Felting with Little Ones
I caught the felting bug years ago and have been a fan ever since. I have done felting with children as young as kindergarten with great success with the method I'll share below. Later this spring I will share a few of my felting lessons I've used successfully at K-2nd grade.
Here is the basic felting process. I thought I invented this method 10 years ago but sadly discovered that its been around :)
* zip lock baggies. I like the ones that have the slide across closure.
* plastic screening cut into squares. Screening can be purchased at any hardware store just make sure its plastic not the metal type.
* Wool roving. This can be purchased at some yarn shops or you might even have a local shop that specializes in felting. If neither applies, shop online....etsy is a great resourse.
* Access to hot water.
* Dawn dish soap. Any type can be used...I like dawn.
* You will be making a "felt sandwich". Take 2 square screens. Lay them side by side.
* On one square, make a layer of wool roving. Hold a clump of wool in one hand and gently pull away some roving. Place roving vertically on the screen starting at one end. Do this until you have filled your square across with one layer of wool.
* Do the same process but this layer must be placed horizontally atop the first layer.
* Do one more layer following the same process but place vertically atop the horizontal layer.
Different colors can be used throughout this process...I'm just keeping my description as simple as possible.
* Place the second screen on top of the felt. Now your "felt sandwich" is ready to be felted!
* Place "sandwich" in baggie.
* Add a little hot water and a drop of dawn dish soap. This is a judgement you will need to make as to how much water you add. The idea is to wet the felt completely with the hot water.
* Before zipping the bag closed, remove all air so baggie lays flat.
* Hold in between both hands and rub back and forth. The combination of hot water, soap and agitation will begin to hold wool fibers together.
* Dump out excess water, zip closed and continue rubbing. This will take sometime...5 minutes or more.
* Remove felt sandwich and remove one screen layer. Does it seem to be holding on? Great! That means your felting@!
* Rinse in hot water, squeeze out excess and place back in bag. Add a drop of soap if needed.
* Rub some more...maybe 5 more minutes....you will know when enough is enough based on if it has shrunk or not.
* Remove, rinse with cold water, and let dry.
Thats the simple way to felt with children. They love it! Next, making felt beads!