Craftsmanship of Making a Felt Beret

At present, I will give more detailing about wet-felting. After finshed four-layer circle, press and check whether weak points. And fill them if necessary. These weak points will form holes in the felting process. Cut a piece of tulle with larger diameter than that of template. Fix it so there are enough tulle to overlap the other side slightly. Add hot water and two to three drops of detergent, then shake and spray water onto fibers. Press down gently and remove excess fibers. Do not rub them energetically, otherwise fibers will leave the fixed position. Turn it over and lay the tulle on the bottom. It would be better if you put a cardboard on the top.

Flip over the beret. Fold overhang wool towards the center of the other side. Lay rovings to the wrong side of the template as what have been done the first side. The first layer should go around the center. And the second layer should in the opposite direction, leaving all fibers pointing to the center. On the side, place wool right up to the edge. There is no need to leave wool overhanging to the edge. Continue adding other two-layer fibers. Add a small ring of fibers along the circle on the template. Press down on fibers to check weak points. Then overlap it with another tulle. Repeat previous steps, spraying soapy water. After press down with hands, press it with a dry towel to blot extra water. Remove the tulle.

Push fibers towards the center of the beret in case the edge is a little baggy, so that they could align with edges once again. Set aside the tulle for use. Process the other side as above. Smooth wrinkles slightly. Shroud the beret with bubblewrap, and keep bubbles towards inside. Roll up the bubblewrap until forming a cylinder.

Roll the bubblewrap and beret up inside the towel. Roll backwards and forwards, like a rolling pin, about 50 times. It’s easier and less tiring to roll using your forearms. Unroll the towel and bubblewrap, turn the beret to another position, then roll up again.

Roll backwards and forwards another 50 times. Do this 5-6 times, turning the beret each time, as well as turning it over. The fibre shrinks in the direction it’s rolled, so you need to turn the beret so it keeps its shape.

Then take out the beret and place it on a large towel. After remove the resist from the inside of the beret, one needs remove creases through soapy water and massages. Then rinse beret in warm water, hot water and cold water subsequently. Then soak it in a mixture of water and a spoon of white vinegar.

Place the beret on a hat block or polystyrene head to dry.

Felt is ready when it feels smooth and dense. The longer you agitate it, the stiller the felt becomes. All above steps are detailed information about wet-felting. The beret hat is a hand-made artefact. So cherish in a good way.