How To Make A DIY Boho Wall Hanging

DIY Boho Style Wall Hanging

Make this gorgeous DIY boho style wall hanging, and give your mental health a huge boost whilst doing it! Some days you feel a bit ‘meh’ but you know that making something will shake you out of it. However, you really need a simple craft project that doesn’t involve too much thinking, and definitely no tricky patterns. Feeling this way the other day I decided I wanted to make a wool wall hanging that I could put together in just a few hours but would still look amazing. So, I raided my wool stash and craft box and set to work.

JUST STARTED CRAFTING? CLICK BELOW FOR THE COMPLETE KIT!

YOU CAN BUY THE COMPLETE WALL HANGING KIT HERE

Create beautiful, sustainable modern décor for the home!

There’s something about no-fuss DIY crafts that are so satisfying. Maybe it’s because they’re usually quick and easy to put together, so you can see the finished result almost immediately. Or maybe it’s because they don’t require any fancy materials or complicated techniques, so anyone can do them. Whatever the reason, no-fuss crafts are the perfect way to shake off a case of the “meh’s.”

What resulted was a beautifully calming wall hanging, with a lovely beachy vibe, made from bits of wool, old jewellery, beads and ribbons, and I wanted to share how easy it was to make and also let me take a break from myself for a few, no stress, hours.

Find all of my video tutorials at: THE FELT HUB ON YOUTUBE

This ridiculously simple craft project can be completed, and displayed on your wall, in less than 3 hours! How amazing is that!

CHOOSING YOUR COLOUR COMBINATIONS FOR WINNING RESULTS

A colour palette is important for most art and craft projects – it helps to set the mood and tone of your work, and can also be used to create a cohesive look. When you are choosing a colour palette, it’s important to think about what mood you want to convey. Do you want your work to be calm and serene, or bold and vibrant? Once you’ve decided on the overall feel of your project, you can start choosing specific colours. If you’re unsure where to start, a good place is with a limited palette of just a few colours. This will help you to focus on working with a specific range of hues, and also give your work a more unified look. As you become more comfortable with working with different colours, you can start experimenting with different palettes, adding in new shades and tones as you go. Ultimately, the best way to choose a colour palette is to follow your instincts and go with whatever feels right for you and your work.

For this no fuss, DIY boho wall hanging, I picked out lovely muted colours – wool, ribbon and beads – with a calming feel but soon realised that a pop of colour was needed to give the project a lift. A bright mustard colour turned out to be perfect for the job and really brings the piece to life! It’s amazing how such a small change can make such a big difference. If you’re ever feeling stuck with a project, add a pop of colour and see how it transforms your work!

GATHER YOUR WOOL AND FIBRE STASH TOGETHER

I have used a selection of wool tops, wool yarn, silk ribbon, beads, glass, cotton rope, and driftwood; although any old branch from the garden or walk will do.

SUSTAINABLE CRAFTS – REUSE AND RECYCLE

I love finding new ways to reuse and recycle materials that I already have on hand for my DIY craft projects. Not only is it budget friendly, but it also reduces the amount of waste I produce. For this wall hanging, I used wool tops and yarn that were left over from other projects, as well as beads and glass that I found in charity shops and my old costume jewellery that I used to wear a million years ago, well it seems that way… I love how this easy wall hanging came together with materials that might otherwise have been discarded. It’s a great reminder that even everyday items can be turned into something beautiful if we just use a little creativity.

CLICK FOR MORE SUSTAINABLE WOOL CRAFTS

TAKE THE CREATIVITY OUTSIDE

Crafting outside is a surefire way to lift your mood and what could be better than crafting outdoors on a beautiful spring day? The sunshine and fresh air are sure to lift your mood, and the relaxed atmosphere will help you to get in touch with your creative side. So, as it was a sunny Spring day here in blighty I thought I would make the most of it and take the creativity into the garden. The craft project I was working on was a simple one, but it was so satisfying to be able to complete it while surrounded by nature. I felt so much happier and more relaxed after spending some time crafting outside, and I would definitely recommend it to anyone who is looking for a mood boost.

HOW DO I GET STARTED?

GETTING STARTED IS OFTEN THE HARDEST PART

Starting your project is often the hardest part, and I spent quite a lot of time pondering about design when really I just needed to get stuck in! I decided to stop pontificating (I love that word!) and start with a simple base of cotton rope, the kind you would use in macramé. However, any yarn, or even fabric strips would look just as good. The trick is to just start. After that it is a breeze! Once you have your base material, simply start adding your materials. You can make whatever pattern you like, and there is no right or wrong way to do it. I went for the ‘less is more’ approach as my temptation is to behave like a toddler decorating the Christmas tree. That said, if that’s your preference then you go for it! The key is to have fun and be creative. Just let your imagination run wild, and before you know it you will have created a one-of-a-kind piece of art.

Simple cotton rope backdrop mounted on a piece of driftwood

ET VOILA!

I love the finished result which, combined with the driftwood and soft tropical colours, is giving me summer vibes; something we can only hope for here in blighty. All in all it took around three hours. This included gathering of materials plus an hour of faffing, pondering, and trimming time. I am thrilled with the finished result and I love the boho, chilled, beachy look. The cotton rope backdrop is perfect and plaiting some of the lovely wool tops adds more interest and texture. I hope you enjoyed reading about the process and it has inspired you to try this project for yourself. This project was so much fun to do and I love how it turned out. The contrast of the white cotton against the colorful wool tops is beautiful, and the texture of the rope adds an interesting dimension. It’s exactly the look I was going for and I can’t wait to hang this up in my home and enjoy the relaxed, beachy vibe it creates. SEE MORE TUTORIALS IN THE FELT HUB ON YOUTUBE!

