Sunday, May 31, 2009
Felted Technology Cozies
Before we went on our Florida vacation (many thanks to our family in beachy locations :) Dell bought me an iPod!
We don't even have cell phones, so this little-bit-of-a-technological-miracle-clad-in-orange kinda blew my mind. And my first instinct was to protect it. So I crocheted a little pouch from worsted wool and felted it in the sink. I made it big enough to also hold the recharge cord and even fashioned a little pouch on the front for the earbuds.
I have done lots of felting from wool roving, both wet and needle felting. And I have done a lot of crochet. I have even felted from my crocheted items, making coasters we love using around the house and which I hope someday to add to my shop. But I always felted the knit and crochet stuff in the washing machine before. I didn't have time for that days before our big trip so I donned my lovely yellow rubber gloves and tried wet felting my cozy in the sink. It worked!
The following isn't meant necessarily as a detailed tutorial, but as an overview of my process.
First I found some worsted weight merino yarn in my vast stash:
Then I crocheted it into a pouch (see below for very basic recipe). This one is for an iPhone type of object. I'm not doing mathematically accurate measurements, I really just like to eyeball stuff. For me that's more relaxed and fun.
After I completed the crocheting, I took it over to the sink, got it wet with hot water, poured a little dish soap on it, and started scrubbing:
You can really rough it up, I smashed it all around into itself, occasionally put a little more hot water on it, or soap if needed, and sometimes pulled it flat to see if it was felting OK and/or becoming a weird shape by accident.
After it had felted as much as I wanted it to, I rinsed it well and sort of blocked it by laying it flat, pulled into the shape I wanted it to keep when dry. I put the pouch on a sunny windowsill, usually they are dry by the next day.
I have a HUGE vintage button collection and I like to go through it, picking out buttons for these little pouches.
Here's one I made for my digital point and shoot camera, the button is Bakelite:
Here is my very basic recipe for making a pouch that could hold a digital camera, adjust as necessary for your specific 21st century marvels:
1) I use a G crochet hook and worsted wool (not super wash!)
2) I chain about 18-20 then turn and single crochet (into the front loop only) back and forth for about 12 rows more or less.
3) When it looks wide enough (I'm allowing for felting shrinkage of about...25%? I have no idea :) I slip stitch the pouch closed down the side and single crochet the pouch closed along the bottom.
4) Then I cut the yarn and work in loose ends, these will disappear into the fabric of the pouch when you felt it which I LOVE!
5) I start the button loop by attaching the yarn at the top opening of the pouch somewhere a ways in from the edge (1/2 inch maybe?) your call, and chain about 10, attach it where it looks most symmetrical to where I began and single crochet along the chain back to the beginning of the loop, fasten off, weave in ends.
6) Felt as above, 7) block and allow to dry then 8) attach button of choice!
You could also add more buttons for adornment, embroider, sew on beads, and/or needle felt designs onto the pouch. Let me know if you make these too and what yours look like!
at 10:51 AM