When I first discovered wool, circa October 2018 (laughable, but true), I had no idea how complicated and truly versatile it is! It all started with a 2 sentence blurb in the the market class list, then I met Phyllis Meiring of In the Patch Designs and her passion is just unmistakable. Not long after that, I met Andrea at Local Farm Girl and I was blown away by the softness of her wool and her amazing eye for color.
So, in their honor, I will try to make sense of Felted Wool vs Wool Felt for you and for me.
You remember felt from childhood. Easy to cut, you probably even glued it on paper to make Thanksgiving Turkeys. You could not tear it easily either and it did not fray. It had a heaviness and firmness to it that helped it hold shape when making dimensional projects.
Wool Felt is just that, but made from wool, whereas the felt from childhood is more than likely made from synthetic fibers. Wool Felt is a grown-up felt, so have fun with it!
The biggest difference between Wool Felt and Felted Wool is the way the fibers combine. Wool Felt is NOT made from woven fibers, but rather a process that uses heat, moisture and agitation to cause the fibers to mat together.
Ah Felted Wool, if you have not touched it, then you are missing out!
The first thing you see when comparing Felted Wool vs Wool Felt, it the firmness. The Felted Wool is much softer and drapes like cloth. The process for making wool is just like traditional cloth – the fibers are spun into threads and threads are woven.
However, to make the wool felted from its woven state, it goes through the same heat, moisture and agitation process as the Wool Felt. What you get though is very different because of the woven nature of the Felted Wool versus the matted nature of the Wool Felt.
Here at Threaded Lines, we LOVE Felted Wool and stock a large variety of different colors and sizes. Mainly used for applique, I see the fun in branching out with all the variety! What makes it ideal for applique, however, is the fact that is does not fray and you typically do not need to use interfacing – just cut and stitch.
Hopefully, this helps you understand the difference between the two wonderful wools. If you are a wool expert, forgive any mistakes as I am a beginner and trying to understand it myself.
What do you think? Are you a wool aficionado or a beginner?