As a result, we decided to offer this colorful felted soap as a February and March Featured Item. It fits our theme for love in February... and spring in March! As a Featured Item, newsletter subscribers get 15% off. Hint hint... ;-)
Callie's Questions on Felt!
Felt is a dense fabric made with natural wool fibers. By wetting the fibers with hot water and rolling, pressing, or agitating them with soap, the fibers all become interlocked and matted together permanently. This process has been used for at least 5500 years. It is resistant to wind and water, making felt an excellent choice for clothing in the colder climates. The Greeks taught the Romans how to felt. The Vikings passed their knowledge down to the people living in the British Isles. Because it is a natural fabric, much of the early examples of felt have decomposed over the centuries... but not all! In fact, one of the earliest felted garments found was in Coventry, England and traced to the 13th century!
Animal fibers will intertwine into felt, but plant fibers will not. So, felt is only made of animal fibers, most notably wool. You can use other types of animal fibers, but they can be more difficult to find or prohibitively expensive. So, wool is the most common fiber found in most any felt.
Roving wool is a type of wool that has long fibers. This makes wrapping up the soap easier. In order to make a felted soap, you need to wrap up a bar or ball of soap much like a gift and then work it under very hot water.
Long before people used loofahs or washcloths for bathing, felted soap allowed you to get a creamy lather without using much soap and gave you a built-in washcloth. The felting helps to conserve the bar of soap so it lasts longer... plus the wool is anti-bacterial! The roughness of the wool acts as an exfoliant by removing dull, dead skin cells to expose new ones. This is great for the skin. So, felted soap is a practical, yet beautiful, way of getting clean!
If you are like me, you can’t ever throw away the last little sliver of soap! So, I usually just paste it onto the next new bar. With felted soap, you can always recycle by cutting a small slit into the felt and stuffing slivers of soap inside. That way, you don’t waste any soap slivers, and you can make your own felted soap!