NO MORE ‘MEH’

We all know how good it feels to escape into a creative project every now and again. It’s a wonderful way to take a break from the hustle and bustle of everyday life and relax into a slower pace for a few hours. And, best of all, when you’re finished you have a beautiful piece to show for your efforts. The result was exactly what I hoped for: a beautiful, no-stress wall hanging that makes me feel good every time I look at it. If you’re feeling in need of a creative escape, why not give this project a try? You might just find that it’s exactly what you needed.

P.S. YOU CAN BUY THE COMPLETE WALL HANGING KIT HERE

HAVE YOU TRIED NEEDLE FELTING?

If you haven’t tried needle felting, you’re in for a treat! This amazing craft is perfect for all skill levels, from beginner to advanced, and I have been teaching this craft since 2014! Needle felting is extremely versatile – you can use it to create all sorts of stunning artwork, from animal sculptures, to jewellery, to home décor. No sewing or tricky patterns plus, needle felting is a great way to relax and de-stress. And there’s no need to worry about being short on ideas, either – this blog is jam-packed with needle felting tutorials, tips, and tricks. So what are you waiting for? Click HERE for the menus on this blog and get started on your needle felting journey today!

HOW TO NEEDLE FELT A HEDGEHOG – EASY STEP BY STEP GUIDE!

Hedgehogs are a much rarer sight in our gardens than they used to be and I remember my dad getting my 11 year old self, and younger brother out of bed at midnight to see a visiting hedgehog in our garden. What a treat and such cherished memories! Whilst you may not see the real thing very often, at least you can have your own handmade hoglet to keep you company all year round. So, I present my needle felted version of our beloved hedgehog and how using a reverse felting needle creates fabulous spikey details.

Did You Know?

Hedgehogs are lactose intolerant so bread and milk is not good for them! Find out what they really love to eat on The Woodland Trust blog at the bottom of this post.

Skill level: Complete beginners and beyond
Make time: 1 hour

Time to settle down with creativity, a cuppa, maybe a slice of cake, and join me for a full tutorial teaching you new needle felting tips, tricks and techniques.

VIDEO TUTORIAL AND MATERIALS LIST

You will need:

  • Grey wool top for body
  • Brown carded batting for top layer
  • Light brown wool top or carded for face
  • Darker wool for nose
  • Brown wool top for spikey halo
  • Standard/medium felting needle – I use a 38 star
  • Reverse felting needle for spikes – I use a 32 reverse
  • Glass beads for eyes
  • Felting mat
  • Enthusiasm

SHOP NEEDLE FELTING KIT– MAKES THREE COLIN HEDGEHOGS

Available from: LINCOLNSHIRE FENN CRAFTS  or  ETSY

If you want to encourage hedgehogs in your own garden here are a few guidelines from James Martin, content editor of the WOODLAND TRUST

What do hedgehogs eat, and how to feed them?

Evidence suggests this decline is most severe in rural areas and hedgehogs are actually faring better in our towns and villages than the countryside. This means gardens can be an important refuge for the species. One way you can help any visiting hogs is to provide some food. But what do hedgehogs eat and what should you feed them?

FOOD FIT FOR A HEDGEHOG

Insects and other invertebrates are the hedgehog’s main natural food source. A typical diet includes:

  • Beetles
  • Earwigs
  • Caterpillars
  • Earthworms
  • Millipedes
  • Fly larvae

What to feed hedgehogs?

As opportunistic eaters, hedgehogs will readily consume food left out in your garden. The best foods to provide are:

  • Meat-based cat or dog food
  • Specially-made hedgehog food
  • Cat biscuits

As well as providing food, you can put out a shallow dish of water to ensure any visiting hogs stay hydrated.

What not to feed hedgehogs

The following foods should be avoided when feeding hedgehogs:

  • Bread and milk (hogs are lactose intolerant so milk can make them ill. Bread has little nutritional value)
  • Mealworms (thought to cause health problems when eaten in large quantities)

Read the full blog at THE WOODLAND TRUST

Workshop Creativity

HOW TO NEEDLE FELT A CUTE GNOME – EASY TUTORIAL!

GNOMES ARE NOT JUST FOR CHRISTMAS

Join me for this easy needle felted gnome craft project. Felt alongside me and create this beautiful gnome in a hoop, which is so much fun to make and beyond cute. It is such a simple needle felting project, made easy by my step by step needle felting tips and techniques. I will also show you how to make the easiest needle felted hearts, without a cookie cutter! You can adapt it to your own style, using whatever felting wool you have to hand, keeping it simple or embellish the heck out of it. Materials list and video tutorial is below and it only takes around 90 minutes from start to finish, and imagine this as a beautiful homemade Valentine’s gift… 💜

MAKE TIME: 90 minutes

MATERIALS LIST

CREATE YOUR OWN DESIGNS

This gorgeous project could just as easily be made on a piece of felt (just as in the tutorial) and popped in a lovely frame. It would look so lovely as a cushion design, or sew the finished project onto a jacket or bag. The options are endless so don’t be afraid to experiment, and swap the colours to suit.

NEEDLE FELTED GNOME VIDEO TUTORIAL

5 TOP NEEDLE FELTING KITS AND HOW TO START NEEDLE FELTING?

NEEDLE FELTING IS SO EXCITING!

So don’t be nervous. Starting a new craft can be exciting but also a little confusing. Needle felting is no different and the array of wool, tools and accessories can send you into a confusing tailspin.

The truth is, you don’t need a lot to get started with needle felting, and it is also a budget friendly hobby. That is until you become addicted, which you will, and then no amount of felting wool will ever be enough!

