Needle Felting Koi Carp

needlefelted Koi Carp orange and brownRecently we visited Montacute House and the children were fascinated by the Koi Carp in the pond. To be honest, so was I. Where they were probably enjoying seeing the fish swim around, I was very taken by the markings. We all have our way to appreciate nature. They saw fish. I saw a needlefelting project. It’s just the way my mind works.

koi carp in the fountain at Montacute close upI wanted to try a technique that I have only done by accident in the past. I started by making the body of the fish out of brown Jacobs fleece. I love this as a base as it felts up easily into a firm shape, that is still easy to manipulate.

needlefelted Koi Carp orange and brown topNext, I needlefelted bright orange merino over the top. Now comes the new method. In some areas, I felted more. This causes the orange to thin and disappear into the brown, giving a brown, mottled look. You can see this most clearly on the back of the fish’s head. As a contrast, I added merino brown to the sides. Where the Jacobs brown has come through, it gives a more natural look, while the brown merino is harsh.

needlefelted Koi Carp orange and brown tailThis is my prototype, and I have learnt so much. Next time, I’ll allow the Jacobs brown to do all the contrast markings. I’ll also make the fins and tail thinner and more feathery. For a first attempt, I quite like my fish.

I seem to be going for a sea theme this week, so far. I’ll break the pattern for a St George’s day (23rd April) craft activity this weekend . Off to bake some biscuits, to go with it.

Jammy Dodger St George Day biscuit


6 thoughts on “Needle Felting Koi Carp

  • Thursday 21 April, 2016 at 3:11 am

    It’s lovely!

    and the biccies look scrummy (thanks for the ST G reminder)

    • Thursday 21 April, 2016 at 1:52 pm

      Thanks, Val. It turned out well. Thank goodness!

  • Saturday 23 April, 2016 at 7:52 am

    I love that you saw a craft opportunity! It looks great ;). Once again I haven’t made a dragon and its another occasion when it could visit our seasonal table!

    • Sunday 24 April, 2016 at 8:47 am

      Thanks. I’m sure it will be an amazing dragon, when you do.

  • Monday 25 April, 2016 at 5:36 pm

    I like the fish and I love the mottled look that does appear that much more organic with the brown coming from underneath. Beautiful bright fish.

    • Tuesday 26 April, 2016 at 4:51 pm

      Thanks, Sarah. It really was a piece to learn on. I’m happy with the dappled effect. Something to add next time.

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