FAQ & POLICIES
Please browse this page for answers to frequently asked questions, tips on preparing your photographs and more information on what to expect when placing a custom order for a Fiber Friend made just for you!
Tips for placing a custom order
Following your custom order please look for an email from Fiber Friends
To complete your order, I will need photographs of your pet and welcome any other requests or comments you may have.
Photo tips: Please prepare several clear photographs of all sides your pet with good lighting with attention to any details/special markings. The collage to the right illustrates the best poses to include. Photographs of your pet in the pose you prefer are very useful, though not always required. Please send images as email attachments or in a shared google drive folder with your invoice number in the folder name/subject of your email. I will do my best to match your pet's markings and colors, but some variation is to be expected due to the nature of the natural wool fibers I work with. The clearer the photographs i have to work with, the better the likeness of your pet will be. Feel free to hit me with a barrage of photos - i can never have too many! "Meeting" your pet via my inbox is my favorite part of my job!
All custom Friends are felted in the order they were received. I usually have a waiting list, especially during the holidays so PLEASE place time sensitive orders well in advance. If you have a specific deadline, be sure and let me know. I always do my best to expedite orders and am occasionally able to bump orders up in the list. Christmas orders should be placed as early as possible.
I will send you photographs of your finished Friend upon completion for your review and approval before popping him in the mail. I am happy to make small revisions at this time. Major revisions will be subject to a reasonable hourly rate. If for some reason you are fully unsatisfied with your Friend, I am happy to refund 50% of the purchase price* this hasn't happened yet!
I ship via the USPS and offer both first class and priority shipping. This includes tracking information with every domestic order. Insurance upgrades are available for an additional fee. I am not able to provide tracking information for international orders at this time. Fiber Friends are shipped in sturdy boxes with biodegradable packing materials. Feel free to toss them into the compost heap. I make every effort to package all my Friends carefully and clearly and am not responsible for items lost in the mail. Please let me know if you have a specific deadline for your order and I will make every effort to get your package to you or your gift recipient on time! Custom gift notes are also available by request.
About your new Friend
Every Fiber Friend is one of a kind and needle-felted using wool grown in Oregon or as locally as possible. I do not use armature or glass eyes and can spend up to 16 hours on one piece. Most Fiber Friends measure around 5-6 inches long. Ornaments and other Nubbins can be smaller and batch orders can be felted proportionately to each other. Fiber Friends are not meant to be toys and should be treated as collectible figurines, sculptures or special commemorative art pieces to remember a favorite pet by. I felt every Friend to be as sturdy as possible, but kitty claws have a knack for ruining felted animals! IMPORTANT: Fiber Friends mobiles are NOT to be played with by baby and may pose a choking risk. Please hang high above baby's reach to enjoy looking at and not touching.
I love every Fiber Friend that comes out of my studio (and sometimes want to steal them!) and stand behind their quality for the long haul. Should your Friend be damaged, please do not hesitate to contact me for repairs. Cost for repairs depends on the severity of the damage and I make every effort to find an affordable solution. *Most damage can be avoided by displaying your Friend out of reach of pets or young human-children.
I do my best to match your pet's markings and colors, with a lean towards the whimsical. Expect the colors of your Friend to be spot on, or a bit more vibrant than your pet's coat and their facial features will be realistic with a whimsical slant. I count on your photographs for accurate depiction, so please be sure I have the best images to work with. I blend dyed and natural colored wool and alpaca or angora rabbit fiber using traditional hand cards for every Fiber Friend order. Expect some color variations.
Fiber Friends need very little care and most damage can be avoided by displaying out of the reach of pets and children.
Dust occasionally and avoid playing with in very dirty situations.
Consider displaying behind glass and out of direct sunlight. Bell jars/ cloches can be found at many craft or kitchen stores in an assortment of sizes.
Protect your Fiber Friends from clothing moths and carpet beetles. Carefully look over your Friend often - if it starts to look fuzzy all over, or if you see holes you may have invaders! Carpet beetle larva can burrow into your friend and like to start in the armpits and bases of tails. If you have an infestation, freeze your Friend for at least 2 weeks and consider keeping your friend under glass. To repell these pests keep cedar or lavender sachets nearby.
Hangnails and rough edges are hard on Fiber Friends. If your Friend gets snagged and unravells some of the wool, carefully trim the loose edges. Do not pull on the loose fibers or you can pull off much of the finished felt.
Fluffy Friends are the most fragile: do not pull on loose fibers and avoid matting by handling too frequently. Trim fly aways rather than pulling.
Though felted very sturdily, avoid pulling on legs/ears
Mobiles: do not pull on strands and do not allow baby to reach the mobile (choking hazard!). Yarn can be broken if tugged on roughly. When spinning the mobile, spin by the wooden hoop not individual strands.
