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 wrap some kitchen roll or a tea towel around it 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???

If you want regular creative updates from me just sign up below.

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!

Easy Needle Felting Projects – The Pumpkin Edit. What’s your style?

Craft your own seasonal happy space with a needle felted pumpkin or two, or three, or fill the whole house (as I do) with these glorious DIY projects that will take us into autumn/fall and beyond.

Make pumpkins with personality using carded wool or wool tops

Scroll down for video tutorials

I am a firm believer that pumpkins are absolutely not just for Halloween and I have you covered with three pumpkin tutorials that will take you right through September to December and Christmas. Yes, of course there’s a Christmas pumpkin!

If you are nervous about starting needle felting then this is the project for you!

Not only are they fabulous needle felting project but, they are also one of the quickest and easiest needle felting projects to make, taking a mere 30 minutes! They will add instant impact to any room, and are impressive seasonal gifts for friends and loved ones and, If the weather permits, they look wonderful on an outside dining table or strung as a garland from a tree or deck.

Keep it simple or go for all out bling and glamour. Go traditional or opt for a style that the cast of Frozen would be envious of. Whatever your style, there really is a needle felted pumpkin for everyone and no needle felting experience necessary; just a few needle felting supplies and a big dollop of enthusiasm.

There are three video tutorials to choose from – traditional, fire and ice and winter wonderland – and you could have all three made in just 90 minutes!

I have popped a materials list above each one but these are just suggestions and anything goes. Don’t worry if you haven’t any carded wool as there is also a tutorial using wool tops. See I told you I have you covered!

Happy creating and I would love to see your pumpkin photos to add to the community gallery. You can email them to me at: info@lincolnshirefenncrafts.com or send them to me via my FaceBook page.

Do you need wool or supplies?

Links for kits, wool and needles are also below or SHOP WEBSITE

1 NEW! FIRE AND ICE PUMPKIN

Shop wool and kit

Materials

  • Core wool
  • 25g carded wool bat (fiery orange/red)
  • Bright white wool top
  • Natural white tussah silk
  • Silk waste (for cobweb/ice effects)
  • Wooden skewer to make stalk
  • Acrylic beads

2 TRADITIONAL PUMPKIN

SHOP WOOL AND KIT

Materials

  • 25g orange carded wool batt
  • Core wool
  • 5g approx. Mustard wool top for leaves and stems
  • 1 x Felting needles (size 36 or 38 is a good all rounder)
  • Felting mat

3 WINTER WONDERLAND PUMPKIN

SHOP WOOL

Materials

  • 25g White, grey or aqua carded batts
  • Core wool (for centre of project)
  • Beads and silk for embellishments
  • 2 x Felting needles in storage tube
  • Felting mat

4 USING WOOL TOPS/ROVING

SHOP WOOL AND KIT

Wool colours

  • Assorted wool tops – autumn/fall colours
  • Core wool
  • 1 x Felting needles (size 36 or 38 is a good all rounder)
  • Felting mat

5 Things You Need To Start Needle Felting

Hi and welcome to my ultimate guide to needle felting.

I’m Sandy, creator, owner, designer, chief cook and bottle washer at Lincolnshire Fenn Crafts.

Since 2014 I have taught thousands of people to needle felt through my tutorials, videos, workshops and extensive range of inspiring needle felting kits. Whether you are a nervous beginner or a confident crafter, you will discover a wealth of needle felting guides and resources at your creative fingertips. Let’s craft a happy space together!

SO, WHAT DO YOU NEED TO START NEEDLE FELTING?

Not much at all as it happens and you don’t have to spend a lot of money either! It’s a budget friendly hobby that requires very little space and zero experience and all you need is:

1 FELTING WOOL

2 FELTING NEEDLE

3 FELTING MAT

4 GOOD TUTORIALS

5 ENTHUSIASM

FELTING WOOL

Wool tops or carded wool are both great to needle felt with. Avoid Merino wool tops and go for a coarser wool like Jacob, Shetland or Romney.

