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Wednesday, October 30, 2013

a needle felted mousy friend.


A few weeks ago we were reading a little story about a fairy and her gnome friends and her best friend, Jeremy the mouse. I made little gnomes last year(click here for this simple pinecone gnome craft! so cute!)  and a fairy this summer but we had no mouse.

We needed a mouse, little miss informed me. Now.

So. Putting aside laundry and dishes and emails and etc. I used up that precious toddler nap hour making a little mouse friend for her. She was ecstatic and carried it around for days. Then she lost it. So I made another just this past week. This time I took pictures.

I think this is my new favorite needle felting project. Sweet. Simple. And best yet, quick.

A first note about needle felting. You can't use regular needles. You need felting needles. They have barbs on them, tiny barbs, that mush and mash the wool fibers together. I did not understand this at first and tried using regular needles. It doesn't work. At all. These are the kind you are looking for. Also, some people love these little gadgets they have that screws in several needles at a time. I have tried using this gadget. I want to believe in this gadget. BUT every time I use this gadget I break a needle. I think its harder to control them. I am down to one needle now. And its bent. So. No gadgets.

A second note about needle felting. The needles are sharp. Like, very VERY sharp. Please take care not to, for example, hold a large project up against your body as you felt. You will poke yourself in the stomach. And please, try not to needle felt when extremely tired. You WILL end up ramming the needle through your fingernail. And it does hurt. A lot.

Now. Where to get wool. Well, I am lucky in that my mom has a flock of sheep. Which I know is unique. But there ARE lots of great sellers on Etsy who sell raw wool to work with. I am happy to post links if you are interested.

So, here are my mousy making thoughts. Tell me if you don't get something. I will edit to clarify.  YAY. Mousy friends.

 
The very sharp bent needle.

 
a lump of grey wool. you will also need black and pink.

 
start pulling and shaping until your lump resembles mousy parts


 
I would like to point out that it is very difficult to take a picture of yourself needle felting. That is all.
Here is the needle in action, Definitely recommend getting this foam pad thingy. You can also use a couch cushion or something like that.

 
So, needle felting is really about shaping the wool. Think of it like sculpting. Poke a little here, poke a little there. That is all there is to it. And if you don't have enough wool, just add another lump. Its a very forgiving craft.

 
After some poking on the ears and the face I added a few bits of black wool for eyes. It kinda looks like a koala here. The pink nose at the end helps.


 
To make the body I started by forming a tail. Just roll a long piece of wool like a snake in your hand. then needle felt up against the foam piece, while rolling and twisting a bit.


 
I had to add a lump into the inside of the body for a fluffier tummy. Then I pulled out bits from the
side to form two little legs, like a mouse crouching. Then I added the tail.

Below is the bit to add for the front paws (paws? hands? what do mice have?)

I rolled a piece and then needle felted the hands quite a bit to make them sturdy.



 
.
Crap picture. again, the disclaimer. But yes, now add the paws to the body.


 
Now add a bit of pink fluff for the ears. And here is the nearly finished mousy, minus a pink nose.

 


 
A finished little mousy friend, romping in the pine needles. And I must confess I am deathly afraid of mice. And I warned the children that if I see these little guys in a corner on the floor I will likely scream. Which is what I did a mere hour later. Rather lifelike out of the corner of your eye in the kitchen under a towel. EEK.

 
Mr. Mouse and his gnome buddies.



 
And of course baby dear needed one too.

Mousy friends for all!

Happy felting mamas!

2 comments:

  1. I love these little felt guys.

    ReplyDelete
  2. emma! hope you get to try them. so fun. I am thinking of trying a squirrel soon. I know, living life on the edge, eh? HA.

    ReplyDelete

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