Felting question

I tried to felt slippers last night. I’m getting frustrated. Does the shrinking take place in the water or in the drying process. I put the slippers in the washing machine I thought the look of the felting looked right but it didn’t shrink. So I thought that maybe it would shrink during drying. I left it out overnight and I measured them and they are still the same size. They never shrank. I used Patons 100% wool. The label said it was for felting. Any input would be greatly appreciated.

The shrinking take place in the water. I have found that smaller items like slippers sometime take longer and more cycles than bigger items like bags. In my old washer it would take me 2-4 cyles on some items. When I made my Ft clogs I kept felting until they fit me. I remember the stitches looking right but it still being huge. I would refelt them until they were the right size for you

Thank you so much Holly!!!

Mary, the aggitation of the machine and hot water actually felt the object. It does usually take more than one complete wash cycle, like Holly says. It helps to throw in an old pair of jeans or canvas tennis shoes, too! Bet I’ve got the smallest, cleanest jeans and tennies in the south! LOL! Hope this helps… Mary

Thank you. I don’t let it spin in the washing machine though right?

I don’t ever let anything go through the spin cycle for fear that it will get distorted beyond repair… some people say you can but I just don’t trust it. Mary

I’m a novice felter, and have a new washer that I’m not so familiar with. I put the item in a pillow case and knot it closed, throw it in with a pair or two of jeans and put the whole mess on hot wash. I suck at catching it before the spin cycle, but I have found that it really doesnt seem to make that big of a difference as long as the rinse wasn’t cold (that will stop the felting) I am sure that there are more experienced felters than me that will disagree with my “ah, its spinning, hm… lets go now” approach, but I think that as long as it doesn’t get a good rinse in cold you can send thru the wash at hot for felting as many times as u want

I don’t think the cold water stops it from felting. I’ve read that some people alternate hot to cold to shock the yarn and speed the felting process. I’ve never tried it though so I could be completely wrong:teehee:

[FONT=Comic Sans MS][SIZE=3][COLOR=DarkOrchid]Fulling requires three things: Change in pH (which soap, vinegar and sometimes just the water itself will do), change in temperature (sudden changes if possible), and agitation.

I find it so interesting that for so many it takes more than one cycle to full items. I generally set my machine for a 15 minute cycle and only once have had to reset it. And I let it run through the spin cycle, too, and haven’t yet experienced any problems. And distortion that may occur can be fixed by blocking and/or stretching, I would think.

My tips are to use the hotest water, the lowest water setting, vinegar instead of soap so you don’t have to worry about getting the soap residue out, and tennis balls. I buy the dead ones they sell as dog toys and put half a dozen in with my wool stuff. It’s worked every time! I’ve made at least ten pairs of slippers this fall for Christmas presents and they’ve all fulled nicely.[/COLOR][/SIZE][/FONT]

Thanks, Yarnlady, I am definitely going to try the tennis balls!