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dgoodjohn 01-27-2009 03:53 PM

Felting Soap
Can anyone recommend some good laundry soap for felting; no detergents please :)

gingerfuzzball 01-27-2009 04:01 PM

Yes, I'd be interested in that too, I spent weeks on my first (admittedly overambitious) felting project which was a large orangutan with a wire skeleton, padded with felt and covered in roving, and it went hideously wrong, i think because my soap was too 'slippy'. He lies in shame, half done, in my cupboard and it would be lovely to dig him out again!

Jan in CA 01-27-2009 04:04 PM

I think the detergent helps, but I'm not sure it's entirely mandatory. I think you mostly just need hot water and agitation. I have friends who have wool socks that have felted a little just from wearing them so I'd try whatever you want.

sue in canada 01-27-2009 04:59 PM

Some instructions say add baking soda to the water, but I don't really know what that does. I think a little of any kind of soap or detergent will work.

TooCircular 01-27-2009 05:29 PM

I've successfully completed two felted totes using no more than two drops of dish soap~~ Joy, Dawn or whatever you have. Heard this technique from our knitting instructor and I've read it online as well. Be careful, though. It's difficult getting only two drops to come out of the squeeze bottle!
Probably should put two drops on a spoon, then hold it under the water that's pouring into the washing machine.


GrandmaLori 01-27-2009 06:05 PM

I've felted with no soap, and with detergent, and with baking soda. It all seems to turn out the same. What seemed to help was adding some jeans, or tennis balls in a bag, or something like that to agitate it more. My washer is new, and it does some new-fangled agitation that is supposed to be less stressful on the clothes (just magic water-swishing). takes a long time to felt with it. I think the soda is to compensate for the hardness of the water????

Nanaof6 01-28-2009 12:38 AM

I've done two felted projects so far and never used any soap for either one and they came out great.

Why do you have to use soap?

vaknitter 01-28-2009 09:49 AM

Excuse my ignorance, but what is the difference btwn soap and detergent?

My first few felting projects took forever to felt (in washer with laundry soap) and when fellow knitters saw them they suggested I use a few drop of dish soap in the water and POOF everything felted so beautifully and so much quicker. Their explanation being that the wool needed the agitations of the bubbles in the dish soap as where most laundry soaps are low suds. I typically run stuff through a cold water delicate rinse to get rid of the soap. Since I am not felting anything I wear I don't worry about a little bit of residue.

megan734 01-28-2009 12:18 PM

I personally use Tide. It works great on all types of yarn and fabric. It also makes it smell nice! But one more thing, air dry. I have learned!

AshleyP 01-28-2009 01:27 PM

I googled felting yesterday to get tips for my own project and I'm pretty sure one website said NOT to use dish soap. It said that's the worst thing to use when you want to felt something. I think it had something to do with the dish soap preventing the fibers from sticking to each other. Here is the article:

Here is what it says: We use Dawn dishwashing liquid to wash our sweaters because it's what preserves their condition best, cleaning without stripping, preventing dye bleeds, and not disturbing the scales so there's less chance of fulling. So consequently it's the worst possible thing to use when you mean to full. There is still some liquid soap available on the market, like some varieties of Ivory, or you can use Ivory soap flakes, or even a plain bar of soap.

Fulling and felting are essentially the same thing, right?

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