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Topic: Make-shift Felting Needles Tutorial with Completed Pin Pics  (Read 5428 times)
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RecycleMicol
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« on: September 01, 2006 10:55:39 PM »

Someone asked about this from another thread, so here's how I made my own felting needles. 

You can also use the corsage pins with the faux pearl on the end or 'T' pins for this.(they're thicker, though.)

If you need more help, I can take more pics.  (Please read through the tutorials on this board to learn how to do the actual needle felting.)

Children...please get an adult to help you with this project.  Adults, do this at your own risk...I am not responsible for accidents!

Take some quilting straight pins (longish pins with either balls or flat plastic grips), a square or oblong eraser, a cutting board and an Exacto knife fitted with a straight-angled chisel blade....or any razor-sharp chisel.

Lay a pin on the cutting board and place the eraser on the ball or plastic top of the pin to hold it firmly in place.  (gives good grip and may save fingers!)

Starting at the pointy end, Start hacking away at the pin with the chisel at sharp angles that will produce nicks with the openings of the nicks pointing towards the sharp pointy end of the pin.  In other words, you will be 'hacking' toward the eraser that you are holding...please be careful!  Only go as far up the needle towards the eraser as you safely can, leaving about half of an inch at the ball (or top) end to grip when doing the actual needle felting.

Now, turn the pin just a fraction and do the first steps again until there are vertical rows of barbs all around each 'side' of the pin. 

And then, a tip about the needle felting brush!   A large, thickly bristled flat (or barely contoured) hairbrush will work well to felt on instead of the traditional foam or more modern needle felting brushes that cost $16.50 at the craft stores!  I got mine at the dollar store...yes...it was a dollar!

Here are the pics:




RecycleMicol

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corduroy cat
« Reply #1 on: September 02, 2006 01:20:56 PM »

wowzers, i'd not even thought about making my own! i'll stick to buying mine cause i figure i hurt myself enough with those, best not to push my luck making my own, lol Wink great idea and tut though, thanks for your contribution!
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GraceOblivious
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« Reply #2 on: September 02, 2006 03:13:16 PM »

Micol, I say again. You are amazing.  It certainly worked.

My suspicion is you will find a commercial felting needle faster at creating the "felt" as the barbs are larger and more uniformly downward.  What you created may be most like a fine finishing needle - size 42.  The lower #s are larger in diameter and have longer barbs.  The barbs capture single fibers and mesh them around and under other fibers with the resulting tangling, compacting the piece and becoming felt.  The commercial needles work mainly in the down stroke. 

As you suggested, using the larger diameter pins and needles one might be able to get deeper "barbs"  -

There is one source online that has needles for 50cents - if one buy quantity of 10.  Most sources charge about $1 a needle.  The fancy Clover felters are more expensive for sure. 

One could use a "wine" cork or build a handle from polymer clay.  for single needle holder or mutliple needle  holders.  Am anziously awaiting to see what you do to create a multiple needle tool for the hat feltalong.  And if you create your own needles for that too.  Love your willingness to recycle and test ideas.

Thanks for sharing this great DIY tool. 
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Etsy http://www.feltsewcrafty.etsy.com
Zibbet http://www.zibbet.com/aTranquilNook
Blog http://aTranquilNook.blogspot.com/
Oh how I love to Sew and Make felt
RecycleMicol
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« Reply #3 on: September 02, 2006 03:49:22 PM »

One could use a "wine" cork or build a handle from polymer clay.  for single needle holder or mutliple needle  holders.  Am anziously awaiting to see what you do to create a multiple needle tool for the hat feltalong.  And if you create your own needles for that too.  Love your willingness to recycle and test ideas.


Oooo...thanks for trying the technique out for me, GraceOblivious!  I was happy to see someone with experience tell me about their tests with this.  Thanks for all the great information, too!

I did try to take the pins and insert them in the eraser to make a 'multi-needle' tool.  But found that the eraser gave way too much to keep them straight.  I'll have to either use polymer clay like you suggested or some sort of hard plastic tool, drill tiny holes and super-glue them into place, maybe.  I thought about using the wooden 'turned' handles off of a jump rope that I saw at the dollar store.  You'd get two for a dollar, that way!  They kind of looked like the shape of the multi-needle tools I've seen, but they're longer, of course.

We'll see!  There will be lots of great ideas from the Craftster crew, I'm sure!!!

Later,
RecycleMicol
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chipper
« Reply #4 on: September 02, 2006 06:48:00 PM »

Love the idea of the diy felting needles!  but in case your in the market for some,  Peace fleece sells them for 25cents  ( http://www.peacefleece.com/felting.htm )  Just a heads up Smiley
--chipp
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RecycleMicol
Phasing out my swaps for now. I'll swap again later!
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« Reply #5 on: September 02, 2006 07:06:21 PM »

That's a great price!  And the shipping is only $2.50 if you only purchase the needles, that's a good deal, too.

I just wish that I could feel more secure buying online.  I finally broke down and made my first two online purchases with my debit card last week and this week we notice a charge to our account just following those purchases and had to cancel my debit card and dispute a $129.00 charge from someone buying computer software with my card number!  Thankfully, we didn't have to pay that bogus charge.

Can you believe it?  I just can't believe that it's a coincidence.  (I really do usually try to buy from locally owned businesses...but the craft stores [even the larger chains] here didn't have the things I needed.)

But, I have a nice Craftster friend who is going to do a personal swap with me and she's including some needles.  That will be wonderful!!!

Felted Hat Craftalong, here I come!!!!

-RM
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Diane B.
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« Reply #6 on: September 03, 2006 03:05:14 PM »

Quote
I did try to take the pins and insert them in the eraser to make a 'multi-needle' tool.  But found that the eraser gave way too much to keep them straight.  I'll have to either use polymer clay like you suggested . . .


RecycleMicol, if you're interested in putting pins into clay handles to make a multi-needle tool, check out the photos I just put of similar things in this thread at the Polymer Clay Board:
http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=118670.0

(There are various other things in polymer handles shown too... I should add more sometime too 'cause the possibilities are practically endless!)



Diane B.

note: edited by moderator GO to remove repitive info more appropriate in signature area
« Last Edit: September 03, 2006 03:07:55 PM by GraceOblivious » THIS ROCKS   Logged

POLYMER CLAY "ENCYCLOPEDIA" 
http://glassattic.com/polymer/contents.htm
few of my photos
http://s96.photobucket.com/albums/l163/DianeBB
(had to move them from YahooPhotos, so many now without captions)
RecycleMicol
Phasing out my swaps for now. I'll swap again later!
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Posts: 2378
Joined: 12-Jul-2006

Use it up, Wear it out, Make it do or do without!


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« Reply #7 on: September 03, 2006 03:32:55 PM »

I replied on the Poly Clay board thread...thanks again!

RM
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For my Free Knitting Pattern for Hand Springs Fingerless Mitts:

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I'm finally on RAVELRY!  User ID RecycleMicol
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