Needle felting – The hills are alive with sheep!

needle felt sheep


I have had an embellishing machine for a couple of years and am ashamed to say, for the most part it stays in the cupboard.  It was bought after I attended a couple of classes on how to needle felt and used a machine to make some samples.  I made a couple of things and then life and work took over and I had less time.

Now I find myself with a change of pace, still working but with more time at home and I thought it was time to get back to “messing around” with crafts again.

Visiting the local library, I found a great book called Art in Felt and Stitch by Moy Mackay.  Her projects focus mainly on wet felt rather than needle felting but I thought I could probably adapt to try with my embellishing machine.

art in felt and stitch by moy mackay


The works are beautiful and would be an inspiration for painting, quilting or embroidery projects too.  I can’t claim my picture is original as I did copy one of the designs from the book.  Having completed it, I will probably have more confidence to try my own designs.

I added some machine embroidery to define areas like the upper and lower slopes of the hill and the trees, adding a few french knots and other stitches for flowers and grasses.

To form the fence, I used a long running stitch, then worked back the other way adding stitched fence posts.

embroidered fence


When photographed, I thought some needle felt sections would make a good start point for electronic art of some kind.  Something to add on to the “try one day” list!


I was pleased how my textile picture turned out and am now keen to have another go…. although the garden and everything else is calling at this time of year.

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3 thoughts on “Needle felting – The hills are alive with sheep!

  • Deb Pearl

    I recently got a needle felting machine from my mom and I honestly have no idea what to do with it. I didn’t know I could make little pieces of art like you did with your sheep! That is wonderful that you got the idea from that book. I will have to look it up to help give me some ideas as well! I would love to make a great little art piece like you did! It is very cute.

    • Alison Butler Post author

      I have had mine for a couple years and haven’t used as much as I should! I liked the idea but was unsure what to do so the book was inspiring. I have also saved ideas on a Pinterest board called “Craft – Felt – the arty kind!” if you want to check it out.

  • Mel Joy

    I am just starting to do the same as you! So excited to have found Moy’s book and I just ordered her new one.Your picture looks great! I was also thinking of using my little felting machine (I have had it for awhile but have yet to play with it too, so don’t feel too bad!). I love Moy’s work.