Wooly Wednesday Dyeing Fun

Wooly Wednesday
Next Broadcast:
March 21 @ 2pm CST

Join us for a fun, interactive gathering of friends!

Last week we celebrated our 14th B-Day LIVE with friends, dyeing fibers!

Catch the Broadcast Live or watch it later
in our fb group: LIVING FELT FRIENDS

This Year’s Group Theme:
EXPLORE – EXPAND – STRETCH

Scenes from our last broadcast:

Wooly Wednesday Felting Broadcast featured on www.livingfelt.com/blog

Living Felt turned 14 on March 14th this year! Many thanks to our friends for felting with us and keeping our community warm, friendly and growing!

Wooly Wednesday Felting Broadcast featured on www.livingfelt.com/blog

Marie discussed “why dye” and shared a few things from her own stash that she has hand dyed. These locks were dyed with Jacquard acid dye in a kettle, the color is Lilac.

Wooly Wednesday Dyeing Workspace featured on www.livingfelt.com/blog

We looked at basic set up and safety of your work space, person and tools. We discussed heating methods such as solar dyeing, a stove top pot, electric kettle and microwave. We forgot to mention the importance of a thermometer…get one in the food gadgets aisle of your local grocery. We also discussed a few ways to apply dye, and how to prepare your fabric or fiber.

Wooly Wednesday Dyeing Silk Fabric featured on www.livingfelt.com/blog

We applied dye to silk fabrics for microwaving with squeeze bottles and pipettes. Anne used natural food coloring which will produce a mild color and may not be very color fast, but fun and safe for kiddos.

Marie used Jacquard Acid dyes in Sapphire, Navy and Black on Margilan Silk yardage. The “acid” is just food grade white vinegar.

Wooly Wednesday Sprinkle Dyed Locks featured on www.livingfelt.com/blog

Next we “sprinkle dyed” locks with the acid dyes. You can do this for low immersion dyeing as we do in our kettle, or for the microwave, or even solar dyeing.

Dyed Silk featured on www.livingfelt.com/blog

This is the silk we dyed during the broadcast. Notice how the colors go from Sapphire to Navy to Black…it was so easy!

Dyed Silk featured on www.livingfelt.com/blog

Marie decided to wear it and keep it for her stash.

See the full broadcast in our group LIVING FELT FRIENDS under VIDEOS.

This one is not on Youtube yet, but we will get it up soon….then it will be under WOOLY WEDNESDAY PLAYLIST.

Free Tutorial for Scrunch-Dyed Scarves

Colorhue "Instant Set" Silk Dyes featured on www.livingfelt.com/blog

Colorhue “Instant Set” Silk Dyes

The colorhue silk dyes are perfect for dying your silk scarves or fabrics before nuno felting, Simply mix with water and apply, no need to steam, no need to boil, no chemicals or vinegar to add. They are truly “instant set”!

Note from Marie: I had enjoyed using colorhue to dye silk fabrics in my studio, and a local friend and fiber artist Julianne Krute seems to pull them out at every fiber event for quick demos and make-n-take fun. After playing with them some more and meeting even more felters who are having great results and great fun with them, I knew you would love them too! So we made this little tutorial to show you how quickly you can get started!

Scrunch-Dyed Scarves featured on www.livingfelt.com/blog

Look What You Can Do…Instant Dyeing!

Free Tutorial for dyeing silk with no heating required!

DIY Scrunch Dye Scarves Free Tutorial

Felting Tutorial: Wet Felting a Vessel Over a Resist

In this free video tutorial, Marie shows her methods for wet felting over a resist … step by step.
This two part video will serve as a great primer or starter project for wet felting a vessel,
a pair of slippers, a hat, or even a cat cave!

Start small and learn with simple projects :O)
For this little project we used Living Felt MC-1 Felting Batts, Resist Material,  Olive Oil Soap,
Bamboo Mat, Felting Mesh, and a Rigid Mat.

You can all the tools in one package! See our Wet Felting Tools Bundle

Create a Needle Felted Gnome Home

 By Joyce Hazlerig

www.gypsyharte.etsy.com

Materials

Approx 1 oz of core wool

.30g –.50g of various greens or earth tone wool

Locks, yarn, and sparkle fibers

Felting needles Tri 38 or Tri 40 Mulitools help a lot

First bunch or roll your core fiber into a ball or oval and needle all over. The denser you roll your core the less jabbing you have to do with the felting needles. You want to needle it until it resembles a conch shell. Multitool time! Make its go faster.

 Now shaping the hillside as you wish. Mostly round, with a flat face on one side and needle the bottom flat. Make a front yard area by folding a section of core batt.

 

 

Needle it form underneath to attach, now it looks like a melted scoop of ice cream.

Now that we have a hillside its time to landscape it!

 

 Gather all your green wools and layer them in thin sections, you can card them together if you like or simply layer by hand, either way works. I like to do different colors or textures of wools giving the hillside a mossy look, use a little firestar to add a dewy magical sparkle. This is only a thin layer it doesn’t take much wool. Neelde with a single or double 40 or 38 until all the core is covered. You don’t have to do the bottom, less you want to. I like to make my underneath earthy brown, like dirt. An alternate hillside, make one face very flat and fill in with earthtone wool for a cut away gnome home.

 

Detail time. Use a single felting needle and gather some mohair locks and fold in half about three short locks and needle at the fold into a section of the hillside. You can even “plant” the lock bush by adding a little green wool into the middle for security.

 

 

 Add yarn foliage the same way. Next make a window!

 

 

 

 

 Just a little wisp of yellow or white wool. Needled into the hill, do it firmly so that it is recessed. Then add a cross pane and frame.

