Easy Needle Felted Flowers – DIY Tutorial!

How amazing do these needle felted flowers look? Elegant felted Calla lilies or striking sunburst flowers; What a bloomin treat of a needle felting tutorial have I got for you! Two totally different flowers, two different techniques, but both results are easy to achieve and, quite simply, bloomin marvellous! Ok, no more flower puns…probably?

You have the divine, realistic, beautiful in it’s simplicity, Calla lily. Then, in complete contrast, the flamboyant, look at me style of this lush needle felted flower brooch which is part sunflower, part succulent, and part sea anemone. Best of all, you get to choose your own personal style with the easy techniques I am going to teach you.

HAVE YOU JUST STARTED NEEDLE FELTING?

It doesn’t matter if you are a needle felting beginner, or a seasoned needle felter, this is the perfect project for those crafty moments when you need to add some colour and style to your creative day. It is also a great way to learn new needle felting techniques and apply them to an endless number of felted projects.

EASY NEEDLE FELTING VIDEO TUTORIALS

You will find the video tutorials for both felting projects at the bottom of this page but you should definitely read my hints and tips before you start; especially if you are new to needle felting!

The key to the success of this felting project is getting perfectly shaped petals which can be easily done without the need for a cookie cutter, or template. Making them free hand allows you to create any shape or style you want and my super easy techniques will show you how to do just that, including the elegant Calla Lily stems.

IS NEEDLE FELTING HARD?

Nervous about starting? Then you are in exactly the right place! Needle felting isn’t hard, but getting the basics right (from the get go), is essential to helping you progress quickly and will make your needle felting journey a joy. If you have the enthusiasm then I promise you I will give you the confidence and techniques you need to make your needle felting projects successful. Always remember that any craft is a learning curve and any ‘mistakes’ you make are essential to the learning process. That said, the joy of working with wool, and needle felting in particular, allows much room for error. Even if the end result isn’t what you intended, rest assured you will end up with a beautiful ‘something’ at the end of it. One of my happiest ‘mistakes’ was a mouse that ended up as a cat. I was thrilled because cats are my needle felting nemesis. It was hugely popular and I have had many requests for a tutorial, which will probably never happen as I haven’t a clue how it ended up that way; aah, the joys of needle felting…

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Or get creative with me over at THE FELT HUB

I have created a Facebook group that will inspire and develop your needle felting confidence (whatever level you are at), and encourage others to get involved, in a more private space. You will also be able to comment and share your WIP creations during and after the live workshops and ask for help and support from myself or other members. It’s a lovely community where you can grab some crafty respite.

MAKE GORGEOUS NEEDLE FELTED FLOWERS!

Display the striking Calla lilies in a vase, create your own DIY wedding bouquet or button holes, have them as a beautiful centrepiece or just as a calming moment in any room.

The ‘Sun Burst’ flower brooch is a total contrast to the lily, in its flamboyant and colourful presence. Us a bright and bold wool that demands the viewers attention and add a simple or exotic centre. Beautiful worn as a brooch, a scarf pin, displayed as a single flower with an added stem, added too an Alice band, or part of a bigger display. I love a colourful headband and am itching to make something Frida Kahlo style so watch this space?

However you wear or display yours, just enjoy the fabulously meditative and creative process and needle felt away the detritus of the day.

WHAT WILL YOU NEED?

The WOOL PACKS AND KITS for these flowers can be purchased on the Lincolnshire Fenn Crafts website.

If you already have your own stash of wool, needles and mats then here is a materials list for you.

These are the wools I have used for the two needle felted flowers, but feel free to raid your wool stash and create your own style.

WHAT’S THE BEST FELTING WOOL FOR THIS PROJECT?

For the Cala Lily I have used natural white Perendale carded batting sheet, carded green lengths for the stem, and a creamy yellow wool top/roving for the stamen. Perendale batt is my favourite as its natural colour is much whiter than most other batting, making it perfect for projects where you want the whitest top coat or finish; I also use it for Daphne Chicken. It felts easily with a really smooth finish, and is super clean with little to no grassy bits to pull out.

For the sunburst flower petals I have used a vibrant blended carded wool, with added carded zingy yellow. For the centre of the flower I have created two completely different looks; the first using yellow and white wool tops, the second using wool yarn in bright complimentary colours.

KEY POINTS

Calla Lily

  • Use equal amounts of wool for each petal.
  • Make sure it’s firm.
  • No thicker than 1-2mm.
  • Leave the end of each petal loose for easy attachment. 4 Use your first petal as a size and shape guide.

Sunburst flower brooch

  • Use equal amounts of wool for each petal.
  • Make sure it’s firm.
  • No thicker than 1-2mm.
  • Leave the end of each petal loose for easy attachment.
  • Use your first petal as a size and shape guide.

VIDEO TUTORIALS

Now that I have built up the creative excitement it’s time to get stuck into this gorgeous needle felting project. Grab your wool, needles, or felting kit and fill your crafty boots with the video tutorials below.

Happy felting!

