If I Only Had A Plunger

Many projects and activities are equally possible in a tiny home and a typical home – relaxing with a movie, making a yummy dinner, working on a computer. Today, I discovered one project that is a great deal easier with a bit more space, and (ideally) a bathroom.

This Friday I will attend a fundraiser for Outright Vermont, an outstanding nonprofit I’ve been volunteering with for the past three years. At this fundraiser, we hold a “Not So Silent” Auction and I promised some knitted items to add to the lineup. The hand-knitted washcloths are finished, but I also promised a lovely felted bag which is still in process.

The easiest way to felt projects is to put them in a delicates bag and felt them in a top loading washer, checking frequently throughout the process to see if the fibers are felting together and the piece is shrinking the way it should. Not having access to a top loading washer, I went with hand felting. I found a  lovely tutorial that explained how to felt using super hot tap water and a plunger in your bathtub. Well, I don’t have a plunger, bathtub or even hot tap water so I had to (as I do very often) think outside the box. I used a large stainless steel pot filled halfway with tap water and heated it on our propane stove to just under boiling, then put the pot into our sink. I added some dish soap to the pot and used a potato masher to agitate the knitted fabric, alternately wringing it out and dipping it into a pot of ice water to help the fibers felt.

apparently a purple bag and green pockets makes very teal water

Needless to say, this was only marginally successful.

a top down shot of the knitted bag, set on a plastic covered shoebox to dry.

three pockets and two straps pinned out to dry

The object did felt, though not as well as I had hoped, and it did shrink, though not as much as it was supposed to shrink. I’ll let the pieces dry and sew them together, then hope for the best when I assemble it. I’ll add more photos to this post when the bag is finished 🙂


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