Felting an Easter Basket | Project Idea & Tutorial

Felting a special Easter Basket is so much fun and really quite easy to do!

We used an Earth Harmony NeedleFelting Hat Form in size small, MC-1Merino Cross Batts, one quilting fabric quarter, sheer ribbon
in two widths, Mod Podge, emboidery thread, a sewing machine and a multi-needle felting tool.

If you have never used a hat form to needle felt a hat or vessel, you can ge ta kit of your custom color choices and complete instructions here: Needle Felting a Hat Kit

If you have needle felted a purse over a foam pad you have the basic idea, you can also see our primer video for needle felting a purse

Needle felt over your form in the colors desired. We made the inside white
because we will line our basket with fabric. Once needle felted, firmly wet felt
the basket to a smooth finish, cover your foam with stretch wrap or a plastic bag, and place the felted basket back on your foam to shape it.
You can leave it on the foam to dry mostly, and remove it for the final drying time – at least overnight.

For a really smooth finish, you can steam iron it while on your foam to block it.

Once your piece is dry, we can needle felt the final design.
Here is the basic shape for our bunny. Print it out if desired.
We used a simple tear drop body shape to get started.

Put your basket back on the foam. Place a patch of wool on your basket
and lay the body shape on top. Use your felting needle to trace an indent around the body shape.

Remove the template and continue to needle felt by felting all of the fibers from outside the line into the body area.
Add the head, feet and tail in the same manner, or just free hand the design.

Tie a wide ribbon and a thin ribbon in knots at both ends.
Mod podge them together with a paint brush.

Create a pattern for your basket liner by tracing around your hat form.
Leave 1/4″ to 1/2″ margin for the circular base.

Since the interior of your basket may be larger than the circumference of your foam,
give yourself a few extra inches to work with. Pin the templates to your fabric and cut out.

Place the long strip inside your basket for proper sizing and pin the short ends of the long strip together.

Sew these ends on your sewing machine. Pin the base on and sew that together.
We will not hem the top of  the liner but instead will fold it down inside the walls of the basket.

Pin the liner in your basket and blanket stitch in place. Sew on your handle so it is nice and sturdy and fill with it with fun!

We hope you will share pictures of your felted Easter Basket and other items on our Facebook Friends page!

 

Free Felting Tutorial: Needle Felted Bunny Ball, "Dot"!

Needle felt this fun litttle bunny ball, we call him “Dot”! More tutorials follow on needle felting Easter Eggs and needle felting  his best pal “Cheep”! This project requires very little wool. We used Living Felt MC-1 Merino Cross Batts in Cotton, and Sorbet, some black glass beads for eyes and some button thread.

Follow the standard directions for needle
felting a ball, you will use this technique again and again!

This is the ball for our bunny head, which also happens to be his body! Our needle felted bunny is very small, yours can be as large as you like! Needle felt this very firmly. Decide which surface will the face and which the bottom. Use your felting needles or multi-needle
felting tool
to flatten out the bottom. For this projectm, we primarily used a 38 gauge star felting needle and a 40 triangle felting needle.

Pull off two small, equally sized tufts of wool to make the ears. Making both
at the same time helps to get the sizing to match. You will find this true
for most “pairs” whether they be ears, feet, arms or slippers! While
your final bunny ears may be small, pull off more wool than you think you
will need. The fibers will compact as you felt them. It is much easier to
shape the wool when you have enough to work with. Starting with too little
may leave thin spots or tips that cannot be properly felted.

Fold them in half length wise and lightly needle felt right in the middle.
Do not try to attach it to the foam, just tack down the fibers.

Fold the sides in towards the middle and needle felt them in place.

Needle felt all around the shape by felting at a very shallow depth and continuously
shaping the ears as desired. Try to avoid felting them to the foam, make sure
to needle felt both sides and the edges.

If desired, felt some pink on the insides. Remember to make very shallow pokes
with your needle so the color does not come out the other side.

To help decide where the eyes go, we colored two white tipped straight pins
with a black marker and used these as temporary place holders.

You can use T-tacks or straight pins to select the placement of the ears and
other body parts as needed.

Once the position is selected, firmly needle felt the ears onto your bunny.
Spread the fibers out and take time to blend them in well. A fine gauge needle
such as a 40 Triangle works well for final blending.

Needle felt or embroider a bunny on your nose.

Sew on the bunny eyes by running your darning or doll needle from the back of the head and out where the eye socket will be. Leave enough thread dangling out the back to tie a knot. If desired, you can needle felt an impression for the eyes first, this is best done with your 36 gauge felting needle. String on the bead and run your needle into the eyesocket and out the back about 1/8th of an inch from the entrance thread. Pull tightly and tie a firm knot. This will slightly inset the eye. Repeat for the second eye.

Cut the threads very close to the head, patch with wool to fill any indentation
and needle felt into place.

Here is our finished bunny, “Dot” and his best pal, “Cheep.”
Watch for a tutorial on Cheep very soon!