NEEDLE FELTED CALLA LILY

NEEDLE FELTED SUN BURST FLOWER BROOCH

HOW TO USE WIRE FOR NEEDLE FELTING?

DO I EVEN NEED TO USE WIRE FOR NEEDLE FELTING?

I am often asked how to use wire for needle felting, and is it even needed? The short answer is no. In fact I rarely use a full wire armature because I like a firm felt. However, using wire in specific areas can really help you create the shape you need, and create more detail and dimension.

WHEN SHOULD I USE WIRE FOR NEEDLE FELTING?

Use it in the neck of a sheep so you can pose the head, or the horns and tail of an animal to create great shapes. If you want super thin legs or arms then wire is a great solution. Alternatively, make limbs around a BBQ skewer (the ‘farmers friend’ of needle felting), to create smooth legs and perfect symmetry in super fast time. Using the BBQ skewer as a tool negates the need for using wire altogether for many projects.

USING A BBQ SKEWER WILL CHANGE THE WAY YOU NEEDLE FELT!

Parsley, the needle felted hare seen below has no wire anywhere. This gorgeous needle felting project was made, almost entirely, using a wooden BBQ skewer. I started using this method back in 2017 and it has made teaching needle felting, and creating projects, so much easier!

CLICK HERE FOR

PARSLEY HARE NEEDLE FELTING KIT or PATTERN DOWNLOAD AND PRINTABLE

Watch the video tutorial, at the bottom of the post, from our Friday night felt along on the FACEBOOK GROUP, or follow the mini tutorial below, and you will be amazed at how professional the finished result is, even if you have never needle felted before!

Happy Felting!

HOW TO NEEDLE FELT FIRM LEGS WITHOUT WIRE – QUICK AND EASY TUTORIAL

Scroll to bottom of the post for the video tutorial.

Make Time: Super fast! Approximately 20 minutes for both legs plus faffing time…

You will need:

The needle felting kit and pattern are available via the links below and you can join the new FACEBOOK GROUP HERE

LOOK, NO WIRE? Making Perfect Legs Around A Wooden BBQ Skewer

As I mentioned, if string is a ‘farmers friend’ then a wooden BBQ skewer is most definitely a ‘felters friend’. Never be without one as it will change the way you needle felt, drastically reducing the chore of hours spent smoothing and shaping.

This is super easy, but technique is important and you may have a couple of false starts as the legs need to be kept tight and narrow, but that’s ok. Just unravel and start again. When finished they will be firm and smooth and the last couple of centimetres will be built up for the feet/paws. TOP TIP: Remember to keep the top of the legs very loose as they will be attached to the body and should look like they are part of the finished project, not just stuck on.

Let’s get going!

1 Select a length of carded wool or wool top/roving and split down the middle. This means that both legs will use equal amounts of wool and sizes will be more or less the same.

2 Start to wrap the wool tightly around the skewer, starting close to the top of the stick. TOP TIP: Keep the wool flat between your thumb and finger so the wool doesn’t twist and become lumpy and uneven.

3 Keeping the wool tight, continue for a little way then stop and felt around the entire area to secure. TOP TIP: Work at a diagonal angle around the sides of the stick keeping hold of the wool so it doesn’t become loose. If it does, unwrap and start again. This will also avoid bending or breaking the needle.

4 Continue with the process until the leg is approximately two thirds of its final length (you will see why when you remove it from the skewer) and add more wool to the foot to widen it. Continue to felt and shape the foot until it is firm. TOP TIP: A foot/paw that is significantly bigger than the rest of the leg will have more impact when your project is finished.

5 Remove from the stick and felt a little more but avoid the top of the leg as this needs to be kept loose for attaching to the body. TO TIP: Don’t worry if the shape is not perfect as you are going to fix that in a moment.

6 You are now going to roll the leg firmly in your hands to firm and smooth it, which will also lengthen it. When you do this keep the top of the leg sticking out, so the wool remains loose. In just a few seconds of firm rolling you will see how the leg has really firmed up and become even smoother without the need for any wires. TOP TIP: Don’t over roll it as it will become longer than needed.

Here’s what some of the fabulous Facebook group made during the live workshop! It’s a great technique that can be adapted to almost any project. Join the group HERE and come along to the free live events.

I was blown away by the quality, personality and individual styles of the projects from the FACEBOOK GROUP members and the amazing feedback has been so good!

VIDEO TUTORIAL – Felt along with me!

Watch the full tutorial and felt alongside me, workshop style.

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.

Free Printable – Needle Felted Mushrooms – Unlock your inner creative!

If you are ready to dip your needle felting toe into the water this super easy needle felting pattern is a great place to begin. Perfect for even the most nervous of beginners this step by step guide will have you confidently creating fabulous needle felted characters in no time. Grab your free printable below. Just click for access, no purchase or subscription necessary. 

TAKE ME TO THE FREE PRINTABLE 

If you don’t have wool or needles then a needle felting kit is the perfect way to get started. There are more than 30 to choose from on the website. All you have to do is open the box and add enthusiasm!

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