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To Felt Or Not To Felt

Apr 11, 2007

I admire knitted, felted goodies…mostly from afar. I love to examine them, and stroke them, but as much as I love all these beautiful creations, I have been dubious about the idea of making felted objects for myself.
Floral Felted Bag
For example: Everyone seems to love felted handbags, and I have seen some really pretty ones. However, I’m pretty hard on my tote bags and purses; I’ve been known to wear through a really good leather bag in a couple of seasons. I think I am a bit leery of putting that much work into something that I know would have a very hard life in my possession.

The other reality of my life is that I have cats, cats who love curling up on mom’s hand-made items. One always has to look at potential projects from the cats’ point of view: would it make a good cat bed? If the answer is yes, then one carefully weighs the possibilities for keeping the item out of the cats’ reach along with the cost of yarn and other considerations before deciding what to make and what not to make. A lovely felted intarsia bag would make a fine cat bed, and thus a poor Sandi project.

Still, I love to look, and to touch, and to see all the ingenious ways that folks come up with to make fabric into something that is as useful as it is beautiful. And I admit that I am sorely tempted to make Amanda’s Squatty Sidekick purse, simply because it is very practical, and pretty—and yet not so intricate that if I found a cat sleeping in it my heart would be broken.

Besides: The thought of tossing my knitting into the washing machine is strangely seductive. I am normally so careful NOT to put my knitting into the washer. And wouldn’t it be fun to carry around something I had knitted all day long?

Perhaps I could knit the pieces for Amanda’s bag, and then knit an extra square of cat-sized proportions, so that the cats would have their bed, and I would have my bag.


my cat Sparrow thinks this is his bed
Oh, wait. They are cats. Everything I have is theirs.

I think I will still make the bag. I can put my knitting in it and keep it at work to take to knitting-friendly meetings, thereby avoiding the danger of it becoming a cat bed.

I am off to find some lovely felt-able wool.


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Comments

on May 9, 2011 10:26 AM

Sandi;

This may be way too late as I noticed the date on the blog was 2007 however I still think that my suggestion has merit.

We have indoor cats and outdoor barn cats (who actually have to work for a living!)  

Our indoor cats love their felted cat beds.  This was my solution to their sleeping on any felted item that they could get to.

I crochet the cats beds.  Very easily by starting at the base center and circling my way out with single crochet until the diameter is 30-40% larger than I want it. (To account for shrinking during felting)  Then I stay at that number of sticthes and single crochet up as far as I want to say 4-5 inches. If I am feelingin a decorative mood I may crochet a shelled edge on top which looks lovely when felted.  Into the washing machine and then onto the soapstone slab in front of the woodstove and the cats are in them before they are even dry!       Holly Arato MD

on May 9, 2011 10:24 AM

Sandi;

This may be way too late as I noticed the date on the blog was 2007 however I still think that my suggestion has merit.

We have indoor cats and outdoor barn cats (who actually have to work for a living!)  

Our indoor cats love their felted cat beds.  This was my solution to their sleeping on any felted item that they could get to.

I crochet the cats beds.  Very easily by starting at the base center and circling my way out with single crochet until the diameter is 30-40% larger than I want it. (To account for shrinking during felting)  Then I stay at that number of sticthes and single crochet up as far as I want to say 4-5 inches. If I am feelingin a decorative mood I may crochet a shelled edge on top which looks lovely when felted.  Into the washing machine and then onto the soapstone slab in front of the woodstove and the cats are in them before they are even dry!       Holly Arato MD

on Dec 16, 2010 3:23 AM

KD - you are a woman after my own heart!  i love to knit and felt, and can't wait for my creations to come out of the wash - always a surprise.  Now, if I could only write down what I'm doing so they'd come out the 2nd time around similiar!

AND, I adore cats, as much as they adore everything I'm doing - knitting, quilting, cooking, sleeping, reading...I rescue them, have 11!  They just make me laugh, everything they do.  The floral felted bag you're toting is beautiful!  Do you have the pattern to share!

Biedebach wrote
on Jul 25, 2010 10:36 AM

Hi - Where can I locate the pattern for this fabulous floral felted bag ?  

markazo wrote
on Feb 15, 2010 8:04 AM

i am looking for a crocheted cell phone pattern that was in a magazine a few years ago.  you knit it then felt it.  It was like a little purse. can't find the pattern, does anyone have one.  It had a crocheted handle on it that buttoned on the side.

thanks

marlene

CharleneL wrote
on May 7, 2008 7:13 AM
Where can I get the pattern for the beautiful floral felted bag? Charlene
CharleneL wrote
on May 7, 2008 7:12 AM
If you cannot felt in a front loader, why not go to the laundramat? They have top loaders. Charlene
arimaria wrote
on Feb 27, 2008 11:03 PM
HI, does anyone know if patons inca felts? I guess i will have to knit a sample and give it a go. BTW I have a front loader and I have used it it to felt. iput it on a small cycle turn the temp right up and turn the spin OFF
AnnJ wrote
on Feb 8, 2008 6:44 PM
I'm wodering the same as Alice E.. I now have a front loading washing machine, and still want to felt. How do i do it? In the dryer maybe? Risky.
AliceE wrote
on Jan 4, 2008 4:28 PM
Hi felters! I want to know if it's just impossible to felt in a front loader, I'm having no success! What is the deal?!
MargieK wrote
on Oct 18, 2007 8:15 PM
Hi, Not sure where to post this question. I like felting, but wonder how you clean a felted project? The clogs especially. Sweaty feet, floor dirt..how do you wash them? Hand wash?
Do you wash them or just make new ones if they get too dirty to wear?
Margie
LesleyP wrote
on Jul 20, 2007 4:28 PM
I agree with her about felting. However, I have a different reason. I tried felting and I don't like it at the moment. Lesley
IrmaP wrote
on Jun 16, 2007 11:01 AM
I became so enamored of felting bags that I had to sell them during the Christmas holiday season last year. I had the fun of making them, then the gift of extra income to buy more yarn! Truly a win-win situation!! Go for it, you won't regret it. Knitpicker