Are you still on the fence whether needle felting could be a good hobby for you? This checklist will help!

Needle felting is getting more and more popular nowadays which is not at all surprising considering how versatile this medium is. You can create anything from fantasy to stylised creatures and so realistic animals that you can actually mistake them for the real ones.

If you have ever wondered when seeing a cute woolly sculpture if you could also learn how to needle felt, then the answer is definitely YES! But if you're still on the fence whether needle felting is a good hobby for you or not, take a look at the checklist below that will help you decide.

What is needle felting?

Collage of different needle felted figurines

In case you're not familiar with needle felting, it is the process of turning wool into different 3D sculptures, decoration pieces or 2D art with the help of special needles that have notches along its shaft. When the needles are being poked into the wool the notches catch the fibre and tangle them with other fibres.

Depending on how long the wool is being needle felted and from what kind of directions, different shapes can be created which can have different level of firmness. The possibilities of what can be created with needle felting are endless.

Now that you understand what this amazing craft is, let's see if it could be your new fave activity.

The checklist to help you decide if needle felting is a good hobby for you

Needle felted checkbox on 100% pre-felt

How to use the checklist

It's simple. Answer the following 7 questions with yes or no. To each of them, I provided a little extra detail why it is asked, so you can give a more informed answer. Count your 'yes' and 'no' answers when you've finished. If you have more than 4 'yes' answers, then you should definitely try out needle felting. 

Before we get to the questions, however, I have to note that the checklist items are based on my and other needle felters experience, so there's no 'science' behind it. It is likely that with less than 4 yes answers you might still find this craft a good fit, especially if your goal is to push yourself out of your comfort zone.

(I'm sorry but) needle felting is not for you if ...

  • you have any aversion to or phobia about sharp needles, or
  • you're allergic to animal hair or wool specifically. Then it's best to find a different craft. It's worth noting, though, that there are synthetic fibres and plant based fibres (such as, bamboo, hemp, cotton, silk, etc.) but needle felting with them is more difficult and getting the same result as with animal hair is not always possible.

The checklist

Are you looking to create unique items that are fun to look at?

Every needle felted sculpture is unique in a sense that there are no two pieces are exactly the same. Even if you buy a kit and follow the instructions, your result will be different, one-of-a-kind. And that's the fun part as well! You can follow your own creative instincts and see where they take you.

Are you okay with experimenting and let go of perfection?

We all know that letting go of perfection can be beneficial but it's really hard. Solution? Needle felting! With this medium you can learn how to enjoy experimenting and follow your (almost) child-like curiosity again. There's no right or wrong when it come to expressing your creativity.

Are you looking for a hobby that can make you forget about your worries and help you relax?

A big fat YES - in my case at least. Crafting has been around for centuries and for a good reason. It can help us unwind and calm our mind. Needle felting is an extremely good way to do so.

Are you patient or willing to practise patience?

Finished needle felted pieces are also called wool sculptures and rightly so. When a wood sculptor starts working on a piece, for a long time no-one - except the craftsman - can tell what it's going to be. The shape of the piece only starts to emerge towards the end of the process. The same can be told about needle felting, with the only difference being that we add more and more layers to a piece and not chip away at it. So, patience is definitely a virtue when it comes to needle felting.

Are you ready and willing to dedicate more time to finish a piece?

Needle felting is a slow craft, which means that it's not done and dusted in 30 minutes - unless you want to make a ball. Just like knitting, for example. Finishing a pullover takes long hours depending on the level of intricacy. And, usually, no one bats an eyelash when they face with how long it can take. It's big, right? Of course it takes a lot of time!

However, needle felted sculptures are not that big and somehow people tend to think that just because they are small they are also quick to do. Sorry to burst your bubble but that's not the case. Which is good news actually! Being able to relax with a craft and forget about some nagging problems of the everyday life requires more time. 

Are you looking for an eco-friendly and sustainable hobby?

Wool comes from sheep. It's natural and no extra land is needed to grow it (only the ones already used as pasture). Choosing non-mulesed wool means that the animals are not harmed when being shorn. And shearing is a must because domestic sheep cannot shed naturally. Even though wool is not vegan (there are only a handful vegan farms yet), it is still natural and biodegradable.

Do you like the natural smell of wool?

Depending on the breed, wool has a natural smell which is less noticeable after being washed and processed and ready for needle felting. It is an earthy scent which some people like others don't. It's really a personal preference.

Is needle felting a good hobby for you then?

The above questions should help you make an informed decision about whether this fun, versatile and relaxing craft should be your next fave. I certainly hope that you will give it a try and let me know how you liked it. In the meantime, let me know which question(s) surprised you the most in the comments below!

And if you can't wait to get started, try making pumpkins first! Learn how to poke a lump of wool to turn it into a pumpkin. Click on the photo below!

cover photo for pumpkin tutorial video

Happy felting!

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