I made a crab for my ocean collection today, and I’m going to take this opportunity to show everyone how I attach limbs to my creations. After all, a crab has 8 legs and two pinchers and I couldn’t think of a better creature to demonstrate this.
When constructing limbs, the side that will be attached is left unfinished as seen below with the leg and pincher. This is so there is something there to easily felt onto the body.
When attaching the limb, grab it and spread the unfinished side out a little bit and then position it onto the body. Also I prefer to attach limbs to the core body rather than the finished body. So as you can see, my body is obviously going to be needing a main color added afterwards. (I used scrap bits of wool to construct the core body seen here.)Using a rather large diameter needle, felt the loose end onto the body. Just get the limb loosely attached during this process, so that if need be repositioning the limb can be done later.
Continue to place the additional limbs, pinchers, fins, whatever you’re attaching; spread the unfinished side and needle felt. My crab is getting more and more legs as we go.
Keep going in my case, being that it’s a crab. They beat a spider and octopus with those pinchers included!
Now that all the limbs are attached, it is time to check the position of each one. If one needs to be repositioned you will be happy that you didn’t extensively felt the limbs into place in the first go round. Now that the positions are correct, make the connections stronger by needle felting around the base of the limbs some more.
Once the connections are strong, it is time to add the main color to the body. I like to do this bit after limb attachment because I feel the extra layer adds more strength to the limb connections. Hopefully, this will create a strong enough bond that little ones won’t pull the limbs off one after another. So, carefully wrap the wool around the body and over the bits of limbs used for attachment purposes, then needle felt it into place.
After the limbs are attached, further decorations and embellishments can be added if need be. In this instance, I needle felted some “googly eyes” and created a soft smile on the crab’s face. Now the felted toy is ready for play. I enjoyed making this soft little crab. He is such a softie. If my instructions were unclear, just let me know and I can clarify. Hope I helped. Happy Felting!