That’s why I always recommend a needle felting starter kit to get you going, so you can test the needle felting waters. They are inexpensive and have absolutely everything you need to complete each project from start to finish. It avoids you feeling overwhelmed and helps to build your creative confidence. All you have to do is open the box and add enthusiasm.

MY TOP 5 FELTING KIT RECOMMENDATIONS

Here are my top 5 recommendations for beginners kits. They all come beautifully boxed and are perfect for storing your supplies! No sewing, no tricky patterns and they take just a few hours of your time! They also use our gorgeous British wool, carefully selected for its excellent needle felting properties.

GREY HARE NEEDLE FELTING KIT

Make time: 3-4 hours

If you love ETSY you can find me HERE

Complete stunner and he knows it! This, along with the Herdwick Sheep, is the most popular beginners kit. It is such fun to make and you can follow the instructions to the letter, or add your own touches. As well as detailed instructions you can felt along on YOUTUBE by following the beginners playlist.

HERDWICK SHEEP NEEDLE FELTING KIT

Make time: 2-3 hours

My favourite sheep from the Lake District is an ever popular needle felting kit. Great for building your needle felting confidence, this super kit will soon have you warmed up and ready for your next project. As well as detailed instructions you can felt along on YOUTUBE by following the beginners playlist.

RUSTIC ROBINSHOP NEEDLE FELTING KIT

Make time: 2-3hours

A gorgeous little project that has enough wool to make two of our favourite UK garden birds. A perfect project to create with your bestie or, one for you and one to give away. There is also a great video tutorial HERE showing you how easy it is to create a perfect wing shape without the need for a cookie cutter.

JACK RUSSELLSHOP NEEDLE FELTING KIT

Make Time: 3-4 hours

What’s not to love with this design? Even better, you can change the markings to represent your own four legged friend. As well as detailed instructions you can felt along on YOUTUBE by following the beginners playlist.

SHROOM’ WITH A VIEWSHOP NEEDLE FELTING KIT

Make time: 3-4 hours

If you are looking for a home for the wee little fairies and forest dwellers, then this is right up your street. Lot’s of different techniques and a great needle felting kit for beginners. Any self respecting gnome or fairy would be thrilled to have the keys to this house! As well as detailed instructions you can felt along to the video tutorial HERE

WANT TO KNOW MORE ABOUT NEEDLE FELTING?

Join the THE FELT HUB with Lincolnshire Fenn Crafts

NEEDLE FELTING TECHNIQES – LIVE WORKSHOP

Join me this Friday night in the new FACEBOOK GROUP, 21st January, 7.30pm GMT, for a live felt along. I am going to cover some techniques for quick wins when making and attaching your animal legs. No need for glue, wax or a full wire armature (I rarely use one). Smooth wool, symmetry, and nicely covered joins are key and I will be showing you my favourite ways to achieve it on your animals, or any other project.

YOU WILL NEED

Any coarse wool top or carded wool lengths

BBQ Skewer

Pipe cleaner

Felting needle

Scissors – Not your best ones

Plus the obligatory cuppa or glass of something nice… Starts 7.30 GMT until 8.30 ish. Hope to see you there. As always, it will be available as a replay after the event.

CLICK THE BUTTON LINK TO JOIN THE FREE FACEBOOK GROUP

How To Needle Felt A Quirky Christmas Gnome?

Well what a blast this live workshop was, recorded in all it’s festive glory for you to enjoy. From his pointy ears to his massive snozzle, every part of this project is an absolute seasonal delight.

Believe it or not this gorgeous pointy eared gnome is a perfect project for everyone, even complete beginners. Learn how to needle felt a quirky gnome, using all my needle felting tips and quick wins. You will be able to create a project that looks like it was made by an expert needle felter, and in less than 90 minutes! How amazing is that?

Scroll down for video tutorial, or take your time and enjoy my creative suggestions.

I have added some sparkly fairy lights to my dome.

WHY NOT ADAPT THIS NEEDLE FELTING PROJECT TO SUIT YOUR FESTIVE THEME?

It is small enough to pop in a dome, hang from your tree, or create a festive gnome garland. I have just received a photo on my Facebook page where they have even been made as little place settings for the dinner table; how Christmas cool is that? However you display yours, you will have so much fun creating them so, time to grab your wool and needles and get making.

With his festive hat askew, funny ears and big nose, it is obvious he is just waiting for mischief around every corner , even the Grinch couldn’t resist him!

JUST STARTED NEEDLE FELTING?

Order your wool bundle or needle felting kit HERE

MAKE TIME: 70 minutes

  • Coarse wool top for the body
  • Colour carded wool for the hat
  • Grey and white wool top for the beard
  • Light carded wool for ears and nose
  • BBQ skewer to make the nose around
  • 1 x size 38 felting needle
  • Felting base

VIDEO TUTORIAL

I have split it into sections so you can skip the intro and cut straight to the felting, but please take time to appreciate my fabulously festive background 😉 🎄

Happy Festive Felting!

WHAT’S YOUR FAVOURITE PART?

I can’t decide whether it is the jauntily angled crooked hat, his pointy ears, or his giant nose. Let me know in the comments and share your photos with me.

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How To Needle Felt With Confidence

NEEDLE FELTING ISN’T HARD, BUT STARTING CAN BE

TOP TOP TIP – ALLOW YOURSELF TO BE A BEGINNER! It’s often hard to find your confidence when you start needle felting, even harder if you haven’t done any crafting before, so tackling those fears is the first hurdle. The second hurdle is finding a good tutorial and materials guide that will give you the best chance of success. I can help with both of those things but you have the most important job, and that’s allowing yourself to be a beginner. And, as sure as eggs is eggs, if you don’t allow yourself a period of ‘learning’ grace you are setting yourself to fail. In fact, you have to get it wrong in order to succeed and believe me, when it comes to needle felting success comes very quickly.

