The Amazing Needle Felted Animals of Hannah Stiles

 Hannah Stiles lives in Maine and has been needle felting for approximately 5 years;  for the last two she has been doing well selling her wonderful creations and custom orders on Etsy.  Hannah first learned to needle felt due to her part time job for a fiber company, her very first project was a little gray donkey ornament that she made as a Christmas party gift.

“I instantly loved felting and felt like I had always been doing it.”

Hannah now has 3 sheep of her own which she shears each spring.
She washes and dyes the wool and uses it to create her gorgeous needle felted animals.

“Every felt is a good felt!”

“My favorite part about felting is the huge array of possibilities it offers. You truly can make anything you dream up. I’ve always enjoyed sculpture and wood carving but was frustrated by the unforgiving nature of the materials. With needle felting I can create a sculpture but have perfect freedom to mess up, add wool, or pull it off. I have never had to abandon a project because it was unredeemable.  Every felt is a good felt!”

As you can see from her creations, Hannah’s inspiration comes primarily from nature and living beings. She credits her immediate surroundings including her pets of yesterday and today, the animals on her small farm, and animals she encounters in her local forest and fields.

“…when the world was simple and animals could talk.”

As a little girl my bedroom was overflowing with stuffed animals. I loved biology and anatomy in school and always looked forward to the next field trip to the farm, zoo or science museum. I get so much enjoyment from felting animals because it brings back the feeling I had as a child, when the world was simple and animals could talk.”

Hannah says her most challenging projects are the portraits she is commissioned to do of people’s pets. “I usually feel some suspense before I get to see the pictures they send me. Obviously the pressure to make a little wooly dog look like the real one can be tough, but the extra challenge makes it all the more satisfying when it’s completed!”

Hannah loves to create and work with her hands. She has been drawing “since she can remember” enjoys taking out her sketchbook for the occasional doodle. She has tried her hand and oil painting and watercolors, and shared with us that she even worked as a carpenter for a few years – which seems surprising given she is still in her mid-twenties!

“…I still get a lot of enjoyment from the odd home improvement project.
Whatever the medium, I’m never happier than when I am creating something with my hands!”

For anyone looking for tips or insights on getting started with felting, Hannah suggests:

“… simply jump in and try it! You don’t need a lot of stuff to begin – just a felting needle and some wool. Sign up for a local class or search the web for tutorials and inspiring work by other felters. Wool is so pleasant and satisfying to work with – put on some of your favorite music, get comfy and get carried away with the joy of needle felting!”

Good advice, indeed.

 

See more of Hannah’s inspired works:

www.etsy.com/shop/Ainigmati

http://www.facebook.com/Ainigmati

8 thoughts on “The Amazing Needle Felted Animals of Hannah Stiles

  1. Hannaha Stiles work is amazing; I consider myself fortunate to have discovered her shop at etsy a little while back. Although I am a needle felter also; I try to collect the work of artists whom I admire; Hannah’s is one of those at the top of my list.. Her realistic approach coupled with the subtle color choices makes her work outstanding.

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  2. Oh my ! I’ve just discovered felting, having taken a 3-hour workshop last week here in Toronto (with the wonderful Kathie Young of Phoenix Art Group). We made felted mushrooms and I instantly connected with the awesomeness and beauty of felting. Seeing what Hannah Stiles creates with the felt actually gave me goosebumps. Truly amazing. Thanks so much for posting, these are wonderful! I can totally relate to Hannah saying making these brought her back to her childhood “…when the world was simple and animals could talk”. Perfect!

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  3. Your animals are just beautiful! You are soooo talented. I’ve done just enough needle felting and I know how much patience it takes to make these things. I wish I could do such beautiful work as yours, but I haven’t got the patience. Thank you for sharing your talent and vision!

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  4. These are absolutely wonderful and so amazingly life-like. A couple of the dogs make you look twice and that cat! Wow! Such coat detail and those beautiful, expressive eyes. Am so evnious.

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  5. Oh My! These little animals are so gorgeous and realistic-full of life and love.
    I find such inspiration in this “beauteous” example of felting art!
    You are blessed with such talent-I am in awe.

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  6. i have admired Hannah’s work for a few years now. I LOVE her rabbits. I recently purchased a set of doves that are beyond beautiful. She is as nice as she is talented!!! She uses the gifts given to her to create beautiful needle felted works of art.

    thanks hannah for decorating the world with beautiful art and making people happy…

    cheryl

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  7. You have a wonderful talent. I’m just learning and you have inspired me. Your little dog looks like a Shiba Inu. I had a black and tan Shiba that has passed away. I’m going to try to recreate him. Thanks for the inspiration.

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