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Pre-felt, Prefelt, what is it and what can you make with it!

pre felt


What is prefelt? What’s the difference between prefelt and craft felt? And what is prefelt used for?

 pre felt picture

Prefelt is the stage between fluffy wool fibres and fully felted (like a boiled wool jacket). Fully wet felted wool is also known as fulled.

Prefelt can be made by hand or bought premade in sheets. The premade prefelt is sometimes known as needle punched felt, as it is made using machines using lots of felting needles to catch and tangle the fibres. Handmade prefelt is made with two or more thin layers of wool tops, or sliver, which are then lightly wet felted using soap and warm water. This is enough for the fibres to catch together but not be totally fuse into solid felt.

 wet felting 3

The difference between prefelt and craft felt is prefelt is a product which needs further action before it is a finished product. A bit like part baked bread. prefelt is very fragile and easy to pull apart. If you wet felt a piece of prefelt and lock the fibres (fully fulled) it becomes a piece of 100% wool felt. Craft felt is solid and can not be easily pulled apart it is ready to be sewn if you wet felt it, its structure will not change.

So what can do with pre felt? Pre felt is a good way to create a picture or part of a picture with sharp edges or add detail to bags, purses, blankets, hats etc such as flowers, wildlife, shapes etc. It is also good as the base layer to work a design onto. As pre felt is part felted, when you use it, it keeps it shape so circles stay round and flowers etc stay as you meant them to look after the wet felting process.

 felted book cover

How to use pre felt? I find it best to either use freezer paper which you have drawn or printed on, simply iron it on the pre felt then cut out your design and peel the freezer paper off. Or you could also pin a design you have drawn or printed on paper to your pre felt then cut out, or cut out free hand. Whatever the project you have in mind prefelt is likely to be a useful part of the felting experience.


pre felt flower hatfelted book mark

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