FEAR OF FAILURE – TIME TO CHANGE THE NARRATIVE

We are, so often, our own worst critics, and we use it as self preservation technique so we don’t have to start something i.e. a new craft. We literally talk ourselves out of it before we have even tried. It is like a fail safe but it can be very self destructive. So, time to change the narrative and, when you think to yourself, ‘I’ve failed’ simply change the statement to ‘I have learned’, and see how that self doubt just falls away. Each time you do this your confidence will grow, as will your skill set. Changing the mindset, that makes you way too hard on yourself, is the most important thing you will learn when it comes to starting a new craft, and that confidence will also find its way into many other aspects of our life.

FEAR OF WHAT OTHERS WILL THINK

We often spend so much time worrying what others will say and, the truth is, they will probably be super impressed that you are learning a new skill. If not then the problem is probably their own self confidence and lack of courage to try something new themselves. Ask yourself who you are doing it for? The answer should always be you! If you really struggle then don’t show your felt creations to anyone until you feel ready, and then not at all if that is how you feel.

CRAFTS ARE SUPPOSED TO BE FUN…

Always remember, you are doing this for you and no one else. Crafts are all about you, and the enjoyment of just making, so try and loose yourself in those creative moments.

NEVER COMPARE YOURSELF TO OTHERS!

Be realistic and always remember that they started off exactly the same way as you…as a complete beginner! If you are on chapter 1 and they are chapter 5 then it’s hardly a fair comparison, and it’s a sure fire way to ruin your day, and knock your confidence at the same time. Find your needle felting feet, learn the basics well, then start to look for inspiration. Also, it is completely normal to think ‘I will never be able to make that’. Honestly, time and practice will change your mind.

DON’T UNDERESTIMATE THE MENTAL HEALTH BENEFITS OF CRAFTS

Anxiety, loneliness, isolation and depression have never been more prevalent than they are in today’s society, and with good reason; a global pandemic, climate change, rising prices, job insecurity, fear for our kids, caring for others, the list goes on and on… But, amidst all of that, the world is still full of great people and creativity. If we just prescribed ourselves some craft therapy on a regular basis then everything will feel calmer, more grounded, safer. And, if that is just for the time you are involved in something that distracts you from the daily stresses and strains it will allow you to go about your day in a much better state of mind. If not needle felting then a jigsaw, sewing, growing house plants, gardening, reading, knitting, colour by numbers, in fact anything that requires your undivided attention. Even though it can be hard it is so important to create a little time to focus on yourself, even if only for half an hour. And fortunately needle felting is incredibly portable so, if you can’t find a quiet space or the household won’t leave you alone, I have often found the loo to be a good alternative. As I said, needle felting is very portable 😉

ARE YOU READY TO START NEEDLE FELTING NOW?

Let’s get going. The video tutorial below is an introduction to creating a really simple shape that will become the most important technique you will learn when first starting needle felting. It can be made in just 5-10 minutes and will act as the structure, or scaffolding for the rest of your project. My tutorials are very workshop style and are the nearest thing to one of my in person classes. Simplicity and speed are the cornerstone of all my tutorials and I am always looking for new techniques to help improve your needle felting journey as well as give you the confidence to fall in love with this craft as much as I have. I have added links for the playlist that will teach you how to complete hares, sheep, mice, foxes, badgers, gnomes and too many to mention, with ease. You just need to be enthusiastic and willing to learn.

DON’T HAVE ANY NEEDLE FELTING EQUIPMENT?

All needle felting kits and supplies can be found on HERE on the Lincolnshire Fenn Crafts website

Happy felting!

HOW TO START NEEDLE FELTING – INTRODUCTION VIDEO

QUICK DO’S AND DON’TS GUIDE TO NEEDLE FELTING

Click HERE for my quick do’s and don’ts guide to needle felting.

NEEDLE FELTING VIDEO TUTORIALS – BEGINNERS PLAYLIST

MAKE ALL THE NEEDLE FELTED THINGS!

Needle felted hares and sheep are always popular for beginners, needle felted gnomes and pumpkins can be made in just 30 minutes, and why not rustle up a macaron or two in just 15 minutes! Needle felting ideas and tutorials are endless so checkout the menus at the top of the page and make all the needle felted things!

DIY Gnome On A Stick – Easy Tutorial

Using a BBQ skewer, or chop stick, as a needle felting tool makes many needle felting projects a whole lot easier, and faster to complete. It is also a great aid for creating symmetry, especially when it comes to legs and feet. It is the tool that no self respecting needle felter should be without, whether it’s your first needle felting project or your twentieth. Even better, you will probably find one, or both, at the bottom of your kitchen drawer, along with the sandwich toaster and vegetable juicer…

IT’S AN EASY TUTORIAL

This gnome on a stick is easy to make and the solid hat means you can really go to town on the embellishments without spoiling the shape. Simple embroidery adds another creative and effective element. Time to make: 60-90 minutes. Beginners and perfectionists add on another 30 minutes.

You will need:

  • Carded wool or wool top (AKA roving) for the hat, body and nose; I am using carded wool for both.
  • Felting needle – size 38 (or medium) is a good all rounder.
  • Wooden BBQ skewer or chop stick; metal is too slippery for the wool to hold onto.
  • Felting mat: Foam, hessian or wool
  • For the beard use wool tops, curly wool or knitting yarn
  • Embellishments or embroidery thread for decoration

Needle felting tools and accessories can be found HERE if you are just starting out.

TOP TIPS BEFORE YOU START!

