RSS Feed

Needle felted animal vote

Hi everyone.  I have set up a fun poll to help decide what to make next.

I have chosen 5 animals which I think will be quite a challenge to needle felt.

Which one would you like to see me make next? 🙂

I will take photos as I go to show progress as usual on my facebook page and will blog about it once finished.

Whatever I make will be one of a kind and available in my Etsy shop.

So please vote here:

https://fans.vote/v/ACjrxdvd3l4

Bon Voyage little guinea pig!

I would like to introduce you to a gorgeous needle felted guinea pig called ‘Teddy’.

As you can see he has a cheeky little face and I really tried to make sure his autumnal orange fur tones ended up looking as fluffy and soft as possible just like a real guinea pig.

6-Needle felted guinea pig (6)

He is now on his way to France to live with a lovely lady who will take good care of him.

Bon Voyage little guinea pig! You were a pleasure to create and I hope you have a wonderful life at your new furever home x

5-Needle felted guinea pig (5) 3-Needle felted guinea pig (3)

His core is made of natural undyed Corriedale wool from New Zealand. His beautiful soft fur and detail on his cute piggy paws, ears and face are of soft merino wool (non-mulesed) from South Africa (Cape). His toes have been sculpted by wool wrapped delicately onto wire.

His eyes are made of wool too, so no glass or plastic.

You can see he is life-sized from the close up of me holding him in my hand.

2-Needle felted guinea pig (2) 8-Needle felted guinea pig (10) 9-Needle felted guinea pig (8)

1-Needle felted guinea pig (1)

Hope you like him 🙂

Would you like to know how to make a guinea pig? (click on the photo to get started).

Needle felted guinea pig

Making a needle felted animal and need some help adding layers of wool to achieve a realistic long fur look? (click the photo to learn more…)

Felting long animal fur

See here for a variety of tutorials, tips and ideas to suit your project

Here are some other needle felted guinea pigs for more ideas.

Needlefelted guinea pig (2)  Needlefelted guinea pig (24)

Guineapig Guinea pig (37) Needle felted guinea pig (1) Needle felted guinea pig (38)

Needle felted bat (Brown long eared bat)

Seeing as I manage the National bat helpline (UK) as my day job it was about time I made a bat! Thankfully I was asked to make this little brown long eared bat (BLE) (Plecotus auritus) – although when I say little she is very big compared to real BLEs which have a body length of around 5cm.

She was a challenge as not only did I have to work out how to make folded wings and a tail membrane but BLEs have such massive ears as you can see. She is made of corriedale and merino wool and has wire inside her forearms, legs and ears.

BLEs can live up to 30 years, eat thousands of insects each night, have only one baby a year and these fantastic huge ears help them to listen for prey as they glean them from leaves.

This one is definitely alert and looking for a cuddle but usually at rest their ears curl back a bit like ram’s horns to show only the tragus (the pointy inner ear lobe). Hope you like her and agree that bats are amazing! 🙂
03-Needle felted bat (8)     12-Needle felted bat (35)

15-Needle felted bat (40) 25-Needle felted bat (57)

02-Needle felted bat (7)   18-Needle felted bat (45) 22-Needle felted bat (50)

My first Youtube tutorial !

‘Would you like to learn some basic techniques for needle felting tiny toes/feet/hands? Here I demonstrate one of my techniques for making toes by wrapping wool over wire. I also prepare them ready to attach onto an animal called a solenodon (a strange shrew-like creature with a long tail and venomous bite). This quick 11 min tutorial is easy to follow step by step.’

As you know I often take photos of my needle felted creations as I go along and have posted various tips and tutorials on my blog so you too can follow the same steps. However I have been wanting to do a video for ages so finally it is here!

Whilst making the feet for the solenodon I used my Samsung s4 mini (hung from some string on a bendy lamp stand!) to video my hands as I shaped the wire and wrapped the wool over it. I used windows movie maker to edit it and added narratives and music. Not so impressed by the volume as my voice is not so loud if watching from a tablet or phone but I hope you can hear it ok.

Feedback welcome please for my first attempt. 🙂

Needle felted solenodon

Needle felted solenodon

Ever heard of a solenodon?

