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If you’ve ever wanted to know how to felt

FeltingA few years ago I found a book containing fabulous patterns for handbags that you knitted and then felted in the washing machine. The knitting part was super easy; you just kept going in circles. It didn’t even matter if you dropped a stitch since the felting process covered up any small holes.

Having mastered the basics I was more than interested in a book which explains the history of felting (apparently it’s a technique thousands of years old) and provides some inspiration for projects beyond handbags. Felting by Elvira López Del Prado Rivas provides details for twenty eight projects including table runners, flowers, slippers, dolls and jewellery, all explained using step by step photographs. A section is included also which is specifically targeted at children though these activities involve purchased felt rather than starting from wool. The author also explains clearly the actual process of turning wool into felt – this can be done via some elbow grease and a bucket of water if you have patience and a lot of time but is much easier using a washing machine. At the end, if you need more inspiration, there is an artist gallery in which international felt artists display some astonishing creations.

Felting was published in 2014 by Schiffer Publishing Ltd. I was provided with a copy via Net Galley. Reading it via an e-reader made it difficult to follow some of the more complex projects so I was interested in buying a copy – but baulked at 30GBP a copy. I know this was an expensive book to produce because it contains more than 500 photographs but it’s still expensive for a craft book.  If you’re bank balance is more flush than mine however, and you are interested in exploring a new hobby, this book would be well worth a look.

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