Sculptural needle felting is fun and easy to learn. It is a popular craft in which unspun wool can be made into a 3D object with the help of special barbed needles. Using a few simple techniques you can create many beautiful (soft and warm as well!) objects – from jewelry and home decor, to toys and dolls.
I’ve been doing needle felting since 2009, when I created my first doll. Though I was very proud of myself, it wasn’t a great success. But the next project was really challenging – I wanted to make portrait dolls of Frida and Diego Rivera, which took me more than two months to complete. After some later changes, I dare say I’m happy with these dolls. So needle felting became my deep love and one of my favorite hobbies.
It is a craft that you just cannot quit, so relaxing and therapeutic it is. Almost anything can be made with wool and barbed needles out of just a shapeless pile of wool. It’s not messy and requires relatively few tools and supplies.
Needle felting workshops that I conduct may consist of 1,2 or 3 sessions, depending on how long and complicated is the project. The beginner 1-session workshop usually is 3 hour long, and includes a brief lecture about the use and purpose of various needles, quality of wool, and techniques for building the forms and making features. Then I make a quick demonstration, and the students proceed to their own projects. The themes of the latter may vary from wool pets’ figures to Christmas tree ornaments. The only restriction is that they must not be too big and complicated for the beginner.
Throughout the workshop I’ll answer the most common questions about needle felting, such as:
How much wool will I need for my project?
- Where can I buy the supplies?
- What if I break the needle and the tip remains inside my sculpture?
- Can I wash my wool sculpture?
- How do I know if the sculpture is firm enough?
Besides that, I will also demonstrate additional tools that you might like in your felting practice. All basic materials will be provided:
- felting needles
- foam mat (working surface)
- wool of various colors
- felt sheets
Items such as pins, sewing supplies, wire and wire cutters, pliers, scissors, etc., will be available as well.
After the workshop, students will walk away with a cute felt project, and a felting needle to continue crafting beyond the classroom.
Long workshops (2 and more sessions) for continuing students are mostly focused on creating dolls and felting on a wire armature (such as making felt flowers).
For the schedule of the upcoming needle felting workshops please see the News page.
You can see some of my students’ works below