HOW TO NEEDLE FELT A CHICKEN

NEW NEEDLE FELTING KIT, WOOL BUNDLE, PATTERN DOWNLOAD AND VIDEO TUTORIAL!

Improve your needle felting techniques and add a needle felted chicken to your creative menu. Calorie and guilt free but hours of fun! You will also learn how to needle felt a perfectly smooth finish; the Holy Grail of needle felting

The key to this project is getting a good shape and perfectly smooth finish and I am going to show you exactly how to achieve it, with easy step by step instructions and more photographs than you can shake a tail feather at. Suitable for confident beginners and more experienced needle felters.

SHOP NEEDLE FELTING KIT

SHOP WOOL BUNDLE – NO TOOLS

SHOP PATTERN DOWNLOAD

Scroll to bottom of page for video tutorials.

Daphne is wonderfully adorable and so much fun to make. Detailed instructions (more than 4,500 words), 110 step by step full colour photographs, plus lots of different needle felting techniques; including perfecting your shapes and getting a super smooth finish. Available as a complete needle felting kit, or wool bundle if you already have the tools.

Makes one large chicken (approximately 13cmH x 18L) or two smaller ones. Also includes downloadable pattern which is for personal use only.

To purchase pattern separately CLICK HERE

MAKE TIME: 4-5 hours. See description below for more details.

KIT CONTENTS – YOUR PATTERN WILL ARRIVE DIGITALLY VIA EMAIL BUT PLEASE SELECT THE OPTION IF YOU WOULD ALSO LIKE A HARD COPY IN YOUR KIT
  • Downloadable pattern plus option for printed pattern
  • White core wool approx. 20-25g for body, head, and neck.
  • 10g white carded batting for covering the body and making the wings
  • Pinch light brown wool for eyes and eyebrows
  • Pinch of orange for the beak
  • 2g of contrasting colour for the crown and waddle
  • 5 thin pieces of wool tops (bright colours) for the tail
  • 2 x Standard felting needle – size 38 is a good all-rounder
  • 1 x Fine felting needle – size 40
  • Wooden BBQ skewer (or similar) for shaping the head – optional
  • Felting mat

All you will need are a pair of sharp scissors.

WOOL BUNDLE CONTENTS

  • Downloadable and printable instructions
  • White core wool approx. 20-25g for body, head, and neck.
  • 10g white carded batting for covering the body and making the wings
  • Pinch light brown wool for eyes and eyebrows
  • Pinch of orange for the beak
  • 2g of contrasting colour for the crown and waddle
  • 5 thin pieces of wool tops (bright colours) for the tail

YOU WILL NEED

  • Standard felting needle – size 38 is a good all-rounder
  • Fine felting needle – size 40
  • Wooden BBQ skewer (or similar) for shaping the head – optional
  • Felting mat
  • Sharp scissors

WATCH THE VIDEO TUTORIALS

PART 1 – BODY
PART 2 – WINGS
PART 3 – FACE, CROWN, WATTLE AND TAIL FEATHERS

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

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

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.

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