I am a crafter. With that said, there are still some crafts that intimidate me to learn because of lack of exposure.
Needle felting is one of those crafting techniques that I have wanted to try but just never knew anyone who could teach me until I decided to take my children on a field trip to the Alpaca Farm Store in Northfield, MN and asked for a quick tutorial. I had no idea it would be so easy to do and I am very excited about the Christmas gifts I have started to work on.
I made my first two projects and when my daughter saw what I had created she immediately asked if this was a project she could learn to do. It is certainly a project that a 6 year can learn to do with some guidance (the needle is very sharp!) It took her a little longer to felt her project than it did for me, but she was more distracted by the TV.
I started out buying a kit from the Farm that included an alpaca cookie cutter, high density foam, 2 colors of roving wool and a needle and bought a 2 oz. bag of another color of wool. After I made my first couple projects and knew I enjoyed this craft, I ordered some more roving wool from Amazon. You can also buy your own needle felting starter kit on Amazon or directly from the Alpaca Farm Store.
Here you can see my first three projects and my daughter’s first project. For both the alpaca and heart forms we used a cookie cutter, as per the 10-second instructions I received, from there I was able to look up more ideas.
Now for the 10-second tutorial:
How to Needle Felt with a Cookie Cutter
- Place cookie cutter on piece of high-density foam that is large enough to be under the entire cookie cutter.
- Fill the inside with roving wool.
- Using a felting needle, press through the wool in a straight up and down motion starting from the outside and working towards the inside.
- Continue doing this motion until you have your desired level of felting.
- Flip shape over and felt (straight up & down motion of the needle) from the opposite side.
- Continue flipping and felting until both sides feel like they have the desired tightness of felting you wish.
To add in another color or more felt, just place it in the desired area and continue felting and flipping, but be careful how far you push the needle through when you add other colors because as the wool colors are felted together the color could be pushed through to the opposite side. In this case, you will not push through very far or if you have the same color on the opposite side you could push all the way through, which is what I did when I felted in the eyes on the alpacas.
Now, if you want to take your new craft a step further and make a felted doll or fairy like I did (see left), then I highly recommend reading the doll tutorial on Bowl of Stones.She has done a wonderful step by step picture tutorial.
This was my first fairy I have made for my daughter and I plan to make a couple more for her for Christmas, as well as a few fairy accessories that I will needle felt or handstitch felt pieces together.
And if you are looking for one more easy craft to do (with or without kids) with your roving wool, then please check out my picture tutorial on How To Make Felted Soap (no needle required.)