Image shows a needle felted gnome in bright orange and turqoise. The body is a needle felted pumpkin

Easy DIY Autumn Crafts To Make Your Home Feel Handmade

FILL YOUR HOME WITH HANDMADE NEEDLE FELTED DECORATIONS

As soon as Autumn arrives I am already full-blown, pumpkin spice latte sweater dresses and jumper mode. It is my absolute favourite time of year as we start to hibernate and get really creative, filling our homes with cosy homemade fall and autumn décor! Without doubt, nothing says it better than pumpkins filling the rooms of your home, especially the ones you have made yourself, and there is no better time than now to grab a cuppa, and start creating with me.

MAKE A NEEDLE FELTED GNUMPKIN WITH ME

Make time: 90 minutes (20 minutes for the pumpkin)

It is full on pumpkin season, or should I say Gnumpkin season. Basically, it is a pumpkin, gnome hybrid but, and I am sure you will agree, they are a match made in heaven. It is my absolute favourite needle felting project at the moment, and I love it more because it can stay up as part of your DIY Christmas décor. This one has a full on Autumnal flavour but I am already making one in cool winter colours.

NO CRAFT OR DRAWING SKILLS NEEDED

This super easy needle felting tutorial will have you creating your own needle felted Gnumpkin in no time at all! Making needle felting easy is what it is all about, and you don’t need any craft or drawing skills. This step by step needle felting tutorial will help build your creative confidence, whilst teaching you all the needle felting basics, and no sewing, I promise! My easy techniques tips and hacks will have you felting in no time!

DO YOU NEED THE WOOL OR FELTING KIT?

Image shows a needle felted gnome. Text reads: New to needle felting? Click to order the kit.

If you have just started needle felting, kits are an especially great way to get started so you can get a real feel for a new craft. In addition to this, you are only spending a small amount to get going. The website is full of inspiring kits and inspiration for every ability.

Find it HERE on the Lincolnshire Fenn Crafts website.

THE NEEDLE FELTED GNOME

The pumpkins alone are really fabulous but let’s take it up a notch and turn it into this super stylish, Gnumpkin. In addition, the full video tutorial is at the bottom of the page – my easy step, by step, felt along with me guide. I had so much fun designing and making these, and I know you are going to love it just as much!

A bright orange needle felted pumpkin sat in the palm of a hand to show a size comparison.

NEEDLE FELTED PUMPKIN

This forms the body of the gnome and is one of the easiest ever needle felting projects; you can make one of these in just 20 minutes, even complete beginners. Scroll to the bottom of the page for the video tutorial.

MAKE THE PUMPKIN BODY FIRST

Image shows what you need to start this needle felting project

LET’S GET STARTED – YOU WILL NEED:

Carded needle felting wool and wool tops – Felting needle – Felting mat – Wooden BBQ skewer or similar; this makes creating shapes so much easier.

Shows how to start needle felting your pumpkin

1 Lay a handful of core wool on your felting mat and create a rough bread roll shape with your hands. With your free hand start to felt with your needle.

2 Continue the process until your wool retains its size and shape.  TIP: It needs to be secure but very soft.

TIME TO ADD THE CARDED WOOL BATTING

3 Sit your shape on top of your piece of wool batting and start to wrap the batting sheet around it, pulling towards the centre of, what will be, the bottom of your pumpkin.

4 Felt the batting into the centre of the wool until it holds. Continue the process until all the core wool is covered and pull away any excess. Tip: White patches are fine as they add contrast

5 Pumpkin ready for shaping, smooth side up.

6 Using your felting needle ‘draw’ a clearly defined line around the entire pumpkin, starting from middle centre and finishing where your line started.

7 Repeat until your pumpkin is divided into eight sections.

8 Take a long, thin piece of contrasting wool top and felt securely into the lines you have just created. Again, work from centre top and finish where you started, leaving any loose strands. TIP: Any loose strands can be trimmed for neatness, but also look good as decoration. Your pumpkin is ready. Time to make a Gnumpkin.

MAKING THE PERFECT GNOME HAT

I tried a few techniques before deciding which one would give me the best result in the most simple way. I found using the trustee wooden skewer allowed me to create the perfect cone shape that didn’t flop around. The needle felted acorn is the perfect finishing touch and only takes minutes to make.

WATCH THE VIDEO TUTORIALS BELOW

GNUMPKIN VIDEO TUTORIAL

PUMPKIN VIDEO TUTORIAL

ACORN VIDEO TUTORIAL

Last but not least, learn how to add a super seasonal acorn to your Gnumpkin hat; the cherry on the cake so to speak.

Save to your Pinterest board for a daily dose of Pinspiration.

WANT MORE GNOME TUTORIALS?

Want more gnome tutorials, and seasonal inspiration? Just click below to discover all of the amazing Christmas DIY projects you can create with just a felting needle and a handful of wool.

Image shows a needle felted gnome and hare as part of an invitation to join The Felt Club

Join the VIP Felt Club and never miss out on the creativity!

Image shows a cartoon female with a strong arm and an needle felting project being completed. Text reads: learn to needle felt with confidence

DO YOU LOVE A CREATIVE COMMUNITY? JOIN THE FELT HUB ON FACEBOOK

Join me on Facebook. It’s completely free and you will have access to live workshops, free patterns, downloads, and so many more resources, all in one place. A group created inspire, nurture, and develop your needle felting confidence (whatever level you are at), in a more private space.

EASY NEEDLE FELTED HEDGEHOG – IN JUST ONE HOUR!

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.

MAKE YOUR OWN NEEDLE FELTED HEDGEHOG

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

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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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.

How to needle felt a firm head shape – Video tutorial

A short video (only 12 minutes) to help you improve your needle felting techniques.

When needle felting a head (animals or people) it is important to make sure you have a really firm shape. If you have a soft head then when you start to add the features you will distort or flatten the wool.

It is one of the most common mistakes (apart from floppy legs) but very easy to get right. As with all things, practice makes perfect, but needle felting does allow for mistakes because you can just add another layer. Just remember the golden rule: Start smaller and build your shape up and you can add but not take away. If you start too big and have to keep adding you will end up with a head the size of a football and then have to make a body to match! We are now talking life size sheep or giant hares that will just scare everyone, especially the dog or cat…

My best advice: Be patient. Don’t try to run before you can walk. Get the basics right and the rest will follow. Yes, I know your bestie, family member or work colleague wants a sculpture of their dog making after seeing a flower brooch you made? However, anything worth doing takes time. If it didn’t we would all be taking David Bailey quality photographs after an hours tutorial, or be able to put in a whole plumbing system after fixing a leaky tap… Most definitely, very soon we would all be very bored of hearing about each others achievements and stop making the effort.

Happy creating!

 

 

needle felting demonstration

Needle felted firm legs – Video tutorial

One of the questions I get asked the most is, “how do I get my legs really firm?” In the needle felting world  floppy and saggy legs on your animals are a no, no! They are the finishing touches that add stability and dimension to your animal so don’t spoil it by being impatient and not taking the time it needs to get it right (approx 10 to 15 minutes for each leg). My short, real time video tutorial quickly teaches you how to avoid common needle felting mistakes by showing you the tips and needle felting hacks I have learned along the way. Hope it helps you improve your needle felting skills and remember: You can add wool but not take it away!

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