Buying Fiber for Felting

All animal fiber felts. There is no one fiber that felts the best - different varieties of sheep, alpaca, and rabbits produce fiber that create different felted textiles: coarse (good for a rug), fine (for a scarf or hat), lofty (ideal for needle felting), etc. The list below is for materials that I've found work well for the projects I teach in my classes.

 
 
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Wet Felting

Most of my wet felted projects are wearable, so I use fine merino wool that will be soft on the skin. Combed Merino Top from Pearl Fiber Arts (PDX) or Outback Fibers (online) are good sources.

  • Avoid wool roving in little packages sold at big craft chain stores – these work best for needle felting and don’t wet felt very well.

  • Be sure not to buy wool marked "superwash." It is chemically treated to not felt. That fiber is for spinning yarn.


Needle Felting

Fibers that work best for needle felting are a little coarser, loftier and less processed than the fiber I use for wet felting. These attributes help conceal the poke marks that the felting needle makes.

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Regional fiber festivals

Support our local fibershed! At these events you can buy fiber direct from the farmer, and sometimes meet the animals who grew it. Both events also have a good selection of fiber-related workshops onsite, but advanced registration is recommended.

Oregon Flock and Fiber Festival - end of September
Black Sheep Gathering - end of June


Other sources for materials we use in class

Oregon Leather Co. - leather by the pound for making slipper soles.
Fiber Trends - pre-cut and pre-punched suede slipper soles (or pads).
Georgie's Clay Co. - liquid latex for painting on slipper bottoms.
Uline - 1/4" packing foam for resist material (comes on an 85' roll).
Biokleen all natural dish soap, olive oil soap - available at food co-ops, natural grocery stores.
Rug non-slip mat - brand not important, this is just an example.
Pencil Roving - incorporate into both wet felting and needle felting.