The incredible process of felting is what makes ShelterPups come alive. All of our plush felted dogs use felting to form their soft, huggable, nearly seamless bodies. The result: a beautiful plush dog made from one of the healthiest, most natural fabrics on earth.
The process of felting begins with all natural, ultra soft merino wool. We travelled the world to find the finest merino fibers in the most realistic colors to create dog coats with unsurpassed detail and huggability (thats the technical term). Our wool is put through its paces through the ancient art of felting. Combine our merino with water, all natural olive oil soap, some added heat and a bit of agitation, and the fibers bond together into a fabric so strong you can even make hard-wearing clothing out of it (as humans have done for thousands of years in fact!).
It is an artistic process. Wool fibers have memory. Using that inherent quality we further sculpt each felted dog into its respective breed shape, whether its a long poodle nose, a silly pug snout, or a bull terriers perky ears.
This ancient art form is why ShelterPups are on the cutting edge of the sustainable toy movement. Generic plush dogs and stuffed animals are usually created by cutting out sheets of artificial, chemically impregnated fibers and them sewing them together. ShelterPups felted dogs, on the other hand, are each handcrafted by blending different colored wools together and felting them into a durable, one-of-a-kind plush coat.
A plush felted dog or cat is a handcrafted heirloom, a treasure that with proper care can last for generations. No harsh chemicals, no plastic fibers parading as fur. Just pure, natural merino gently blended and shaped into the perfect felted dog companion.
Wool is also real hair, not plastic fibers parading as fur. Soft short-fiber merino is justly famous for its luxurious soft feel and long-lasting durability. The texture, natural colors, and softness of merino wool all combine together to create a plush felted dog coat of incredible realistic detail.
Part of the nature of the soft wool fibers is that they have "memory." The soft, short fibers actually have tiny barbs visible under a microscope. Through felting they bond together and create a super-durable surface but without losing the incredible feel and colors of the merino. Its an incredible material that can be sculpted into soft, smooth, and original stuffed felted dogs. This diversity reflects the countless breeds and breed mixes that fill rescues and shelters across the U.S.A.
The art of felting can be accomplished through two different techniques and we utilize them both here at the ShelterPups. These top-secret (ok, not really!) techniques are called wet felting and needle felting. Sound fun and fascinating? We think so too!
about wet felting!
about needle felting!