Needle Felting "Cheep", a Chickie in a Bunny Bonnet

Needle Felting “Dot”, our fun little bunny ball was first in a series of 3 needle felting tutorials based on an Easter theme. Next came our needle felting Easter eggs tutorial which shared a few more techniques. Now meet, “Cheep”, Dot’s best pal. This basic tutorial will utilize some of the techniques in the previous two tutorials, and will help demonstrate a few more fundamentals for needle felting little 3D animals and objects. We hope you have fun! For this project we used CW-1 Core Wool, MC-1 Mango and Canteloupe, Black Beads, Black thread, Pipe Cleaners, a skewer, felting needles, doll needle and needle felting foam.

Start by following the instructions below for needle felting core wool for the body into an egg shape and the head into a ball.

As in our Easter egg tutorial, cover the body and head with wool in the color of your choice.

Once the head and body are made, it is time for the wings. Draw a tear drop shape onto a piece of paper in the size of the wing desired. Err on the larger side, because once cut out, you can hold it up to the body and cut it smaller if desired. Pull off two equally sized tufts of wool about 2 1/2 times longer and 1 1/2 times wider than your template. Fold the wool in half lengthwise and begin needle felting in flat primarily right in the center. Let your pokes be shallow and do not attach the wing to the foam.

TIP: Make sure you have enough wool. If it feels thin when you fold it over, it may feel thin when needle felted. It is better to have a little more wool because you can really compact it down with needle felting.

Place the template on top of the wool and begin needle felting (sculpting) the wool by felting all around the sides towards the template. Continue working around and around, but leave the end towards the point loose and unfelted.
Flip the wing over and needle felt the other side as well. As your wing begins to get as small as the template, put your tempate on the foam under the wing and continue needle felting towards the shape of the template.

Now both wings are needle felted for our little chickie. Use straight pins to choose the position and needle felt the loose end onto the body.

Needle felting the ears. This is the same process used for bunny ball. Pull off two equal tufts of wool about 2 1/2 times longer and 1 1/2 times wider than the finished ears will be. Fold in half lengthwise and needle felt just
in the center to compact the fibers. Do not attach it to the foam.

Fold the sides in towards the middle and needle felt into place. Sculpt the ear to a point or rounded end as desired. Make sure to felt both sides of the ears, and leave the base unfelted for attaching to the head.

Add a little pink inside the ear if desired. Our black headed pins serve as place holders for the eyes. Position the ears and hold them in place with T-tacks or pins. Needle felt them onto the head. Add some more white wool
around the base of the ears, but do not finish the bonnet just yet, we have more to do. It is best to attach the head to the body before finalizing the bonnet so we can hide our joining threads. That comes soon.

To make the beak, pull off a small strip of wool and twist it around the tip of a wooden skewer or very small paint brush handle. Continue to twist the skewer and let your hands somewhat dry felt the wool. Slide the wool off the skewer and needle felt right into the widest part of the cone. This will compact the fibers by felting them towards the point of the beak. Because this piece is so small, we used our fine 40 gauge needle.

Now needle felt along the beak away from the tip at a very shallow angle. Do this all around the beak to make it nice and firm. Next, place the beak onto the face of your chickie. Needle felt it directly into the head. You
can compact the fibers into the head very well. Use your 38 needle for this job.

To make the feet, start by needle felting two very small balls. Next, twist a small amount of wool around a pipe cleaner, longer and slightly thicker than you want the leg to be. It helps to have the piper cleaner a few inches longer than needed so you have something to hold onto!

Using a very shallow angle, needle felt up and down and all around the length of the wool on the pipe cleaner. Make it very compact, even and firm. Stand the covered pipe cleaner up on your ball and needlfelt the two together as shown. If you have having challenges with the connection, wrap a small around the join like an Ace bandage and needle felt through it connect the leg and
the ball.

Repeat for the second leg to make both the same size then cut the leg to the desired length. Use your ball head pins to choose the position, and needle felt the legs right into the body. Our chickie is meant to sit, not stand.

Attach the eye beads to the head with strong thread. See our bunny tutorial for these steps if needed. Attach the head to the body with a string joint. Use a darning or doll needle and some strong button or uphostery thread, or waxed floss. We offer a little detail kit here with eyes, thread and floss. Start with a very long piece of
thread, and your needle single threaded. Enter the body from the bottom up and slightly off center, run the thread up through the base of the head and out the top of the head just behind the ears. Leave at least 4″ of thread coming out of the bottom of the body. Re-enter the head approx 1/8″ – /4″ from where the thread came out, and run it back through the head and out of the body. Pull tension and tie a very strong knot. Just as you did with the eyes, cut the threads and cover the indentation from the thread with wool and needle felt it in place.

To make the strings of the bonnet, pull off a long thin strip of wool and roll it into a tube. Get it soapy and wet and roll it on your bamboo blind or rigid mat to very firmly wet felt it. Once it is dry, tie the ends into a bow. We did this by leaving it in one long piece, and then wrapping it around small plastic bottle to give a surrface to pull bow tight. It was too small to tie on its own, so the bottle helped a lot! Once the bow is in place, cut the wool off the bottle and needle felt it around the neck of the chickie and into the bonnet area. Now finish the bonnet by adding wool and needle felting it neatly around the face.

Here is Dot and Cheep, two pals so happy to be together now. Send us pictures of your Easter creations!