Needle felting with cutters is the ideal beginners project. You can create any shape without the need to be highly skilled whilst protecting your fingers from getting a little stabbed with the needle.
Needle Felting Supplies
you will need roving wool in any colour of your choice. Then you will need a set of needles, normal needles won’t do! If you want to learn more about the best wool for needle felting have a little look at our other articles.
Then take a look at some of the cookie cutters you already own, or try some here. We go for metal ones but just be aware that the end of your needle will be brittle and susceptible to damage if you hit the metal.
Using the Cookie Cutters
This will take around twenty minutes. You can hold it between finger and thumb to feel if it is thick enough.
If the cookie cutter is massive it will take longer. If you ant a more dense shape it will also take longer.
We will put the stars into a mobile for a gift, but the hearts will form part of a little valentines garland.
Waffle Stitch is one of those crochet stitches that look super effective and are actually relatively easy. I hope to show you an easy tutorial to make your own soft cotton face cloths.
You will need some cotton double knit. Now I love a variety pack and get them like this because you can make little matching sets for different family members. It is practical to make them different colours so that you have separate face cloths.
Get yourself a set of these
and you will be set for any project. For this one we will need a size 4 hook.
YouTube Tutorial for Waffle Stitch Face Cloth
How to start waffle stitch
You will be working a chain in threes. So for the face cloth we are thinking about 21 or 24 chains, on a 4mm hook. For a baby blanket around 60 will be good, don’t forget you will be using thicker wool so a 5mm hook will be great.
Once you have chained to a multiple of three you must add a further four chains on.
Then you will need to complete a treble into the second stitch from the hook. The treble is fully explained in the video but you want to wrap the hook before feeding it through and then bring one more back with you.
You will need to put a treble into the top of each of your chain stitches. When you get to the end of the first row you will chain one. Now for the waffle stitch part.
We turn it round and complete a treble back into the top of the first stitch Now we can decide which of the two row repeats we want to make. I go for a treble into the top of the first stitch, followed by a treble from behind the next stitch. So I will then do another one from behind. It is not pulling through any stitching but pulling the whole treble forward. This then creates the waffle stitch look. Two forward and one from on top.
When we get to the end we always give it one chain and then turn and treble into the top of the end stitch. Then we flip the pattern to keep pulling the waffle stitch pattern. Now instead of two trebles from behind we do one treble from behind and two from the top. Carry on until the end and then create our chain one and turn to repeat the second row again and so on.
Getting the pattern even
To finish it is really important that you do not give only half of the start, as you can see here it is not even. You can see that the top section is half as high as the bottom so make sure you give one more row. This is now more even.
Waffle Stitch blanket
I made this gorgeous blanket for my friend as a housewarming present and I couldn’t have enjoyed it more.
When you go for a blanket this big just do all of your chain stitches until it looks the right length. Then count them and work out if they divide into three. Then add your four more chains and start the treble back into it as above. I managed to do an entire ball of wool an evening but had to buy softer grip crochet hooks as a result!
Good luck and please do share with us if you have enjoyed making them!
The best wool to use for needle felting is called roving. This is not a well organised and teased fleece, but a clean and carded wool that can be easily meshed together. The principles of the needle are that the barbs allow us to entangle the strands. Roving wool allows this to happen easily. The more messy the wool to start with the easier it becomes. It is not a science. However you can get started easily.
You want to be able to pull it apart gently and keep the fleece in line ready to manipulate.
Best wool for beginners needle felting projects
This wool is 100% Natural Wool Roving and perfect for making needle felting projects. It is from Corriedale cross sheep and you are also helping support an industry which has been established since 1955.
Perfect if you want an undyed roving wool, but for more vibrancy you could go for because with this kit you get 50 Colors Fibre Wool Yarn Roving . So you can be as creative as you like. It also gives you perfect freedom to play around.
Needle felting accessories
You will also need a good quality one of these! This one is also rather cute as it is made from natural wool.
These are fancy and it will save you time in the future that they are colour coded too! there are other brands available but these really will be a life saver in the future.
Needle Felting Projects For Beginners
We love to be creative and hope that everyone can find our Needle Felted Baubles nice and easy for your first project. We are using our new skills to work out the best rare breed sheep for our small holding. So that we can use all of our own produce.
You may also like to try
We love all of our craft project and you may also like to try..
Hot chocolate stirrers make wonderful gifts for a class at Christmas, or as favours for a winter wedding! If we are honest they can get expensive if you are buying ready made ones! Even though they look sumptuous they are also often wrapped in single use plastics.
Then you are also going to need some Wooden Teaspoons these ones are fully biodegradable and will go straight on the compost after use. All very in keeping with an Eco-Friendly Christmas or wedding, party any excuse really! The basis of hot chocolate stirrers are wooden spoons!
