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Topic: Is it possible to take a longer break during the wet felting process??  (Read 1306 times)
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silk81
« on: November 24, 2009 01:38:25 PM »

Hi everyone!

I've been wet felting for a little while but so far I only made smaller projects (flowers, jewelry, Christmas ornaments...). However, I plan to felt a rather large wallhanging as a Christmas gift for my parents. The problem is, that I have a baby AND I'm working part time. This means that crafting starts when my son is sleeping at night. That works great for sewing projects which I can set aside whenever I get tired and take it up again a day or two later.

Now my question to all the experienced feltmakers out there:

Is there a point in the wetfelting process where you can set aside your project for at least a day without damaging it?
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Jane Doe
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« Reply #1 on: November 27, 2009 06:18:12 PM »

I have heard of people putting aside their project while wet, but you do run the risk of fibers loosing their spring, and not felting as tightly.

What I've done for super large projects when I want to spread out the task is:

Day 1 - organise myself, ensuring I have all the fibers, soap, materials I want for the project.

Day 2 - unroll my bamboo blind, and lay thin plastic over it.
          (a large black garbage bag cut open & flat)
          Start laying out the fibers.
          When I run out of time, I lay another piece of plastic over it, then roll it up in the bamboo blind for the next day. Everything's still dry at this point.

Day 3 - unroll my project, and continue laying out the fibers.
          When I'm finished laying out the fibers, and just at the point where I would begin the wet process, I put it away.

Day 4 - Unroll my project, remove the top layer of plastic, and start the wet process!
          I do all the soapy felting in this session.
          I then rinse out ALL the soap.
          If I'm pressed for time, I complete the fulling & drying another day - but within only a day or two so the wool doesn't rot or go funky. I've heard of it being left for longer but I don't trust it.

Hope this helps Smiley
When you get to the soapy section, hopefully your kids will be happy to join in and roll the bamboo blind with you. So maybe anticipate doing the soapy section on a weekend with the kids?

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silk81
« Reply #2 on: November 28, 2009 03:52:43 AM »

Thanks for your answer.
I basically did what you described. I laid out the fibers one night and started felting the next. My son is 9 month old and won't be much of a help yet.
Around midnight the felting part was pretty much done and I was getting really tired. I was thinking about rinsing it and fulling it the next day but then I was afraid that anything might go wrong and decided that I'd rather try fulling it in the washing machine. I was afraid of destroying it there, too but the anxiety only lasted some minutes. I put it in a warm washing cycle for about 10 minutes and it worked perfectly. It had about the size I wanted and it was still the right shape.
I try finishing it this weekend and try to post pics next week.
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« Reply #3 on: November 29, 2009 03:48:30 AM »

Oh I'm so glad it's turning out the way you wanted it  Smiley
Yeah, that's the hart part about wet felting - it's physically draining.
But I just think of it as motivational exercise. I really dislike gyms etc, and I'm not the type to "push through the pain" when jogging or doing exercise. But I will keep felting even when I'm feeling tired.

Looking forward to your photos!  Smiley
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piskie-mishkie
« Reply #4 on: March 17, 2010 12:28:41 PM »

hey, well  i read that your peiece alreasy done, but wanted to share some experience ive had. this is what works best for me, and i do it with all my projects (i too have a 7th month, and even b4 that pregnancy forced this habit upon me...)
once i have felted my piece to a point where it is lightly felted, , still soft and spongy, i stop. i rinse and let dry. sometimes if its very delicate, then i let dry with the soap in ti (gasp im sure some ppl might say, but if u use a nice natural soap, and its only for a day, then theres no harm done, just make sure to give it a good vinegar rinse when its the end).
i have found that resuming the felting process is much easier and the fibres felt to the next stage in their feltedness (is that a word?) much faster.
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