Creating a Felted Cell Phone / MP3 (iPod) Pouch

This is such a fun and easy project.  Several can be completed in a single afternoon.  Begin by selecting from the precut pouches available Browse through the category as several styles are available including a plain version.  The standard pouch size fits an iphone 4S with a slim case.  Bulky cases do not fit.  However, you can request a larger case and provide dimensions for the device you wish to carry.

Paint the canvas pouch with the desired basecoat. Acrylic paint will stiffen the pouch while textile paint will allow it to remain more flexible. Either may be used. The example shown at right was sponged with two different colors (tangerine & plum acrylics).  The example below has been painted solid black then stenciled, tone on tone, with dark grey acrylic (graphite).

Stencil the pouch with an allover background stencil like the Heritage Flora, Houndstooth Mini or Paisley Swirl Petite stencil, which was used on the example bellow.

If the pouch has a cutout design you will need to back it with wool felt.  To do this, apply RB Clearly Elegant Stencil Gel along the perimeter as well as to all bridges of the design.  Carry the gel slightly beyond the felt size.  It will dry clear so it won't matter if it covers a slightly larger area than the felt and all edges will be secured.  Once the pouch is varnished the gel will not be visible.  Do not use water to wipe excess gel from the pouch or you may shrink the wool.

A few colors of wool roving are needed.  It takes very little roving to complete the pouch designs.  These assorted packages of roving are an economical way to obtain a variety of coordinated colors and each will complete several pouches. 

Once the pouch and felt assembly are dry you can begin felting.  Place the flat pouch on a base.  I use a 2" thick piece of styrofoam insulation board.  Foam felting pads and brushes are available but I prefer the firm surface and depth of the pink insulation board.  It is sold at home improvement stores in 4'x8' sheets. Hopefully you or someone you know have some scrap pieces available.  It may not have pristine edges but it works like a charm!

Pull a small tuft of roving from the mass and place it over the space to be felted. Using the pen-style needle felting tool punch straight up and down through the roving and felt and into the styrofoam. Do not hold the pen at an angle or you will snap the needles.  It is okay to work quickly just remember to keep the needles perpendicular to the surface.  If you stray outside the cut design you will feel resistance from the canvas. 

The pen-style needle felting tool can be used with all three needles for quick progress.  You can also use it wit two or just one needle for finer design work. Make sure to have replacement needles on hand.  You are likely to break a needle in the midst of a project and will wish you had extras.

Continue in this manner until all areas of the design have been felted.  Fold the pouch together using the precut tabs and slots.  There is no need for glue.  The tabs are designed to hold.  If you have used a hanging style pouch you can use the velcro dot provided or dress it up with a button.  

Below are other examples of felted pouches including one that was felted right into the canvas (no cutout design).  The Paisley design is stenciled onto the pouch for use as a pattern then felted as described above.  Larger tufts of roving used on the paisley provided dimension to this piece.

A work in progress
Two shades of pink are used for the ribbon
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