Learn how to make a felt wreath using recycled jumpers. This fantastic project from Felt, Cut and Sew Unique is an inspiration to reduce consumption around the festive season and to use what you have to make something new to share or to give!
You Will Need
- Felted wool sweater scraps
- Sharp fabric scissors or a rotary cutter and mat
- Ball of extra strong no-stretch twine (baling twine works great)
- A weaving needle that you can thread the baling twine through
- Small spring-loaded pliers
- Work gloves
- Darner needle
- Embroidery floss or similar cotton sewing yarn
- A small metal ring designed to hold keys
- Small piece of ribbon or colored tape
- Felted Holly or Poinsettias or decorative bow for finished wreath
Preparing Your Materials
1. Cut the felted wool material you have gathered into same size squares. This cut material can be loosely described as squares; it is nice to spice up the look and texture of the finished wreath with occasional oddly shaped bits and pieces. Think about each cut piece having about the same area as a 10cm square.
To avoid pools or blocks of colour and make a randomly coloured wreath, it is important to cut all the material you will need before you move on to the next step. Put your cut pieces into a laundry basket or bin as you cut. Once you are finished with the cutting process, toss the pieces to ensure a random mix of colour throughout.
How to Make a Felt Wreath
2. Place the cut squares in stacks approx 120cm high; I fold any long skinny ones in half.
3. Thread your large weaving needle with 1.9 metres length of baling twine. Make a large double overhand knot about 20cm from the end.
4. With your threaded needle, poke through the centre of one stack of felted squares, checking to be sure you have pierced each layer as you pick it up. Continue to thread all the stacks of cut goods onto the twine, one after the other, pulling them to the knot as you go.
This process is easier with the aid of the pliers. Hold the needle firmly with the pliers. With your other hand, tug the cut goods over the needle and down to meet the knot. Be sure the pieces are laying flat next to each other without being bunched up, adding bulk that will loosen later.
5. Continue to pack the bits tightly together until you have threaded a metre and a half “caterpillar” on your baling twine. (I measure this when I am not pushing the pieces down and they are not under pressure.)
6. Wear your work gloves to tie the two ends of the twine in a very strong, nonslip knot. Do this sitting on the floor with the twine between the toes like a flip-flop. Push the fabric away with your feet while pulling the twine tight and trying like hell to knot it well. A loose knot makes a droopy wreath. Use a square knot with an extra go ’round.
Finishing the Wreath
7. Decide which side is the front. Thread the needle with the embroidery floss, knot both ends together, and attach the key ring to the wreath back with very deep, strong stitches. The ring will be used to hang the wreath, and it looks nicest if it cannot be seen from the front. Mark the ring with a piece of brightly colored tape or ribbon so it is easy to find later.
8. Once you have the base complete, embellish it with felt holly sprigs or poinsettias. Pay attention to the wreath’s orientation, being sure you know where the top is.
9. A wide bow is a nice, traditional holiday addition. Use ribbon or cut a wide strip of pretty cloth from something used and try that. You might have to piece it together to make it long enough. Starch will help it stand crisply.