* needle felted flower tutorial

Posted on April 18th, 2005 by maitreya. Filed under Felting, Projects with Instructions.

I made another needle felted flower, and took some pictures along the way. (Here’s my first one.) I tried to keep the scale the same in each of them so you can see the shrinkage. The grid in the background is 1 inch squares. The pictures were taken every commercial break for ~45 minutes, just to give you an inpression of the time scale involved.

Wad of roving. I got this at a neat toystore that had a bunch of Waldorf/Montessori-type toys.


Pull the roving apart into little wisps and wad it up into a flattened oval. Put it on a pillow or a piece of foam and have at it with the needle. Push the barbed part of the tip all the way through the fiber and into the pillow. It’s the barbs that do the work. It’ll start to felt onto the pillow if you jab too much, so flip it over every few jabs. If the edges seem irregular, just push them into shape and jab a few times to secure.


The oval should start to reduce in size and start to hold together. Keep jabbing all over, flipping, and jabbing more, paying attention to the edges, until it starts to feel like felt. I find this step the hardest because it doesn’t seem like it’s working at first.


Now you can start forming the petals. Jab into the edge of the disk in a line where you want the petal divisions to be. It should only take ~10 jabs to get an indentation. If it takes much more than that, go back to jabbing all over and make the felt a little denser. For now, just make a little indentation for each one.


Finish the petals by jabbing all around the petals and further felting the indentations. I also jabbed in a line along the top to further define them. The felt should really be firming up now. You should feel some resistance when you put the needle through.


Once you’re happy with the flower, you can embellish it however you want. I used some felt beads I got in my Sampler from Lili la Malice. She was kind enough to post a tutorial, too, if you’d like to make some yourself. Just place the beads on the flower and jab until they’re secure.


It all makes a lot more sense when you have the needle and roving in hand, I promise.

35 Responses to “needle felted flower tutorial”

  1. kelly Says:

    Thanks! Great tutorial! Yet another craft I want to get into…

  2. myra Says:

    Thanks for sharing, I am dying to try it.

  3. Sussu Says:

    where can one buy roving for felt flower fun?

  4. Maitreya Says:

    Hi Sussu, I got mine at a toy store, but you can also get it on the web, and occasionally at the fancy yarn stores. If you search for “roving” in Google, it will bring up a bewildering number of hits. The merino is generally regarded as a good pick, though it’s a bit more expensive than the courser stuff. I just bought some undyed roving off eBay for pretty cheap, and I’m going to try Koolaid on it.

  5. Camilla Engman Says:

    Thank you so much for the tutorial. I’ve bought some wool but havn’t got the courage (and time) to try yet. Now, with your help I think I’ll dare.

  6. erin Says:

    wow… great tutorial. thanks for sharing. I am going to try it this weekend. I bought some roving this summer at a flock and fiber festival (in the country outside portland) and I have been meaning to soapy-felt it into beads, but now…. i think i may be needle felting it! ah, inspiration is sweet. thanks, again.

  7. karen fletcher Says:

    that’s a great tutorial! thank you for putting it together — I have another craft to add to my list now! :)

  8. Hollywood Girl Says:

    I bought some tie-dyed roving on eBay and tried to shrink it into felt in the dryer – didn’t work! I’d found this idea in a craft/sewing book. So I still have a boxful of the stuff. I’ll have to try the needle method! I would’ve never guessed that would turn it into felt.

  9. Linda Washburne Says:

    When you do the needle felted flowers, do you spray the roving with water, soap water, …???
    Could you let me know; I’m interested in trying this. I need specific directions, my mittens turned out large enough to fit a large bear! Linda

  10. Maitreya Says:

    Hi Linda, there’s no soap and water with needle felting. You just use this special barbed needle to entangle the fibers. For shrinking mittens, you should probably use wet-felting, though. Good luck!

  11. Sally Flower Says:

    Look nice!
    A good hobby to spend cool winter evenings :)
    Probably, I will try

  12. Lin Says:

    At last a needlefelting tutorial that I understand. Must have a go!

