is that you sculpt by poking the fibers with the felting needle repeatedly. This needle poking made me think of the “voodoo” reference.
Above you can see the final size of the head after I have poked it… and when I say “poked it” I mean that I have poked it a lot. I realized something about myself while poking this and that is I really like poking things…. hmm.. That doesn’t sound right… maybe I should say stabbing?… wow that might even be worse. Let me just keep this appropriate by saying that I found the process of felting very enjoyable. For those of you like me who look for short cuts or ways to get things done quickly… watch that you are not poking too aggressively or too deep. Poking hard, fast, or deep does not make it turn into felt any quicker. If you are too aggressive you also risk breaking the felting needle. Look closely at the needle in the picture above and you will see the tip poking out separated from the needle. I got over excited and yes… I broke my felting needle. I had to go out and buy a new one. (The only thing I could recommend for making this kit better is to include a spare needle)
Once I got the head done I started poking the ears out.. and move on to each part of the body. To connect pieces you leave the fibers “un-poked” where they would connect to the other part… then you poke those fibers into the other part making them fuse. Did I tell you how much I like poking. There is one thing I don’t like about poking and that is when the needle misses the felt and finds flesh. Here is another piece of advice… Don’t poke yourself… it hurts. I ended up with several bandages. I will not tell you how many since I know there are people out there that will take joy in hearing that I hurt myself repeatedly.
Here is the final rabbit! I found this to be a very fun interesting project. Surprisingly it did not take too much time to completed… plus I got to poke things. I think I might try to felt some of the pink alpaca fibers into an Easter egg for the bunny… (dont’ know yet how well alpaca will work). That is all for this week. I recommend giving this a try… you might be surprised at how much you like poking!