How to: Make Felted Mukluk Liners

Category: Shelter / Difficulty Level: 3
Posted: 0000-00-00 00:00:00
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Video

Making the Pattern...
This is a tutorial overview of trying my hand at making wet-felted mukluk liners from raw wool. In this tutorial I am making the pattern for the "resist" that will be the frame for the liners.

Materials:

  • Raw Wool (combed and cleaned roving or batting)
  • Soap (all natural is best)
  • Very warm water
  • Large paper bag
  • Large sheet of bubble wrap, or clear vinyl
  • Large square cookie-sheet
  • Sheer curtain or bed-sheet
  • Absorbant towels
  • Sponge

Making the Resist...
This is a tutorial overview of trying my hand at making wet-felted mukluk liners from raw wool. Here, I adjust the pattern made from a paper bag and lay it out onto store-bought vinyl. Bubble-wrap can be used and is ideal, or I suppose any lightweight water-resistant material

Laying Down First Layer of Raw Wool, Starting The Wet-Felting Process...
This is a tutorial overview of trying my hand at making wet-felted mukluk liners from raw wool. I just laid down my first layer of wool; the amount of wool you use is based on ounces. I didn't have a digital scale so I am eye-balling the amount to lay down..here I am going by feel. For a larger project I used 10oz...5oz on each side. Next I begin to add very warm soapy water to begin the wet-felting process.

Flipping the Resist and Adding Raw Wool...
This is a tutorial overview of trying my hand at making wet-felted mukluk liners from raw wool. Once one side is thoroughly wet and soapy, I am ready to flip the resist with the wool so that the other side can be covered with raw wool. Be sure to pull the allowance of wool over the resist before adding wool to this side.

Flipping The Resist Again & Blending then Light Agitation...
This is a tutorial overview of trying my hand at making wet-felted mukluk liners from raw wool. After wetting down the second woolen side, flip again and pull the allowance on the up-turned side; blending and lightly agitating the fibers onto the new side. Then roll the resist in a covering or absorbent towel and gently roll back and forth, 1 - 2 minutes each way, four directions including diagonally by un-rolling the resist, flipping the rolling it up again in the towel length-wise, then repeat...length-wise (top-bottom, bottom-top), width-wise (front-back, back-front), and diagonally.

Freeing the Resist...
This is a tutorial overview of trying my hand at making wet-felted mukluk liners from raw wool. After lightly rolling to agitate causing the woolen fibers to intertwine and lock, it is time to cut the two halves apart. Then agitate the inside of wool to feel for week spots, and rub out creases...at this stage the liner could be slipped from the resist and turned inside-out.

Shrinking, Sizing, & Shaping...
This is a tutorial overview of trying my hand at making wet-felted mukluk liners from raw wool. Using hot water, being careful to not scald myself roll the liner under the water and then squeeze and agitate. Continue this both ways in all four direction including diagonally, as well as laying the sole out flat and rolling up and squeezing.

The hot water should cause the fibers to continue to shrink and intertwine more tightly, thus shrinking. If an area is to big, tall, or long, focus on that area by rolling and squeezing that area. For the instep roll and squeeze under hot water diagonally...from instep to heel. Periodically, check by placing the liner on the food for size and to find out what areas need to be focused on.

Final Touches...
This is a tutorial overview of trying my hand at making wet-felted mukluk liners from raw wool. Here, I show an example of using Kool-Aid dye. In a pot of COLD water not hot or warm, or the liners with continue to shrink.

I douse the white liners in a mixture of pink lemonade and black-cherry Kool-Aid...this gave the liners a nice cotton-candy or bubble-gum pink color. Then I let them dry.

Next, I will stick-felt and loose or un-sightly felted mats or flaps (kling-ons). Stick-felting takes a special needle with barbs on the end to get the sides to inter-lock. After these finishing touches the felted mukluk liners are now complete and ready to wear!

SORRY - There are no steps for this How-To. Please check back later. Or drop me a line at TheUrbanAbo@gmail.com to let me know you wanna see this one fleshed out.