Felt crafting is one of the more popular projects that Japanese girls and young women indulge in, when not shopping up a storm in trendy Shibuya or spending hours at hair and nail salons. Felt crafting is far easier than embroidery, crochet, and knitting, and it is very easy to pick up and get hooked on even with very few sewing skills.
If you’d like to start felting yourself, there are a number of online crafting resources to help you on your way, although I do recommend purchasing books if you really want to craft a wide variety of items. Once you’ve downloaded sewing and cutting instructions or purchased the book, where can you source your materials locally? Here are three places in Manila where you can purchase felt and crafting supplies.
National Bookstore — particularly their branches at Mall of Asia and Robinsons Galleria, stock Japanese craft magazines covering a wide variety of subjects, including origami, bead-working, and felt-crafting. Yes, the text is in Japanese, but these magazines are full of photos and illustrations so figuring out the steps is not that difficult. Plus, at PhP 85 per issue, they are an absolute bargain!
If you are an absolute beginner, Clipper (Greenbelt 1, Trinoma, Market! Market! and other malls) is a Japanese-style stationery and gifts shop that sells felt sweets kits at PhP 100 per box. Each box comes with pre-measured and pre-cut felt fabric, laces, and threads used to make one project: a fruit-topped cupcake, a slice of roll cake, or an oversized sandwich cookie. All you have to do is follow the instruction booklet that comes with plenty of diagrams to help you out.
Saizen, my favorite place in Manila to accidentally-on-purpose lose money in, has three entire aisles dedicated to crafting supplies, including sewing, crochet, and felt craft. They have not only precut felt squares in a variety of colors and nifty gadgets to make your craft life easier and more organized, they also have pre-cut lace rolls and iron-on felt appliques that you can use to accessorize your felt projects like small bags, billfolds, and notebook covers.
If you have a pretty good set of crafting skills and want to capitalize a bit on your hobbies, you can either venture into selling your finished products or assemble your own craft felting kits for sale. If that’s the case than you should head over to Tabora Street, Divisoria and look for Wellmanson, a fabric and notions store that sells felt fabric in large sheets as well as laces, ribbons, and colored threads. Buy in bulk to get a discount from the store owners, and then simply measure, cut, and package your kits for sale online or from bazaar booths.
I’m on a pretty tight budget this Christmas season with all the out-of-the-country romps I’ve been on, so I am really considering making felted goodies for friends and family instead of buying stuff for them. Maybe you guys should give it a try too 😀
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Just letting you know – Wellmanson also has a bigger variety of crafts and supplies over at Quiapo, which I believe is their main branch. 🙂
Manco Trading (Ilaya Street, at Divisoria) also has some different varieties of good felt, including furry felt cloth and safety eyes. It’s targeted mainly for plushmakers and doll craftspeople, but they have great stuff for felt crafters too. 🙂
brilliant — thanks for the heads-up @nissie 😀
Thanks for the info, Rotch and Nissie 🙂 I should check out those places soon because Christmas is just around the corner, especially when you think about how much time you need to spend on making hand-made gifts.
This is a great idea for Christmas gifts! I’ve been wondering what to get my family and friends for Christmas, so this post is a great help. Thanks! ^_^
great help for me! i’d been really looking for local stores selling felt fabric for my crafts. again thanks!
no problem — have fun!
From the bottom of my heart, I thank you for your information about where to buy Japanese craft books. I would never have thought of looking in National Bookstore because I felt that their stocks would either be limited or insanely expensive. I dropped by their branch in SM San Lazaro and found these wonderful selection of books in the Hobbies and Crafts section. I bought five of them: children’s clothing, beaded accessories, embroidery, rubber stamping and my best find — crafts with cat designs (felt, nuigurumi, etc.) ! All cost 85 pesos each. Now, I only have to find an amigurumi pattern book and I will be in 7th heaven. Thanks again!
no problem — i’m glad that you found the post useful 🙂
@Mayan: there are lots of free amigurumi patterns online, i’m sure you can find stuff you need. patterns are also available for downoad via etsy and ravelry (some are free, some are for sale)
@magnetic rose: Thanks for sharing those useful info, i’ve been wanting to try felting for so long, i just didn’t know where to find supplies. 🙂
no worries — always glad to help 🙂
P.S. your pets are ADORABLE! ❤
There are crochet booklets in Saizen in Trinoma. I’ve checked the Ali Mall branch but they don’t have any of the booklets but they have really cute three colored acrylic yarn, as well as plain ones 🙂 I heard from another friend about the knitting needles in Galleria. Funny how the stuff are spread out across 3 branches. It just means one thing: Visit them all to get the supplies and booklets you need 😉
Do you know where to buy those things that they put in stuffed toys? and what is it called? Is there one selling in divisoria in a low price, thanks!
the material is called fiber fill, and i believe you can find them in upholstery supply stores.