  • Needles are sharp so keep your fingers out of the way. If in doubt, use finger protectors. Not suitable for young children and older children should be supervised at all times.
  • When working around your stick avoid hitting the wood with your needle as it could break. Working at a diagonal angle will help avoid this.
  • Keep the wool firm as you wrap, using thin lengths of wool, and take your time to build it into a cone shape. If your wool is too bulky you will struggle to get a nice smooth shape.
  • If you start to loose the shape, simply unwind a little wool and do it again.
  • Enjoy yourself and, if it’s your first project, go easy on yourself; you are only on chapter 1 so don’t compare yourself to others who are on chapter 5.

There is no end to the style of gnomes you can create and how gorgeous are these visions in pink and raspberry! I love the impact created by these simple embroidered snowflakes against the bold raspberry colour.

EMBROIDERED SNOWFLAKES

Embroidered snowflakes are super simple! Just thread a large needle with yarn and criss cross four straight lines until you have a seven pointed star. They can also be needle felted on.

TOP TIP: Keep the yarn loose so as not to sistort the shape of the snowflake.

HAT AND BODY

1 Wrap your wool around the stick and felt into place

2-4 Continue to wrap and felt until you have covered half of your stick, longer if you want a bigger hat.

5-6 Continue to wrap and felt to secure

7 Continue to build the shape but don’t take the wool to the tip bas you want to create a cone shape.

8-9 Create your shape along the stick by using your needle at a diagonal angle.

10 Widen the base as you felt; mine is approx. 6cm diameter

11-12 Create the body the same way but aim for a barrel shape approx. 6cm in height, slightly narrower at the top and wider at the base for stability.

13-14 Remove from the stick and continue to shape and firm

15 Create a cavity at the base of the hat for the body to sit in.

16 Narrow the top, if necessary, by felting at a diagonal angle from the top towards the base.

17-18 Pop some fresh wool on the top of the body and felt into the hat.

19-20 Now felt through the hat and into the top of the body, until it is held firmly.

NOSE

21 Wrap the end of a small piece of wool firmly around your wooden skewer, aiming for a short oval shape.

22 Continue to wrap the wool around the stick (no need to use your needle yet) and use your thumb and finger to stop it from moving down the stick and becoming too long. Felt a little to secure but leave the ends slightly loose. TOP TIP: Don’t forget to keep it tight as this will create a great shape. Make it any size you want.

23 Check you are happy with the size and shape.

24 Remove from the stick and felt each side (where you left the wool loose) just under the brim of the hat.

25 It needs to be a good size as it will soon disappear under the beard, so if it’s too small it will look lost.

BEARD

26-28 Felt the beard wool or locks just under the brim of the hat. This will keep it looking neat.

29 Add in more colour if you want to.

30-31 You can create a beard at the front or, as I have done, create a full skirt all the way around the hat.

Et voila! Leave it simple or add embellishments. I have wrapped wool yarn around this one and created a loose pom pom at the top. Now go forth and make more gnomes; it would be rude not to and they always look better in twos, threes, fours…😉

Wool Storage Ideas And How To Avoid Moths Without Chemicals?

When it comes to crafts and wool storage, there is no such thing as a spare room; what an utterly ridiculous concept!? However, the easier it is to access our precious wool the more felting can be done. So, assuming we don’t have an entire house free for wool storage, what is the solution to storing our wool efficiently and safely?

There are three simple but important rules for keeping your wool in the best condition:

1 Keep it out of direct sunlight!

2 Keep the moisture out!

3 Avoid creating a welcome home for moths!

Save this photo to Pinterest for later!

 

Light And Moisture

Direct sunlight will, over time, bleach the colour out of your wool. A brightly lit room is fine (moths hate the light) as long as your wool is in containers that protect it from UV rays or the containers are facing away from the light. IMPORTANT! Don’t use sealed bags in a warm room because the moisture will build up inside and moisture is also wools enemy.

Much of my wool is in a very brightly lit room (below) but I remove it from the plastic bags and store it in black bins with lids, or open fronted stacking boxes, facing away from the windows. I don’t have any problems with fading wool or moisture (even in the summer) because the air can still circulate. No moth problem either because they hate bright light. For smaller amounts in bright rooms you can use cardboard shoe boxes, craft boxes, drawers, jute bags, etc.

 

What if you can’t store it in a brightly lit room?

If you are keeping wool in a dark room, drawer or cupboard – and many of us do – make sure they are in airtight containers or bags; this will keep the moths out; if you are concerned about moisture then pillowcases are a great solution or, wrap some kitchen roll or a tea towel around your wool before sealing. Silica gel sachets are also another moisture deterrent. Also, if your wool is stored for long periods, it is good practice to take it out occasionally air it and check for moisture.

Moth Deterrents Without Chemicals

A proactive approach is always best and Lavender and Cedar are good natural deterrents as the smell confuses the moths, throwing them off the scent in the hunt for your precious wool stash. However, neither will kill an infestation and, if the moth eggs are already there you will need to remove and dispose of the contaminated wool. There are hundreds of ‘remedies’ on the internet for getting rid of them but, as with everything, prevention is better than cure. Thankfully, in the nine years I have been using wool I have never had a moth problem (or used Lavender and Cedar) so, hopefully, neither will you.

Storage Ideas

I recently asked my Facebook community how they were storing their wool and they had some cracking storage solutions for large, and small amounts of wool which I thought I would share with you.

Jane has inventively stashed her wool in cardboard poster tubes with all the colours cleverly sticking out of each end. Or, if If you want quick access to all your lovely wool, then Lesley’s easy desk set up, using takeaway containers, is just the job. It’s also a great way of ogling your wool stash and thinking about which wool you are going to try next?

Sharon has stored all her lovely wool and locks in these handy compartment boxes. I think I have seen similar in B&Q and Argos? The tool storage aisle is always a great place to look and probably cheaper than the hobby stores. Sock drawer organisers are also a great way to store your wool in a similar way. It’s also a great portable solution so you can take your wool anywhere.

