Tag Archives: wet felting

How Much Does Wool Shrink

A common question that felters have is how much does wool shrink when felting. It can depend on a lot of factors such as the type and fineness of the wool, what direction you have laid the fibres, what direction you roll the wool while felting, what temperature of water you used, etc. The best way to find out is to do a sample before you begin your project.
In this example, I have used both 21 micron and 18 micron merino wool tops. I started by laying out 2 sets of 12 inch x 12 inch squares. I wanted to see if the direction of the wool layout made a difference in the amount of shrinkage.
For each sample I laid out 3 layers of merino wool.
Felt Sample 1 – Landscape
For the sample on the Left (Blue) I first laid out a thin layer of wool, laying the fibre from left to right (Landscape)
The second layer was in the opposite direction: Top to Bottom (Portrait)
The third layer was again in Landscape (Left to Right)
So in this sample there were more layers of wool in Landscape direction, wool laying across the fabric.
Felt Sample 2 – Portrait
In the second sample on the Right (Red) I laid the fibres in the opposite direction, having 2 layers laying up and down (Portrait) and 1 in Landscape.
First layer: Up and Down (Portrait)
Second layer: Left to Right (Landscape)
Third layer: Up and Down (Portrait) read more

Wet Felting with a Washboard

The old fashioned wash board is quickly becoming my most used felting tool. I use it for the final fulling process when wet felting. What it does is it straightens out the top layer of wool and smooths it out creating a harder surface of felted wool.
When wool hasn’t been felted enough it starts to pill as the fibers continue to move around in the felted wool, break and rise to the surface. Fulling your felt sufficiently prevents this from occuring.
I had a bag that I felted recently. I was a bit impatient and didn’t felt it completely. Soon my lovely bag started to get little wool balls rising to the surface. read more

Feltmaking – Wet Felted Hats: wet-felted-hats

I got a hat block for Christmas – Lucky Me 🙂 This one is a cloche style of hat block made of styrofoam from Gillian Gladrag . These hat blocks come in 4 sizes:

Metric Inches US UK Punti
55/56 21 5/8 6 7/8 6 3/4 4
57/58 22 1/2 7 1/8 7 5
59/60 23 1/4 7 3/8 7 1/4 6
61/62 24 7 5/8 7 1/2 7

Hat Shapers
Another good source for hat blocks.

Head and Hat Sizing

If you are not sure of your hat or head size, using a tape measure, measure around the circumference of your head. Place the tape measure across the widest part of your forehead, just above your eyebrows, around the tips of your ears and across the back of your head. Take the measurement with the tape measure snugly but comfortably around your head – not too tight, unless you like a very tight fitting hat. You may need a friend to help you with this. read more

Felting Project – Waterlily: waterlily

A great way to use up some of your handspun stash is to knit flowers and felt them.
Here is an example of a waterlily that I knitted.

Felted Waterlily
Felted Waterlily

The pattern came from a book I purchased from Amazon – Knitted Flowers, 20 to make.
The pattern calls for double knitting weight yarn. I substituted this for my woolen hand spun in variegated colours. read more