Saturday, March 17, 2012

Tree Stump WIP photos

Hello there! I'm up at 1:30 a.m. working on a custom order (I seem to work so much better at this time of night, I don't know why!). I'm making a needle felted tree stump with mushrooms growing from the side, and it's going to be displayed as part of an exhibit in a mushroom library. I've never heard of a mushroom library before...what a neat place it must be! Anyway, I thought I would take some photos of my progress; the photo quality isn't too hot since it was at my work table instead of in my fancy-schmancy (read: cheapie) light box, so please overlook that! :)

This is the tree stump I made from core (un-dyed) wool in all its nakedness. I start out by making a basic cylinder shape and then add bits of wool for the roots, and deeply needled lines to represent the texture of bark.

Here I'm putting the first layer of brown wool over the core wool stump.

Here it is completely covered with the first layer of brown:

Next, I start adding some darker brown wool for bark detail; you can see how thin and wispy it is on my fingers-- it can get fiddly at times but the end result looks SO much better when you don't use large gobs of wool. I add thin dark strips and needle them deeply into the stump to make more natural-looking crevices.

Finally, this last shot shows the stump pretty much finished; with more of the darker wool and some lighter gray-ish wool added for highlights on the parts of the bark that stick out more. Also some SUPER wispy (like, thinner than the photo above) silky silver roving has been added to the top in circles to represent tree rings. I'm going to be covering a good part of the bottom with moss, so I'm not worried about getting the bark details all the way down to the very bottom of the stump. Now it's ready to be added to a mossy base and have some mushrooms added, which I haven't done yet ;)
**Update** Part 2 and the finished tree stump with mushrooms has been added here

So those are the steps I take in attempting to make my tree stumps look more realistic, and I seem to discover more little tricks along the way with almost every new one that I make. Needle felting is awesome that way :)

I hope you have a great weekend and take in some nature somewhere! ♥


  1. Fascinating! You're almost painting the details with wool and it adds so much depth and realism. I love seeing a glimpse into your process - it makes me appreciate the finished work even more. I'll look forward to seeing the finished piece!

  2. Your quite the night-owl Janine! If you don't already, you should make owls too! :-) I love this little tree stump and seeing it come together was just fascinating!