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CRAFTY: Felting with Scraps

September 11, 2009

FO - Printed Tee1
Remember the T-Shirt i embellished sometime back… I found some photos i took at that time which inspired this post.

Knitting/Crochet/Spinning will result in yarn scraps and small fibre pieces. I normally discard the acrylic pieces but try to keep all the wool and cotton yarn scraps. Over the time the obvious Q of what to do with them comes up (some pieces in my scrap stash are so small i cant even knit beyond 2-3 stitches)

While you can save every scrap to fill amigurumi toys or other critters,
you can also use some embroidery skills to embellish other projects/plain canvas,
or with spinning for some art yarn!!!!
or to create interesting texture and color like here,
or try a bit of felting.

Though there is needle felting , here is something to try without a needle; Hand-Felting.
(IMP: Use only pure wool yarn/fibre; cotton and acrylic do not felt and silk might give an interesting texture and shine to the felted piece.
I never tried alpaca, mohair and other stuff, do they felt??? )

FELT - Yarn1
Wool: yarn scaps/ fibre specks from spinning
Water: hot and cold seperately
Soap: i like using shampoo rather than dish/laundry soap.
Piece of old nylony lacy curtain and/or softbristled toothbrush (anything to create some friction and agitation);
A pair of scissors – For trimming the dried felt piece

FELT - Yarn2
Gather all the yarn pieces(do not cut them any further), untwist them and disintegrate them (I call this.. unspinning :-)); you can pool the fibres now by color incase you don’t want multicolored felt.
Warm water needs to be as hot as you can handle – Very Important.
The kitchen or laundry areas are great for this.. ofcourse any place where you don’t mind a couple of water drops is fine.
I used the soft nylony meshy fabric peice i had for some friction but i found a used soft-bristled tooth brush also works fine.

Time to get the hands soapy…
Soak the fibre in hot water for 4-5 mins (unless you want to mix all the colors, work with one color at a time)
FELT - Fuzzing
Take the wet fibre and spread on your hand as a thick layer and pour couple of drops of shampoo on it. just starting rubbing(for agitation) with other hand or a peice of meshy nylon.
Shock it occasionally with a splash of cold water and repeat the process with hot water until the fibres kind of stick with each other and the whole thing is a jumbled mess (looks a felt).
Additional warm water/soap might be needed based on water temperature(the hotter the better), agitation, fibre type and amount of fibre.
Once done; dry pieces flat.
(My instructions are kind of very basic, hope you got them; else there is always YouTube.. :-))

FELT - Felted
If felting flat, shape isn’t so important as once the piece is dried, it can always be trimmed with a pair of scissors. Beads are very easy to do too.

FELT - Shaped
Once trimmed, the felt pieces can be used to embellish clothes, accessories, cards…
The beads can be used as buttons, couple more will make a bracelet… practically everywhere where normal beads can be used.

Hope to get you stash your yarn/fibre scraps.
If you are already a scrap stasher, I would love to know what you do with them.

6 Comments leave one →
  1. September 11, 2009 2:07 pm

    Wow! thank you so much for this post. Have been seeing lots of felt projects online these days. Never really thought of hand felting myself. Your post has given me the push needed. Off I go to find some wool πŸ™‚

  2. September 12, 2009 2:57 am

    Just so pretty and a great way to use up wool scraps after weaving in ends.

  3. September 14, 2009 2:21 pm

    Great fun!

  4. September 15, 2009 11:19 pm

    Super. What a great way of using scraps.

  5. September 24, 2009 9:56 pm

    So cool! I wish I could donate all the tons and tons of scraps we have to someone who would make cool stuff and find it useful (although I don’t have any nylon or wool scraps, I’m sure cotton and tasar would turn out unique in its own way).

  6. December 26, 2009 11:27 am

    Hi there,
    I am from Chennai too and have fallen in love with your crochet stuff. I am having difficult time getting yarn and needles here. Can you suggest a place in Chennai where I can get cotton yarn? I tried Mylapore, T Nagar (Raja Threads) and few local shops in vain 😦 Can you help me here?

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