Moth hole repairs

Our programme assistant, Rosemary Bangham, was too lazy to darn the millions of moth holes in her jumpers and thought needle felting them up would be easier! Her jumpers are now covered in needle felted moths and bugs and she showed us how she did it.

WARNING – Felting needles are hooked and not easily removed from skin. BEWARE NOT TO STAB YOURSELF!

If you want to have a go you will need:
What you will need:
  • Felting wool
  • Backing felt (a loose, thin sheet felt)
  • Felting pad
  • Felting needles
  • Woollen items with holes! (Wool blends seem to work too depending on the percentage of wool – higher is better)
Step by step:
  • Place a hard surface under your felting pad and place them under the hole you wish to mend
  • Cut a piece of backing felt into a circle that is slightly larger than the hole
  • Place the backing felt under the hole, pinning it in place
  • Take a small wisp of felting wool and place it over the hole
  • Stab the felting needle into the wool over the hole, cautiously so as not to break the needle on the pins
  • After a few stabs, enough to keep the backing felt in place, remove the pins
  • Continue stabbing and adding more felting wool until you have secured the hole
  • Make sure you have something hard beneath your felting pad so you don’t felt both sides of your jumper together!
  • You can use a soft sponge as a felting pad but wrap it in cloth – something soft the felting needle will go through but not felt to!
  • Always keep the needle at right angles to your work to avoid breaking it.
  • Remember to put a piece of backing sheet felt under the hole.
  • Pin your sheet felt in place and carefully do a few stabs to get started, then remove the pins and keep stabbing.
  • Do some stabbing from the back too, then go back to the front.
  • Mix different colours together as you felt.
  • You can add patterns as you go or on top.
  • Use tiny bits of wool at a time.
  • We’re not sure you can over felt, but probably can under felt!
  • Add legs and details by sewing with embroidery or cotton thread.
  • Have some photos of moths or beetles to hand to inspire the shapes and details.

Rosemary’s moths

Susannah’s moths

Bee by Sarah

Rosemary’s beetles

Rosemary’s ladybird

Sarah’s creepy crawlies!

Kate’s imaginative transformation of an old holey jumper into a cheerful child’s dress