Contact me if your Friends are ever damaged - I'm here to help!
A minimum non-refundable retainer of 20% the total price is required for all orders to secure your place on my waiting list. Installment payments are welcome. All orders are to be paid in full prior to completion/shipping. Should you decide to cancel your order in advance of my beginning your project, I am happy to refund your payments, minus the 20% non-refundable retainer. (Retainer can be held as a credit towards a future purchase.) Cancellations of any in-progress wok will be refunded at 50% of total price. I haven't had a Friend returned yet, but (like-new and undamaged) returns will be refunded at 50% of cost minus shipping to my studio and will be offered for general sale on my website.
When ordering, you are assigned a date on my production calendar. This date may change slightly. Please let me know if you have a specific date you are hoping to receive your new Friend by.
Any photographs or testimonials sent to me via email or Facebook may be used for marketing purposes on any of my websites or social media outlets. I encourage my customers to send me side by side photos of their pets posing with their new Friends and am happy to feature them on my website! (Every dog deserves his 15 minutes of internet fame).
I reserve the right to re-use your custom illustrations: I may borrow the composition for another client or offer a line drawing version of your illustration as a coloring sheet.
I reserve the rights to my original artwork. I do offer high resolution copies of my illustrations to my clients for personal use only. Please credit me when sharing to social media and do not put my artwork on any goods you plan to sell.
Q: How long will it take for me to get my order?
A: If your purchased a Nubbin or other item from my in stock inventory, expect to see a shipping notification in 1-5 business days. If you've ordered a custom piece I will add you to my production schedule and send you an email right away notifying you of anticiapted delivery. My waiting list is often booked out several months. I do apologize for this delay and am doing my best to expedite every order, while giving each piece the same love, attention and careful artistry as I will yours!
Q: Do you offer workshops or private lessons?
A: Yes! I teach classes and workshops at my own studio in Pedee, Oregon as well as other shops and fiber studios. Contact me for prices and schedules.
Q: Your items are cute and all but why do they cost so much?
A: I realize that not everyone can afford all of my items but they really are a labor of love and patience. You may have seen other 'felties' at craft fairs or in shops at lower cost but many of these are much lower quality than my Fiber Friends or were made in another country. I take great pride in only making and selling items made to last: firmly felted with well attached appendages. The felting process itself takes anywhere from 4 hours for Nubbins to 16 hours for pet portraits and that's just the final stage: All that wool needs to be washed, dyed, picked through and carded which can take up to a week for each fleece. I make my living via a very slow craft and appreciate your support! Bonus: I take installment payments!
Q: How big are Fiber Friends? Are they like stuffed animals?
A: Fiber Friends average around 5-6 inches long or tall. They should be thought of as 'sculptures' in wool rather than stuffed animals. They are sturdy enough to carry around with care, but should not be snuggled or slept with. They are not suitable for very young children and should be kept far from the reach of cats! Stubbins are about 3 inches long.
Q: How are Fiber Friends made?
A: Fiber Friends have been needle-felted using natural wool and barbed needles. Wool felts via agitation (like that sweather you washed in hot/cold water with plenty of soap). Barbed needles push and pull the wool fibers together to create 'felt'. I basically sculpt with wool using a technique that takes many hours, and often includes finger pricks. Nubbins take me 1-2 hours, Fiber Friends take 8-16 hours and custom pieces require even more time to be sure i capture your pet's personality as well as his markings. Check this page out to see a glimpse at how they come to life.
Q: What made you want to learn to needle-felt?
A: I have been an artist since I was a young child and a professional illustrator since 2005. I learned to spin yarn in 2009 which led to an interest in the fiber arts in general. Sometime in 2011 I tried out some felting needles for the first time. After a few hideous practice runs, I figured out the basics and hit the ground running. I love blending my love of fibers and arts to create lovely little sculptures that are as cute as they are one of a kind
Q: Do you have a store front?
A: No, I do not have a 'physical' store front but you can find Fiber Friends in shops across the country. I occasionally attend markets and other local events. Check back for a list of shops where you can find Fiber Friends items.
Q: Who's Pocket?
A: Every invoice and email from Fiber Friends is signed "Miranda and Pocket." Miranda is me, the human typing all of this marketing nonsense and Pocket is the Pembroke Welsh Corgi who has been my inspiration to needle-felt from the beginning. My love of Corgis and Pocket keep me going every day. Pocket is muse, office assistant, anatomical reference, break time entertainment and wrangler of chickens, guineas and ducks. Pocket is my fur-baby :)
Q: Are the cute animals in your logo based on real pets?
A: Yes! That's Pocket and Bunyip! They're real life friends, though Pocket prefers to do her modelling for the camera without the distraction of a small Himalayan bunny rabbit.