Monday, March 14, 2011

Day 1 purse making. How a raw wool purse is felted tutorial

Hello Everyone!!! I have started on a large felted purse. For those of you that have been following my blog, this type of felting may be new to you, but this is what I have mostly been doing previous to the hat challenge. The type of purse I am making requires me to make my own hand felted fabric from raw fibers. For this purse I am using sheep's wool which is pictured above and alpaca wool . The sheep's wool is used as a reinforcement. It creates a stronger thicker wool, but the alpaca wool is softer and has a more pleasant texture. You can see above what it looks like in its cleaned raw state.

Pictured here are a set of carders. I take the hairs and "card " them. This is like brushing your hair when it is tangled. I am trying to put all of the strands in the same direction so I can lay them out on my mat for felting.
THE CAT FOUND MY WOOL BOX!!!! This happens to me frequently.....
Here is what the wool and alpaca fibers look like after I have carded them. The wool is on the left and the alpaca is on the right.
This the first layer of wool. The hairs are all layed out in on direction overlaping
This is a picture with three layers felted together, except the back row. I took the picture this way so that you could see the contrast . I have " pre" felted this with a felting needle. You do not have to do this step, but I prefer to have an idea of how the fibers will look before I work on felting, I can also correct my mistakes if any at this point. Once I start felting the process is not reversable. I like to keep myself in check all the time. I am very very careful with detailing.
This is a picture of me with the pre felt fabric. This is to give you an idea of the size of the piece I am working on. It will shrink by about 30 percent. The next post will be on Wednesday and I will show you how it becomes felt and I will put the designs on the front of the fabric. It is going to have black and Red/brown designs on it.

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