I've recently switched my morning habit from coffee to tea. Along the way I acquired this lovely teapot. I decided if I was going to make the switch, I need to go all in and learn how to make a proper cup of tea.
I'm very good about filling it up with hot water to heat the teapot while I have the kettle on the stove. This helps keep the tea hot longer.
But without a tea cozy (think of this as a sweater for your teapot), my second cup of tea wouldn't be hot enough. Lo and behold I decided to make a tea cozy. Of course, I was inspired by my knitting blogging buddy Rhonda the Stitching Nut's Felt-Tea Farm Tea Cozy which is more of a painting than a felted project. It's so gorgeous it's been pinned on Pinterest about a gazillion times. So I decided to felt a portrait on my tea cozy, too.
First up, I needed an actual tea cozy. Rather than knit one and felt it, I took the short cut and bought a wool sweater at the Goodwill. I threw it in the wash and it obediently shrank and felted to a nice thick felted wool. For a basic pattern click on this tutorial by Simply Rurban.
I sewed my front and back together and gave it a go on my favorite teapot. Yes - it's too big. I knew that. I actually planned that because I wanted to hem the bottom of the felt to give it a more stable base.
* Sorry about making a red cozy. I know red stinks for photographing - but there you have it.
I rolled the hem twice and tested it to see if it would still fit my teapot. Perfect! Now I'm off to hem.
Trust me. I know you can't see it, but I hemmed this and it created a nice thick base to support my tea cozy.
I found my favorite picture of Wilma the Wonder Dog and printed it. Then I cut out the actual part I wanted to needle felt in order to make my template.
I centered the template on the tea cozy base, inserted the foam pad (part of the needle felting kit) and pinned my template in place. Now I was ready to begin needle felting!
I have two sets of roving samplers plus the multi needle felting tool which I use. I found these on Amazon. If you're new to needle felting, check out a few videos on YouTube. I like THIS ONE.
Following the picture, I started with a base of natural white roving. Then I added the fawn colored markings, and dark brown and black for the nose, mouth and eyes. I added gray for shading and pink for her tongue.
To complete my tea cozy, I thought Wilma's portrait needed a dog bed. Instead of the tan bed in the photo, I made this one green to provide some contrast color. I used green and white yarns to cover a plastic loop; attached it to the top and had a wonderfully personalized tea cozy to ensure I will always have a perfect cup of tea.
Thank you Girly Girl. You will always have a special place in my heart and soul.