How to Make Wet Felted Soaps Using a Tumble Dryer
Wet Felted Soaps Drying Out on a Radiator
Soap in a Sweater!
What is the Purpose of this Tutorial?
We have all read those ads which promise work from home opportunities to anyone looking to earn an income. Most of these ads offer false hope and promises which will never materialize.
For those of you who love crafting and would love to earn some income from being creative. it will be a long road to prosperity. Far too many people give up on their creative dreams only to replace them with 'real work' because they become discouraged by their inability to produce enough quality items to turn a profit. The aim of this tutorial is to help you discover an easier way to make more quality items in the least possible time.
Wet felted soaps can look beautiful. but they should function perfectly as 'scrubbers' as well. To do this, the fibers need to be put down in a meaningful way which will produce the best results. This takes time, lots of it. Felt making is not a quick process especially when one considers how much rubbing and rolling goes into it to making it.
With this method which I created, you should be able to prepare multiple soaps in one sitting and then tumble dry them together at your leisure.
True, there will be some preparation required to make the little foam parcels but you may be able to source recycled waste foam which already has cavities which were cut into it from the manufacturing stage to cushion a product in transit.
The beauty of my system is that these foam bundles will be used over and over again. It is my hope that you will find this felted soap tutorial useful and that in time it will help lead you down a path to some genuine financial gain. You can sell them at craft fairs, on even from your own Etsy store. If not, give them to friends and family for Christmas or birthday gifts. These soaps make wonderful gifts which will likely be treasured or enjoyed.
Pack of 36 Dove Beauty Soaps
Things Needed to Complete this Project:-
Recycled Cushion Foam
A Pair of Scissors
A Sharp Knife
A Long Ruler
A cut-off piece of Stocking
A small piece of Bubblewrap
Hot soapy water
Merino Wool Roving or Tops in a glorious mix of colors especially for felting
Dove Soap or other soap of your choice.
Place a Piece of Foam on a Cutting Table
The foam should be about a minimum of 1 1/2 inches thick and not quite dense.
A piece of foam which has been recycled from a seat cushion
Cut the Foam into 2 or 3 Lengths.
Place the soap on the foam and cut into the strip leaving a border of about an inch of each side.
Cutting a length of Foam from the Seat Cushion
Use a long Metal Ruler to Measure the Foam
Cut the foam into two to three strips depending on the size of the soap. The metal ruler provides a strong line to hold the knife against for cutting purposes.
An electric carving knife can be used if you have one handy.
Cut 2 or 3 pieces from the Foam Cushion
Cut down into the foam to a depth of about 1/2 inch into the foam as shown here
Cut lines into the foam rectangle which can easily be removed.
Remove the foam one line at a time with a pair of Scissors
Foam removed to a depth of 1/2 an inch to create a hole
How to cover the soap in Merino Wool Fibers
Please follow the instructions below for creating the wet felted soap. The felted soap will act as a loofah, shrinking as the soap shrinks leaving a handy scrubber behind.
Items required to cover the Soap in Merino Wool Roving/Tops
Gorgeous Wool Roving, Soap, cut off Tights and Hot Soapy Water
Dip the Dove Soap into Warm Water
Small Squeeze Bottle
Squeeze Bottle, Water and a Little Dish Washing Liquid
One needs very little soap with this tutorial as the soap will come through from the woolen fibers below.
First add Merino Wool Fibers to the sides of the Soap
Add the Fibers carefully
Place the fibers down carefully onto the soap. Drop a few drops of soapy water onto the fibers and smooth down with your fingers to ensure that they stick to the soap below.
Next cover the top of the Soap with Fibers
Merino Fibers carefully arranged on top of the Soap
Dampen the Woolen Fibers carefully with a little Hot Soapy Water
Wrap the Fibers firmly around the Damp Soap
Wrapping the Fibers around the Soap
Add more Fibers to the bald spots and match the other side
Completing the 1st Layer
Wet the Fibers and wrap the Soap
Completing the 1st Layer
1st Layer Is Now Completed
Layer 2, repeat the 1st layer by putting the Fibers onto the sides
Close up of the fibers on the sides of the Soap
Wrapped and all ready to go!
Put a cut-off Stocking on your hand
Knot the Stocking so that it can easily be pulled open when required
A note on the following Step.
Unfortunately. the foam can shed little pieces when it has been cut with a knife which is why I decided to cover the hollow in the foam with bubble wrap before placing the soap in the hollow. I would suggest that you pull a stocking leg over the length of foam after you have cut the hollow to prevent it from clinging to your wool fibers and leave it there.
Use an Electric Carving Knife for cutting the Foam
Place the Soap in the prepared Foam hollow
I used a small piece of bubble wrap to prevent any loose bits of foam from getting onto the covered soap. This was a preventative action as the soap is already covered in a piece of stocking.
Fold the Foam in half over the Soap
Secure the Soap with Elastic Bands which have been pulled tight
Please prepare all your soaps and then insert them into a tumble dryer at once. Better still, pop them into the dryer at with your laundry in the last stage of drying process to help conserve energy in order to make this project as cost effective as possible. The soaps should felt in about 10 - 15 minutes. Check the contents of the dryer after 10 minutes and if the soap is not quite ready, continue felting for another 5 minutes.
Remove the Soap from the Stocking and check the contents
Check the contents of the stocking after 10 minutes by removing the soap from the stocking.
If it has stuck to the stocking, gently tug the wool away. . Put the soap back into the stocking, knot and plunge the soap into very hot water as shown and then into cold water. Repeat twice more, rinse under a cold tap, dry with a towel and put it onto a radiator to dry.
Dip the Felted Soap in a Bowl of very Hot Water
Then dip into very Cold Water
A row of Soaps drying on the top of a Radiator
The completed Soaps in their Sweaters and one which has a personalized Label
Your opinion matters!
Which type of felting do you find the most interestingSee results without voting
I hope you enjoyed this Tutorial!
I look forward to receiving any feedback or suggestions for any future projects which you might like to see.
More wet felting tutorials by this author
© 2015 Sally Gulbrandsen
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