Needle Felting

I’ve been interested in needle felting for a while, especially after buying a trivet made of colorful wool balls at Trader Joes. A couple weeks ago I came across a picture of a needle felted parrot and decided to look deeper into the art, or hobby, or craft. Whatever.

Well, when executed well, it’s an art. I found photos of needle felted parrots that, at a glance, I thought were real birds. Partly because of the precision of the artist, and partly because they blend clay and other materials for the hard bits with the felted wool. It turned out that basic supplies aren’t terribly expensive–at least compared to some of my other pursuits–so I ordered a starter kit.

I made a ball, and then a moth. I watched a few videos. I stabbed myself with the needle. My first project is a galah parrot, like Ruga. No photos of that yet because I have to dig out some clay for the beak. It’s nowhere near as amazing as the ones that sell for hundreds of dollars on Etsy. But I learned a lot making it.

Next I found a lot of pictures of coral reefs. Good thing the starter kit came with 50 colors. I specifically wanted to create a coral reef as seen from above, like when I snorkel or dive them.

I found a remnant of marbleized green cloth in my fabric drawer to serve as the backing. The pieces are sewn to the cloth, and the cloth is doubled (to hide the stitching, and secured in this cool “display embroidery hoop.”

The jellyfish is suspended on a wire run through one of its tentacles. I see I need to conceal the top of the wire–too much handling to get it installed I guess.

Coral Reef #1
12″ diameter (not counting starfish legs), 5.5″ high