I had never heard of one until I came across this strange but interesting creature a few months ago when researching what to make my colleague for his birthday. I discovered that he had spent several years working on a conservation project for this intriguing animal in the Dominican Republic.

As soon as I saw the solenodon’s shrew-like snout, shaggy dense coat, long clumsy legs and thick scaly tail, I couldn’t wait to get started. As this was a secret birthday buddy present though I had to keep quiet..

I started with a wire armature covered with pipe cleaners, then wrapped core wool (corriedale batts) over the wire to give him some shape.

2015-06-20 11.54.45

Then came the layers of luxurious merino wool for his cream fur with dark brown flecks over the top. I also made tiny toes from thinner wire with merino wool wrapped over it. He has a lovely pinkish nose, ears, feet and tail and little black eyes to finish.

2015-06-20 11.56.51

2015-06-20 11.57.31

IMG-20150614-WA0000

Not sure if many people have heard of this animal let alone needle felted one!!

Creating an animal you know is so much easier – with this one I had to keep looking at the photos frequently to ensure I captured its build and character correctly. It was a lot of fun !!

My colleague loved his surprise! yay!!  🙂

2015-06-19 19.10.15

Needle felted Solenodon 2 Needle felted Solenodon 3

The real solenodon has a venomous bite – thankfully this one doesn’t!

Needle felted Solenodon 4 Needle felted Solenodon 5

Needle felted Solenodon 6

Don’t ever miss out on another blog post! enter your email on the right hand panel of my about page for notifications of when the next post is up..:-)

Happy Mother’s day

I absolutely adore my mum. She is always there for me and whatever I say in a card or buy for her on mother’s day would not even come close to showing her just how much she means to me.

Life has been extra challenging these last few weeks and she has lovingly sent me a text message every morning without fail full of encouraging words to inspire me and reassure me for the rest of my day.

Although I have been full of cold this week and tired I wanted to make something beautiful for her as a glimpse of my appreciation for all that she is.

I managed to create an orchid from a combination of crochet and needlefelt. 🙂 – something a bit different from my usual felted sculptures.

Real flowers often don’t last long and even orchids which can flower each year don’t always flourish. Wool flowers however will last so much longer and will still be there in years to come.

I followed and adapted a free pattern I found on line for the flowers, added a bit of felt to them and wired them to my own felted stem (with buds) and leaves.

I watched her open her package this morning on the ipad. It was a privaledge to see her smile.

I love you so much mum 🙂 xxx

image

image

image

image

image

Italian Greyhound becomes Bee-dog!

I made this cutie pie as a leaving gift for a work colleague. He is modelled on a real Italian Greyhound called Philip.

He is needle felted over a wire armature complete with a little fluffy heart shaped chest, pink paw pads and those sad puppy eyes that make you just want to take him home:-)

01-Needle felted dog (101)

04-Needle felted dog (54)

06-Needle felted dog (56)

11-Needle felted dog (4)
13-Needle felted dog (8)   14-Needle felted dog (11)

15-Needle felted dog (13)

17-Needle felted dog (19)

I soon learnt that my colleague also loved bee-dogs! Never heard of one of those before. There are whole websites about them!

So letting my imagine run wild I just couldn’t resist giving little Philip dog his very own bee antennae and stripey cape so he too can transform into a bee-dog!

21-Needle felted dog (37)

25-Needle felted dog (41)

27-Needle felted dog (43)

28-Needle felted dog (45)

22-Needle felted dog (38)

Most bizarre creation yet but very fun! 🙂

Needle felted guinea pig (number 3)

May I introduce you all to my third needle felted guinea pig. I made her in loving memory of a beautiful piggie of a lady in Warrington. I completely enjoyed felting her especially as she has the cutest face and wonderful markings!  She has now gone to live at her furever home and will receive lots of cuddles. She is also my first creation to have one of my new ‘Fit to be loved’ heart tags sewn on. 🙂

Here are few photos of her when she was a work in progress. If you would like more ideas on how to make a guinea pig of your own please see my photo tutorials; felting a guineapig and felting long fur.

