Wet felting is such an enjoyable, though time consuming method of creating many felted projects.My product preference is wool roving. Personally I think it felts faster but others prefer to start with a pre-felt or Merino Cross Cut Batt as seen above. The idea is that it allows you to quickly add a base layer, rather than layers of wool roving. Yes, the layer is added quickly, but for me the actual felting of the layers seems to take longer. Just my experience....others I'm sure will disagree. I purchase my supplies from Living Felt.
For the decorative vessels/vases I make, the wool, whether roving or a Merino Batt, covers both sides of a round flexible plastic circle. It's wet down with hot soapy water, covered with a netting, and worked with one's hand or a textured tool. The idea is the water/soap and friction begin the process of getting the wool fibers to attach to each other. Once one side is prepared, it's turned over and wool is added to the other side, carefully making the sides of the circle nice and tidy and the same thickness. It's slowly worked at first, turning side to side....eventually when it begins to hold together the netting is removed and more rubbing, tossing, turning etc. continues.
When the fibers pull away from the plastic template, it's removed and the project is now roughly worked until it shrinks and becomes dense. I'm obviously providing only the cliff notes here.....this isn't intended as a how-to.... Rather it's just an overview of the process.
A vessel like this takes me a minimum of 2 hrs. I stuff it with old napkins to help keep its shape while it dries for at least a day.
Once totally dry, I like to add extra touches such as this found stick and a piece of sea glass.
This vessel is a bit bigger and embellished with hand-dyed wool 'curls'.
I find these projects very satisfying, however as I suspected for the last 2 years.....it's something sensibly I can no longer do. My shoulder just can't handle the required workout to achieve a densely felted piece.
**** BOTH NOW SOLD. These two pieces will be added to my inventory for sale. Perhaps I can figure out a way to avoid putting so much stress on my aging shoulder.... Hopefully they won't be the end of my production!