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#1 of 43 Old 11-08-2006, 05:18 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Do felted balls bounce? (i hope i am posting this in the right place)
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#2 of 43 Old 11-11-2006, 10:00 PM
 
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Minimally but satisfactorily. Bobby likes to throw his and yell "BOING!!!"
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#3 of 43 Old 11-15-2006, 05:30 AM
 
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They bounce best if they are firmly felted. They are also great for bowling with the recycling (bottles) I discovered while teaching a felting class for young kids.
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#4 of 43 Old 11-15-2006, 09:00 AM - Thread Starter
 
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wow that is cool! thanks so much, now i have to figure out how to make one:
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#5 of 43 Old 11-15-2006, 06:58 PM
 
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Wind wool yarn into a firm ball a bit bigger than what you want your finished ball to be. Then take it to the sink, get it wet & soapy, and squish and rub it with your hands until it's as felted as you like. Keep wetting and soaping as needed - hot water helps open up the scales on the wool fibers better, speeding the felting.
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#6 of 43 Old 11-16-2006, 02:11 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mehndi mama View Post
Wind wool yarn into a firm ball a bit bigger than what you want your finished ball to be. Then take it to the sink, get it wet & soapy, and squish and rub it with your hands until it's as felted as you like. Keep wetting and soaping as needed - hot water helps open up the scales on the wool fibers better, speeding the felting.
For a smoother and a bit prettier ball, wind yarn like Mehndi Mama says, then needle felt a layer of roving (hardly takes any at all, maybe a half-ounce) to the outside. Then continue to follow M. Mama's nice clear instructions about felting. (For those fiber geeks among us who just happen to have felting needles and roving about in frighteningly large quantities).
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#7 of 43 Old 11-17-2006, 09:14 PM
 
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I did one like that a year ago, because I wanted an excuse to needle-felt something. I put a cute little lamb-in-a-field scene on it, with a sun, and a bush with berries, and a butterfly, and flowers in the grass.....it turned out gorgeous! And it wet-felted down really nice and smooth and firm, too.
Unfortunately, one of my kids left it in my mom's yard, and my dad ran over it with the lawnmower
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#8 of 43 Old 11-18-2006, 04:00 PM
 
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how would you needle felt roving? and how can you put a design on the outside? I'm fascinated!!
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#9 of 43 Old 11-18-2006, 04:13 PM - Thread Starter
 
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soo cool! I took some yarn and did what Mehndi mama said but I must have done something wrong because it is unraveling though it is rather hard and bouncy so maybe i need to work more on it or get different kind of yarn, I believe the yarn i used is bartletts? but am not positive since it was a thrift store find.(i found a bag of yarn and some are bartlett)
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#10 of 43 Old 11-18-2006, 06:55 PM
 
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I use strips of cut up sweater for the core of wool balls, since I have so many scraps from sweater pants. Then I tack a layer of wool batting on top with needle-felting, and wet felt it in the washer. I've added needle-felted designs after I make the ball too.

I've also run wool balls that are fuzzy or pilly through the washer again, tied up in pantyhose like I do the first time. Makes them look like new!
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#11 of 43 Old 11-18-2006, 11:49 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Erinok View Post
how would you needle felt roving? and how can you put a design on the outside? I'm fascinated!!
You use a felting needle, which isn't a needle in the sense that you're probably thinking. It's a thin pointy piece of metal (needle-like) with little barbs on the shaft that catch the hairs of the wool and tangle them up with each other. You can use it to sculpt wool, or embellish knitted fabric with yarn, or, in this case, tack down roving so it won't go shifting on you when you wet-felt it. Felting needles are only a dollar or two each, or .30 apiece or less if you buy them in massive bulk from e-bay.

So you would pull a thin layer of roving, say 2"x3", lay it on the yarn ball, and poke at it with the felting needle until it's staying put pretty well. Then add more on another area of the ball, and repeat. Keep it up until you can't see the yarn. Then wet-felt. (Keep in mind it takes AGES to dry - mine have been 4 days on my windowsill and are still damp. Maybe I'll stick them in the dryer. That might be interesting. :-)
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#12 of 43 Old 11-27-2006, 10:50 PM
 
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I just tried this, and my ball keeps unwinding while I roll it around in the soap and hot water. Any more advice?
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#13 of 43 Old 11-28-2006, 10:49 AM
 
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Make sure it's wound very tightly. If you can, tuck the yarn end in under some other strands of yarn, or use a yarn needle to poke the yarn end through the middle of the ball.
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#14 of 43 Old 11-28-2006, 10:59 AM
 
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Thank you Mehndi Mama. I'm so excited by this idea. I have a big bag of moth-eaten Lopi and lots of little ones on my Christmas list.
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#15 of 43 Old 11-30-2006, 10:51 PM
 
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I've just made my first felt ball, and have broken my first felting needle! What happened, you ask? Well... I wet-felted the yarn ball, then tried needle-felting the roving over it. .. the first ball looks great, but when I started the second one... I bent, then broke, the felting needle. I knew I wasn't doing it the traditional way, but it seemed to be working...

Will follow the instructions from now on.

Thanks for all of your help -- this forum has really inspired me!

