10 Inspiring Felt Tutorials & Projects

Handmade felt

I’m still experimenting and playing with felt making. It’s been so fun and I love the instant gratification I get from it. Here are 10 feltmaking tutorials and felt projects that have inspired me to keep exploring the world of felt. Maybe they will get you interested in it too. 😉

  1. Wet felt making for beginnersLINK
    I used this tutorial to make these coasters. Great tutorial!
  2. Felting with kidsLINK
    Small scale felting with basic materials found around the house
  3. Nuno feltingLINK
    Felting a sheer fabric with wool roving to create a stable felt. Great for scarves and belts
  4. Felted balls or beadsLINK
    Clear instructions and pictures to make felt balls for necklaces
  5. Felted wool bead braceletLINK
    Found this tutorial via WhipUp
  6. Necklace and bracelets kids can makeLINK
    I like these as they don’t use the regular round felt beads. Interesting results!
  7. Felt baby bootiesLINK
    Too cute! You have to check these out. You can use store-bought felt for these
  8. Elf felt slippersLINK
    Elf slippers made from felted old sweaters. I want a pair!
  9. Cutie-pie felt basketLINK
    Felt a sweater and make one of these to hold your buttons, sewing notions etc. The name says it all. Cutie-pie indeed!
  10. Felt boxLINK
    You can use handmade or store bought felt to make this clever box. I’ll be making one very soon

I’ll be sharing my own felt tutorial/project on Monday. Until then, I hope you have a relaxing weekend, especially all the mummies out there. Happy Mother’s Day!

See you back here soon. Ta ta!

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Tutorial: Mouse Hand Warmer Quilt

I was looking through my Delicious bookmarks the other day and came across this. I probably bookmarked the mouse hand warmer for its novelty factor but with winter around the corner, it didn’t seem like a bad idea after all. However, I certainly would not fork out $20 for it, especially since it looks so easy to make. And so I sewed my own mouse hand warmer quilt!

On any regular day, this mini quilt looks like a pretty mouse pad and somewhere soft to lay my wrist on.
Mouse Hand Warmer Blanket

But when the temperature drops, I can easily slip my cordless mouse and hand INTO the quilt! My hand stays warm and toasty for hours, making me one happy surfer.
Mouse Hand Warmer Blanket 2

I’m suspecting you’re laughing your heads off now. I know Richard did when I showed him my mouse quilt. He said it’s the most ridiculous thing I’ve made yet! 😆 Even if you just had a good laugh from this, it would have made my day.

Anyway, I also left a little opening for a corded mouse and use a non-slip mat underneath to stop the quilt from sliding around.
Mouse Hand Warmer Blanket 3   Mouse Hand Warmer Blanket 4

I’ve written up some simple instructions below.

  1. Cut two cotton fabrics and batting to measure 12.5″ wide and 24.5″ long.
  2. Place the 2 fabrics together with right sides facing. Place batting on top of the fabrics. Using safety pins, pin the quilt sandwich in place.
  3. Sew a 1/4″ seam all the way around, leaving a 4″ opening on one short side.
  4. Clip the corners and turn inside out through the opening. Use a skewer, chopstick or something similar to poke the corners out.
  5. Give it a good pressing. Fold the whole piece in half and press again.
  6. Sew the 4″ opening closed.
  7. Referring to the above pictures, sew a 1/2″ seam down two sides and leave a 2″ gap in one corner for the mouse cord.

So there you have it! I hope that’s clear enough. It’s just a simple quilt for your mouse and cold hand to slip into. Happy days!

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Tutorial: Knitted I-cord Coasters

What do you do with small amounts of yarn, fabric and other scrap craft materials that you have lying around? Turn them into fun shapes and use them as coasters! Dig out your stash yarn and start knitting relaxing I-cords. It’s so easy that any beginner knitter can make one.

