Have you ever seen any beautiful wool-composed dolls? Have you ever touched them? They are so adorable and cute. I like puppy dolls since I am a dog-lover. They look beautiful and so realistic so that I thought they were real puppies.
Now one question pops up in my mind: how do people make wool dolls like these? There is no way such beautiful things can come only so simple. It must be complicated and takes a long time from start to finish.
Well, I am not a good person at sewing. In fact, I have never seen anything at all. I am not afraid of needles, but I see that sewing is something complicated and needs a lot of patience. I have problems regarding that last thing, so I prefer not to sew than hurting my own fingers ridiculously. I recently came to know about a website called feltingwool.com . It is a forum site that has many craft lovers as members who discuss and share their ideas about felting wool tools and techniques, I have joined this forum and I would suggest you join this forum as well. You will definitely learn a lot about felt wool related projects.
But what about those who love sewing and want to try something new, like making these fiber dolls? Surely there are differences between ordinary wool sewing and this one. We can quote a certain presenter, “how hard can it be?” We can answer the question later. First of all, we have to understand what this fiber-sewing thing is called.
This seems-to-be-complicated, realistic-resulting wool-sewing is shortly called felting. It is a new short word for people who rarely or even never sew, like me. Basically, it is a way of transforming our wool into a 3D object using a barbed needle.
There is nothing to worry about because I went to the internet this week and I found out that felting is not horribly difficult like what I have imagined. It surely requires patience and accuracy, but the steps for this new sewing method can be simplified. Still, mind your fingers.
First of all, we need some wool. It is easier to use roving (like a ball), but we can also use wool in different shapes like batting (like a rolled towel). Simply, we can use any kind of wool. It’s just that roving wool is (said to be) easier to use.
Obviously, another thing we need is the proper needle. It is not a tapestry or sewing needle, but a specific felting needle. It has sharp and barbed blades specially designed to tear apart wool fibers.
We also need protection for our fingers and other body parts. We need felting surface like sponges and foam block, a few inches thick.
Now we can begin, starting with prepping a piece of the wool. Cutting is unnecessary since the roving will break apart easily. Then we roll it into a ball and can also tuck its ends if possible. We continue by poking the wool ball with the felting needle, about ¼-inch deep every poke. We also must pay attention to our fingers, not to get in the way of the very sharp needle blades. Other than that, we can keep poking until the fibers start to bond together and the wool ball shrinks a bit. Then we can make anything from that, usually animals.
There is a proverb: practice makes perfect. We can know all the theories in the world, but they are all useless if we don’t practice them. It is the same thing with felting. We already know the requirement and simple way to begin felting, and it’s best to start and keep practicing. There could be mistakes along with the progress, but there is nothing to worry about.