Decluttering SAHM of three. Going for 2011 items in 2011.
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#16 of 43 Old 03-26-2007, 09:36 AM
 
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bumping up an old thread! would this method work for felting shapes other than a sphere? say like a strawberry??
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#17 of 43 Old 03-26-2007, 01:53 PM
 
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Don't know. Why don't you try it and let us know! I alsways use roving or batting all the way through, unless I amd putting a ball inside.
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#18 of 43 Old 04-04-2007, 09:02 PM
 
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If you use roving all the way through, is it necessary to needle felt it? Or can you just roll it with the water and soap? I am thinking of using a tennis ball as the base--would that work? Thanks!

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#19 of 43 Old 04-06-2007, 10:48 AM
 
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I think it would be pretty hard to needle-felt into a tennis ball....so in your case, you'd have to wet-felt exclusively. It's doable, bit just a bit more messy (i.e. wool fibers get stuck all over your hands) than when you needle-felt it first.

I think, if I were felting wool over a tennis ball base, I'd wrap roving over the ball as tightly as I can, in as thin of layers as I though I could get away with, and then I'd tie it into a nylon stocking and felt it in the washing machine instead of doing it by hand. It'll take a few cycles (just keep tossing the ball back into the washer after each load is completed), but it'll get you a nice smooth ball without the fibers-all-over-the-hands icky mess of doing it by hand.
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#20 of 43 Old 04-06-2007, 08:32 PM
 
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i'm curious about why you need to wet-felt the wrapped yarn ball first... i tried that this morning and it didn't seem to be doing much. i figure i would definitely needle felt the roving over it, then wet felt for good measure.... yeah?

some part of me is thinking that i am going to have some done for ds by easter!

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#21 of 43 Old 04-06-2007, 09:08 PM
 
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I just do it that way because when I construct the ball completely first, and then felt, it takes a very very very long time to felt down solidly. If you do it in layers, wrapping some and then felting some, you get a much more solid ball.

But you certainly don't have to do it that way - putting the ball together first and then felting will work just fine.
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#22 of 43 Old 04-26-2007, 10:32 AM
 
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WHat a cool thread! I've never heard of the yarn first idea. I'll have to try that. I usually make mine entirely of roving, (I'm another with a HUGE stash!) or put wool sweater scraps in the middle for bulk. I haven't needle felted it first, either. I've just tried to we felt the whole thing and it works, but can take some time. I have decorated the already felted ball with a needle and that comes out nice. I saw some kits someone had once, with cat ball toys for the center and styrophome balls for the center. The tennis ball seems like it would give it a good weight.

Have fun!!
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#23 of 43 Old 05-21-2007, 10:37 PM
 
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I just bought some wool roving and a felting needle and am excited to make a set of balls! I was wondering about putting a bell inside? I'm assuming that putting a bell alone inside wouldn't give it enough room to ring. What about slicing open a ping pong ball partway and putting a bell inside the ping pong ball and then wrapping the wool around that. (I plan on doing the wool yarn ball with roving on top) Would it be too muted to hear?
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#24 of 43 Old 05-21-2007, 11:21 PM
 
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Get a package of jingle-ball cat toys, and use one of those as a base for the ball. Those balls are fully perforated, so no water will collect inside during felting.
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#25 of 43 Old 05-21-2007, 11:36 PM
 
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What a great idea! I'll try it!
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#26 of 43 Old 05-22-2007, 02:03 PM
 
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Another question- if you are doing the ball of yarn covered by roving, do you need to use yarn the same color as the roving? Or do you just put a thick enough layer of roving on top that when you needle felt it, the under-color doesn't get pulled through?
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#27 of 43 Old 05-22-2007, 04:52 PM
 
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I haven't tried it with yarn yet, but I'd think that if you make the roving think enough to cover the yarn, you won't see it once it's felted. Just make sure you use enough. One of the fun things about roving is that you can use lots of colors!
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#28 of 43 Old 05-23-2007, 03:25 PM
 
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If you just want to wet felt the ball wind a tight ball to begin with and stick it in the toe of a nylon stocking. (I don't wear them but I got a pack of cheap kneehighs and they have lasted a long time) Use warm, very soapy water and rub the outside of the ball firmly but not suishing it and keep it up until it seems right. Check it now and then because you don't want to felt it to the nylon. Take it out and contim=nue working until you are happy with it. Tha is how I do it with kids and it works very well.

Another idea is the tennis ball and I checked some out last week at fibre fest that had a light covering of alpaca and then yarn wrapped around. They were then wet felted. They bounced very well and ere lovely with minimal use of fibre!
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#29 of 43 Old 12-02-2007, 07:18 AM
 
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You can also wrap the wool tightly into balls and put them in pantyhose and tie them off and put them in the washing machine with detergent and HOT water and let the machine felt them for you. I have a tutorial on my website. I have found the bigger the balls, the better they felt! Check them periodically while they agitate. It might take up to 20 minutes of wash cycle to get them to go. Augment the wash water with kettles of boiling water to make it hot enough to felt.
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#30 of 43 Old 12-02-2007, 10:00 AM
 
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What an AMAZING blog!!! I love the moth pics!
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