A Focus on Fiber Arts: Creating woolen-covered soap gifts
Submitted photo – Ginger Balch Soaps covered with jackets of soft wool make an enticing and easy gift for Christmas.
By Ginger Balch
Posted: 12/10/14, 2:54 PM EST |
The first felting workshop I ever took was over twenty years ago. It has taken up until just the past few years for the commercial market to finally catch on to this fascinating, fun and actually very simple craft. It consists of taking unspun wool which may or may not be dyed, and working into either a flat or sculptural finished piece, using either a wet, dry or combination of both techniques.
Needle felting uses a special barbed needle to poke the wool into shape, where wet felting employs the use of water, and soap to mesh the wool fibers into place.
The beauty of felting is that it can take very little time to create unique gifts
Felted soaps are just one of those gifts. In short time you can take beautifully colored wool and encase soap. Why would one want to cover soap in wool? The woolen coating which is naturally antifungal, acts as its own exfoliating washcloth.
It also makes the soap last longer. I had one the lasted a month before it became a solid piece of felt. Add water and you will have plenty of lather. If you use a naturally hand made soap, you can not only feel good about the product that you are using, but you’ll be squeaky clean all at the same time. This can also make a fun project for kids for those snow days.
There will a free adult felted soap workshop on Sunday, Dec. 14 from 1-2 p.m. at the shop. Soap making kits will be available for purchase. Please call ahead to register and reserve your spot, because seating will be limited.
Virginia (Ginger) Balch knits, weaves and spins in all things “fibery” at her shop In Sheep’s Clothing at 10 Water St. Torrington www.in-sheeps-clothing.com or phone 860-482-3979.