Yesterday afternoon two women came into our shop and almost fell over with excitement. One was a needle felting dabbler and one was a wide-eyed, excited-beyond-measure novice. Both had questions about armature wire, so I decided to ask my trusty desk-mate Trish what she would suggest, as she makes the most adorable bunnies using armature wire for form, merino combed top roving for fur and our fabric scraps for little bunny clothes. Let’s start .
Koalas. Penguins. Giraffes. Donkeys. What do these critters have in common (besides the fact that they are made of flesh and blood)? They can be (and have been) needle felted! Many of our customers come in with pictures in their heads of a veritable zoo waiting to be brought into the world. So what is the first step that we would recommend? First of all, try to find a reference photo! One of the great .
Some of you fiber vegetarians might be wondering what alternatives to animal fiber are out there in the felting universe. NEFS recently decided to carry ramie and hemp in addition to the dyed bamboo and merino/tencel already in stock, so read on and find out more! Ramie is a white, shiny, very durable fiber sometimes known as Chinagrass or vegetable silk. It is one of the oldest known textile fibers, and has .
So before you start pulling out handfuls of needle felting wool from our glass cases or your stash, stop and think: can I use core wool? C-1 and C-1/Pelsull are both affordable options, and core wool is even more economical wool that allows you to make a needle felting base without using all of your dyed fiber. It is available in both roving and batting form, and at NEFS we carry both dark and .
NEFS has several rolling mats (including a rolling kit and cording mats), and honestly all I knew until about a week ago was how much they cost. That’s useful at the cash register, but not so much when trying to actually make something! I asked around to get some answers, but I mostly found what I needed to know in Uniquely Felt (which you should consider getting, because that is always my first step .
Silk, Silk, Silk! When I turn around from my black wooden desk, I am constantly delighted by our collection of hand-dyed silks. Similar to our roving wall, they have the power to brighten any grumpy, rainy day, or echo the sunshine that slants through our enormous windows. Equally as important are our undyed silks in the pottery planter by the windows. (If you haven’t visited us yet, let these descriptions entice you!) These silks .
One of the things that initially drew me to NEFS was its emphasis on sustainability and supporting local agriculture, for feltmaking as a medium depends upon the earth and the creatures on it to succeed. Nowhere is this more evident than in the work of Claudy Jongstra, a Dutch fiber artist who believes strongly in the process of feltmaking as a social message. I was introduced to the work of Ms. Jongstra by NEFS .
If you’re reading this blog, you know what a satisfying, creative, inspiring process felting can be. If you have hours to spend on classes and practice, that is wonderful! However, if you find yourself short on time and desperate to complete a project, consider using prefelt as a fast-felting option. Prefelt is wool that has been partially felted but has not yet made it through the fulling process. Felters can make their own prefelt, .
Every single day I can expect at least one question about needles. Ours are nicely color-coded: purple for 38 star, green for 38 triangle, and blue for 40 triangle. (Choose yours here!) But what’s the difference in real life? The simple answer is that different needles are used for different things. Our green needle is used for making the core of your project and is your all-purpose needle that is used with needle felting .
Are you ready to felt something delicious? Our new kit, the Chocolate Sampler, provides five opportunities to needle the perfect sweet treat. We know that beginners and experts alike can run into challenges when faced with a new project, so we wanted to pass on a few tidbits that can make things easier. These tips are helpful when needle felting any project, so keep reading even if you don’t have a sweet tooth! To .
So you were drawn to the sparkle, you thought your fairy could use a dress, your clouds needed to shimmer… and now you’re wondering what to do with that Angelina Fiber you found here! Wonder no more! Angelina is a synthetic, light reflecting and light refracting fiber, and it comes in both heat bondable and non-heat bondable varieties depending on the color. It is a trademarked fiber and therefore is not identified, but we .
Hello NEFS friends and family! Welcome to our blog, Felting Detangled! My name is Sarah, and I am the new Head Retail Associate at our store in Easthampton, MA. When you call or visit us in person, I’m the one who has as many questions about felting as you do… which we think will help me answer your questions as a brand-spanking-new felter! I’m going to keep a running list of my own questions .
In this two day workshop students will learn how to create a elegant felted pillow cover (16×16) while applying different textural and printing techniques. During the first day, students will learn how to design the surface of the silk with paints and inks by printing, stamping, rubbing and stenciling. Students will then be able to make a small sample at the end of the day to learn how to place all the layers to create the textural surface .
Using materials from the store, NEFS staff will walk you through the steps of creating a variety of holiday ornaments! Choose two ornaments to make for the class with the option to take home the mini-kits for other designs if you like. These sessions filled fast last year when people decided it was a great way to get together with a couple of friends during the holidays while making stocking stuffer/secret Santa/hostess gifts. .
In this beginner-friendly workshop participants will create a pair of cozy slippers to warm one’s feet for a cold winter’s night! Students will learn to calculate shrinkage to determine the right size and shape of their template and explore the wet felting technique of using a flat resist. The design and embellishment will be kept simple in order to focus on shaping the slipper to achieve the perfect fit. Different methods of embellishment such as cut-outs, applique, and .
In this two day workshop students will learn how to create a 3D felted bag and learn how to use natural materials to eco-print the bag. During the first day, students will use natural Merino wool roving and a plastic resist to wet felt a beautiful felted hang bag. This is a great introduction to 3-D felting. The second day will begin with finishing off the bags and eco-printing them. If you’re unfamiliar with .
Come, explore the ancient art of feltmaking with a modern twist….nuno-felt. The term nuno-felt is used to describe the felting of natural fibers (we’ll be using Merino wool roving) into an open weave fabric base. Nuno felting was developed in 1994 by textile artist Polly Stirling and her assistant, Sachiko Kotaka. They found that by manipulating wool fibers through a lightweight base fabric, that they created a felted fabric with characteristics quite different from .
Participants will study and explore numerous ways to bring three-dimensional surface textures to otherwise two-dimensional felt. Four main techniques will be covered: surface resists, differential shrinkage, a combination of the two to raise forms within a plane, and solid form protuberances. The use of surface resists will be employed to create high-relief planes and pockets. The application of thick partial felts to a thin background fleece will result in undulating surfaces as a result of differential shrinkage and circumferential .
Create a hanging globe or globe lamp shade for a lamp or desk top. Using the nuno technique combined with felting on a ball you will be able to catch the soft glow of light with a felted shade. You can choose the size and number of lights ((if you work quickly you may have time to make more than 1) you want to make. Make them plain or fancy – round or shaped – .
Using Nuno felting techniques, you will be elated as you transform layers of hand-painted silk, sumptuous merino wool roving, novelty and other silk embellishments into gorgeous flowing fabric. During the felting process, the wool fibers migrate through the weave of the silk and entangle, pulling the silk and any other embellishments along with them as they shrink. This results in an incredibly lightweight garment that drapes the body beautifully. In this one-day workshop we will cover design, layout, felting, .