 

 

 

 Add a Door with a bit of brown wool or any color you want your door. I framed the door with another darker brown. And then added lines and a knob. Here’s a red round door on a different Gnomehome.

 

 

 Add details! Novelty eyelash yarn needle felts into grass and paths.

 Mushrooms and toadstools provide a chimneystack for your gnome. Just felt a stem from brown or white wool and felt a cone shape and attach together. An easy mushroom is to felt a dense ball and then cut it in half to form two mushroom caps. Outline paths and add stones or little lakes. The possibilities are endless! Now you have your own secret world!

Now, you can also watch a complete tutorial of this project by Joyce! 🙂

We are so grateful to Joyce for gifting this tutorial to our community!

You can visit her on etsy: https://www.etsy.com/shop/Gypsyharte

or on facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/GypsyharteArts

 

Felting Tutorial: Wet & Needle Felting Round Robin

This tutorial for felting with children was generously gifted to our community
Laura Ballard  (aka Laura Bill)

who teaches at a Montessori School.

When the robins return up north it is a sign that spring has finally arrived, even if there is still snow on the ground! When I was a kid one of my favorite books was called Round Robin by Jack Kent about a baby robin that ate and ate and ate…

 Until he looked more like a ball than a bird. Everybody called him Round Robin.

 

Come fall, Round Robin is too fat to migrate with the other robins to the south, so he tries to hop along to get there. He is much slower than the other birds and it takes him all winter to catch up and join them down south. I still love the story and if you would like to read it to the children you will be doing this project with you can get it used, as it is unfortunately out of print,
through the following link: Round Robin

You can also read A Nest Full of Eggs, which follows a robin family through the spring activities
of nest building, hatching, and fledging.

For this project you will need Core Wool, Mc-1 Merino Cross Batts, I used a gray color [ willow ]  from the Scenic Vista Studio Pack and 3 varieties of pink from the Berries Studio Pack, as well as black, white, and yellow for the head. You will also need a felting needle, an old knee-high stocking, soap and water. If you would like your Round Robin to make noise when you shake it you will also need a hollow ball that you can put in the center with bells or rice in the middle.

Projects with a wet felted ball as a base are great to do with children because there is less chance of them poking themselves or breaking felting needles when they have a large base to felt on.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you would like to put a shaker in the middle start by wrapping the wool snugly around the form being careful to keep the fibers from twisting as you wrap it. Turn the ball slightly every time you make a rotation so the wool builds up evenly on the surface of the ball.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Continue to wrap the wool until you have reached a size a little bigger than you would like your finished product to be (keep in mind that the form will shrink in the felting process).

Once the desired size has been reached, the ends may be tacked down a little with a felting needle or just put it directly into the stocking by putting the stocking over your hand, grabbing hold of the ball and flipping it over the outside of the ball.
(Young children may need help with this step).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The seam of the stocking should be facing out once the ball is inside. For the next step you will need a bowl of hot water that is still cool enough to put your hands in. You can grate some bar soap into the water or you can use mild dish soap in a very small amount directly on your hands. Rub and roll the ball in different directions until felted. See the tutorial on Wet Felting Easter Eggs for more instructions on wet felting but ignore the part about fulling at this point, as you will be felting another color to the top of the white wool.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Once felted, carefully peel back the stocking from the wool ball. Squeeze out excess water and leave in the sun to dry for a few hours.  The ball does not need to be completely dry to add the next color. Wrap the gray wool around the ball, tacking down the ends with a felting needle to ensure that the wool won’t shift when it is wet felted.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Repeat the wet felting process starting with putting the stocking back over the ball and follow the instructions all the way through fulling on the Wet Felting Easter Eggs page. Once finished with the felting process, leave the ball to dry overnight. Once dry, needle felt the pink or red patch where you would like the robin’s belly to be.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Needle felt black wool in a small circle at the top of the ball where you would like the head of the robin to be. If you would like the head to be more three dimensional, continue adding black wool to the top of the robin until it is the desired size.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Measure out two small tufts of white wool for the eyes. Roll one of the tufts of wool into a ball leaving one side a little fluffy so that you have some material to attach the eye with.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Poke the ball with a felting needle on a foam block, turning the ball constantly so it does not flatten on any side. Children will probably poke themselves in this step so an adult can make the base of the eyes for them, they can be wet felted, or the eyes can be two dimensional and children can needle felt them directly to the head. Black wool can then be needle felted to the white ball followed by a small white inner circle for the details of the eyes.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Round Robin’s beak is made by attaching a small amount of yellow wool to the middle of the head, pulling that tuft to a point and felting it directly to the ball. The beak can be made 3D by making a yellow cone-shape out of wool and then attaching it to the ball.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Take the eyeballs that were set aside earlier and attach them above the beak by fluffing some wool on the backside of the eye and needle felting the fibers into the head. If the eyes were wet felted there may not be enough loose fibers to needle felt the eyes to the head. In this case you can sew the eyes on.

Draw a tail shape on a piece of paper (it can even just be a triangle) and cut it out. Lay the paper tail pattern on top of a swatch of black wool on a foam block. Use a felting needle to make an indent around the outside of the tail shape.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fold in the wool from outside the indented line of the tail to the inside and felt the tail leaving the end that will attach to the bird unfelted. Attach the fluffy, unfelted end of the tail to the backside of the bird with a felting needle.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Add wings or any other embellishment you would like. Your Round Robin is now ready to play! If you enjoyed making the robin you can make him some friends using the same technique but the markings of a different bird.  Be sure to send us pictures of your children’s creations.

 

If you would like some more bird-themed activities to do with your children, there are some printable bird coloring pages that may help your child plan out the colors of wool they would like to use in the robin project or with another bird. Enjoy!