I've been kind of hinky (worried) about needle felting around my baby. She's not big enough that she'll sit on the floor and play for the most part, so I no longer worry about how to felt with her on my lap. Now I have to worry about what to do with those needles when I go chasing after her (boy can she MOVE!).
GraceO suggested clover's needle felting tool. I looked around a bit and discovered that you can pick it up at the local Hobby Lobby (for us in the states) and last week it was ON SALE. So I got one. I played around with it (look for my pinewood derby car). And I LOVE it. Let me show you why.
You can see the needles are in a plastic cover. You can also see (erm, maybe) the green band says 'lock/unlock'. When unlocked, the clear plastic slides up and down, exposing the needles when you punch, covering them when you don't. When you lock it, the clear plastic STAYS IN PLACE. So you can leave it sitting for a second as you run after babies that chase kitties.
I've got my fingernail on the plastic and I'm holding it about half way down.
The handle holds 5 needles (and I think they come with medium needles?) and you can easily replace or take them out.
There are a few drawbacks. The plastic does give kind of a funky 'bounce' to your felting rhythm. It may throw some people off. I didn't let it throw me off, I have my baby's safety to think about.
You also can't use the tips of the needles to move fiber around unless you pull the clear plastic up a little.
It for sure is a great investment and I HIGHLY recommend it to anyone with small children, pets, or paranoia.
Now on to my HAT!!