CLICK HERE FOR MY ULTIMATE WOOL GUIDE AND QUICK LOOK, HANDY CHART

FELTING NEEDLES

Just one or two standard felting needles will get you started. I like to use a 38 star as a good all-rounder.

CLICK HERE FOR THE NEEDLE FELTING GUIDE

FELTING MAT

You will need a foam, hessian, or wool mat. A piece of firm foam is what many people use but there are other mats you can try. I tend to use a mixture depending on the project.

LEARN MORE ABOUT MY FAVOURITE FELTING MATS HERE

TUTORIALS

Ignore all the fancy needle felting creations you see online and start with a simple needle felting project or tutorial. It is so important to allow yourself to be a beginner and build up to those fancy creations you have been drooling over.

WATCH MY VIDEO TUTORIALS HERE or on YOUTUBE

ENTHUSIASM (and a cuppa)

When it comes to needle felting enthusiasm goes a long, long way! It’s all you need to get started; you don’t need to be artistic, just enthusiastic. Allow yourself to be a beginner and you will pick up the needle felting basics in no time. You may prefer to start with a needle felting kit , especially if you don’t have any equipment. It is a budget friendly way to get started and allows you to see if you enjoy this fabulous craft without ending up with lots of equipment.

SEE MY FULL RANGE OF INSPIRING NEEDLE FELTING KITS AND ACCESSORIES HERE

JOIN THE VIP FELT CLUB HERE

July needle felting project of the month is a prickly subject?

Needle Felted Cactus – Felting Needle Pin Cushion

I love this time of year in my garden and my 17 year old Cordyline is flowering for the very first time. I am so thrilled and the smell is divine; like Jasmine with a hint of caramel.
As plants, and the garden, are on my mind I have put together these super cool cacti; a perfect pin cushion for your felting needles and a plant that will never show any signs of temperamental behaviour, or just die for no apparent reason???

As always, I spend a lot of time during the design process, creating projects I know you will love, sharing the techniques I have learned over the last eight years, whilst carefully choosing the wool and fibres to suit the finished piece. I think I made six cacti before I was happy with the finished design.
This means that you can get stuck in (if you pardon the pun) to your new projects with confidence, knowing that you have great materials and instructions to work with, every time.

VIDEO TUTORIAL

If you already have all the gear then the video tutorial will be available from the 1st July so look out for a new post (next week) with the links. Pattern is also available for download on the website HERE

PRE-ORDER NEEDLE FELTING KIT FOR THE FIRST WEEK IN JULY

You can choose your colour, and each fibre pack makes two cacti, comes with full printed instructions, two terracotta pots and, if you are gifting it to someone, you can the add needles and mat.


JULY LIVE WORKSHOP
The video tutorial will be on YouTube but I also plan to go live with this on Facebook towards the end of July so keep a look out for an email with the details.


 My garden pride and joy; wish you could smell it!

Live needle felting workshop

Join me on the 25th June at 7pm (BST) for a live workshop where we will be making the June project of the month. Learn how easy it is to paint with wool (absolutely no drawing skills required) and we can create together. The North Sea Coast is one of my favourite places and my dad was a Hull lad who used to love walking along the old fish docks with its stunning views of the Humber. It may be no tropical beach but what it lacks in glamour it makes up for with drama and attitude! I have popped a list below with all the wool and fibres I will be using so you can raid your own stash, or you can visit the website and buy the fabulous wool and specialty fibres and beads box I have put together, including your pre-felt – which will be your canvas – plus a downloadable pattern.

I can’t wait to enjoy some community creativity with you! If you don’t have any wool then you can purchase the wool and fibre bundle HERE

LEARN TO PAINT WITH WOOL!

