Feel the felt…and then, create

Sometimes, small details can make a whole lot of difference.

SmART games are more than your masterpiece: they are your new games. There are endless ideas to the activities you can play with them, and therefore, creating them well is the most basic step that we need to pay the attention to.

When we talk SmART, felt is one of my favorite materials to create with. Picking the right types of felt will increase your chances of loving your final product. Felt is a durable fabric that can be soft, flexible, dense and of the perfect thickness to work with happily . All you have to do is pick the right felt for you.

There are several kinds of felt out there in the market: some are made of natural fibers, others are synthetic, and some are mixed. It can be very confusing to try to pick our felt according to its title, so when we talk SmART, what really matters isn’t the kind of felt, but how it feels and its characteristics.

In my book B SmART ‘n PLAY you will find a helpful list of tips to help you go and create each one of the games that appear in the book.

Here are some reminders as well as some extra tips, that will help you pick the proper felt for your SmART family:

  1. Shopping in a store versus shopping online– Choosing colors and materials for your games from a website will never be the same as picking them out at a local store, since you won’t be able to feel them and test their level of compatibility up close. The more senses you use, the better decision you will make!
  2. Make sure the felt you choose, whether online or in a store is, dense, soft, and flexible at the same time, and about 1 mm thick (0.8-1.4 mm). There are also eco-friendly felts available that may be perfectly suited for your SmART games.
  3. Stiffened felt, which is a less soft and less flexible type of felt, can work very well when used to create flat games pieces (for instance, stiffened felt is a good choice for the Shadie SmART inner squares, one of the games).
  4. Sheet size– The felt sheet size is important too. Make sure you pick a sheet that is about the size of standard printing paper or larger (8”x12” and larger). Smaller sheets will make you run out of material too soon, and won’t leave you room for mistakes.
  5. Plan ahead- I like to plan ahead for my future SmART games and stock up on felt by buying 2 or 3 sheets of each shade of color I chose. That way, I save time and frustration later looking for the exact shades that I need.
  6. If you are teacher, an instructor, or a parent who enjoys the experience of being exposed to a wide variety of colors, you may find it more convenient to purchase the larger packs of felt that contain multiple colors. More colors always add to the joy and to the enthusiasm!
  7. If you still wish to purchase felt online, you may find these websites helpful, as they let you pick the individual colors of felt and lets you add more items to your kit.

                                           

                                                         Now, are you ready to stART?                                                       

                                                                  So, let’s go SmART!

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