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Zed Bear Newcastle NSW
Posts: 19

I have just placed my first two orders (one for wool, and one for tools) to get myself started at needle felting. I have been looking around and have seen some amazing stuff. Already I have so many ideas, I can't wait to get started. Just one question though, I've seen a fair few articles suggesting that the core can be made from a different wool (I'm assuming it's to save dollars) and then covered in coloured wool. Can anyone suggest what I should be using for the core??????

desertmountainbear desertmountainbear
Bloomsburg, PA
Posts: 5,399
Website

When felting an animal I use  Navajo-Churro wool for the core, it is a little coarser and felts very firm fast,  I finish with alpaca which doesn't felt so firm for me, but feels and looks so soft.   When felting a face I just use the same wool all the way through.
Joanne

anacarol Malaga
Posts: 23

Interesting thread as I was thinking on getting a "starting kit"...
How do you felt a face? can you do it on an already made synthetic or alpaca bear stuffed with polyfil? does it have to be wool stuffing?
:-?

desertmountainbear desertmountainbear
Bloomsburg, PA
Posts: 5,399
Website

I think that using a store bought "practice teddy" would be a wonderful way to start.  I have felted into polyester stuffing as well as wool.  I start with the cheeks, felting and adding wool till I am almost happy with the shape, then I add a thin layer to the top of the muzzle and shape the eye lids.  I then finish shaping the whole muzzle.  Last I felt a nose.

One thing I have learned about stuffing the face area with wool is that along with needle sculpting I can also sculpt the face from under the fur, felting the wool stuffing. I especially notice it, on the top of the muzzle, the bridge of the nose,  and under the chin.

Joanne

nimbleknot Cupcake Bears
Austin, Texas
Posts: 711
Website

I use Corriedale for the bodies all my creations. Sometimes I dye it. But for the accents of color I use Merino, which I buy from The Wool Shed http://www.outbackfibers.com/fiber/palette.htm.
Her colors are second to none and the quality is number one.

EvaJ EJ's Crafts
Fort Mohave, Arizona
Posts: 829

I got my needefelting supplies from www.edinburghimports.com  They had the best price on the core wool for me.

Mikki Mikki, Cripple Creek Creative
Bethel, Ohio
Posts: 1,051

Use a coarse Roving for the basic structure and Merino wools in the finishing /refining process. Have used Outback for my Merino wools...excellent selection and service. Use Wildewools for my roving wools,also excvellent selection and service.......Mikki

matilda Matilda Huggington-beare
WA
Posts: 5,551

I use NZ Corriedale for my NF. Which I order from the supplier in NZ. You will find that different wools need different needles and we all use what is best for us. So it is trial and error of what is available to you.
I felt most of my work on the foam before I apply it.  The best advice I can give is to know exactly or close to what you wish to create with the NF.  Sketch the face on paper and have a think about it.
You will find a tutorial on the way I felt my faces on my website.
go forth experiment and have fun.
OH and one more thing. ...dont trim back unless it is absolutely necessary.
Wendy

Zed Bear Newcastle NSW
Posts: 19

Thanks for all the helpful replies....I have had a chnace to experiement with both 22micron Merino and a 29 micron Corriedale and I do prefer the corriedale for the core....it's so much easier. For the next question, does anyone know any Australian suppliers of Romney?

rkr4cds Creative Design Studio (RKR4CDS)
suburban Chicago
Posts: 2,044

I just read your wonderful post, Michelle! You gave the fiber you chose in terms of MICRONS!! I LOVE it!
Are you finding sources who are now listing their fiber with this information? I wonder if it's an OZ thing; home source of a lot of the world's great fiber!

Once needlers familiarize themselves with the Micron Count system, purchasing fiber by count according to what they'll do with it (what type of end product they're aiming for) half the battle is won!
This is great - it's my hope that if enough of us ask for it, suppliers will give us the information we need when purchasing.
Here's to the future of Needle Felting!

enchantmentsart Feather Heart Creations
TX
Posts: 419

I use Navajo-Churro too for my core it's also sometimes called mandala wool too.  It's a nice off white, and then I felt with mohair or Merino on top.  For larger things I make a soft sculpt body out of muslin stuffed with poly-fil then just felt my wool on top.

Zed Bear Newcastle NSW
Posts: 19

Bobbie

It must be an Aussie thing as it is quite common to list the micron information of the wool. Merino and Corriedale are very common here, but I am finding it near impossible to get anything courser, such as Romney. I can order internationally, but the freight is prohibitive.

rkr4cds Creative Design Studio (RKR4CDS)
suburban Chicago
Posts: 2,044

I can order internationally, but the freight is prohibitive.

I wonder if it's more a 'Handling' thing than a 'Shipping' cost affecting the price that's being asked.

I help 2 Oz friends: many US companies refuse to ship to Australia or want those outrageous fees. They impose those to discourage having to ship so far away - it fouls up their automated shipping systems which are not set up for the streamlined processes as pulling the merchandise and slapping on a set postage fee, according to either weight or total cost of items purchased. And then they have to do the math for currency conversion - time is money and it's not a large enough portion of their businesses to do all of the extra work.

There are companies here in the States which will accept pkgs from multiple companies and box them all up into one shipment to you. That too carries a fee, though it's less than what the total shipping would be if each company were to ship to you. I accept their packages and remove all of the bulky boxing and superfluous items like the extra catalogs they all insert (those're Heavy!!) and pack it all into one delivery, charging just the actual cost of mailing. They pay me by Paypal, which costs .048% as it's a business/Premier acct. It's a huge savings that way.

I'd say to ask a US citizen to accept for you, as I personally feel that it's ridiculous for them not to accept monies from everywhere in these days of shrinking revenue!

I've used Wilde Bros. in Philadelphia for over 9 years: I don't know if they're one who refuses to ship overseas - - - - but the fiber is NEW ZEALAND Romney!! It got here by shipping from that area to begin with!

JulietK julietk
London
Posts: 66

Thanks for an informative and interest thread ladies
I work small and so far have used the Merino or alpaca all though my makes
but I would use a base if I worked large.

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