Wensleydale Cobweb Felt

Wensleydale Cobweb Felt

I found two of these lampshade kits at the local thrift store about a year ago (or maybe longer). I thought it would work well with cobweb felt so since they were only $7.00 each I bought them. Then they sat around for a year. I had them on my list of things to do but never seemed to get anything done with them.

Thrift Store Find

Finally, last week I decided I would make the felt to cover the lampshade. The pattern assumes that you use commercial fabric and has you cut pieces from yardage. I decided I would make each side of the lampshade as a separate piece of felt. I have wanted to make a piece of cobweb felt with Wensleydale wool for a while now so I thought this project would be perfect for it.


This is a very bad photo of the original pattern. I just doubled the size of the original middle section of the pattern as I thought that the cobweb felt would shrink at least 50% or more.

Enlarged Pattern

I marked the enlarged pattern on a piece of plastic and then laid out the Wensleydale wool. I got this wool when I first started felting so I think I’ve had it for about 10 years now. I have used some of it over the years but I still have quite a bit left.

Beginning Layout

I laid the Wensleydale out in a random manner starting with the edges. I used only one thin layer.

Layout Complete

Here’s the wool after I finished laying it out. I did have to patch a few places so next time I will make it slightly thicker.

Wet Down of Wool Complete

I then wet it out and started felting. I rolled a little but then mainly just finished by rubbing.

Completed Felt on Original Pattern

After fulling and shrinkage, you can see that it did shrink 50%. The lampshade needs a total of four of these. One down…

Wensleydale Cobweb Felt

I really like the texture that the Wensleydale gives.

Texture of Cobweb Felt

You can see it better with the light behind it.

Cobweb Texture

I think this will be really pretty on the lamp with the light shining through. I may use a lining fabric in a darker color but I haven’t decided yet. Of course, I still have three more of these to make. I hope it won’t take another year to complete πŸ™‚

23 thoughts on “Wensleydale Cobweb Felt

  1. The Wensleydale curls are very pretty when you hold the felt up to the light, can’t wait to see the finished lampshade. Will using a lining fabric stop the light from highlighting the beautiful curls?

  2. They will be beautiful shades Ruth. Wensleydale has a beautiful sheen and gives those wonderful textural effects best seen when lit. A fine silk voile would make an excellent lining, it’s fire resistant too.

    Look forward to seeing the finished shades. Only 7 sections to go! πŸ˜‰

    1. Thanks Judith. Yes, I’m looking forward to seeing the finished shades too πŸ™‚ Hopefully, the next 7 will go a little more quickly.

    1. Thanks Lyn – I’m not sure about the lining but once I have all the pieces, I will see whether I like it with or without.

    1. Thanks Judy. Wool doesn’t burn easily so makes a great lampshade. I really want to highlight the texture so I think this will be perfect for that.

  3. I’m happy to see you lamp, cause I’m working on one too right now. Thanks for sharing, it will be beautiful.

  4. The Wensleydale looks beautiful through the light. Have never worked with this fiber before but it looks luscious. Great project!

    1. Thanks Cathy! Wensleydale has a really long staple length and is quite curly. It is a coarser wool so isn’t good for apparel items but it has such wonderful texture I thought it would be perfect for this project.

  5. Ruth, that was a great idea to use the Wensleydale for the lamp shade. It can be a bit fussy to felt. When I used it for a table runner, there was hardly any shrinkage. But that was early in my felting experience. I will have to try it again. I look forward to seeing the finished shade.

    1. Thanks Marilyn! It was funny when I started rubbing to felt, I thought “what the heck?”. I hadn’t used the fiber in so long that I really forgot how it felted. Once it gets started it’s fine but it takes a bit to get it going. I used a really thin, one layer application thus the amount of shrinkage was a lot, less wool = more shrinkage.

  6. It does look great with a light behind it. reminds me I have a similar piece ( I used massum) made that was going to be a roller blind and then a lampshade but the lamp died. I wonder where it went to. hmmm

  7. It’s going to look great, Ruth! I have so many photos of felt made from Wensleydale or other curly wools held up to the light πŸ™‚ I agree with Judith about the sheen too, so will look nice even when it isn’t lit up.

  8. I love the texture of the curly locks! I had been planning on making some cobweb lampshades to sell at a craft fair but thought they would need a specialist fire retardant lining?

    1. Thanks Jane – wool is naturally fire retardant. That’s what they use in firemen’s uniforms etc. It shouldn’t need a fire retardant lining.

We'd love to hear your thoughts!

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: