Meet Amy Gropp Forbes, one of our dearest friends and author of the delightful blog Eclectic Mom.  We are thrilled to announce that Amy will be sharing a handful of her many talents and skills with us this summer on The Purl Bee!  For everything else she does, including being an amazing mom, chef, photographer, graphic designer, knitter, crafter, sewist and more, you must visit her beautiful blog Eclectic Mom.  Check out her first guest post below!

I was delighted when Joelle and Page asked me to do a guest blog post for the Purl Bee. Every time I visit their shop, Purl Soho, I am drawn immediately to the beautiful wool felt so it was natural that I went there first for my inspiration. Not only are the colors beautiful, but it is a fantastic material to work with. Sewing is so much easier and less time consuming when you don’t have to worry about finishing every edge and seam!

My daughter Bea absolutely loves doing art and craft projects and has been very jealous this year of the weaving classes her brothers have taken. I decided a woven pillow would be a great use of the felt, and that she could be my partner in the project. Purl sells lovely felt bundles which eliminated the difficult task of editing my color choices and it kept the cost of the project reasonable too. Bea loved all the colors and we both agreed that this would be a pretty pillow for her room.

One thing I have learned about crafting with my kids is that if I care a lot about what the finished project is going to look like I have to be pretty careful in the planning stage. I find it very beneficial to work with them one on one when I can, which is a lot less chaotic than trying to manage all three of them, and has the added benefit of special time together. In this case I also did not want to waste the gorgeous felt so I cut the strips in advance and only did a few of each color so that the remaining felt could be used for a second project another day.

Bea loved carefully weaving the strips in and out and creating the pattern. She was able to do that part pretty independently but I sat with her and helped her tighten the strips as she worked so the weaving would not have any big gaps between the strips.

For a complete description of how we constructed and finished our pillow see my Woven Felt Pillow post on Eclectic Mom right here. –Amy