Knitted I-cord Coasters

MATERIALS

  • Scrap amount of any weight yarn
  • A pair of double pointed knitting needles or a short circular needle suitable for yarn. I used the needle size recommended on the yarn’s ball band
  • Dressmakers pins
  • Pen and paper or print my free template (pdf)
  • Long doll making needle/joining needle or embroidery needle
  • Bits and pieces of scrap material to decorate (optional)

THE BASICS: HOW TO KNIT AN I-CORD

Cast on 3 stitches.
Row 1: Knit all. Do not turn work. Just slide the 3 stitches to the other end of the needle.
Row 2: Pull the working yarn tightly around the back of your work and knit all 3 stitches again.
Repeat rows 1 and 2 to create I-cord. Cast off when you’ve reached the desired length.

5 EASY STEPS TO MAKE AN I-CORD COASTER

Step 1: Draw an outline of your coaster on a piece of paper. It can be any shape you want. Or simply print my free template (pdf).
1. Draw outline of shape/ coaster

Step 2: Knit an I-cord and pin onto the outline as you knit. This is to work out the length of I-cord you’ll need for the coaster. Pin from the outside and wrap your I-cord towards the center. Keep knitting until you have enough I-cord to fill your shape.
2. Knit i-cord and pin onto outline as you knit

Step 3: Cast off and pin the remainder of the I-cord into place.
3. Cast off and pin to outline

Step 4: Now for the trickiest part. Using a long piece of yarn and the joining needle, sew the coaster together. You may use the pictures below to get an idea how I’ve done mine. If you’re using an embroidery needle, you’ll have to sew it together differently. I trust that all you creative people will be able to fudge this step. 😉
4.1 Sew shape/coaster to hold it in place

4.2 Sew shape/coaster to hold it in place

4.3 Sew in loose ends

Sew in all loose ends.

Step 5: Remove pins. One coaster done!
5. Remove pins and enjoy!

PERSONALIZE YOUR COASTERS

  • Embroider using chain stitch to bring the leaf to life. Simple and elegant.
    Leaf I-cord Coaster
  • Decorate with scrap fabric and a button. Cut fabric slightly larger than the size you want. Turn the edges in and finger press. Whip stitch into place. Now your bird can see where it’s flying to!
    Bird I-cord Coaster
  • Glue on a toothy felt grin and a couple of googly eyes. Sew a little belly button too. Roaaarrr!
    Monster I-cord Coaster

As you can see, the possibilities are endless!

  • Make them smaller and glue magnets to the back to make cute fridgies
  • Make alphabet and food shapes for your kids to pretend play with
  • String them up into a party garland
  • Add a cord and turn them into Christmas Tree decorations
  • Make super sized ones to sit on as a butt cushion

Have fun making these and happy stash busting! 😀

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Ravelympics: Ready, Steady, Swatch!

I’m getting ready for my first 2010 Ravelympics*. I’ll be knitting for Team Buttercream which you’re all invited to join if you’re not already in a team. I’ve picked my event too – Sweaters Slalom! I’m attempting a personal record of knitting a full-sized man’s jumper in 17 days!

Knitting without Tears book

I’ve chosen to knit the Seamless Hybrid jumper by Elizabeth Zimmerman (EZ). Her book arrived last week and I’m very excited to get started. However, I can only swatch before the start of Ravelympics on February 12.

I really want this jumper to fit as it’s a birthday present for a special guy. Since the pattern is knitted in the round, EZ recommends to swatch in the round too as “some of us knit more tightly than we purl, or contrariwise.” I know it seems like a lot of work, but I’d much rather put the effort in now then to look at an ill-fitted jumper which is never worn outside the home.

So how do you check your gauge for circular knitting?

I’m glad you asked. 🙂 The tutorial I’m about to show you is for a pattern like the Seamless Hybrid, where your own personal gauge with your choice of yarn will determine the number of stitches you need to cast on. If you are swatching to achieve a specified gauge, you might need to increase or decrease your needle size and swatch again if you did not achieve the desired gauge the first time round.

Patons Jet ball band

The first step is to look at the gauge given on the ball band. 16.5 sts = 10cm. I have a 60cm circular needle of the recommended size (5.5mm). Therefore I need to cast on at least 16.5 x 6 = 99 stitches to make sure the work will go right around the circular needles comfortably.

Second step is to knit in the pattern for 8 to 10cm. In my case, I knitted in stocking stitch until I ran out of yarn.

