so much felt: a wreath tutorial (+ something faster)

Ok, so maybe *one* more felt thing…then I’m done. I just realized that I failed to post my fav project from Christmas — the felt wreath I made for my mother.

I secured some really nice wool-blend felt from Benzie Designs. It has a lovely hand, a slew of attractive colors and the prices are more than fair. Seriously, this stuff is a wonder compared to the acrylic version from craft stores, but is far less spendy than 100% wool felt. I also think it’s easier to work w/ than 100% wool. Plus, Renae at Benzie was very responsive when I stupidly mailed my second order to my old address (I blame the Etsy interface for that, btw).

I went w/ an “exuded” (yum!)  styrofoam wreath form since the straw ones are SO HEAVY.  Having plaster walls makes me sensitive to the weight of the things that will hang on them. I know, “wall anchors”, but still…I get nervous. The exuded forms are the the ones that are smooth and rounded, not the flat, coarse forms w/ the sharp edges.

Anyhoo, all you need for this project is a wreath form, felt, hot glue, and scissors. Then it’s just cut and glue. My main bit of advice is to avoid getting obsessive about the shape of your felt squares and the resulting leaves. Just eyeball it, truly. I started out w/ a ruler but it really wasn’t  worth it. The leaves overlap so variations in size aren’t obvious.

Supplies:
– “exuded” styrofoam wreath form, 16″ or whatever size you’d like
– felt squares in your fav color(s) — i used 14 9×12 sheets for the 16″ wreath
– many many hot glue sticks
– glue gun
– scissors

Directions

1) Cut a 9×12 felt sheet into 5 roughly similar strips (going the long way).
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2) Cut one strip in half. You’ll have a stack of four rectangles.
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3) Take two of these rectangles and fold them into an S shape (i.e. fold in thirds). Cut across the center of both of the rounded parts of the S. This will make 6 roughly equal rectangles.
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4) You’ll have a stack that looks like this:
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5) Repeat w/ the other two long rectangles from step 2.

6) Repeat steps 1 – 5 for all your felt sheets.

7) Next cut your rectangles into “leaves”. I’m using the term very loosely! To make the leaves, orient a small rectangle the tall way. Starting in the bottom corner, cut one side with a “leaf-like” curve, ending in a gentle point.  Repeat on other side.  Here’s a pic on paper, so you can see the shape I was going for. You should certainly modify, if you’re not into this shape!
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8) Then just keep at it, making all your leaves.
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9) Now glue your leaves to the wreath form. Starting at the top, glue one row of leaves around the short/fat dimension of the wreath (there must be a math word for this?). For the next layer, place the leaves BETWEEN the points of the layer above. To me it looks like dragon scales. ;)
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The leaves won’t fit perfectly, but don’t worry. Just make sure that none of your wreath form is visible. As you add layers, be sure that the points of your leaves are facing a single direction. That gives the wreath a uniform look.

10) Keep on w/ the gluing until your wreath is full. Then, tah dah!, you’ll have something  looks like this.
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Or…you could skip all the steps above and just wrap a wreath form in bulky yarn, then add some felt flowers. They were my first flowers, so kinda wonky looking, but I still like it. :D
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