“Paws”, an adorable and realistic looking Tabby kitten, is looking up at you with those big green eyes. His little paws playfully protrude out of the picture. He has been lovingly hand-made and is ‘fit to be loved’. As you can see from the photos he is in a black frame with green insert to compliment his eyes.
The frame I used measures 9 inches wide by 7 inches tall perfect for fixing to a wall or standing on a table/chest of drawers. It took many hours of hard work and love to give him his playful character through the art of needle felting.
His beautiful soft fluffy fur is a blend of merino sheep’s wool (non-mulesed) from South Africa and British Corriedale wool. His nose and eyes are made of wool too, so no glass or plastic. He even has cute brown wool paw pads when you look underneath! His core is made of undyed mixed rare breed sheep’s wool from Scotland with a wire frame inside his legs for extra support. His white whiskers are made from horse tail hair for a realistic finish. He has a little collar with gold coloured heart pendant.
Here are some photos of the needle felting process.
- With real cat photos as reference, I started sculpting the core wool to make the head,
- I then filled in the eyes and added layers of grey, black, brown and white wool to resemble cat fur.
- I added nose and mouth detail.
- Once the head was complete I wrapped more core wool over a wire armature and sculpted the legs and torso.
- After attaching the head I layered coloured wool over the top of the body and legs to give that soft fluffy cat fur look as well as the paw pad detail.
- Finally after tying a collar round its neck with a gold coloured pendant, I threaded the horse hair whiskers.
- As with all my long haired sculptures I went over all the furry layers with a tiny needle to separate fibres and ensure no fluffing or matting and then trimmed any excess fibres that stuck out.
For more info about how to add long fur to needle felted animals, please do follow the tutorial here.