Using a wire armature

I usually make my felted animals with a solid woollen core. The various attempts I have had at using a wire armature usually end in a lot of bodging.  I find that the extremities (paws, claws and so on) are very hard to felt, even when fully wrapped in pre felt.  As the wool fibers shrink and tighten the wires begin to show through.Yet I have long wanted to do a more poseable character so once again I am working around a wire

 

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Using florist’s wire and jewellers pliers, it is quite easy to shape the skeleton of the armature.
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Working from a quick sketch and combination of photographs, the head begins to take shape.
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Adding length is quite tricky; the nose here is too short so I added small layers of wool to the end to shape it.
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Layers of prefelt and merino fiber felted together, mostly using 38 star and 42 triangular needles.

 

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3 Comments Add yours

  1. Rin says:

    I can never get the felt to “stick” to the armature, any suggestions?

    1. I make a sheet of prefelt, two layers of fiber, rolled with either my mat or the felting roller. When this is dry I cut it into strips, 1/2 inch wide. I use this to wind around the wire. This time I used a white tape (masking as I couldn’t find my sewing tape) to wrap around the armature first. That way I found the prefelt didn’t slip when I was adding the layers of fiber for felting. Good luck; if this doesn’t work for you then I know that Dreamfelt sells a prepared armature wire for needle felting, which has the prefelt already attached.

      1. Rin says:

        Thanks so much!

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