Needle felted WIP guineapig (17) Needle felted WIP guineapig (18)

Needle felted WIP guineapig (21)

Needle felted WIP guineapig (20)Needle felted WIP guineapig (22)

Needle felted WIP guineapig (23)  Needle felted WIP guineapig (25)

Needle felted WIP guineapig (27)

Needle felted WIP guineapig (28)

And here she is all fluffed up and posing for the camera 🙂

Needlefelted guinea pig (12)   Needlefelted guinea pig (6)

Needlefelted guinea pig (25) Needlefelted guinea pig (21)

Needlefelted guinea pig (1) Needlefelted guinea pig (13)

Needlefelted guinea pig (2) Needlefelted guinea pig (3)

Needlefelted guinea pig (4)  Needlefelted guinea pig (11)

Needlefelted guinea pig (16)  Needlefelted guinea pig (23)

Needlefelted guinea pig (24)

Don’t ever miss out on another blog post! enter your email on the right hand panel of my about page for notifications of when the next post is up..:-)

Heart Tags

I was very excited this week to receive these little acrylic hearts with ‘Fit to be loved’ engraved on them. I bought them on etsy from Stacy Hotchkiss of ‘Running with scissors‘. Very impressed with the little organza bag presentation. I love the extra detail of adding the heart attached to the ribbon so I can see what was inside. 🙂 

image

         

I have been thinking for a while now of how to make my needle felted animals  identifiable as being created by me. If I were a painter I would sign my painting with my name. Not quite so easy with a fibre sculpture.

I did look at metal tags but these being transparent are not so conspicuous and don’t take away from whatever colour wool I use.   

image

I liked the hearts as they really suit the name ‘Fit to be loved’. They each have a tiny hole so they can be sewn onto my creations.

image

image

image

image

I just love love love them! Can’t wait to use my first one. 🙂

I would well recommend Running with Scissors. Great product and a friendly helpful service.

2014 review for fit to be loved

How exciting! The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2014 annual report for my blog.

Thank you to everyone for following me and encouraging me on my journey. Without you all I wouldn’t be where I am today. I wish you all a blessed and exciting new year!!

Click here to see the complete report.

Miniature donkey

Miniature donkey

I can now reveal my latest creation, a miniature donkey!

I was sent some photos of an absolutely gorgeous real miniature donkey and asked to needle felt her as a surprise Christmas present for her loving owner. It was an absolute pleasure to create her as I looked at those cute eyes and wonderful fluffy coat.

As she is a hoofed animal I quickly realised that to stand up she would need some stability so I wrapped core Corriedale wool over a wire armature. She soon started to take shape!!

Needle felted donkey 1

 

 

 

 

 

 

Needle felted donkey 2

 

 

 

 

 

 

I made her as a young fluffy donkey with long fur rather than when she was a bit older after a summer moult but this meant I really had to think about how to get the right colour and texture for her fur. I ended up buying 4 wool colours and mixing them carefully by hand with other brown and cream colours I had to get the right shade.

image

 

 

 

 

Once I started adding the long fur I had to be so careful not to let the strands fuzz up when laying the animal down to reach all sides. I therefore had to start on the legs and tummy and do the back and face last so the fur was looking its best in these areas and I didn’t end up squashing her ears.

Needle felted donkey 8

 

 

 

 

 

Needle felted donkey 9

 

 

 

 

 

 

Needle felted donkey 10

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Needle felted donkey 11

 

Needle felted donkey 12

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Needle felted donkey 13

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thankfully donkey fur is slightly matted so I didn’t have to worry too much about it having to look silky smooth! I just love doing faces so this was hard for me to have to wait til the end but it was definitely worth it 🙂

Needle felted donkey 3

Needle felted donkey 4

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Needle felted donkey 6

Needle felted donkey 5

Fox and squirrel ready for adoption!

Fox and squirrel ready for adoption!

Looking for Christmas present ideas? 

How about a one of a kind wool art sculpture from Fit to be loved?

I have just put two red beauties; the red fox and red squirrel up for adoption in my Etsy shop!!

Some of you may recognise the little red squirrel ‘Chestnut’ as she stars in my ‘adding head and limbs tutorial’ and I have posted about her before. The red fox has been nicknamed by a few friends of mine as the ‘Fantastic Mr Fox’ as he is so strikingly red and looks like a real gent in character, ready to go on an adventure.

I absolutely adore them both but they are looking for their forever homes.

