This needle-felted snowbaby is a little bit of cuteness for your Christmas tree. I designed these to be my 2012 Christmas gifts.
medium or small felting needle
foam pad to felt on
hot glue gun
white wool roving
wool roving in another color
Soft Fimo in orange
Soft Fimo in black
(optional: sticker labels to put on thread)
Step 1: Make Two Puffballs
Cut a 1-1/2'' to 2'' (4-5 cm) length of white wool roving and divide it in two. With each piece, form it roughly into a ball by bringing the ends together. Poke it with the felting needle, turning the ball around to get every side and to make sure it doesn't get attached to the foam. Roll the puffball between your hands from time to time, and keep poking until you are satisfied with the shape. My snowbabies end up quite puffy—with this amount of wool roving, just felting them enough to hold together, they end up being 1" to 1-1/2" (2.5-4 cm) in diameter—but if you want denser snowbabies, use more of the wool roving for each ball and poke it for longer.
If you're unfamiliar with needle felting, see here for more detailed instructions, but it's mostly just a matter of poking the ball with the needle. The hardest part is being careful not to poke yourself or break the needle.
Step 2: Make the Scarf
Cut the other wool roving into lengths of about 4" - 5" (10 - 12cm). Divide these into three (or four if you want a thinner scarf) and poke them, as is, with the felting needle until the fibers stick together to your satisfaction.
Step 3: Make the Body
With the hot glue gun, glue the two puffballs together.
Step 4: Glue the Scarf On
Glue the scarf on: put one dab of glue in the middle of the scarf, press the body to that spot, then glue the ends of the scarf together near the body as shown in the photo, and press the ends together.
Step 5: Make the Eyes and Nose
Using the Soft Fimo, form the eyes and nose. Especially if you're doing a bunch of these, it's helpful to do the noses first because you will get black stuff on your hands from doing the eyes, which will come off on the noses if you do the noses second. Bake according to the directions on the package.
Step 6: Glue on the Eyes and Nose
Using the hot glue gun, glue on the eyes and nose. Do the nose first, smushing it into the wool so that it sits up straight. The eyes only require a little glue; here a pair of tweezers is helpful to hold each eye as you put glue on it and attach it to the wool. Keep your felting needle handy to tame any stray bits of wool.
Step 7: Sew the Hanging Thread On
Cut a length of thread about 10-12" (25-30 cm) long. Starting from the top of the head, sew all the way through the snowbaby and back up to where you started. You'll feel the glue in the middle where you glued the puffballs together, but just go around it. Tie an overhand knot right on the snowbaby, then tie a square knot further up the thread. Trim the ends.
Optional: attach a sticker to the thread for a label. Mine have the year on one side and my initials on the other, and were made using a Silhouette cutting machine. The site doesn't seem to be letting me upload the file I used to make the stickers, but if you message me I can send you the file.
Enjoy your snowbaby!
And do post a photo if you use or are inspired by these instructions, I'd love to see what you make!