How To Needle Felt For Beginners - Darn Good Yarn

How To Needle Felt For Beginners

Written by Kate Curry

So, you’ve managed to find the wonderful world of needle felting! Welcome! This funky art form is a fiber adventure that has increased in popularity over the last few years. If you want to create some stunning needle feeling ideas, but don’t know where to start - don’t worry! We’re here to help! 

What Is Needle Felting?

Essentially, needle felting is the art of taking loose roving fiber and combining and compressing (aka stabbing the roving with needles) to create the shape that you want. It’s essentially the perfect way to burn off steam. You can use your needles (called felting needles) to push and shape the roving fiber. You can do this when the roving is wet OR dry, which can change the look of your work. 

Beginners will sometimes felt inside cookie cutters, outlines, or molds, but once you get used to the feel of the needle, you can free form your newest creation! 

Needle Felting Supplies For Beginners

Before you get started, make sure you have all your supplies! 

  • Roving - this is the step before fiber is spun into yarn. Needle felting artists typically use wool 
  • A close up of three hanks of roving wool - one in tan, one in purple, and one in green.
  • Felting needles - these come in different sizes 
  • A felting needle with a wooden handle.
  • Finger pads / protectors 
  • A felting surface - this is where you can place your work without worrying about stabbing yourself or your table 
  • Scissors 
  • Any outlines that you want to use 

How To Needle Felt

Step One: Gather your supplies and come up with a plan of what you want to make! For your first time, try to make something simple like a ball or a star.
Step Two: Prep your roving! Tear off a chunk of roving and roll it into a semblance of the shape you want. If you’re making a circle, roll it up as best as you can and place it on the felting surface. This is also the time where you would add water to your roving if you were to do the wet method.
Step Three: Stab away! Using your needle, begin pressing the needle(s) into your roving from the top down. You’ll want to press in about ¼ deep with each stab, prodding straight up and down so your needle slides smoothly. Be aware of where your fingers are and wear those finger pads! Feeling needles are incredibly sharp! Keep going until you’ve created your desired shape!

Needle Felting Ideas

On the hunt for what you can do with needle felting? There are TONS of options! 

A mobile for the baby made of felting space-themed dolls.
Adorable dolls and figurines
Tiny little peppermints made of white and red felting.
Multicolored felt pom pom balls.
Pom pom balls
Two bars of multicolored felted soap on a teal soap dish.
Felted soap!

Meet the Author

Profile picture of the author, Kate Curry, wearing a dark red Nanda Poncho sitting on concrete stairs in front of brick wall.

Kate has been on the Darn Good Yarn team since 2018.

They have their degree in Creative Art Therapy & Psychology - and like crafting and animals a little too much.