How’s this for super space saving ingenuity? Michelle has come up with a great solution for storing small amounts of wool in these fab jam jars which are the perfect shape for getting as much in a small space as possible. The six sided hexagon means that no space is wasted and is also the very reason that bees use the same pattern in their hives.

Open ended stacking trays are a great solution for storing wool, especially for a business that needs to store a lot of wool in the most efficient way possible. Door tidy’s are also a great way of utilising your space and keeping everything in one place.

Lin has cleverly used plastic shoe storage boxes and labelled each one so she can grab what she needs at a glance, and I love my craft drawers on wheels.

 

Kathy’s suitcases are an imaginative solution for storing your wool. However, Verity’s cat had other ideas???

I know there are hundreds more storage ideas but I hope this has given you some inspiration for keeping your own wool stash in the best condition possible and, if you are still struggling for space then the only option really is a second home???

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Happy felting! x

Want to know more about felting wool?

Autumn Wreath DIY Tutorial

Create stylish autumn/fall décor with this beautiful DIY needle felted autumn/fall wreath which is incredibly easy to make, and ideal for any ability. Super easy needle felted pumpkins and acorns will make this project a breeze, even for the most nervous of beginners. See below for video tutorial, materials list, wool bundles and kit.

MATERIALS LIST:

  • Seasonal wool tops and carded wool for your pumpkins and acorns
  • Acorn caps
  • Wooden skewer for shaping acorns
  • Natural jute ribbon
  • Natural vine wreath
  • Felting mat and needles

SHOP PATTERN, WOOL AND KIT

P Is For Pastel Pumpkins

Pretty pastel pumpkins are a lovely alternative to the traditional colour scheme and this cool wool palette is perfect for winter décor.

Watch The Video Tutorial

Have a question?

I love questions so feel free to message me!

Needle Felted Gnome Tutorial

Grab a cuppa and mince pie and get creative with me, You can felt along with me or just watch and save for later. All you need is a handful of wool, any colours or type, and a felting needle. A cocktail stick will come in useful but it’s not essential.

OK, so maybe her attention is more on the mince pie than the needle felted gnome but, she does love wool and loves watching me needle felt. That counts, right?

VIDEO TUTORIAL Scroll down for written tutorial and materials list.

Or watch the live version on my INSTAGRAM IGTV channel or FACEBOOK PAGE

Skill level: Complete beginners – no crafting experience necessary

Time to make: Approximately 30 minutes

You will need:

15g any colour wool top/roving for the body

5g Wool top/roving or carded wool for the hat, in your choice of colour

Pinch of light colour for the nose

2g Wool top/roving, or curly wool for the beard, in your choice of colour

Enthusiasm

If you don’t have any supplies then the Gnome needle felting kit is available on the website.

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Nordic and Scandinavian style decor is so popular and I just love it. What I especially love are the charming Nordic gnomes. You may also see them referred to as Nisse, Tomte and Tonttu. Our house is full of them and they are super easy so here’s a tutorial for you.

If you have never needle felted before or are an experienced felter this is a wonderful way to start and get you in the festive mood. It’s simple and relaxing and so much fun to make.

This is just one style to get you started but there are so many variations that soon, like me, you will be tripping over them. So grab a cuppa, mince pie and some festive cheer and get creating.

1 – Hat: Make this first so the body fits the hat; much easier than trying to fit the hat to the body! You can go as small or tall as you like but this hat, when completed, is approx 20cm. The triangle template measurements are approx; base 10cm (slightly curved) and sides 12cm .

Layer your hat wool on your felting mat and pop your hat template on top of your wool, leaving a few extra centimetres of wool around each side. Top tip: Your wool shouldn’t be too thick but make sure you can’t see the felting mat through it

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Make sure you can’t see through the wool

2 – ‘Draw’ a line around the triangle with your needle to create a very rough outline

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‘Draw’ around the template

3 – Remove template and draw around the line a couple more times. This will be your fold line.

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Make sure your line is visible

4 – Fold in the sides one at a time and start to felt to create a triangle; it will be a very rough shape to start with but you will tidy this up as the wool becomes more felted so stop fiddling with it!

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Stop at the fold line

5 – Gently fold and felt each side until you have this rough shape; keep the excess at the top of your triangle because this is going to create your lovely pointy hat shape.

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Repeat for all three sides

6 – Gently pull away from the base you are using, turn and repeat. Tip; any felting base will do (foam, rice bag etc), whatever your preference.

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Keep turning regularly so it doesn’t stick to the base

7 – Keep repeating the process until it starts to firm up.

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Continue felting until it holds its shape

8 – Time to tidy up the shape; use your finger to fold in the sides that need straightening (doesn’t have to be perfect). Be slow and careful so as not to stab your finger; you can use a finger guard but I find they just annoy me. However, I have lots of customers who get on with them just fine.

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Be careful, the needle is sharp

9 – Your approx finished triangle which should be soft but firm and holds its shape.

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Your finished hat shape; it doesn’t have to be perfect

10 – Fold in half and felt along the side to mesh the fibres together. Keep turning and repeating until the hat is now firmly felted along the side so it doesn’t pull apart when you gently pull it.

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Fold in half and felt along the seam
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11 – Open up the base of the hat and tidy up the line by folding in any rough edges and felting. Keep turning and felting until you are happy with the shape at the base of your Tomte hat.

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12 – Roll just the top 2/3 cm of your hat between the palm of your hands to firm up the top and point. This improves the look as well as allowing you to tip the point over to the side at a jaunty angle.

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Roll the tip in the palm of your hands to create a pointy hat
Use any colours you want for the hat

Basic Body Shape

Body shapes don’t get much easier than this. Don’t be too precious about needle marks and dimples because most of this will be covered by its big beard.

