Saturday, March 17, 2012

Hat Felting

This past Friday, I lead my Surface Design Group in felted hat making. I had done lots of felting but never tried a hat. We are a group of five but one member was away. Between us we have about a dozen books on felting and many had wet felted hats. This photo above shows one layer of purple and the start to the other direction.

Yvonne is making a Tam style hat from her book Uniquely Felt by Christine White. I loved this book and may have to get myself a copy. The book had four or five different hat patterns in it. Here is the plastic resist on her wool and she has just wet the one side and then flipped the wool. She will now add the wool that will be the top of her hat.

The top of her hat with the wool still dry. She is adding different wools for a design.

Placing more bits of wool and these great purple locks. When she is happy with the design she will place a screen over the dry wool and then wet down. After wetting we all rolled the wool on Pool noodles sandwiched between plastic (I forgot to get a photo of this rolling). We then test for some felting before moving on

 Yvonne has got her hat well felted by now (after a few other steps). She then measure for the hole she will cut in her hat for her head.

The wet hat on her head.  We had balloons or Styrofoam heads to dry our hats.

I made a white hat. This is the screen on my wool and I am wetting it down.

 I have my plastic resist on top of my bottom layer at this point. I need to add the wool for the other side. I will leave the plastic resist stick out the bottom for my head opening.

After rolling on a noodle and making sure that felting was starting to take place, I then placed my hat in some tulle and did some hand rolling.

I have got a very large hat here. Very wet too. I did some shirking in the sink with hand rolling and warm damp wool. I may have done just a bit of throwing at this point. It is still to big.

After more shirking it is getting to the correct size. One the right is my white hat. On the left is Dianne's purple and green hat. We were very worried that Dianne's hat was way too big and looked very thin is some places (maybe to wet when we started rolling). She kept going with each step. She got very harsh and did lots of ruff throwing with warm water and some soap. Well in no time it looked great. One of the best hats. I was amazed it worked out great.

The back side of the hats. You can see I added some locks to my hat, I was worried they were not gluing well to start with but they are attached enough. Looks good in person. I will get another photo when it is dry. After 24 hours it is still damp.

This is Dawna's hat. She has not finished the shrinking or throwing part yet. Her hat was getting a small hole in the side so she is going to let her hat dry and then do some needle felting to add more felt in. Then she will finish the wet felting.

I have added this post to The Magic Onions Friday's Nature Table  and Show and Tell and tatertots and jello and Thirty Handmade Days


  1. Cathy....these are awesome. I look forward to seeing the finished products. Looks like you all had a lot of fun.

  2. Who knew there were so many steps in felting? Sounds like you are all having fun throwing and roughing things up. Hope the hats turn out just as you'd like.