Introduction to Wet Felt Making

93 TUTOR: Kathie Barrs

The ancient craft of wet felt making is simple to learn and offers a myriad of creative possibilities. You will begin by mastering the basic principles, laying out layers of wool fibres and felting them into a piece of non-woven fabric using only your hands and warm, soapy water. Resist work offers the opportunity to create seamless, hollow 3D objects and you will use this technique to create a simple pot in felt before applying these skills to your main project, which might be a hat, a bag, a cushion cover or a pair of slippers.

Course Notes

This course will provide you with the basic skills and techniques of wet felt making. Kathie is an experienced tutor and artist, with many years of experience working with 'the fluffy stuff'.She is a member of the International Felt Makers Association, and has completed a City and Guild qualification in Design and Textiles (Felt).


We'll begin with a brief history of felt making, along with a simple explanation of the science behind the process. After watching a demonstration of how to make a flat piece of felt, students will produce a table mat using the traditional Shrydak method originating in Central Asia, which is an inlaid patchwork technique using folk motifs.


Nuno felting is a modern technique where loosely-woven fabric (often silk) is bonded to the wool during the felting process, producing wonderful textures and patterns. We'll use this method to make a short scarf, cowl or infinity scarf using merino wool and silk fabric.


In order to create seamless, hollow, 3D objects in felt, a resist is employed, which allows us to produce items such as bags, hats, vessels and clothing. Students will use a circular resist to make a decorative vase which they can then embellish with silk fibres or nuno felting.


Using some of the techniques we've learned, we'll design and begin our final project: students may choose to make a hat, a bag, slippers or a cushion cover.


We'll complete our final project, learning how to finish our felt making to a high standard.

Students need to bring a waterproof apron.

Course Tutor

Kathie Barrs

Kathie Barrs

About Kathie

Kathie is a qualified teacher, and now works as an artist and tutor in the ancient craft of wet felt making. Having studied with and worked alongside renowned felt making tutors, she has completed the City and Guild qualification in Design and Textiles (Felt) and is a member of the International Felt Makers' Association. Kathie spent a year in Florence, studying at the Florence Academy of Art, and loves introducing students to the fascinating craft of felt making with its magical transformation of loose woollen fibres into beautiful textiles.

Kathie's work can be found at

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Summer School Dates for 2022

All courses run for 5 days

WK 1 11 Jul - 15 Jul

WK 2 18 Jul - 22 Jul

WK 3 25 Jul - 29 Jul

WK 4 1 Aug - 5 Aug

Morning Courses

9.15AM to 12.15PM

Afternoon Courses

1.45PM to 4.30PM

All Day Courses

9.15AM to 4.30PM