1 – Roll your wool (I have used natural white Shetland) into a basic barrel shape. It will do this automatically as you start to roll. Start with less than you need and build it up.

Most important! Do not start to felt with your needle until you have rolled at least half of it really tightly; trust me, this will save you a lot of felting time and applies to all body shapes made this way!

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2 – Start stabbing all over with your needle (mind your fingers) as you continue to roll and remember to keep it tight. Tip: Check to see if your hat sits on top and if the body is too small add some more wool and felt again. If it’s too big then continue to felt where the hat will sit to reduce the size.

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3 – Continue to turn and felt until you have a more even and neater shape. You may end up with a narrower end which is fine because you will pop the hat onto this. Pay particular attention to the base which needs to be flat for stability. Tip; you can also press on the base once felted as the wool is pretty malleable.

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4 – Flatten the base until it sits without wobbling.

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5 – Pop on your hat and felt, gently, all around the edge until it is felted securely onto the body making sure the hat seam is at the back.

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6 – Make the nose by rolling a pinch of white or flesh coloured wool in your hands just to rough it up. Place on your mat and continue to felt with your needle, turning all the time. Now place back into the palm of your hands and roll vigorously until really firm and smooth. Tip; you may have to do this a couple of times to get it right as it is very easy to add too much wool and have a huge nose if you have never needle felted before. Less is always more when it comes to needle felting.

7 – Place the nose on its side, just under the front of the hat and felt the end into the body.

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9 – As you do this the nose will naturally rise into its correct position. Continue to felt around the base until it is firmly attached. The base of the hat should be sat just above the nose.

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10 – Decide what type of beard you are going to have. I have used grey Jacob but use whatever colour you wish. Curly locks also look really great.

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11 – If using a straight wool pull off a small section and fold in half and start by felting it onto the body just under the nose. Don’t worry about it being longer than the body because you will trim it to size (or not) once it is attached.

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12 – Continue to felt along the fold and attach it up the side of the nose and along the hat line. Tip; you can push the wool under the hat line with your needle (don’t bend it or  you may break the needle) for a neater finish.

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13 – Now trim your beard to your desired shape and style. I like mine quite ‘raggy’ so once I have got the length I then snip into the sides.

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There you have it. One fabulous Tomte Christmas gnome! You can crease the hat or keep it straight. I like both. Told you it was easy!

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Try different wool and add some fabulous locks for a different look. For the gnomes below I have used a lush teal batting with green silk fibres for the hat, and plant dyed, hand spun locks for the beard. The gnome on the right has a beard of grey Masham shot through with white silk.

But why would you stop there when the variations and colours are endless!

Gnome needle felting kits are also available on the Lincolnshire Fenn Crafts website.

CLICK FOR GNOME NEEDLE FELTING KIT

Adding Face Details To Your Needle Felted Animals

One of the trickiest things to do when creating face details is getting the really fine lines for the mouth and nose. It’s something I always spend time on with my workshop students so they don’t feel disappointed with the finishing touches. Practice, practice practice is the answer, a firm base on which to work, and less is more when it comes to the wool. When I say less is more, think even less than that. You only need the tiniest strand of wool to create really impactful details, add in a few simple techniques and you will soon be adding those details with confidence.

Top Tip: If it doesn’t look right don’t try and rectify it. Pull the wool off and start again. I often do this and it takes much less time than trying to fix the problem. Also, preparation is key so make sure the head is firm before starting. If the head is soft and squidgy you aren’t going to get the nice straight lines you want to achieve and your sheep or animal will look like they’ve been on the sauce.

Whatever your design, this technique can be applied to your project in many different ways.

Let’s get started and, if you haven’t made your head yet just click the link for the video tutorial: HOW TO CREATE A BASIC HEAD SHAPE

1 Create an impression of the mouth – Do this by ‘drawing’ the mouth onto the face with your felting needle. ‘Draw’ a V for the nose, a line down the centre and two shallow curves each side. Go over the lines you have drawn until they are clearly visible and defined. This is where your wool is going to sit and makes it so much easier to maintain a nice, even shape.

2 Roll a very, very thin wisp of wool between your fingers to gently mat it together (not vital but it helps). If you don’t think it is thick enough you can go over it again later. However, start with too much and it ends up looking like you have drawn it on with a felt tip. Place it on the top left of the V shape you have created and gently tack it down towards the bottom of the V shape. Top Tip: Make sure the wool is at least twice the length you need as it will be pulled into the face as you felt; you can trim it later.

3 Continue back up the V shape and leave the ends loose.

4 Use another thin strand of wool (longer than you will need) to create the line down the centre. Top Tip: Keep the wool taught with your free hand. This will help create a straight, even line and avoid a drunken grin.

5 Leave all the strands loose until you have completed the mouth.

6 As before, use a very thin strand of wool and felt along the mouth. Repeat for the other side.

Top Tip: Don’t be precious over the shape of the curve as this can be teased into shape before you finish.

7 Make sure the wool is secure before trimming and shape the mouth by gently rubbing the tip of you finger on the wool – in the centre – to pull it down slightly.

8 Your head is now ready for the eyes and that’s another easy tutorial. You can watch it Here or keep scrolling for the written tutorial.

Top Tip: Sometimes the mouth can look a little off centre or lopsided. This is easily fixed by squeezing, and moving the head in your fingers – wool is still quite pliable, even when felted – until the features straighten out.

Create fabulous features for all your needle felted creations.

How to sew eyes onto your needle felted animal

Needle felted eyes look great but I also love the sparkle and shine you get from a glass bead. I always find it funny that, when some of my students have spent hours creating their needle felted animal, they say they find sewing on the eyes the hardest part. I think it is because they seem a little bit fiddly but here is a quick way of doing it, in five minutes and four easy steps.