This is a great project that only takes a couple of hours. It is really easy and you don’t need any drawing skills at all. I will show you how to put together this dramatic seascape so you can then go on to create your own needle felted pictures. Follow me on FACEBOOK for updates

WHAT DO I NEED?

If you are already a needle felter you can use any wool scraps (carded or wool tops) you have in your wool stash. Scroll down for materials list. Tea and cake optional but highly recommended!

NEW TO NEEDLE FELTING?

SHOP WOOL AND FIBRE BUNDLE

If you are new to needle felting then the complete wool and fibre bundle is available on the LFC website. As well as all the lovely wool you see here it also comes complete with pre-felt, beads, silk throwsters waste and hand dyed locks. Needles and mats can be purchased separately. There is enough wool to complete a couple of full size pictures or lots of little ones.

ASK ME ANYTHING?

As well as felting along with me live you can ask me any questions on needle felting, or anything else for that matter.

MATERIALS LIST

You can use wool tops, carded wool, or both and this is a perfect project for using up scraps of wool. I have also used beads, silk tops and silk throwsters waste for embellishment but anything goes. The picture can be made with just one felting needle and it’s also a good project to try out those multi tools. Don’t forget your pre-felt or flat piece of fabric to felt onto as this will be your canvas.

If you don’t have any wool then you can buy the whole wool, fibre and embellishment bundle over on the website. This also includes your pre-felt which will act as your canvas.

See you on the 25th. Happy felting!

June needle felting project of the month!

PAINTING WITH WOOL SEASCAPE

Scroll down for video tutorial.

Scroll to the bottom of the page to join the LFC Felt Club so you don’t miss any new tutorials.

Make time: 90 minutes

Skill level: Easy

I have had lots of requests for needle felted picture ideas, picture kits and a project of the month so I am kicking June off with all three. If you already have the wool then you can watch the video below.
North Sea Coast is inspired by my Yorkshire upbringing, not far from the coast, and my dear dad with his roots along the Humber. Those of you familiar with the North Sea Coast will know not to expect golden sands and palm trees. The North Sea is moody and has real attitude which is what I have tried to convey in this project; slightly abstract and full of texture! However, this is just my take on it so feel free to add artistic licence, and a palm tree or two, if that’s the vibe you want. There’s no rules and it’s your project, not mine, so just go for it!

If you don’t have any wool, fibres or needles you can SHOP HERE on the website for them.

YOU WILL RECEIVE:

A complete wool pack with all the wool, silk fibres, plant dyed art yarn and embellishments you see in the photographs, as well as a piece of Shetland pure wool felt which will be the base of your picture. This also includes a downloadable and printable pattern.
The accompanying video is also available so if you are a complete beginner, or don’t need any wool or fibres, you can felt along with me.  I may also do a Facebook live if time allows so we can hang out in real time.

Picture Size

It really doesn’t matter. I have used a piece of Shetland pre-felt approximately 25cm x 25cm but have also used a much smaller piece to pop in a frame. I can also see this on the front of a greetings card to sell or just give to the besties in your life. Any piece of flat felt will work as a canvas for your picture, just make sure it has a good amount of wool in it and isn’t just acrylic felt.


I know you are going to love this project so make sure you SUBSCRIBE BELOW to join the LFC Felt Club.

Happy Felting and don’t forget your life jacket!

WATCH VIDEO AND FELT ALONG WITH ME

Needle Felted Mini Bunny

Mini Bunny needle felting video tutorial – for even the most nervous beginners. With supporting printable pattern download on the website.

This is the easiest of easiest needle felting projects, only takes around 30-40 minutes and is just a whole heap of relaxing fun. Whether you are a nervous first time needle felter/crafter, just want to have some relaxing creative fun or want to fill the house with gorgeous handmade bunny decorations, this is a great project. The process and technique for this pattern is really easy and straightforward. Your secret weapon is the BBQ stick you will be using which makes creating the body shape so much easier and super fast. It really is the needle felting tool you never knew you needed but was in your kitchen drawer all the time.

