You plan the piece you want to make.
You draw and cut the resist.
You lay your wool.
Everything is going great, but when you start fulling, your felt just seems to be stuck. Somehow the wool just doesn’t seem to become compact. In fact, nothing seems to happen.
You’ve been felting for hours and you feel tired. What started out as fun is now getting on your nerves. So, you decide to stop.
But then you ask yourself:
WHAT HAPPENS TO MY PROJECT IF I STOP NOW?
IS MY PIECE RUINED?
SHOULD I JUST LEAVE IT ON THE TABLE LIKE THIS? (I ACTUALLY NEED THE TABLE!)
I DON’T EVEN KNOW WHAT WENT WRONG!
Do you recognize the scenario? It’s happened to me dozens of times. The difference when it happens now is that I know exactly what to do.
So – because I suspect it’s happened to you too – I wanted to bring you a couple of tips today on what to do.
Let’s start with “what went wrong”
Well, felting is a physical but also a chemical process. That means that sometimes different factors combine in a way that doesn’t favor the process. To put it in another way, if there’s too much soap or too much water in the wool or the temperature of the piece isn’t right, the felting process just doesn’t happen.
If you don’t have a lot of experience yet, you just go on insisting, and nothing changes. So, you become frustrated and tired. And you don’t feel like finishing your project anymore.
In that case, there’s no point going on. It’s better to come back to it another day. In the end, felting is supposed to be fun. And nothing will be ruined if you return to your work a couple of days later.
So, what do you do with the whole thing?
If you don’t need this workspace, you can just leave things as they are. The only thing you should do is grab a sponge and soak out all the water in your project. Leave it as dry as possible. And it can lay there for a whole week if necessary. Actually, if you let it rest for that long it’s even better, because the wool will probably dry completely.
If you need the workspace, soak out all the water and then lift everything carefully (the project along with the bubble wrap) and put it somewhere else, preferably in a dry, warm place.
When you’re ready to restart, just add some lukewarm water, but not too much. Don’t add any soap just yet. Start massaging and you should see your wool “reacting”, as it should start compacting slowly.
Now is the time to add soap if you need to. What you want by now is to see some foam.
When you feel that the wool is compacting normally, you can proceed with the fulling method you normally use.
And that should do it. Let me know it this helps!
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