1 Use black thread and needle and sew through the side of the face – where your eyes will sit – and repeat a few times until your thread is secure.

2 Pop your bead onto the tip of your needle and pull it through.

3 Push your needle back through to the other side and pop on your second bead.

4 Repeat the process a few times until you can pull quite firmly on your thread, and both beads are secure. Finish by sewing through the back of the head a and cut the thread.

We need craft therapy, now more than ever!

For the first time in my 51 years I am suffering from, what I can only assume, is anxiety. I am usually pretty chilled and my glass is almost always half full. Yet, my stomach is in knots, I can’t switch off, my heart is constantly fluttering, I’m frequently feeling overwhelmed, and fight or flight mode is firmly in the ‘on’ position. I’m worried for those who are going to suffer terrible financial hardships over the coming year and for the kids where school is a safe haven and a place where they get most, if not all of their nutrition. Ring any bells? Well of course it does. It is a universal feeling and we are all suffering – to one extent or another – the same emotions. Much of what we take for granted will be out of reach for some time and many of us (myself included) have the added worry of close, immediate family members and friends who are very vulnerable with serious health conditions. We are entering difficult times, in uncharted territory, and need to find our own coping mechanisms to help us navigate the next few months and beyond.
So here’s the thing. We all know how to stay safe but staying sane is another matter. Many of us will be isolated and often lonely over the coming months and crafts, now more than ever, will provide us with much needed respite and allow us to switch off, for a little while at least. For lots of us crafts and the creative community will become our online ‘tribe’ and take on a much more important role. Creativity is so important for our mental health, especially as we hunker down for the long haul.
I had a discussion with a very close friend about how I was feeling and her advice was to keep creating and continue to share it with others, as I have for the last six years. So, to that end, I will continue to add tutorials to YouTube and the blog whenever I can. I may even do a Facebook live if that’s something you might enjoy. It’s also a time to refocus and prioritise and this is just my, very small contribution. If there is any aspect of needle felting you are struggling with, even if it’s the confidence to get started, then just pop over to my Facebook page and message me or pop a question in this FaceBook post. Even if I’m not around (or don’t have the answers), there are lots of knowledgeable and talented crafters on there (some I have been in contact with creatively for a long while) able to share their own creative advice or just give you the boost you need to get going. What you definitely won’t see from me is lots of ‘positive vibes’ quotes. It’s not my bag (I have always found my sense of dark, dry humour to be the best remedy) and it will get very old very quickly, oftentimes diminishing the problems we are facing. Nobody wants a barrage of ‘you got this’ or ‘keep calm and carry on’ when calm is the last thing we are feeling. However, social media really is about to come into its own so let’s bolster and support each other as much as we can and continue to use our creative social media community for the greater good.

YouTube tutorial links are below and kits and supplies available on the Lincolnshire Fenn Crafts website and Etsy but all you need is a handful of wool, a felting needle and a cuppa.
Stay safe and big love
Sandy xxx

This way for craft therapy video tutorials

Est. 2013
© 2013 Lincolnshire Fenn Crafts

Realistic Animal Eyes

Needle felting eyes are really simple, once you know how…

Feeling ready to tackle needle felting your own animal eyes? Well, I have created a super easy tutorial for you. It consists of 8 simple steps to get you started and is the method I still use myself. Try a few practice runs first if you are a little nervous but, as with all my instructions and tutorials, everything is broken down into simple steps to make it really easy to follow. Adding eyelashes is the easiest feature to add to your animal and you will find the four step, mini tutorial at the bottom of the page.
If you want to learn how to crate a basic head shape, then pop over to my YouTube channel and follow the ‘needle felting for beginners’ series of short videos, showing you how to make each body part: head, legs, body and ears. Exactly as I teach my workshops. They work as standalone tutorials but have also been designed to work perfectly with the Lincolnshire Fenn Crafts range of needle felting kits.
Happy felting! 

TAKE ME TO YOUTUBE TUTORIALS

SHOP NEEDLE FELTING KITS

Let’s do this!

Copy of EASY EYES 1

Copy of EASY EYES 2

Copy of EASY EYES 3

Copy of Copy of EASY EYES 4

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Say hello to Hamilton!

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This simple technique can be applied to most needle felted animals; the Winter Hare is life size.

EYELASHES

Eyelashes are the quickest – we are talking a couple of minutes – and easiest feature you can add to your projects. They also create a striking finishing touch to your animals features.

how to eyelashes

Est. 2013
© 2013 Lincolnshire Fenn Crafts

needle felted hedgehogs

Needle Felted Hedgehog Video Tutorial

Hedgehog needle felting kits are available on the Website

So excited to introduce Colin Hedgehog, the prickliest member of the Lincolnshire Fenn Crafts tribe. The full needle felting kit to accompany this video is also available on the Lincolnshire Fenn Crafts website.

This is my version of our beloved hedgehog. More fun than you can shake a stick at? Not sure what that means but it is definitely a lot of fun.

Skill level: Complete beginners to intermediate
What you need: Enthusiasm!

So, make a cuppa, cut yourselves a slice of cake and join me for a full tutorial teaching you new tips, tricks and techniques as well as trying new wool and needles.

Bonus! if you are using the kit you get to make at least 3 Colin hedgehogs! What better way to spend a crafternoon…

Happy felting!

Shop hedgehog needle felting kit at: Website     Etsy Store

For all enquiries please message me at: Lincolnshire Fenn Crafts

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Instant pattern downloads now available!

Pattern only instant downloads are also available on the Website and Etsy

If you would like to see more of these types of tutorial don’t forget to leave a comment.