We wanted to bring some stones with us as souvenirs, so we could create cairns at home too. However, the stones were heavy and packing them up in our suitcases seemed a vastly impractical idea. Once I arrived home, I consoled myself by making some stones (and a cairn) for my friend Sharon. Of course, I used my favorite material, felt! I did this using the wet felt technique and . . . a salad spinner! Yep, a salad spinner!
Here's how I did it:
First I chose the wool, in the colors of the stones we had seen in Ireland. I rolled the wool into a ball, using side to side and up and down winding motions. (For some stones, I used multiple colors of wool.)
Then I stuffed the ball into some of my daughter's old ballet tights.
(I think thinner stockings might have worked even better, but I used what I had handy.)
I knotted the stockings with slip knots so they would be easy to untie at the end of the felting process.
I filled up the salad spinner about 1/3 to 1/2 full with hot
water and about 2 tablespoons of liquid dish soap . . .
and dropped in the stones.
I put the top onto the spinner and pulled away. I discovered I had to pull pretty hard to get the spinner to work. If yours is too difficult to pull, empty some of the water until it is a bit easier. Lots of water and suds will sop out of the top of the spinner, and you may need to add some hot water and more soap about half way through your spinning time. I spun the stones for between 10 and 15 minutes.
After removing the stockings, I rinsed them with cold water, and wrung them out. I took the stones out of the stockings, rinsed them in cold water, and squeezed them out with a clean, dry dish towel.
I have to say, I think the stones turned out very well! Don't you?
After they dried overnight, I sewed the stones together in a cairn formation. The stack is a little wobbly as it doesn't have much weight, but it is much lighter than bringing a cairn home from Ireland!
Happy wet felting, and Slainte!