I was surprised how much I enjoyed making these because cute and cartoony normally isn’t my thing. But, it seems I am a cute and colourful convert just because of how relaxing it was and, there’s no denying, those pastel colours are pretty lush. Even as a seasoned needle felter it is incredibly satisfying to complete something quickly and easily, knowing what the end result will be, and then repeating the process again. I was completely focused and really just felted away in quiet contemplation. There is something immensely calming about creating simple projects and repeating a task – part of the human psyche I guess – so much so that I ended up making four of them and will be making more for an Easter garland.

YOU WILL NEED:

  • Needle felting wool – Approx. 5g, any type or colour.
  • Standard felting needle – size 38 is a good all-rounder.
  • Wooden BBQ skewer (or similar) for shaping
  • Felting mat

Click HERE for the downloadable pattern at a special price of just £1.50.

VIDEO TUTORIAL

CLICK FOR PATTERN DOWNLOAD

MORE SPRING/SUMMER MAKES

For more easy spring and Easter makes just follow the link below and grab yourself some more calming creativity.

You can make a needle felted garland in around 90 minutes – including bumble bees – and the bumble bee brooch will take just 30 minutes.

CLICK FOR SPRING/SUMMER MAKES

Needle Felting Kits And Punch Needle Embroidery

See the full range of needle felting kits, punch needle kits, accessories and handmade items over at the WEBSITE 

Meet the family. Well, some of them…

Over 40 carefully and lovingly designed needle felting kits to choose from. Each kit is a complete starter kit and so, contains everything you need including detailed instructions, lots of colour photographs, an actual size template as your size guide, quality wool (mostly British) and everything you need to complete each project. Kits are suitable for absolute beginners and advanced beginners.

No sewing. No wires. No glue. No stuffing. Open the box and get started…
All you need to add is a little patience and enthusiasm!

SHOP NEEDLE FELTING KITS

NEW ADDITIONS! HEATHER THE HIGHLAND COW AND PARSLEY HARE

BUMBLE BEE BROOCH WOOL PACK AND VIDEO TUTORIAL

BUMBLE BEE VIDEO TUTORIAL

SHOP PUNCH NEEDLE EMBROIDERY KITS

PUNCH NEEDLE VIDEO TUTORIALS FOR BEGINNERS

Why Reverse Felting Needles Are So Cool!

If you like to see it done just scroll to bottom for video tutorial!

I was a couple of years into needle felting before I tried a reverse felting needle and now I wouldn’t be without it. The special effects you can create are endless and super cool, taking your needle felting to a different level. A reverse needle does exactly what it says and instead of felting and compressing the wool it pulls the already felted wool back out, creating dramatic, or subtle effects. It adds instant character to a project and is simple and easy to use.

I love the subtle effect it created on top of the head of the head of this moon gazing hare, giving it a dreamy fuzziness.

Look at the subtle effect atop the head of this moon gazing hare

I use two sizes of needle; 32 and 40 gauge. As with standard felting needles, the higher the number the finer the needle and the more subtle the effect.

I have used the size 32 most recently (although a size 40 would have done the job just as well), on my bee brooches to create the fuzzy body and eyebrows. I also used a contrasting white core for more effect and visibility.

When I made this brooch the eyes looked a little lost so I used the reverse needle just above the eyebrow to pull out some of the core white wool.

You can watch the full bee broch tutorial HERE

Shop bumble bee brooch WOOL PACK

Reverse needle used above the eyes

I repeated on the other eye then trimmed it back. As you can see, the effect is great and those eyes really pop!

Trim to your preferred length

I wanted to create a similar effect all over the body to create that lovely fuzzy effect. Repeatedly use the reverse needle until you have pulled all the lovely wool through then trim quite short to create a neat finish that allows the white and dark to compliment each other.