05-IMG_4096Have you ever seen a real red squirrel? Aren’t they adorable! Though they can be shy and hard to find. Thankfully I managed to get to see some at a British wildlife centre recently but unless you live in certain places of the UK and abroad you may never be privileged to see one in the wild. But you can now have your very own miniature in your own home..

Chestnut is a one of a kind sculpture, made through the art of needle felting. It has taken many hours to give her that unmissable joyful character! Her core is made of natural undyed Corriedale wool from New Zealand, her tail hands and feet are wrapped and needle felted over wire. You can see she holds a nut ready to take a nibble..

Her beautiful red coat is made of soft Merino wool (non-mulesed) from South Africa (Cape). Colours were blended and varying layers of wool were needled into place to create her natural fur texture. Her nose and eyes are made of wool too, so no glass or plastic beads.

Why not give her a new home this Christmas and keep her warm and snug?

needle felted fox (4)-001

The inquisitive foxes we sometimes see in our garden were the inspiration for making him. Although some find foxes to be a pest, it never ceases to amaze me at how we have such a beautiful wild animal of their size in the UK! I even had the priviledge to nurse a 5 day old cub once!

This striking red fox has been lovingly hand-made from 100% wool over wire.

He is one of a kind, and it has taken many hours of needle felting to give him his noble character!
His core is made of natural undyed Corriedale wool from New Zealand, wrapped and needle felted over wire. This natural wool was also used for his chest and tummy fur.  The wire gives him stability and his head, legs and tail can be carefully repositioned to other standing poses.

His nose and eyes are made of wool too, so no glass or plastic beads.

His foxy red coat is made of soft Merino wool (non-mulesed) from South Africa (Cape). Colours used were rust, cinnamon, mink and raven. Colours were blended and varying layers of wool were needled into place to create his natural fur texture.
Dark brown Corriedale wool was felted over his legs and back of ears, used for detail on his face and also blended on his coat for shadow.

Could you or someone you know give him a loving home this Christmas? He doesn’t bite and costs nothing to feed 🙂

Please contact me if you have any questions about either of them.

Amanda x

Needle felted ferret!!

Needle felted ferret!!

After 7 weeks I finally stepped back into my office in London today. Pneumonia and pleurisy was not at all nice to have and definitely took away my energy (even to the point of not being able to needle felt at one point! )but I managed it in. Yay!!

I have so been blessed by my parents (who looked after me for 2 weeks at theirs in Lincolnshire) as well as my friends who have made me feel very loved indeed with texts and cards and gifts ! I have also been able to rest and slow down! I am now home with my lovely hubby again and getting back to normality gradually..

Today was not just about accomplishing the commute and seeing my colleagues who I have so missed, but I have been working on a surprise secret birthday buddy gift for my CEO who celebrated her big 40 at the weekend and today she got to see her new ferret. Of course she knew it was me as she knows I needle felt but never mind. 🙂 I just loved the look on her face. I have planned this since January when I found out I was her birthday buddy!

She did at first jump with a delighted shock when she opened the wrapping as I had found a picture of her beloved pet ferret on facebook and copied the colours and pose as best I could.   So worth the hours spent when I can make someone smile 🙂

I started with the head with core wool, very similar to when I made my badger, adding layers of soft merino colours on top.

01-Ferret (14) 02-Ferret (121) 03-Ferret (1) 04-Ferret (15)

05-Ferret (16) 10-Ferret (3) 11-Ferret (4) 12-Ferret (5)

Ferrets are beautiful creatures and very unique with having such a long body and neck. This one has just been asleep and woken up so is still curled up tightly but face looking at you with those adorable big eyes and twitchy nose and whiskers asking for a cuddle. I made the eyes bigger than in real life as .. well I couldn’t help myself- a bit of a fit to be loved interpretation 🙂

You can see more pictures in my facebook Ferret album, but here are a few of the finished ferret. Hope you like them  xx

37-Ferret (90) 24-Ferret (32)

32-Ferret (42)  39-Ferret (99)

26-Ferret (35)  42-Ferret (114) 46-Ferret (119)

44-Ferret (117) 35-Ferret (84)

How to make a rice bag for needle felting

How to make a rice bag for needle felting

“How do I make a rice bag to use as a needle felting base?”

