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Renew it…with Felt! Felted Pen Cup

Felting over objects can be a fun way to transform the ordinary into the truly unique. In this project we will learn some simple wet felting techniques by felting over an old pen cup. This was a good item to use because the holes in the cup design allow water to flow through freely and give the fibers something to grab onto.

Your work surface should be an area that can get wet. We like to use the lids from plastic storage bins as they hold the water quite well and are easy to drain into the sink when finished. You can use similar techniques to make felted rocks for paperweights, doorstops, bookends, and felt over wood ~~ just experiment and have fun!



Wool top, sliver or roving, pen cup, soapy water solution, towels, nylon stocking, plastic wrap.

1. Begin by wrapping a thin layer of wool around the cup.
2. We added various colors in this initial layer.
3. Turn the cup upside down and layer wool to cover the bottom and go up to the rim, which is touching the table.
4. Create a third layer in diagonals.
5. Stretch your stocking over the cup, try not to shift the fibers.
6. Dip your hand in the soapy water and completely soak the wool by drizzling water over the cup. Press down as you wet to push out the air and make the wool both saturated and flat. Gently peel back the top of the stocking and fold any wool extending beyond the rim back under the stocking.
Put the stocking back in place and press this area to cause the wool underneath the lie flat. When the wool is completely soaked and compressed, begin massaging lightly over the entire area, rubbing in small, gentle circles to entangle the surface fibers.
Gradually increase in your pressure of massaging, use both hands and rub in all directions. Focus on flattening the bottom and tightening the rim. Rub, rub, rub.
7. When the wool starts coming through the stocking, or seems to be pilling on the stocking surface, peel the stocking off gently.

Continue to felt the surface by wrapping your hand in plastic wrap and rubbing in all directions. The felt shrinks in the direction rubbed. When you can pinch the surface and the fibers hold together, rinse, wrap in a towel to absorb the water and allow to air dry.