Tuesday, August 25, 2009

How To: Felted Balls

Have you ever wet-felted anything? If not, felted balls are an easy and fun place to start. You will need:
  • Roving
  • Bar Soap
  • Towel for your work surface. You will have hot soapy water dripping down your arms so it's nice to be able to dry your hands and arms often.
  • Two bowls of hot water; one for soapy water, one for clean water. The hotter the water the quicker the wool will felt. Use common sense here though, you are going to need your skin later.
Pull of a piece of roving and shape it into a loose ball in your hand. Dip it into the hot water and start rolling it between your palms. Rub your hand on the bar of soap and continue rolling the roving in your palms. Occasionally dip the roving back in the hot water and add more soap to the mix. Around now you should be reaching the "this chick's crazy, this is never going to work" phase; keep going.

After rolling, wetting, and soaping for a few minutes you will notice that the roving has formed a loose ball. It still feels squishy and hollow in the middle at this point. You are now in the "yeah, they're cute but not that cute" phase; keep going.

Now the ball is really firming up. You have reached the "wow, that chick was right after all!" phase. You can add more layers of roving over the ball to make it any size you want. Just keep wetting, soaping and rolling until you reach the desired size. You can try changing the shape into an oval or egg shape too. Make sure the ball is nice and tight with a good smooth shape. Dip the ball into the clean water, swish it around to rinse it off and set it aside to dry over night.

Way to go; you now have a felt ball! You can trim any loose fuzzies with scissors to smooth it up if you like; I like the fuzzy edges myself. Also, try trimming the edges to form a square instead of a ball.


Beth said...

Oh these would make the perfect pom poms on a hat or scarf. I'm definitely going to do this. Thanks!

Martha said...

I recently picked up acorns under the oak tree and took off the caps and then glued the caps onto felted ovals and used them for a fall decoration. Lots of fun! Also our local yarn shop has small felted balls with some embroidery or embellishment added and they're hung on a miniature Christmas tree. I guess there are a ton of uses. Thanks I love felted projects.

The Sweeter Sweater Company said...

Thanks for the great ideas Beth and Martha!