I have been working on a purse to felt. It has been hibernating a bit. I finished it, and was quite pleased.
Felt is the oldest form of fabric known to humankind. It predates weaving and knitting, although there is archaeological evidence from the British Museum that the first known thread was made by winding vegetable fibers on the thigh. In Turkey, the remains of felt have been found dating back at least to 6,500 BC. Highly sophisticated felted artifacts were found preserved in permafrost in a tomb in Siberia and dated to 600AD.
WHO INVENTED FELTING?
THERE IS THE IDEA THAT ST. CLEMENT,
THE PATRON SAINT OF FELTERS AND HAT MAKERS,
PUT WOOL IN THE BOTTOM OF HIS SANDALS AS
HE TREKKED OFF ON A HOLY MISSION.
THAT IS POSSIBLE, BUT ARCHEOLOGY AND
SCIENCE HAVE SHOWN US THAT FELTING HAS BEEN
AROUND A LOT LONGER THAN THAT DEAR OLD SAINT.
MAYBE AS LONG AS ABOUT 30,000 YEARS OR MORE!
Saint Clement I, was the 3rd Bishop of Rome about 100 A.D.
He is the Patron Saint of Hatters in England
and is celebrated on November 23.
The Mongolian thought is that the nomadic
tribes often used sheep skins to sit upon
while they rode their horses. Perhaps one hot and
humid day of hard riding turn the skins into some great felt
Whoever originally discovered this process, probably many people accidentally felted something, as we all have. The first article I felted was a hand knitted sweater of my husbands that his grandmother knitted him (long dead). I didn't tell him that it fit my Barbie doll for a number of years. (about 10)
Even happier than I thought I would be, when I finished knitting the purse.
So I happily put the purse in my machine to felt it this beautiful sat morning.
My "purse" is not 2 feet long!! Yes that's a ruler there, I don't think I can make it work as a purse. Right now just looking at it and trying to figure out what to do.
Lesson from this exercise: Knit a test swatch and felt it. See how the yarn you are using in the pattern is going to felt.
My local LYS, tells me, that all yarn felts differently, and....
1-Your water PH will affect your felting.
2-What kind of washer is used. (top loader, front loader, type of agitation)
4-Use soap or baking soda, "improves felting", makes more little fuzzies to stick together. Also "speeds" the felting process up.
I have felted several pairs of clogs before and never had any problems.
So be forewarned, gauge is important in felting, knit one and process it exactly like you are going to for your finished product.
May your needles fly as fast as Dragonflies...