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The basics of needle felting: Where to get started locally

Nov 3rd, 2018 | Category: Crafts

by Maggie Swanson

You start with the best of intentions. The project picture looks adorable and doable, the materials are lined up, and you’re eager to get started needle felting. You give it a go, but it’s lacking a lot of the simple beauty you were striving for, and it doesn’t compare to the items featured in the tutorial video, photos and books that you’ve been following. Your felted project that should be simply charming has turned out to be simply the opposite. You could use some help.

Make this adorable lumberjack in a class on Wednesday, Nov. 28, 5:30-8 p.m. at Ragfinery in Bellingham.

Make this adorable lumberjack in a class on Wednesday, Nov. 28, 5:30-8 p.m. at Ragfinery in Bellingham.

Needle felting uses a barbed or notched needle to combine individual fibers together to form a shape. For those wanting to learn needle felting – or for anyone wanting to create within a real-life class with instruction and camaraderie – you can comfortably move past the online tutorials and check out your local shops for guidance.

Following are some ideas for seasonal classes that combine fun instruction with a take-home ornament or project. Plus, you’ll learn about the materials needed and how they work together, as well as felting kits and other questions. Generally, materials include small amounts of carded wool in various colors (preferably fine or medium-fine wool), felting needles (please note these are sharp and kids should be helped when learning to use them), felting needle holder, and a felting surface such as a sponge or piece of foam.

Fairy: Join Natalia of Feral Felt on Saturday, Nov. 3 to create a fairy. The cost is $35 plus kits will also be for sale. The class runs 2-4:30 p.m. at Northwest Yarns, 1401 Commercial St, Bellingham, (360) 738-0167, www.nwyarns.com.

Bird Ornament: The Pickford Art Studios and Feral Felt present this workshop on Wednesday, Nov. 7. Participants will sculpt wool roving into a delicate bird to hang in your window, use as a gift topper, or add to anything else in need of cheer and whimsey. The cost is $35 per person, supplies included. Needle felting kits will also be available for purchase. The workshop starts at 6 p.m. Pickford Art Studios, 1318 Bay St, Bellingham. See www.brownpapertickets.com.

Gnome: Northwest Yarns offers a needle felting gnome workshop on Saturday, Nov. 10, with Natalia of Feral Felt. The workshop starts at 1 p.m. The cost is $35 per person. Ages 8 and above. Or, try the Felted Dryer Balls class on Dec. 1. Northwest Yarns, 1401 Commercial St, Bellingham, (360) 738-0167, www.nwyarns.com.

Intro to Needle Felting: In this class on Sunday, Nov. 11, students will discover how fun and easy it is to create with wool fleece. From simple wool beads to intricately detailed small figures, the creative possibilities are endless. Students will leave class with new felted creations plus the tools and knowledge to keep on creating more at home. The class is open to ages 12 and up, and meets 1-4 p.m. at Schack Art Center, Studio 1, Everett, (425) 259-5050, www.schack.org.

Holly Berries & Leaf: Carol Hewitt will show you the basics of needle felting on Sunday, Nov. 18. At this workshop she will be instructing how to needle felt your own leaf and holly berries. Cost is $10 per person. These workshops are intended for ages 10 and over. The class runs from 2-4 p.m. at Fairhaven Toy Garden. Also, the store offers an owl class on Nov. 6, Bunting Baby on Nov. 27, and others. See www.fairhaventoygarden.com or call (360) 714-8552.

Boot slippers: Make a hand-felted pair of boot slippers by layering and felting wool fibers around a custom made pattern, instructed by Donna Hunter. The result is warm, strong slippers of your design that fit you. The workshop meets Thursday, Nov. 15 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Jansen Art Center, Lynden. The cost is $40.50 per member and $45 for non-members, plus $12 materials fee. Contact (360) 354-3600, www.jansenartcenter.org.

Felted Lumberjack: Learn the art of needle felting, using natural wool roving, to make this hearty lumberjack. The class meets Wednesday, Nov. 28, 5:30-8 p.m. at Ragfinery in Bellingham. All materials provided and no experience necessary. Tickets are $29 each. See www.ragfinery.com/upcoming-events.

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