Exploring Different Pod Shapes

We have another Guest Post by Tracey from the Forum today.

I wanted to carry on exploring how to make different shaped pods by altering the shape of the resists. I thought a stone shape may open up new possibilities regarding the surface design. I have always used pond liner for my resists, I think it is perfect for the job, especially as we had a lot left over from pond construction! Here is the resist, it roughly measures 15.5” x 10.5”.

As before I placed six layers of Merino wool either side of the resist and here it is wetted down with yellow and orange silk hankies as decoration, the colour of the wool is a lovely rust so I thought how this would compliment it.

After lots of hard work felting, I cut a cross to take the resist out, it is a small hole, luckily I have small hands to get inside to start the fulling!

Once it was fulled, I packed it with fabric to help it dry out, by doing this it creates ‘memory’ and hopefully retains the shape you want it to be. When it was dry I had plans to decorate it slightly with some Mother of Pearl nugget shell beads that needed a home, the colour matched perfectly. Here is the finished pod.

Because by then, I definitely had the bug, I made more.

When I am layering the wool, I try to lay it neither too thinly or too thickly, but evenly of course. I was putting down six layers of wool each side of the resist as I have mentioned before. However, when I have held my pods I feel that the very bottom ‘gives’ a little, even though I work them until my shoulders and arms ache!, so I was not very happy with this. I decided to go to seven layers, a lot of wool!, but I am far happier with the outcome, much sturdier and thicker of course!

I then decided to change the shape of the resist once again and cut an oval shape, this one measures 16.5” x 13.5”.

For this design I put down four layers of Merino each side, wetting down each time. I then added two small circles of resist to reveal craters in the end design, with a different colour underneath. Here is the picture, I didn’t realise at the time but it looks like a happy grinning martian! I then continued with the remaining three layers each side.

I then decorated it with lots of lovely Blue Faced Leicester locks and wool nepps.

Lots of hard felting and fulling later, here it is, with a little bead detail.

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15 Responses to Exploring Different Pod Shapes

  1. Leonor says:

    Loving your pods, Zed. They look otherworldly (or maybe sea-wordly?) and your added decorations really make the whole thing pop. The blue one with the seashells and the red one with the alien “eyes” are my favourites!

  2. nvukadinovic@gmail.com says:

    They are all lovely, Zed, very thoughtfully decorated, but my favourite is the red one. I haven’t made a pod for a long while. The don’t sell at all and I have quite a few at home to serve my needs.

  3. Tracey says:

    Nada, I made the pods, Tracey. Thank you for the comments!

  4. zedster66 says:

    Great pods, Tracey! I really like all of them, they’re so well made. I like the green one, it reminds me of stones I see on the beach, does it have silk hankies on?

    • Tracey says:

      Thanks so much Zed! Yes the green one is decorated with silk hankies which are great to work with as long as your hands are moisturised, as they snag on everything!

  5. Lyn says:

    Tracey – you must have the firmest upper arms in the kingdom! That’s a lot of felting effort but so worth it. They are wonderful – and your nepps behaved beautifully in the blue one. I like them all equally – I couldn’t pick a favourite.

  6. Tracey says:

    Ha ha yes who needs the gym! Thanks so much Lyn! You are right about the blue one, I worked it forever, the nepps didn’t and haven’t moved a millimetre, I don’t think they dare!

  7. Marilyn aka Pandagirl says:

    Tracey, all the pods are lovely. I love the different shapes and the embellishments. Have you considered using a heavier fiber in the middle to cut down on the number of merino layers? I do this and find it works well to give the pod a bit more sturdiness. The downside is you may have to shave it if the inner fibers come thru.

    • Tracey says:

      Thanks very much Marilyn. I haven’t considered this no, but it is a good idea especially for the strength aspect.

    • Marilyn aka Pandagirl says:

      It’s worth a try. I usually only use four layers each side when I use Corriedale in the center. You may want to add an additional layer of merino so there isn’t as much hairiness on the outside. Let us know how it works if you try that. I may try a new shape myself and see if this works as well.

  8. ruthlane says:

    Gorgeous pods Tracey! Thanks for doing the guest post and keeping us up to date on your pod progress 🙂

  9. Sharon says:

    I’m new to felting and wondering if you felt each layer as you go (ie you said you did 7 layers ) or just roll with all the layers on top of each other ?????

    • traacey says:

      Hi Sharon, it is better to do two layers each side, wet them down, you can soap them slightly, I don’t bother, and flip (keep a written note by your side of the amount of layers or you will forget!) This way you are not fighting with a huge wool pillow, it all stays contained and neat. rosiepink.typepad.co.uk has an excellent free tutorial on their site, this is what a lot of us follow enjoy!

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