Pussy Willows in Wool

Betz White posted the cutest wool “pussy willows” a few weeks ago on her blog.  Well, I didn’t really read it clearly, and I thought she had actually used real pussy willows.  She actually just used bare branches to which she attached the felt balls to make them appear to be pussy willows.  Ah-ha!  Well, as I said, I didn’t read that clearly, and when I saw some pussy willow branches in the store, I snapped them up.  (To be told later, of course, by my friend that she has a ton in her yard!  Note for future reference.)  Well, after buying the pussy willows, I read the directions again, and realizing my mistake, decided to go for it.  And put the pussy willows out on our hall table, and added two branches of “wool” pussy willows to add in some color.  I love it!  And the high arrangement looks really good in front of the stairs.  I’ll have to remember that for future arranging.  In retrospect, I’m glad I only did two branches because I was making the felt balls by hand and my hands were getting tired rolling wet, soapy wool balls.

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Halloween Houses and Random Crafting

Pumpkins carved by the boys

Pumpkins carved by the boys

Well, October has not been a good blogging month.  I have been busy crafting (and working like a dog at the paid job), just not blogging about it.  And I was able to get together with my girlfriends this weekend for our annual Girl’s Weekend!  Fun!  We went to the White Mountains of NH and it was gorgeous and perfect weather.  A bit chilly, but it is mid-October after all.

I also had my monthly crafty night with my local friends last weekend and got to work on some things.  I made some mummies for the Halloween Houses, and also some ghosts!  I dusted off the scroll saw and made the ghosts from the hubby’s scrap pile.  The first ghost I made from pine, so I decided to paint him with some acrylic paint.  The second ghost I made from some gorgeous curly maple, so I kept him unpainted, and just used a beeswax polish on him.  Love them!  I also did an inaugural run on the wood burner, and burned in the ghosts’ features.

Wooden ghosts

Wooden ghosts

The mummies are just “men” people turnings and I wrapped little strips of an old white sheet around and used some Aileen’s craft glue.  Before I glued on the strips of fabric though, I painted them white with some acrylic paint, and used a thin brush to make some tiny eyes.  I got the idea originally from looking at the little gnome mummies that were posted on Wee Folk Art last year.

Mummies!

Mummies!

And since I had the wood burner out, I pulled out a penguin that I made many months ago on the scroll saw for my youngest.  I hadn’t finished him because I wanted to wood burn the lines in before painting with the watercolors, in an effort to keep the watercolor paint from bleeding into the different areas.  I thought he turned out very well!  Stocking stuffer!

Wooden penguin

Wooden penguin

I have also been working on a little embroidery.  The “pink house” tutorial that Melissa posted on Sew Mama Sew a few months ago.  I love her stuff, and was so excited that she posted a tutorial!

My "pink" house embroidery

My "pink" house embroidery

And then all the other stuff of fall, like pumpkin carving, apple picking and cider making, soccer games, football in the yard, watching football on the TV (Go Blue!), and starting to anticipate winter.  I was watching the Patriots play in Foxborough tonight and it was snowing!  Eek!  Just rain here….so far.

Our new favorite backyard game -- "tackle soccer"

Our new favorite backyard game -- "tackle soccer"

Oh,……and did I forget to mention the super-cute wet-felted wool acorns??  More on those later…

Wet felted wool acorns

Wet felted wool acorns

For the Easter baskets

I was hoping to make some cloth napkins and some crayon/paper book cover type things for the boys’ Easter baskets, but they aren’t done yet. So I guess we’ll see what I get done tonight at my Saturday Night Crafty Club! However, I did make some wool eggs (wet felted in the washing machine with needle felted details) and I needle felted some cute little guys to go inside. I still want to do a blanket stitch around the opening of the eggs which I’ll do tonight. I’m not really happy with the penguin, but it was the first time I had ever made a needle felted little figure and I did it without instructions or a pattern so I guess considering that, he came out alright. I’m sure my son won’t mind!


In case anyone is wondering, they are the size of the small plastic Easter eggs, and I wrapped six layers of wool around the eggs (alternating directions for each layer).

Antique Finds


This past weekend, I finally made it to our local “antique mall” to check it out. Okay,…they weren’t kidding. It was five floors of antique’ing madness. I restrained myself pretty well. Came away with a just a few things. The little crocheted doilies were very cute, and I think I might use them to back some embroidery collages. Not sure yet.


The washboard is to use for wet felting wool. Last time, I used my husband’s sushi rolling bamboo mat and it smelled like sheep for a few weeks afterwards. I think he will appreciate that I bought a dedicated tool. I don’t have pictures of the other things, but my boys are into Tom & Jerry right now, so I picked up two vintage T&J comic books, just for fun. And, I found a very cool, vintage hand beater with orange Bakelite handle. J loves to cook with me, and it didn’t take more than five minutes from me arriving home that he was standing at the kitchen sink beating a bowl of soapy water with the new hand beater!

Wet felted Easter eggs

Just made my first wet felted Easter egg using Resurrection Fern’s tutorial. Lots of fun! I’ve been wanting to wet felt something for a long time, had all the supplies, and just never made the time to try it out. So, I saw Resurrection Fern’s new tutorial, and figured with Easter right around the corner, the time was prime for some wet felted eggs! Of course, I just bought some adorable ones in the Wool Food Mama‘s Easter egg co-op, but hey,..more is more, right? I don’t have quite the right wool roving for Easter eggs though, in terms of colors. The white and brown that I have worked perfectly. So, since I had some bright blue and green, I decided to make “earth” Easter eggs. Now, I need some new wool roving! Lucky for me there is a Peace Fleece co-op going on right now. How opportune.

Here is the wool (this is wool batting that I normally use for stuffing wool felt play food), wrapped loosely around the plastic Easter eggs in about five layers. You wrap each layer in a different direction, which helps the fibers bind together. My Dawn dish soap (2 parts water, 1 part Dawn) in the cup behind.

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Here we are in the rubbing on the bamboo mat with soapy hot water phase. Hmm…probably shouldn’t have used my husband’s sushi mat. It sort of smells like wet sheep now. It will probably dissipate after the mat dries. Hopefully. I should get a washboard, it’s probably easier. I might have used too much water, but I’m not really sure. I’m still a wet felting newbie. But, it turned out okay, so maybe I was fine.

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And here’s my completed egg! It’s still drying. After about 24 hours, it seems dry, but I might let it dry a bit longer before I cut it open. I will be cutting it open with sharp scissors across the side. Then, pull out the plastic egg. Then, I will blanket stitch the opening with some embroidery floss or cotton perle, a la Wool Food Mama’s eggs.

Wet felted wool egg

And here are the four of the five eggs that I made! How do you like the “Earth” ones? I think they are cute. My son helped me with a fifth Earth egg, and we had some better polar ice caps on that one. I used two layers of the white wool, then one layer of green, then a top layer of blue.

Try it out! It was fun, and satisfying working with the wet wool with your hands. It probably took me about 20 minutes to make one egg. And pretty easy prep phase and clean-up phase, since you are pretty much only using soap and water.