Nursery Update: Needle Felting a Mobile

Needle-felted animals in progress for the mobile I'm making for my baby's room.

The details for the nursery are coming together fast and furious. In addition to the quilt, I’ve been busy making a few other things to hang on baby’s wall. We have our crib in place (we went with the Ikea Sundvik) as well as a lovely shaggy rug, also from Ikea. Our change table is a hand-me-down that we’re dressing up a bit with new pulls. We have a mid-century rocker that is being reupholstered that I found at Tribute Decor (thanks to owner Susan who tried it out for me with her own kids, to see if it would work for feeding!). I found a beautiful Moroccan leather pouf from Bohemia in Edinburgh, Scotland, which will serve as a footrest. When looking for a pouf, I discovered that the leather poufs from Bohemia were cheaper than local options, even with shipping charges—plus, they had way more beautiful colours to choose from than I found anywhere else. The Farrow & Ball low-VOC paint is on the wall, and we have some really fun removable wallpaper from WallCandy Arts for the interior of an open closet. Also on the way: bedding from Carousel Designs and a Roman black-out shade from the lovely folks at Tonic Living, from whom I’ve purchased many yards of beautiful fabric over the years.

You’ll be able to see all of this in a fall issue of Canadian Family (which one is still to be determined), so I don’t want to give away too much, but here’s a sneak peek of the mobile!

I discovered needle felting when I was in the land of cute crafts, also known as Japan. I bought a few kits by a brand known as Hamanaka (you can buy kits at Purl Soho or Superbuzzy in North America), and learned the basics with the help of my Japanese/English dictionary. I’ve since moved on to felting things from pattern books. I bought a great little animal book online at Purl Soho (the one I bought is sold out, but this one is similar).

Needle felting isn’t as complicated as it looks. All you need is wool roving in different colours and small barbed needle felting needles. You roll, ball and shape the roving into the shape you need, poke it with your needle, and the barbs start pulling the roving into a shape. The more you poke, the tighter it gets, which means it can be sculpted into almost any shape. It’s a little hard to describe, but this video is a great introduction.

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