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Topic: felting needles, foam pads, "finger felting", and fiber  (Read 2028 times)
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« on: September 21, 2009 01:53:35 PM »

Hi everyone!  I'm pretty new to needle felting (I have completed a few projects so far), but I have 4 questions.  Instead of posting them all separately, I figure that i'd post them together.

1. My detail felting needle broke (40 g.) and I would like to know of a good website to get one.  I bought the originals at Pennsic and I forgot to take a card so i could get more (slaps forehead).  I have heard about needles that come in 48 g. and would like some of them too.

2. I have been having a lot of difficulty felting against a foam surface.  Every time I pull the piece away it always leaves these little trailing pieces of fiber behind.  I'm using this flexable piece of styrofoam-ish packing material that I found in my mom's craft stash that I saw one website selling for needle felting.  Could what I'm using to felt on be the problem?  I don't think I am pushing the needle in too far.

3. I have seen on a few topics people using a "finger felting" method that is just rolling the fiber between your fingers or hands.  Whenever I try to do this my fiber does not like felting together or it only felt very loosely.  Am I just a spaz or am I actually doing something wrong?  Should I wet the fiber before I roll it?

4. I would like to know a online cheap source for core fiber roving and for colored roving.  Does anyone know of someplace spectacularly low priced?

Thanks and have a great day!

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« Reply #1 on: October 24, 2009 03:22:07 PM »

Hi, try www.thesheepshedstudio.com for core wool.  A pound of white mill ends is $7.50, I think, plus shipping.   I'd check ebay for needles, I think the smallest I've seen is 42 gauge. I "finger felt" flatter pieces before I needlefelt them together.  It meshes the fibers together enough to take the place of a lot of the needlefelting, but it won't make a firm sculpture or anything.  Anytime  you are stabbing the needle all the way through a piece, fiber is going to poke out on the other side. To avoid getting your piece stuck in the foam, you have to pull it up frequently.  Try angling the needle differently instead of straight up and down, so maybe the fiber won't poke through as much.  Don't bend the needle though, make sure you are still stabbing straigh in and out.   


« Reply #2 on: October 26, 2009 12:19:37 AM »

The finest needle I know of is a 42 as well. I found a place where you can get a 40 but with the barbs concentrated at the end of the needle, which is great for detailing.

As mentioned above, move your piece around. If I am needle felting an ear (which is flat) I make sure I peel the ear off often and needle both sides to wrangle the loose fibres. And do work at an angle, but always in and out at the same angle so you don't bend the needle tip.

I always lay a piece of craft felt (one of those squares you get at craft stores) on my foam (mainly to protect the foam pad) but I still get stray fibres in the felt. Its the nature of the art. So just keep peeling your piece off. It will take practice, but you'll get the hang of it.

I often roll roving, but I make sure I roll it as tight as possible. It will be loose, but it just helps the process a little; you will still need to needle felt it quite well.

Try YouTube and search needle felting. Often someone has uploaded a video as a how to, they may give you some tips.  Smiley

Happy stabbing!

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