When I decided to needle felt my first pig I really wanted to create the coarse top layer you see on a lot of pigs that sits on the peachy skin. I used a Romanov wool core but any coarse dark will do; grey Jacob is perfect and one of my favourites. It created exactly the look I was aiming for using a 32 reverse needle.

There’s no limit to what you can use it on and I think the hedgehogs were crying out for a reverse felting needle makeover. I know you can get the realistic spikes but this was much more fun. I created a grey Jacob core with a brown Shetland carded top and went at it quite fiercely with a 32 reverse needle. You can watch the full hedgehog tutorial HERE

See how I have picked up the grey I pulled through plus a little of the brown. Give it a twizzle for instant spikiness and a gorgeous ‘Prickle’ of hedgehogs; yes that is the actual collective noun for a group of hedgehogs. My heart… 🦔

So, there you have it. Just a few of the cool things you can do with a reverse felting needle. Experiment on your own projects and just have some fun with it. Happy felting!

VIDEO TUTORIAL – 10 minutes

SHOP REVERSE NEEDLES

Needle Felted Garland Tutorial

SCROLL TO THE BOTTOM OF THE PAGE FOR VIDEO TUTORIAL

The wool bundle to create this gorgeous garland can be purchased on the LFC website: SHOP HERE

Temperatures are below freezing, the days are still short, we can’t go out anywhere, the shops are shut… but hey, the heating’s on, there’s food in the cupboard, my dog is there for constant cuddles and we have crafts for company. That’ll do me for now.

In an effort to bring some colour into our lives I am stuck on pretty pastels and all things spring at the moment and it doesn’t get more pastel or spring like than this gorgeous Easter garland. It is also a great way to use up any scraps of wool you have in your felt box and, if you have needle felted before, there are always plenty of scraps in your felt box.

TOP TIP

So here I am with a little golden nugget of a needle felting tip for almost perfectly firm and round needle felted balls; use a wooden BBQ stick. I have been using one for ages to create even, smooth shapes and discovered – after trying many other techniques – that using said stick is by far the fastest and easiest way to make perfectly shaped felted balls, in just 3 to 4 minutes! Who knew?

This gorgeous garland is so easy to make and, teamed with the needle felted bumble bees (also a breeze to make), you have yourself a beautiful piece of spring décor to brighten even the most dullest of days. The bees also make a great brooch, or pin.

Click HERE for bumble bee tutorial.

TIME TO MAKE

Felt ball: 3 minutes

Bumble Bee: 20 minutes

Felt Ball Garland: 50 minutes (14 balls)

With 3 bumble bees: 2 hours

YOU WILL NEED

1 Small length of wool top or carded wool; mine are approximately 1g (20cm long) but you can make them bigger. Just make sure they weigh approximately the same so your felt balls are all a similar size; unless you prefer odd shaped balls…

2 Felting needle; a size 38 or 36 is best as they are sturdy and less likely to break on the stick

3 Soft felting surface; foam mat, rice filled hessian bag or a piece of flat felt

4 Sewing needle and strong thread to create your garland

Let’s get going!

SCROLL TO THE END IF YOU LOVE A VIDEO TUTORIAL!

1 Select your first piece of wool.

2 Twizzle the end of the wool in your fingers to slightly matt it.

3 Wrap the end firmly around your wooden skewer

4 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.

5 Continue until all the wool is wrapped around the stick. TOP TIP: It should be firmly wrapped but also springy to the touch. If it is too firm it will be harder to shape.

6 Start to shape by poking your needle gently into the ends of the wool – avoiding the stick – at a diagonal angle so the needle doesn’t bend. TOP TIP: Keep moving the stick around with your free hand so the shape is even and there are no flattened areas.

7 Repeat for the other end and continue to shape the entire ball until it is quite firm. It won’t be perfectly round yet but that doesn’t matter.

