finished and unframed

Small abstract seascapes are quick and easy to make.  Just lay down some coloured horizontal lines and ‘hey presto’ the eye is tricked!

Make 3 base layers of wool fibres – start with a vertical layer so that the 3rd layer is vertical.  Wet down the wool fibres then mark a horizon with a piece of thread.

The layout shown below was approximately 30 x 20cm (12″x 8″) and only Merino wool fibres were used.

Base layers

You can just lay down horizontal, dry, coloured strips of wool fibres, but I prefer to wet the strips as I think the results are better.

The sample below shows 10 strips of merino wool fibres on a base layer of white (each colour was the same amount of fibres).  The top 5 strips were pre-wetted and the bottom 5 strips were dry, and when placed on the base layer they looked identical.  However, during felting the dry fibres have spread and the colour is not so intense.  The pre-wetted fibres don’t spread so much and the colours stay vibrant.

strips sample

To wet a strip of fibres, simply hold each end and saturate it in a bowl of soapy water.  Then lift it out and run finger and thumb gently down the length.

wetting and smoothing a tuft of wool fibres

To make the sky, start at the top with the darker colours then work downwards to the lighter ones.  Go back over it putting in colours wherever you think they need to be!

Adding strips to form the sky

To make the sea, start with the darker colours on the horizon (remember to remove the guide thread) and mirror some of the sky colours in the water then add a bit of headland.

adding strips to form the sea and land

Add a focal point.  Perhaps a lighthouse or buildings or boats.

The focus for this seascape is a windfarm and the windmills were formed from very thin wisps of white merino wool fibres.

making the windmills

During the early felting the straggly bits on both sides of the piece of felt were trimmed and it became painfully obvious that the windmills looked more like drunken dancers, so they were removed!

oops - that didn't work

When the felt was dry the windmills were added using white cotton perle embroidery thread – each windmill comprised a french knot and 4 long stitches.

I have a stash of frames bought from charity (thrift) shops and I had just the right one for ‘The Windfarm’.

in a plain white frame on wall

This is a very quick and easy way to make a seascape and it will never be the same twice!


  1. Ooh I am so going to try this Lyn, I like how the white merino has crinkled up, forming clouds and waves, making it look as if you have used mulberry silks instead of merino.

    1. Thank you Tracey. The standard white merino has a lovely crimp, softness and smell to it. (but not the brilliant white merino – it feels odd, a bit like over-bleached hair).

  2. Beautiful! Simple but elegant! Thanks for sharing. I’m glad you eliminated the drunken dancers. 🙂

    1. Thank you Marilyn – I should have anticipated that the white merino would not stay straight, so I’m claiming that a ‘senior moment’ caused a brief lapse of concentration!

  3. Beautiful striations, and the colors were chosen and placed with such great care! I am a painter and the composition kept my eyes traveling through the painting. Great job!!

    1. Wow Vicky – thank you! As a non-painter I am very pleased and delighted with your critique.

We'd love to hear your thoughts!

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