  13. Linda Says:

    Just got interested in woollen crafts after a visit to The Threshing Barn in Shropshire, England.
    Off to a Woolfest in the English Lake District tomorrow to see all the traditional sheep and wool crafts.
    Started looking for info on the internet and found your tutorial, so will have a go when I have bought the materials tomorrow.
    Do you know if your ‘roving’ is the same as our ‘wool tops’?

  14. Jo Says:

    I have been wanting to try my hand at needle felting for a long time. I am scanning the web for creative ideas and came across your wonderful tutorial. Can’t wait to get the supplies and get at it! I want to make a bear first, since I collect bears. Thanks for the tutorial!

  15. sue lea Says:

    Hi i am new to this and like to do this as i love crafts and find this very good to do.
    any chance someone can give me some tips for a beginner.



  16. Rebecca Says:

    I’m a felter and I do love to dabble in dry felting too. Although I find I can’t possibly watch tv at the same time … well I can, but then I end up with rather a lot of finger piercings that I hadn’t intended getting! If I made a flower it would probably turn out red too … but more as a consequence of occupational hazards!

  17. Lea Says:

    Thanks bigtime, luv the pics & great idea for a tut! I have just ebayed a needle felt kit, so thank you, Lea.PS just cant wait to start now!

  18. Ann Says:

    I have just started to do some needle felting. I have felted roving to 20%wool felt. I have done the entire piece of a yard of fabric and am experimenting with another yard. I am wondering how long the needles are effective for and how do I know when they are worn out. Can anyone help me.
    Should I be able to “feel” the barbs? I can’t on the needles I am using.

  19. Ann Says:

    I have found roving at Hobby Lobby. Our store carries 4 different packages of it. Each package containg 6 colors that work together.

  20. Brenda Says:

    I have found lots of roving, from Goodwins Yarn Shop in Columbus, N.C. 28722. She has lots of dyed colors and supplies. 828-894-3677

  21. Pattie Says:

    Thanks so much for this! I’ve been wet felting for a while and I’ve been putting off the needle felting for too long! I ordered my roving and needles from theyarntree.com (they had the best prices and variety I could find) and I can’t wait to get started. I’m not nearly as afraid as I was before thanks to your tutorial!

  22. Marion Says:

    I just bought the kit for needle felting, want to try it on a denim vest as embellishment.
    Will let you know how it turned out.
    Nancy’s Notions has some ideas for using yarn and just doing outline patterns.
    Your directions are great.

  23. Jill Says:

    This is a place in Wyoming that I picked some Roving up at. Her cost is reasonable, and She is great at helping. Take a look, and see if this interests any of you. Jill http://www.thesheepshedstudio.com/

  24. Sharyn Says:

    I buy my roving from a wonderful fiber arts site called http://www.joggles.com. She has five different kinds of roving in tons of colors. Her site even tells you which ones are good for needle felting and which are good for wet felting.

  25. Loretta Says:

    Hullo from South Africa
    I always felted with one needle now my daughter brought me the 5 needle outfit, Wow, yes, it’s a wow. You can also get the attachment for certain sewing machines. Thanks so much for sharing your flower with the world!

  26. Marilyn Says:

    I want to needle felt, but can’t a place to buy patterns and materials. I live in Washington State. But mostly I need some instruction. Would like to do wall hangings and place mats, etc. Thank you.

  27. Needle Felting - Living Felt Says:

    Beautiful flower & tutorial :O)

  28. nanisnack Says:

    hey there awesome site!
    hey hey hey
    this is me and me only yo yo

  29. Cat Says:

    I can’t wait to try this– I got a huge needlefelting kit in the mail yesterday from etsy, and am soooo excited. Also, I’m glad it came with a bandage…

  30. Victoria Says:

    Thank you for such clear instructions. This is just what I need to embellish a hat! Thanks again!!

  31. Nelda Says:

    I have done quite a bit of needle felting with wool roving. I also have over 100 wool squares, about 1×1 1/2″ (dye samples) in more colors that you could dream. I think I want to make a wall hanging by felting these squares together. Has that ever been done? How?

  32. Jane Says:

    I too am new to needle felting. I want to do designs on jeans but I am worried about the washing aspect. I can’t find anything on the web that says once you make a design on the jeans it is okay to wash them as normal. Anyone have info on that?


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