Making the Chocolate Stirrers
This is a good family activity and will be lovely as a gift for class mates at the end of year. However there is a lot of heat when we melt the chocolate, so depending on skill levels adults may be in charge of pouring.
To melt the chocolate we used a saucepan with a pyrex dish on it. The saucepan has water in it and the dish sits on top without touching the water at all. Break the chocolate down into small pieces. One bar of cooking chocolate will make around 4 spoons of very full chocolate. It has to be cooking chocolate as we want the stirrers to work in hot milk. The chocolate just needs to melt and not cook at all.
Keep stirring and when it has all melted take it from the heat. Then you can pour into the silicon cupcakes.
Watch our wonderfully awful video showing how easy it is to get the sticks to stand up! It is an epic fail but we did enjoy it and got them to stand tall eventually, but that is why we now use wooden spoons not sticks! Our epic fail is your triumph!
Now to make them unique…
Make your hot chocolate spoons unique!
The beauty of DIY hot chocolate stirrers is that you can load those spoons with all of their favourite things. Marshmallows, hundreds and thousands, lace it with alcohol anything you like.
If you are melting the chocolate over the hob it is the ideal time to add small amounts of alcohol at a time. This will not split the cooking chocolate and will depend on how you want it to turn out. We love Baileys in ours as it goes so well in hot chocolate.
If you are adding marshmallows use some patience! Wait until it is cooler. Then sprinkle on top. We use the mini marshmallows to hold the spoons in place as well!
Needle felted baubles are a fun way to create unique Christmas tree decorations. There is a comparatively small initial cost involved and it is easy to decide if you enjoy it before any big expenses. You can be completely creative and try any colour combination that you like.
If we were needle felting animals or statues we would need a mat to work on. Usual just a lap sized square of upholsters block. It is robust enough to take the occasional needle through it and fat enough to protect your lap! In this instance we have the bauble itself. Just don’t go too far into it!
Using a medium sized needle you can see that it is graduated to get wider, therefore the thing to remember is that the deeper you push the fatter the needle is. So if we want to create gentle joins with not much disturbance to the surface we go gently and don’t go too deep. If we want to make the wool more condensed we can stab it deeply.
Remember we cannot undo what we have done in needle felting but if we make it too compact, we can always add extra fleece to make it a larger size.
Getting started with your needle felted baubles
No scissors is the rule! You want the natural fibres to knot together and by cutting it you limit that ability. So gently pull the wool apart keeping your hands a good distance apart. It is possible to break the wool sideways as well. This gives us freedom to make small scraps useful.
YouTube Tutorial for Needle Felted Baubles
You can see from these images that I have twisted the wool together loosely. Then I hold firmly to the bauble. This then creates a surface to poke through. So bare in mind that the needle is barbed and the deeper you insert it the thicker the needle. This gives you freedom to mix it up a bit. Change the angle that you poke from and you will have a lovely firm connection.
Just work a small area at a time and keep moving around the bauble. You want it to be completely covered with no polystyrene showing. I like the swirls of this wool so I am keeping the direction of my wool. I also mix the colours as well. So once it is covered with my base wool I then add a top wool. Felting sideways as I go to keep them all together as one entangled piece.
We are 100% aware that these are not perfect, but they our beginners needle felting projects so are therefore perfect to us!
Other Handmade Christmas Decorations
What does needle felted mean?
The needles that you use for needle felting are barbed and designed to mesh the fibres together. The wool is naturally prone to entanglement so the needle just encourages that process. The more you work the wool the more dense it becomes. So you can make it more compact and rigid, but you can’t undo that process.
Can you felt without a felting needle?
No, because it is barbed and graduated to entangle the wool it wouldn’t work with smoother needles. Normal needles have the opposite design feature as they are intended to glide through without snagging. With the barbs your carded or loose wool becomes more dense and meshed together, making it ideal for modelling and shaping.
Is needle felting hard to learn?
If you want to get creative then it is an ideal beginners craft, but if you want to get some of those amazingly accurate animal sculptures then it is hard! So far I have made a few dozen needle felted baubles and it has massively helped my skills with the needle, but I am not in the same league as some of these super neat etsy stars! But give it a go, I have popped a few beginners kits together which are really affordable so you can try and not carry on afterwards.
How do I get started?
Start with a basic project. We have gone for baubles because I wanted some stocking fillers that were unique. If I am honest I think ours look better because they are not perfect, but very satisfying. We put a pack together that you can buy to get started. That way you will have everything you need with a smaller initial cost. We think that each bauble has cost us around £1. So not expensive but fun, so why wouldn’t you give it a go?