“Felted socks” with Alla Khalaydji

Alla Khalaydji has developed an amazing technique of making felted socks. She started with the traditional socks, jorabs, which are popular in Central Asia, Caucasus and Balkans, and developed her magic 3D template. She uses mostly undyed wool and cotton; these materials in combination with her felting techniques result in a strong, but elastic felt (see video).

These socks are great as house socks, but they can be also worn with shoes, especially when it is cold outside; they are perfect for gumboots. Such socks can be a good gift, or you can add them to your list of handmade products.

In this video, Alla Khalaydji gives a step-by-step instruction for making custom felted socks. She shares with you the ideas, tips and tricks that she collected during long-year experiments.

Plan of the videotutorial:

  • In Part 1, she gives a list of material you will need. First, it is basic felting equipment. Alla uses an electric sander, which helps a lot, saves time and produces better results. Then, you will need about 100 grams (4 oz) of undyed sliver/top, finesses 23-25 mikron and about 40 grams (1.6 oz) of dyed wool, some cotton fabric (0.5 yard) and some plastic for a template.
  • Part 2: taking measurements and making a custom template.
  • Part 3: laying out the wool.
  • Part 4: working with fabric. Cotton fabric requires special techniques to be incorporated into felt.
  • Part 5: Finishing the layout, adding dyed wool.
  • Part 6: Felting, fulling and shaping. It is very important for any type of footwear that the felt is perfectly done, without flaws. Enjoy your own pair of great felted socks!

This tutorial is perfect for both experienced and novice felt makers. It gives you the tools to construct a variety of custom socks. You may use other colors of natural wool and fabric (for example, with traditional geometrical pattern), try alpaca/merino blends etc. Make socks that are as unique as you are!