When I can’t sleep at night….I think about felting projects. This project has been on my mind for several months ~ a nuno felted floral vest. Yesterday, I could not resist the sun was shining through the fiber studio windows. It was calling to me to come and spend the afternoon felting. I thought I would join Nicole at Frontier Dreams for her Keep Calm Craft On and share my vest with you.
Step One: Design Layout
This project uses silk chiffon fabric, natural and dyed merino top, dyed silk hankies, and locks of dyed mohair. I laid out my sheet of bubble plastic, which is a piece of old swimming pool cover. On top of that, I laid a piece of silk chiffon fabric that measures 42 inches by 85-90 inches. Next, I covered the entire piece of silk with transparent tufts of natural merino wool. Then, using the silk and wool as a backdrop, I created my design on top, using the silk hankies and mohair locks.
Step Two: Wetting It Down
Next, I used a spray bottle to add a fine mist over top of all the wool. This helps keep my design in place. Then, I take a piece of old polyester sheer curtain and carefully lay it over the entire project. Now, I use my spray bottle to thoroughly wet through all layers of the wool, using my hand to press the water into the fibers.
Step Three: Felting
In the felting stage, the wool fibers adhere to the silk fabric and to one another. I drizzle a little soap over top of the entire project and gently rub it using my felting stone. After rubbing for about 30 minutes, I roll it up in my bubble plastic with a swim noodle or PVC pipe inside. Then, I roll it back and forth, checking from time to time to see if the fibers have felted together yet.
Step Four: Fulling
In the fulling stage, the felt shrinks and strengthens. I begin this process by gently throwing the piece of felt on the table for about 15 minutes. Then, I take the felt into the bathroom and use hot water and an old glass wash board to finish the fulling process.
Lastly, armholes are cut and the piece is ironed and ready to wear!
Farmstays & Felting
You too may learn to make a nuno felted vest! Contact me if you would like to come stay in our Farmhouse Suite and take a custom felting workshop!