Easter, the chocoholics holiday. All that yummy chocolate goodness, ahhh lovely.
For those who are still holding strong on your new years resolution (I did try too, honest) I have been thinking of you. Next week I will have a free tutorial for you on making needle felted Easter eggs.
To follow up on last weeks post I have written a Reference Guide Felting Needles . I hope that this brings anyone who is starting out with needle felting a bit more clarity on how to use needles. I own far too many felting books, more than I will admit to my husband. I love to read them and learn techniques but I have found that discussing needles and how to use them effectively is always missed or not discussed. So here is my solution to all of that. 🙂
In the guide I make some suggestions on types of wool or fibre to use. Unfortunately there are sooo many different types of fibre (animal, vegetable, man made… no it’s not a science lesson) that I could not name them all. So a broad coarse, medium, fine category was used to help out. Let me share with you my favourite fibre to felt with. 🙂
What fibre tickles your fancy?
I am a fibre fiend. My cupboards are full of mason jars filled to the brim with hand dyed wool and my drawers are filled with fleece waiting patiently to be turned into delicious fibre sculptures. When I first found needle felting I pretty much only used Merino wool and Corriedale wool as these are readily available on spinning and weaving online stores. As my addiction to fibre has grown I have found so many more luscious fibres to use. Working with farmers and small artisan fibre producers has shown me what a variety in texture I can bring to my work. Here are my top 3 favourite wool fibres to felt with.
Merino is probably the first type of wool you think of when you hear the word sheep. They grow large quantities of dense wool that can vary greatly in micron. I use Merino fibre with a micron of 22 (for a smooth finish) to 30 (coarse for core structures). Merino dyes really well which makes it great to create lively needle felt pieces.
Lush tones of grey and easy to felt is the lovely Gotland wool. Gotland felts so quickly and has beautiful shades once dyed. Oh how my heart melts. The Gotland breed are originally from Sweden but we are lucky enough to have breeders here in Australia. (YAY) Which means lovely locks of Gotland can be mine to felt.
This breed of sheep and its beautiful locks drive me wild. It loves dye and creates beautiful shades. Unlike Gotland, I do not use English Leicester for core wool. Oh no, those pretty shades of lock are used by me to create hair for any of my more human work. A friend of min from down south processes and dyes this fibre for me and I am eternally grateful to her for sharing her talent with me.
Well that’s it for this week. I’ll see you next week for some fibre fun.