Thursday 18 August 2011

Felt Slippers

I have worn the same kind of slippers for years - suede moccasins with a woolly lining, bought from the leather shop in the Shambles in York.  I must have bought around a dozen pairs by now.  But my current pair split at the toe when they were still quite new, so I do not love them any more.    I have been pondering what kind to buy instead, and thinking of some (very expensive) felt slippers I saw featured  in a magazine a few years ago, and then had an inspiration:  I am knitting again!  You can knit things and felt them! I can make felt slippers!   I consulted a friend who does a lot of felting and she pointed me to Mindie Tallack's Duffers pattern, free from here.    So I have made a pair.

They are really quick to make - you use super chunky wool on 8mm needles.  You cast on 64 stitches (for the largest size) and work just 19 rows before casting off.   (Of course, there are several increases and decreases in betweeen, otherwise it wouldn't be slipper-shaped).    I used Filzwolle by Four Seasons Gr√ľndl which comes in a range of variegated colours. 

I put them through the washing machine twice - the first time they came out still too big.  So I stopped being careful and put them in a regular wash at 40 degrees with a 1400 rpm spin, with a load of other things - all the things you should never do with untreated wool - and they came out teeny-tiny.  Fortunately, the pattern says not to worry if they come out too small because you can stretch them to fit your feet, by putting them on while they are still damp.

They are really comfortable to wear because they fit so well.  So, no more moccasins!

Apologies for the slightly weird colour of the photos.  They originally showed the wool as very blue, but overall it's a mixture of greens.  I adjusted the colour, but the slightly green tinge to my feet is not natural, I assure you. 


  1. Thanks for posting the link - -definitely have to try these. DZ in KY, USA

  2. Oh, I love these .... I will try them.
    Presumably the seam is not uncomfortable, I suppose it depends on how carefully one sews them up. Did you do anything to stop them being slippy, or do you not have that sort of floor?
    They remind me of knitted slipper/bootees which I used to make for my girls when they were young and would not or could not keep an ordinary pair of slippers on. Knitted ones were warm and comfortable but did not restrict activities. I seem to remember that ordinary slippers were 'in the way' when they were sitting/squatting on the floor.
    Knitted slippers were so much cheaper too; and, easier to keep clean.

  3. You have to take care to make a flat seam along the middle of the sole so that you don't end up with a ridge - I did it by bringing the needle up from underneath on each side alternately, if that makes any sense.
    The slippers are a bit slippy on wooden floors, but I bought some rubber liquid stuff to put on the soles, called Sock Stop. I haven't tried it yet, because the first bottle had already solidified, so I had to take it back to the shop, but I'm told by a friend who has tried it that it works well.

  4. Ah yes, I have heard of Sock Stop .... will have to try that too for when wandering about my tiled floors which can be slippery when not covered in a layer of dirt from the garden


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