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Nuno felting is an exciting process that has gained in popularity over the last few years. Using the process of wet felting wool over a fabric like silk chiffon, the materials bond together and create a wonderful, new material. Nuno felting can be used for garments or for art concept pieces. This is a simple but beautiful lightweight shawl. It is wonderful to wear in warmer weather over a tank top or in cooler weather you can snuggle it around your head and neck to keep really warm. It is a very easy to wear and versatile piece!
Step 2 – Carefully divide the wool into 8 long bands. Set aside. To make the ruffled edge, begin to lay out the horizontal bands along the inside edge of the folded fabric (see photo below), tugging on the wool to flatten it as you go. The wool will go through both pieces of fabric. One of the bands you split off should stretch to make one of the bands going the length of the shawl. Continue with the wool about 4” past the edges of the fabric to make the fringes or the edges.
Step 3 – Continue to lay out the long horizontal bands, splitting the area in the middle into 3 areas. There should be 5 long bands in all – each one should extend past the edges of the fabric about 4” to make the fringes.
Step 4 – Next, begin to lay out the vertical bands along the cut edges, being careful to keep the wool on top of the silk. These bands also extend beyond the edges of the fabric about 4”. Lay out 5 or more vertical bands across the width of the fabric, just eyeing the spacing and making it fairly even as you go. The 5 interior bands should stop at the beginning of the horizontal band that makes the ruffled edge and not extend into the ruffle. These bands can be straight, or you can make them have some curves, or whatever shape pleases you. The bands on the sample curve a little bit on the last 1/3 of the band. There are 7 vertical bands in all.
Step 5 – When you are happy with the layout, add your decorative finishes. In the sample shown, small thin pieces of silk and bamboo roving were spread across the piece. Tiny wisps of wool were added on top to secure the silk and bamboo roving.
Step 6 – Wet out your work, either by covering with tulle and adding cool soapy water, or use the fertilizer sprayer on the finest setting as shown in the photo. You do not have to cover your work if you use the fertilizer sprayer.
Step 7 – Cover your work with the lightest weight painter’s plastic (.6 or .7 mil). Rub lightly with a scrunched up plastic bag to make sure the wool is flattened and the water is spread evenly.
Step 8 – Roll or sand your work.
Step 9 – When you are finished rolling or sanding and the wool is securely adhered to the fabric, begin to full your work. Scrunch, throw, roll etc. to shrink your work.
Step 10 – Rinse the piece to get the soap out. Also rinse with white vinegar to restore the ph of the wool. Lay flat to dry. Iron it with a cool iron when it is dry. Enjoy!