Birds of a Feather

I started a new creative hobby this week. 
You know, with all my spare time and all.
My sweet friend, Allison, gave me this book for my birthday, and I haven’t been able to put it down:

Al originally thought it was full of patterns to make items out of store-bought felt, like the little wallets that I have made for my nieces and other special ladies. Boy, was she wrong… and boy, am I so glad!  I “felt” in love with this new art the minute I opened the book.  

As I thumbed through the pages, making a list of tools and materials that I would need and that I was so sure Chris would be ecstatic for me to purchase and store in the house, my eyes fell to what I knew would be my first project: a sweet bird mobile for a new baby. Looked simple yet impressive enough that a novice like me couldn’t mess up. I got myself to Joann’s as hurriedly as I could and nearly fell out at how expensive a quarter of an ounce of roving was going to cost, and I needed a lot more than that. I was a bit discouraged that my new hobby was over before it began because I couldn’t afford it. Sad day in the life of a stay-at-home-crafting-to-keep-sane-because-I-live-in-the-woods-and-camp-is-starting-mama. And now I wouldn’t be able to make my mobile. Stink.

I pulled myself out of that close call with defeat and went home to do some more research online. Apparently, I am not the only one intrigued with this creative outlet as there were many, many websites and resources. And that’s when I found these fine folks, Living Felt. I quickly and easily found what I wanted and needed to get started at extremely fair prices. I spent about $30 and got a lot of variety of wool and colors…where at J’s it would have cost me almost three times that for the same amount. Not to mention my order was shipped that same day with a sweet hand-written note from the company. And then, just today, I got an email from them checking in to make sure I am enjoying my order and lending their assistance if I have any questions. They are good people, making sure they provide folks with the best product from humane practices. The only thing that could make them better is if they were local and I could support my community. I will definitely continue to order from them…

Let me back up a minute… for folks who may not know what “felting” is, because I honestly had no idea before seeing this new book, here’s the rundown: It’s taking raw wool called roving, dyed or natural in color, and forming it into shapes, three-dimensional or large sheets. 

There are two types: needle felting and wet felting, respectively.  I have only tried needle felting with my first project and I think I’m already attached, it may be a while before I try the wet felting. With the needle you are simply rearranging the wool fibers, interweaving them with themselves, into whatever shape you want them to be. It’s repetitive and mindless once you get going, which makes it all the more wonderful.

In my first project, the chosen shape was a sweet little bird, with several spheres:

This little bluebird is a part of a bird family that is now living in my cousin Kristen’s nursery for her sweet baby, Easton.  I wanted to do something unique and handmade for them and when she told me that they were doing the nursery in a “natural and earthy” theme, I knew this would be simply perfect:

I love how it turned out, especially for my first try at felting! 
Poor Noah, his mama got all domesticated after his nursery was done. And now I only have time to make things for other people. Maybe this summer, buddy…

If anyone is interested or in the market for a mobile for a baby gift or yourself, let me know. I would love to create one for you for a fair price. They are just that fun to make…

And for your viewing pleasure, a few photos of the photographer:




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