Learn How to Felt

Follow our basic felting directions and then continue in this slide show to see five home projects you can make using the fun technique (we even include free patterns!).


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felting technique
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Felting Materials:

    Wool garments (made of at least 80 percent wool)

    Washing machine and laundry detergent

    Clothing drying rack or dryer

    Scissors

    Pencil or pen

    Card stock or paper for patterns

    Felting needle punch tool and brush mat

    Felting Directions:

    1. Place knitted wool goods in the washing machine and launder in hot water on high agitation with detergent. Remove items and allow to dry completely, either by placing on a drying rack or using the dryer. The wool will now be shrunken and "felted."

    2. Create patterns with pencil and paper. Cut out patterns and place them right side down on the back of the felt. Trace lightly onto the felt with pen or pencil. Using scissors, cut out shapes from felt.

    3. To join pieces of felt, place pieces atop a felting needle mat and use a needle punch tool to press through both layers. This pushes fibers from the top piece through the bottom piece, securing them. You'll know pieces are joined when you see fibers from the top piece coming through to the back of the bottom piece.

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Design a Felted Bath Mat

    Keep your toes warm fresh out of the bath with this oh-so-soft felted bath mat.

    Felted Bath Mat Materials:

    Wool sweaters: blue, ecru, blue plaid

    Basic needle-punching tools

    Five 18-inch strands of 3-ply pink

    wool yarn

    Note: Finished rug is approximately 21x31 inches.

    Felted Bath Mat Directions:

    1. Cut twelve 6-inch-diameter circles each from the blue and ecru sweaters after they?ve been felted.

    2. Lay out a row of six circles; overlap the circles 1-inch. Lay out the second, third, and fourth rows of circles in the same way, alternating the colors. The rows should overlap each other 1 inch. Note: There should be openings between the circles. Use the needle-punch felting tool to join the circles.

    3. Download the star pattern. Cut 15 stars from the plaid sweater. Position the stars over the openings between the circles. Use the needle-punch felting tool to adhere the stars to the circles.

    4. Separate the three-ply wool yarn. Wind one ply of yarn in a solid circle in the center of each star; adhere the yarn to the stars using the needle-punch felting tool.

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Design a Felted Table Mat

    Sew a pretty table mat featuring a bird pattern you can grab for free.

    Felted Table Mat Materials:

    Wool sweaters: blue, pink, raspberry; beige and green scraps

    1 yard of green wool yarn

    Basic needle-punching tools

    Note: Finished mat is 16 inches in diameter.

    Felted Table Mat Directions:

    1. Cut a 10-1/2-inch-diameter circle from a blue sweater that's been felted.

    2. Download the bird pattern. Using the patterns, cut the bird body and wing from the sweaters. Cut the beak from a scrap of beige ribbing. From the raspberry sweater, cut the flower pattern, three berries, and a bird?s eye. Cut three leaves from the green scraps.

    3. Adhere the bird body, wing, and beak to the circle using the needle-punch felting tool. Needle-punch the leaves to the circle. Lay pieces of green yarn on the blue circle to create tree branches and leaf veins. Needle-punch the yarn in place.

    4. Needle-punch the berries to the blue circle and the eye to the bird, and then needle-punch the blue circle to the raspberry flower.

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Make a Felted Hot Pad

    Make a hot plate as stylish as your home with this pretty floral pattern and directions.

    Felted Hot Pad Materials:

    Felted wool sweaters: scraps of ivory cable, orange, multicolor stripe, light green

    Basic needle-punching tools

    Six 12-inch strands of 3-ply light green wool yarn

    Note: Finished hot pad is 7-3/4x9 inches.

    Felted Hot Pad Directions:

    1. Felt some sweater scraps and cut two 7-3/4x9-inch rectangles from ivory cable, two 7/8x7-3/4-inch light green ribbing strips, and one 1-1/4-inch-diameter striped circle.

    2. Download the petal pattern. Cut four petals from orange felted wool. Adhere the ivory background rectangles together using the needle-punch felting tool. Note: A thicker background will provide better protection for your fingers and tabletops.

    3. Adhere the light green ribbing and petals to the background. Adhere the striped circle over the center of the petals. For the loop, use two strands of yarn together as one. Braid the three double-strand lengths of yarn to the desired length. Form the braid into a loop and tack to the back of the hot pad.

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Make a Felted Storage Box

    Stash stuff on the floor with no worries about sharp edges. This felted box is great for kid or pet toys.

    Felted Storage Box Materials:

    Wool sweater: ivory cable

    4 sheets of 9x12-inch plastic needlepoint canvas

    Wool yarn: ivory and pumpkin

    Large-eye needle

    Basic needle-punching tools

    Note: Finished box is 9x12x5 inches.

    Felted Storage Box Directions:

    1. Use one sheet of plastic canvas for the bottom of the box. Cut two 5x12-inch and two 5x9-inch rectangles from the remaining sheets of plastic canvas for the sides. Download the handle pattern. Using the pattern, cut out a handle opening in each 5x9-inch side.

    2. Cut matching pieces from the felted ivory sweater. Using ivory yarn, overcast stitch the plastic canvas sides and bottom together, forming a box.

    3. With wrong sides facing and using a 1/4-inch seam allowance, machine-sew together the short edges of the felted side pieces, alternating the shapes and forming a tube. Do not turn. Pin and sew the sides to the felted bottom piece in the same manner. Overcast stitch the side and bottom seam allowances with pumpkin yarn.

    4. Insert the plastic box into the sweater box. To secure the two, overcast stitch pumpkin yarn around the top edge of the box and around the handle openings.

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Sew a Felted Bunny Pillow

    Design a cute-and-cuddly bunny pillow from felted sweaters and a pre-made pillow form.

    Felted Bunny Pillow Materials:

    Wool sweaters: gray and cream cable

    1/2 yard of gray wool fabric

    Basic needle-punching tools

    Pillow form

    Note: Finished pillow, unstuffed, is approximately 1817 inches.

    Felted Bunny Pillow Directions:

    1. Cut one 19x18-inch rectangle each from the already felted gray sweater and the gray fabric.

    2. Download the bunny pattern.Using the pattern, cut one rabbit shape from the cream cable sweater. Adhere the rabbit to the gray sweater rectangle using the needle-punch felting tool.

    3. Place the gray sweater and fabric rectangles together with the right sides facing. Stitch the rectangles together, using a 1/2-inch seam allowance and leaving a large opening in the center of one side. Turn the pillow right side out, insert the pillow form, and hand-sew the opening closed.

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