How To Make A Felt Ball-
Quick and Easy How-To
Making felt balls is lots of fun. There is water, and fleece, and soapy bubbles, and mess, and splashes. What’s not to love? You can use felt balls for lots of things. Felt ball necklaces for kids and adults, felt ball bracelets, felt ball dolls, felt ball rugs (oh, I do LOVE these big chocolate sprinkle things. Adorable!), felt ball garlands, felt ball wall hangings, felt ball animals, felt ball toys…. the list may be endless.
Here is a step-by-step guide to making quick and easy felt balls perfect for your next colourful project.
How to make a felt ball:
You’ll need wool fleece. Any kind will do, but I like Corriedale because it is a bit coarser and the spurs on the fibres mean the fleece sticks together more easily.
1. The first thing is to take a piece of fleece about 30 cm in length. Gently pull off a 1 cm wide sliver of the fibre, from top to bottom, so you have a long piece like this. You can tie a knot in the centre, then begin wrapping the two loose ends around and around the knot. Or you can follow my little trick and find a spiky seedpod as your centre. Wrapping the fleece fibres around the seed is so easy because the first bit sticks to the seedpod, and this makes the next bit find it’s way.
2. When the first wrap is done, gently pull a second strand from the fleece sliver, and continue.
3. Do this three times for your base.
4. Fill a small container with warm water. Add a small handful of lux flakes, or washing up detergent will do.
5. Dunk the felt ball into the water, and begin rolling it around in your hands to create suds.
6. Dry your hands in between dunks, and continue adding dry fibre to the ball in the same way as before. Long lengths. As you roll, the wet ball will help the new dry fibres to stick in place. Do not be afraid to pull a bit more tightly on the wool if the fibres loosen or go out of shape.
7. Roll and rub the felt ball as you go. Roll, roll, roll. And grow it to the size you want. Then roll, roll, roll some more.
8. Keep rolling until all the fibres have cemented in place. Do the pinch test. If the fibres pull away more than a few millimetres, it is not ready. Keep rolling. Roll, roll, roll. The ball should be tight and ‘squeezie’, kind of like a tennis ball, when done.
9. Remove all suds from your finished felt ball under running water. Leave to dry and your felt ball is done.
Make them whatever size you need. By the way, if felt ball rolling ever becomes tiresome, do as my friend Jen does and set the children to work! Her kids could run a felt ball factory, and they love earning 20 cents a ball!