8 Slide off the pointy end of the stick.

9 Continue to firm and shape with your needle. This will also close the hole created by the wooden stick.

10 Finally, roll the ball firmly in your cupped hands (for a few seconds) to create an even round shape and smooth finish.

Once you have enough for your garland string them together with strong cotton. If you are adding bumble bees make sure you push the needle and cotton through the upper part of the bee as they are top heavy and will be upside down when you hang it. Also, it took me longer than I care to admit to work that out. 😳

Hope you enjoyed this and just subscribe at the bottom of the page for instant blog notifications and up-dates. Happy creating 🐝

VIDEO TUTORIAL

CLICK FOR ALL VIDEO TUTORIALS

Needle Felted Baby Penguin – Video Tutorial

Penguins are the best at any time of year, but even more so when the Winter chill sets in. These cute needle felted baby penguins are great fun and an easy and relaxing project, using simple shapes and needle felting techniques. Just imagine your house filled with a ‘Waddle’ of penguins; yes, that really is the name for a group of penguins.

If you don’t have wool and needles you can order the complete penguin needle felting starter kit over at the Lincolnshire Fenn Crafts WEBSITE.

Happy felting x

Skill level: Easy

Time to make: 60 minutes

Subscribe to my YOUTUBE CHANNEL for new tutorial notifications

LIVE WORKSHOP 19TH DECEMBER 6PM GMT

Also, don’t forget I am holding a live workshop on Saturday over on my Facebook page. It’s free and will be 90 minutes of joyful , festive creativity. Plus, you will be able to ask me all your needle felting questions. Full details and link below; it would be lovely to see you there! Click photo for Facebook notifications.

For needle felting kits and accessories please visit the Lincolnshire Fenn Crafts website

Live Workshops

Join me for my live workshops and felt alongside me whilst asking me all your needle felting questions, or anything else for that matter as I am always up for a chat over crafts and a cuppa. Details below. Hope you can make it. If not the replays are below.

Join me for 90 minutes of fully festive creative respite. It’s a completely free workshop so if you have your own wool stash then come and join me. It will be a fabulous evening and a great way to get in the festive mood. Why not make a night of it and get the whole family involved. Or, grab a glass of something special and have a Skype craft party. However you do it, I will be there answering your questions and showing you all my favourite felting moves.

FAIRY LIVE WORKSHOP REPLAY

You will need:

Pipe cleaners/Wool tops; white and whatever you have in your wool stash/Felting needle/Felting mat or soft base to work on

SNOWMAN LIVE WORKSHOP REPLAY

Bring wool, felting needles, your favourite tipple and create a cute, super easy needle felted snowman to add to your Christmas decor. Click HERE for Instagram notifications
You will need:
Any core wool/White carded wool (wool tops can also be used/Orange for carrot nose/Black or dark brown for details/Bright felting wool for scarf and hat/Felting needle/Felting mat, or soft surface to work on.

Needle felted sheep and hares – Step by step video tutorials

Each video tutorial breaks down every step of needle felting your animals into simple body shapes and can easily be can be adapted for whatever animal you are making. They are perfect for beginners, improvers or anyone wanting some creative respite and I have created each video to guide you step by step – workshop style – on your creative journey, sharing my top tips to make it even quicker and easier.

Everything you need to know is covered, from needle felting your basic body shape at the start to putting it all together, in simple bite size chunks that will give you the confidence to continue with this fabulously addictive craft.

If you are working from one of my NEEDLE FELTING KITS just follow the written instructions alongside the video tutorials.

1 BASIC BODY SHAPE – 12 minutes

2 BASIC HEAD SHAPE – 12 minutes

3 BASIC LEG SHAPES – 21 minutes

4 HARE AND FOX EARS – 15 minutes

5 SHEEP EARS – 15 minutes

6 FACE DETAILS – 11 minutes

7 SEWING ON BEADS FOR EYES – 8 minutes

8 PUTTING IT ALL TOGETHER – 35 minutes

Now you can create any size and shape you want

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