Swatching for Seamless Hybrid jumper

Third step is to pin the work flat. I put the live stitches on a piece of scrap yarn but I don’t think it’s necessary. I’m just paranoid that it will unravel. Basically, take the needles out and pin it.

Fourth step is to measure. I have a couple of knitter’s gauge rulers to help me with this but any old ruler will do. I want to know how many stitches I have in 10cm space.

Checking gauge

You can see from the ruler above that I have 8 stitches per 5cm (see red numbers below stitches).

Double checking gauge

I also have another gauge ruler from Knit Picks and this one has a magnified area. It does not photograph well but trust me there are 16 stitches per 10cm (see yellow numbers).

So my gauge is 16 stitches = 10cm on 5.5mm needles. It’s slightly different from the ball band’s gauge of 16.5 stitches = 10cm.

The top to copy from

The fifth and last step is to work out how many stitches to cast on. I’m going to use the measurements from an existing top (above) to make my Seamless Hybrid jumper. The bottom hem measures 111cm around.

So basic maths will tell me that if 10 cm = 16 stitches, 111cm = 16 x 11.1 = 177.6 or rounded to 178 stitches

If I did not swatch and just used the gauge on the ball band, I would have cast on 16.5 x 11.1 = 183 stitches. The extra 5 stitches would have added about 3cm to the sweater body!

Another good thing about swatching is that I get a chance to see how the yarn looks knitted up. I was nervous about the colourway at first but I really like how it looks. It will suit the birthday guy perfectly.

That’s it. I’m ready to knit the jumper! I have to wait a little over 3 weeks before casting on and I can’t wait!

*Ravelympics is a Ravelry event where knitters/crocheters/spinners from all around the world compete for 2 weeks of focused, intense personal & team challenges while watching the Winter Olympics. This time we’re “gathering” in Vancouver, Canada during Feb 12-28, 2010. Come join us!

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Two ways to reuse your bath puff

My bath puff always comes loose after a few weeks and I just end up buying a new one. It seems such a waste. There must be ways to reuse or recycle the bath puff.

Used bath puff

I unravelled one that was destined for the bin. The centre cord that held it together just needed a little snip and the whole thing came loose very easily.

Bath puff pulled apart

There was nearly 2 metres of tube netting in that one puff! No wonder the bath puff doesn’t fray after washing. It’s a tube! Duh! It just comes loose and looks like a ball of mess.

Tube netting from bath puff

I’ve seen yarn sleeves made with a similar netting. They are sold as knitting/ crocheting accessories to hold centre-pull balls of yarn.


Photo from Ozquilts.com.au

I snipped a small section of the tube netting and stuck my pretty red yarn cake in it. Voila! One yarn sleeve!

Yarn sleeve

My only concern is that when the ball gets really small, the netting will be too loose for it. I think the netting can be cut lengthwise and the edges re-sewn (or crocheted) together to make a tighter tube if that happens.

Anyway, I still had a lot of netting left. So I cast on 6 stitches with the largest needles I own, which is a pair of 12mm needles, and began knitting in plain garter stitch.

Knitting up pot scrubber

I knitted till I ran out of netting and cast off.

Loose ends

I wove the ends in with my fingers and reattached the hanging cord. Ta-da! A “new” pot scrubber!

"New" pot scrubber

Now for the test. It’s a good thing I didn’t do the dishes last night. 😛

Pot scrubber in action

It aced the pot scrubbing test but how will it go getting machine washed? I threw the pot scrubber in the washing machine for a wash with some tea towels. It survived that too with just some of the ends coming loose. I just wove them back in with my fingers again.

So there you go! Two ways of reusing a bath puff – make a yarn sleeve and knit up a pot scrubber.

Yarn sleeve & pot scrubber

What do you think? More ideas welcome. 🙂

Update: Notice the little Stumble It! link below? If you like what you read here, I hope you will give me a Thumbs Up on StumbleUpon so that other crafters can find my patterns and tutorials. And oh, while you’re at it, why not subscribe to blog updates too? 😉 Thankyouverymuchly!

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