Monday, March 2, 2009

Felted Zipper Purse Tutorial

So I wanted to post a short tutorial...well less of a tutorial than a before/after shot of my felted pouches which you can purchase through my shop on Etsy.


1. I start with 100% wool (there are no substitutes...I recently picked up a 50% acrylic blend without knowing it, falling for the "will felt when washed" label. It did not.)
2. Using a smallish hook, I single crochet a large rectangle, folding it in half as I work, envisioning the finished size.3. To close the sides I slip stitch down one short side after I've folded it, then cut the yarn and slip stitch down the other. If I've added a handle I chain, then do two single stitched rows before closing up the sides. I do this with all one length of yarn, never cutting it until I close up the second side.
4. I then choose an alternating yarn to freehand the topstitched design and we're ready to felt.
5. With nearly boiling water, I work in the sink, with yellow plastic gloves (what do you call those???). Adding a little bit of liquid soap I scrub and agitate and rub and, well, all you can do here is elbow grease and sweat. The longer you agitate and scrub the pieces together, the more the fibers fuse.
7. What is happening here is the previously separated fibers are fusing, becoming one piece of fabric, one piece of felt.
8. Rinse the work and pop it into the microwave to dry for about 3 minutes. Done and done!
Alternately, you can wash it in the laundry on super hot, drying it on high as well, but this costs more in energy, and can shrink your clothes...what a waste to run it alone. I suppose if you have a very large piece and hand felting won't work, but I don't even think there is enough agitation or heat for it do work properly anyway.

Warm Wooly thoughts to you all, and make sure to look around my shop! Baa bye.


Dionne said...

Wow. I have never heard of wetting it. Then again, I know absolutely ZERO about this kind of stuff. Thanks for sharing!

Gregg said...

Cool! Discovery Channel should do a whole series on you.

K @ Blog Goggles said...

These are beautiful. I had no idea what felting was or how it was done, so thanks for the tutorial. I'll check out your goods ;)