Pattern Springboard: Sewing Patterns That Beg for Needle Felting
When I first read Threads #212, Dec. 2020/Jan. 2021, I fell in love with the technique author Ellen Miller demonstrated in All About Needle Felting. Needle felting, also referred to as dry felting, is an embellishment technique that permanently embeds batt or roving fibers into a base fabric. The article inspired me to look for additional jackets and coats that screamed out for some embellishment.
I’m glad I bookmarked them so I can quickly share my finds in hopes they will serve as your own jumping off point. Consider them a blank slate for exploring needle felting. Without further ado, here are some appealing outerwear patterns for you to use to create your needle felting canvas, along with some of the ways I envision them.
You can find details about the patterns, including sizing, features, views, and more on each pattern’s home page. If the pattern is no longer available, we suggest doing a Google search for the name and number.
Let’s start with the pattern used in the original article! The Threads team obviously loves this versatile design enough to use it in print. This particular look has a bit of a Talbots feel to it and I love it as shown – but I also would love to see it in a loden green wool with needle felted autumn leaves. Sizes XS to 3XL (bust 30 inches to 58 inches, hip 32 inches to 63 inches).
To be honest, the Gaia is one of those patterns that permanently occupies a corner of my mind. I absolutely love looking at the makes out there. It truly needs no embellishment, with the contrasting back and side panels providing plenty of opportunity for personalization. But I can’t stop imagining an all black coat with needle felted Frida Kahlo style flowers on the coat’s gloriously large lapels. Sizes US 0 to 14 (bust 30 inches to 46 1/2 inches, waist 22 inches to 38 1/2 inches, hip 32 1/3 inches to 48 3/4 inches).
This cocoon coat, formerly known as the Sapporo, is a great jumping-off point for some detail work. Following the #novacoat hashtag, many makers are already pulling out the stops with bold fabric choices, quilted linings, and embroidery. While @madewithcwtch did her embroidery by hand, I think it would be amazing needle-felted. Sizes US 4-18 (bust 30 inches to 46 1/2 inches, waist 22 inches to 38 1/2 inches, hip 32 1/3 inches to 48 3/4 inches).
I am unashamedly into wide lapels these days. The Cambria Duster is shin length and unlined for a relatively quick make. I would love to see this made in a neutral lightweight wool with Celtic knots on the pockets or a Celtic line pattern along the hem. Sizes XS to 4XL (bust 32 inches to 54 inches, waist 24 inches to 47 inches, hip 34 inches to 57 inches).
I’m in love with the horizontal in-seam pockets and slightly oversized lapel. And I’m in love with all the wonderful makes being shared on Instagram. I would love to see one of those baby blue ones with some needlefelted snowflakes along the hem. Sizes 0 to 18 (bust 32 inches to 44 inches, waist 25 inches to 37 inches, hip 35 inches to 47 inches).
We hope you will try making one of these great patterns – and try your hand at needle felting! When you’re done, be sure to share pictures in our Readers Closet gallery or share on Instagram and tag #memadethreads.