I have been using a blue foam pad since I started needle felting (as featured in most of my tutorials) which has been really great to use but I am finding that tiny bits of blue do come off of it now onto the piece I am working on and fibres tend to stick to it and the whole thing is looking a little fluffy, holey and worse for wear. After looking at alternatives for a needle felting base on the internet I came across a rice bag. Many claim it to be hard wearing and perfect for 3d sculptures. I didn’t want to pay the earth by ordering one on line and so for my birthday my mum kindly sewed one together for me from an old cotton bag. I added the rice this morning and finished it off. It is approx. 14 by 9 inches in size. So here’s how you can make one too; 1) Take an old rectangular cotton/burlap bag – I have several of these at home and usually use them for my shopping. You could pick one up from a charity shop, or buy one from a cheap store /supermarket.  If anything like this one it’s probably best to give it a good iron before you start sewing 🙂 Best to use a plain one or one with a nice pattern you would like to show off. This one had a boring motif so this was hidden from sight once sewn. The weave should not be too tight but wide enough to allow the barbed needle through. You may need to test what you feel happy with. image 2) Fold the bag in half, unpick the handles and remove. You could leave handles if you wish to hang it up. By folding the bag in half it will be double layered so it will be long lasting. The size of the bag should just be right but with this one my mum picked the thread from the top side too to allow an extra inch width.   3)Sew the edges by hand or by machine, stitches should be close enough to prevent any rice grains from coming out of the bag. Ensure the corners are well sewn by double stitching to reinforce. Simple back stitch is fine. Leave one end open for adding your rice. Turn inside out so stitching is on the inside with a neat edge.  4) Measure approx 1.75 kg of rice. I used cheap long grain rice. Pour into the bag using a funnel or jug (you can do this straight from the bag but mine tend to spilt and rice goes everywhere). You can choose more or less rice depending on personal preference. This amount comes to almost three quarters of the bag when holding the bag upright like a sack. If you fill it too much it will be very heavy and not lay right for a flat felting surface. Too few grains and the surface will dip.          5) Before sewing up completely, lay your bag out as you would use it to check you have the right amount of rice. You should have at least a good inch depth for the needle to go through. Then sew up as neat as you can.       And there you have a rice bag!!! Simple!!! 🙂    I have to say I am loving it already. It feels different to my old faithful foam pad but I am quite liking the sturdy feeling of it and it looks like good quality and long lasting. I may not carry this one around as it is fairly heavy and I have soon found my needles don’t stay put for too long if I stick them in the bag like I used to with my foam pad, but then I sometimes break my needles from being lazy and not putting them back where they belong so that may be a good thing. Hope this inspires you to have a go and make a quick simple bag for yourself… Hmmm looks like my headless cat is pawing at it and enjoying the new feel too 🙂 

Little by little (a custom needle felted guinea pig)

Little by little  (a custom needle felted guinea pig)

Do you ever feel like you just don’t have the time to needle felt? Feel envious of those amazing artists who produce several sculptures a week whilst you work hard at your full time job and dream you could be stabbing some wool but then feel too tired when you finally get home?

Well you are not alone! …I really haven’t had much time at all recently. In fact I have felt so frustrated about it and have had to remind myself that I am not in a competition but this is my hobby and my style and my time.

This month I have proved to myself that you can still take just a tiniest bit of time out to have a little stab here and there even with a full time job …and guess what ? little by little you start to make some progress and when those deep brown eyes from that newly needle felted animal are staring back at you, you soon realise you have managed to create something quite wonderful and all that effort and time passing by has been worthwhile!! 🙂

Of course seeing that end result is very satisfying but it’s time to enjoy the journey too (no matter how long it takes) !!

So, the dark eyes staring back at me? Well they would be from the little guinea pig I just finished for a very doting guinea pig lover in Warrington in memory of her precious loved guinea pig.

This sweetie pie has taken me a while but I got there in the end!…. phew…. Hope you like her.:-)

Guinea pig (8) Guinea pig (11) Guinea pig (13) Guinea pig (16) Guinea pig (17) Guinea pig (25) Guinea pig (26) Guinea pig (27) Guinea pig (28) Guinea pig (29) Guinea pig (33) Guinea pig (36) Guinea pig (37) Guinea pig (39) Guinea pig (40) Guinea pig (41) Guinea pig (42) Guinea pig (43)

<span>%d</span> bloggers like this: