Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Needle felted teeth or molar with a heart!

I promised my friend, a dentist, that I'd needle felt something for him and here it is! A needle felted teeth/molar. Love your teeth!!

Now I just have to get this squishy hearted molar to him! :-)

(Wool tools & supplies from Felt Alive)

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Origami addiction!!

As usual, been super slack at updating my blog BUT that's because I didn't have much to offer/show...

Seeing that I have dipped my hands on using different materials and making different things, I have gone back to paper! I absolutely LOVE IT! I've gotten myself into origami now and have folded a couple of complex origami designs. I learned how to make them from Youtube. Both tutorials are taught by Sara Adams, Youtube name AdamsSara.

(Designer: Dennis Walker)
 Tracing paper Snowflake
 Tracing paper Snowflake
 Backside of tracing paper Snowflake

Silver pearly paper Snowflake

Tessellation: Star Puff!
(Designer: Ralf Konrad)

Backside of Star Puff Tessellation

I should update my blog more often and will soon when I start making cards again! :)

Enjoy crafting!!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Needle felted Ice cream!!

Last Saturday, I was minding my own business and needle felting sushi rolls for my nephew. The boys were watching tv, chatting and knocking back a few Vodka shots then they saunter over to where I was needle felting at the kitchen bench. One of the boys said, "Hey, why don't you make an ice cream for my girlfriend?" And I did! :D

Apologies for the bad photo. It's the only one I've got. It was fun needle felting it on the spot!

I've also received 3 of 5 packages from Dream Felt/Kay Petal's Needle Felting Supplies. Hoping for 1 to arrive this week and the last package next week!! Pictures coming soon! :D

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Dream Felt Core Wool has ARRIVED on my door step!!!

My first order from Felt Alive's Needle Felting Supplies (Anchorage, Alaska) has finally arrived!!!

The Dream Felt Core Wool is exactly a DREAM to felt! I used to felt a plain egg using natural merino wool top and that took HOURS! This took about 15 minutes (or less)! :D Happy Happy Joy Joy! :D

 Dream Felt Core Wool needle felted in just MINUTES!

Merino Roving wool needle felted in HOURS!
 Roving/combed vs crimped messy wool

I do hope that the coloured Dream Felt FUN Economy batting will arrive tomorrow!! *FINGERS CROSSED*!

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Needle felted cupcake with cherry on top!

Almost 4 hours later, I got a cupcake with a cherry on top!

I used merino roving for the core (hence it took me a while to manipulate it into shape...). Trying to use up as much merino natural coloured wool as I can to make way for the new wool coming from Felt Alive. Whoopeeeee!!!

Cupcake measures: 3 1/4" tall x 2 1/2" (widest point)

 The strawberries are real!

Merino roving/top/sliver vs wool batt/batting plus types of needles

Few days ago, while I was stalking (still stalking!) Felt Alive's needle felting supplies webpage, I came across some very valuable information regarding the type of wool used and the type of needles. I even have one of the Felt Alive's needle felting supplies page open when I open up Mozilla. That's how much I love being there.

I have to find it the hard and expensive way. I bought lots and lots of beautiful and colourful Merino top/roving only to find out that it is very difficult and time-consuming to needlefelt, especially when it comes to sculptural, 3D projects. 

Roving is combed one direction like straight hair, that's why it's quite difficult to felt as it is not a messy ball of wool like batt/batting. If you're really just after flat needle felting project, in my opinion, the merino wool tops/roving/sliver is ok. The wool batting is more for sculptural, 3D projects. It took me hours and hours to needle felt an egg using merino wool. I'm hoping the core wool batting will take me less than an hour to make one egg! I've also tried using the Clover tool with 5 needles to needle felt an egg. It also took a few hours.

It is indeed true (according to Felt Alive's guide) that it is very difficult to find the suitable supplies and tools for needle felting. We unfortunately cannot just walk in to craft stores here to find the wool batting and inexpensive needle felting tools. From what I've experienced, wool roving is pretty much the only wool I can find at such stores and online. I have not personally walked into a fibre store so I'm not too sure about their stock. I've scoured through the Australian websites/stores for wool batting but can't seem to find a whole lot of them. If I did find some, their prices are almost twice more expensive than overseas supplies. Apparently some needle felters use quilt wool batting for needle felting their core projects. I've never tried them but may give it a go if I do find some. It is unfortunate that I (and possibly a few other crafters or even more) have to source supplies and tools from overseas just because it's cheaper, although slower. 

Enough blabbering!!

Without further ado, here's the link to Felt Alive's guide to Needlefelting and supplies

Felt Alive needle felting supplies also features Dream Felt needle felting wool. They are based in Alaska so overseas eager needle felters, shipping can take a while longer to get to you. I still haven't gotten mine and can't wait (getting antsy!!) but I'm super excited to just wait for them to arrive at my doorstep!! *Fingers crossed* I get them next week!

I do not represent Felt Alive and even if I have not received my 4 orders from them yet, I'd highly recommend them for needle felting supplies. Kay Petal (owner and founder of Felt Alive) and Patti McAleenan (owner of Dream Felt needle felting supplies with husband, John) are rare cancer survivors who share the love of needle felting and work together to bring the world needle felting supplies! You can read about them here.

Please feel free to correct me or comment with any helpful tips or where to get wool batting (at decent prices!!).

Happy needle felting!!

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Some of my older other craft work

Very pic heavy! I used to be known as "For the LOVE of Paperart" but due to my love of other crafts, I've changed it to jojo's buttons. "jojo's buttons" is initially for my other craft, fabric covered buttons, but I haven't made any since there are millions of fabric covered buttons and accessories out there. I will try my hands on covered buttons down the track but not with fabric.

The babies are actually drawn on tracing paper as I don't have the stamps for it. Credit goes to Stampin' Up! 

 Love at first sight when I saw this stamp! So cute! =)

This is a slim gift pouch for a best friend (and colleague AND childhood buddy) who left my work for greener pastures. She's studying to be a paramedic and she's one of my personal heroes! (October 2009)
This slim gift pouch is clever! The ribbon on the top pulls out the gift as it is wrapped around the gift vertically inside. If you would like to learn how to make this slim gift pouch, here's the youtube video: Candy Bar Slider with Dawn to Dawn's Stamping Thoughts. She is an absolute gem for posting her skills in youtube and sharing them with the world! (Decoration was my idea)

 We were sad to see her go (Some colleagues cried!) but we are very happy for her and what she's achieved and achieving!

Clover mat makes REALLY VERY fuzzy felting..

So I've tried, the Clover felting mat can be used for both flat and sculptural/3D needle felting. The only iffy thing about the Clover mat is that the bristles are like the hookey side of the velcro that keeps "fuzzing" up the projects. Money-wise and personally, I'd go for the cheaper option of the block of foam to create less super fuzzy needle felting projects. Although the Clover felting mat lasts longer, the block of foam is more ideal with making both flat and 3D needle felting objects with a cleaner look.

Clover natural wool roving is used for this "photoshoot". 

Very therapeutic but not very keen on the outcome, especially on the reverse side. 

  The Clover mat bristles hold on to the felt during the needle felting process hence the felt fuzzes when peeled away from the Clover mat bristles.

Super le-fuzz!

I've cleaned up 2 of the petals needle felting on the syrofoam block (HUGE NO-NO! I'm still waiting for the blocks of foam I ordered from Felt Alive's online store, http://www.needlefeltingsupplies.com). Once again, styrofoam is NOT GOOD for your needle felting projects as the needle felting process tends to pick up bits of styrofoam and embed it into your project.

There may be needle felters out there who likes the fuzzy look but I personally prefer the clearner, less-le-fuzz look.

Each to their own. =)

So it's true.. Difficulty needle felting onto wet felted blanks (bead)

So I have personally wet felted a bead ball using Sara's Texture Crafts' method. I promise I didn't leave the water tap running like hers in the video!

 Wet felted ball 2.5cm. Although soft enough, the merino wool is so densely meshed together that it gets a bit difficult to needle felt onto the ball. Naturally, when you needle felt, the wool will not stop your needle from penetrating through. With the wet felted ball, the needle stops approx. 0.5cm into the wet felted wool and I can't seem to needle felt onto it. Thanks to asherjasper from etsy who mentioned needle felting onto wet felted stuff, especially round 3D objects, is not a good idea as it doesn't needle felt well. Prompted me to try wet felting and experiment needle felting onto wet felted round objects.

This is just a little experiment I decided to try. I wanted to make needle felted Onigiri so I roughly needle felted it to that shape and wet felted it. It shrunk but it didn't really work like the wet felted ball. You can also see some pilling (little lumps) on the top left of the "onigiri". Fail!

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Needle felting update: Just a little one!


