Before we start, please remember that felting needles are extremely sharp, go slowly and take your time so you don’t prick your fingers, “because believe me it hurts!”
Pull away a small handful of yellow wool roving.
A good way to tell if you have enough is to scrunch the wool tight to determine the size it will be when it’s compressed by the felting process. It’s always best to start with less than you think you need because adding wool is a lot easier than taking it away again.
Once you are happy with the amount of wool you have, start to curl the wool up into a tight cylindrical shape. Hold it tightly in your fingers and start poking the needle in and out of the wool repeatedly.
Frequently rotate your wool and needle poking movements to ensure it’s evenly felted.
After a few minutes it will start to firm up and feel dense and spongy, keep going until you are happy with the firmness and the shape of your bee’s body.
Now it’s time to add those gorgeous black stripes our bees are known for.
To do this you will take small bits of your black wool roving. Again, remember to use less rather than more.
Wrap the black wool roving around the body of the bumblebee and again hold tight and start poking the needle in and out of the wool, keeping the movements in line with where you want the detail to be. It’s almost like drawing and trying to keep within the lines.
To make those delicate and sparkling wings you will need two evenly sized bits of white wool roving. Roughly about the size of a £2 coin.
This is where the foam pad comes in handy. Lay out the wool onto the pad and start poking your needle down into the wool and gently through the pad (don’t push the needle in too deeply as the wool will just sink into the pad).
Keep your poking movements in the shape you wish your wings to be.
Try to leave some loose fibers at the ends of your wings as these will be used to attach them onto the bee’s body.
Pull each wing up from the pad and start gently poking the other side. Then just neaten the edges very carefully.
At this stage you may want to add some glittery fibers and/or beads to your wings using a needle and thread.
You may also want to attach some buttons for eyes to your bumblebee using a needle and thread.
It’s easier to attach one wing at a time to the body. To attach the wings hold it in the desired spot and pin it in place.
Spread out some of the loose fibers to cover as much of the bee’s body as possible and then start poking these fibers down into the wool.
Once the wings are attached, you may need to neaten this area up by going back into the sides of the bee’s body with yellow wool.
Lastly, attach the brooch pin to the underneath of your bumblebee. You can either use glue or sew it in place.
Love Bees? Bee inspired by a collection of Bee accessories, wall art and jewellery here.