Just a word of advice, do NOT use styrofoam blocks to needle felt! Little bits of white styrofoam will get stuck in your projects and it is sometimes difficult to dig out. Don't let the styrofoam ruin you "hard felt work"! ;-)

On the other hand... Needle felting an egg. Took me hours! BUT I was doing something else in between needle felting too. Still though. HOURS! :-/ Practice practice practice. ARRR! I've yet to try wet felting. Saw videos on wet felting wool into a ball. I will try that someday! There's a BUT. According to an experienced needle felter and my personal inspiration to start making needle felted eggs, asherjasper from etsy has mentioned in one of her listings that it is not as easy needle felting onto a wet felted item, such as a ball or egg. Besides being an inspiration, she makes the CUTEST egg-and-ball-shaped, theme-based characters. You should check out her work: Asherjasper from etsy.

Now! Lucky Australian eggs are not as big. Teehee!!

PS: Just discovered that needle felters use "wool batting" as the core and apparently it felts quicker, hence a quick nice round egg! Harrumph!! I just purchased 2 pounds (Almost 1kg) worth of wool batting off the Felt Alive's website: Needle felting supplies. Kay Petal is the owner and founder of Felt Alive, making her famous sculptural caricatures of famous people and friends! Check out her website. It's absolutely full of information on needle felting. Yays! It is so damn difficult to find wool batting suitable for needle felting in Australia??

Happy felting! =)

Friday, July 22, 2011

Needle felting tools

As promised, here are the pictures of the tools that I'm using to create the macarons!

I am NOT a representative for the needle felting brand, Clover. Just want to show what Clover tools I use to make needle felting goodies. 

Warning 1: VERY pic-heavy & SUPER SHARP needles!!
Warning 2: NEVER needle felt when you're tired unless you need the wake-up jolt, ie stabbing your finger(s) by accident!

Large needle felting mat. More like a big scrub! :D
You can use this mat OR opt for a cheaper option, block of foam (styrofoam sucks!).
This clover mat unfortunately make your felt projects really fuzzy (DUH, felt! BUT I'd prefer less fuzziness) so a block of foam is good on hand to clean up or shape any non-flat needle felting projects.

Even if there's a safety lock and barrier, I still managed to stab myself twice on the thumb so be VERY CAREFUL!

The good thing about the Clover needle felting tool with 5 needles is that you can felt faster but in the end for flat projects, you'd need to use just 1 needle to "clean up".  That's my opinion though. :D

This pen has room for 3 needles.
I forgot to take a picture of the pen that you can use by just uncapping and you're ready to stab the wool. (Like above picture, just uncap and stab!)

Do NOT use the pen the way as shown above. It should have either the other half of the pen attached OR the see-through guard attached (for cookiecutters/applique moulds) before use.

BUT. The most dangerous part is the SHARP pointy part of the needle!

The needle looks like this on it's own.

The cleaning/felt holder/blending tool. Instruction as shown below.
Another alternative I saw as a holder is toothpick.

Extra sets of needles. These needles are exclusively for the Clover needle felting tool ONLY. I'm not too sure if other brands of needles are compatible with the Clover needle felting tool.

 Clover Assorted bags of Natural Wool: 20g per colour.
After doing a bit of research, batting is actually more suitable for needle felting rather than roving/sliver wool. Please visit Felt Alive's Needle Felting Supplies to find out WHY!

I highly, highly recommend HAMANAKA WOOL that I purchase from etsy: 1127handcrafter and hallowinko 

There's also this Economy FUN Batting and Premium Needle Felting Batts in mixed colours from Felt Alive's needle felting supplies. Pretty!  
Wool roving. Just pull it apart gently. 

 Superhero strength not needed to pull the roving apart, gentle tugs at both ends will do.

If you've scoured through youtube for needle felting videos, you will see some videos where the presenters use only 1 needle and a block of foam. A much much cheaper option! Some people use melamine foam blocks but I find that they disintegrate too quickly compared to the foam blocks from "Felt Alive's Needle Felting Supplies".

June 2014 edit: I highly recommend purchasing felting supplies, kits and wool from online sellers at etsy: 1127handcrafter and hallowinko as they have the best prices! I purchase Hamanaka Wool from from them too, which I absolutely love needle felting with! 1127handcrafter also sells "Carter short fibre wool" and it's absolutely great to needle felt with too!

I purchased wool batting - coloured Economy FUN batting, needles and foam (3 sizes!) at: Felt Alive's Needle Felting Supplies online store

Please feel free to share your info about what other alternative products that you'd use.