Pearhug Studio's asked me to explain in more detail about Layla's skinless sheep skin rug. This was a lot of work and my arms were hurting the next day but its great cardio!
I started of by using very matted wool. The wrong side was so matted that I couldn't pull it apart. Most of the work was already done for me in this case. To wet felt, you use hot water, soap and agitation.
As I was washing my fleece, I took the very matted section and submerged it in the hot soapy water right side down (the exterior part of the fleece.) Wearing rubber gloves I began to rub sections of the fleece between my fingers causing it to felt. I would apply soap directly on it and rub my hand over the whole surface very fast while applying pressure. I would try and overlap a few sections that had gaps. After 20 minutes or so, I would empty the water and add fresh hot water. I continued this 4 or 5 times until the fleece was mostly clean and felted. When I say hot water, you want it to be very hot- hence the rubber gloves.
There were still some sections that needed to be re-enforced. After the piece had dried completely, I began the needle felting. I started to patch the wholes that didn't need extra wood added. Then I went back and added some wool to the parts that were thin. When the back becomes hard enough where you cant pull it apart you're done! I did take a dog comb and brush out the right side.
This is the felted back up close The back of the rug
The front (right side) of the rug
Now you have a skinless sheep skin rug! No one is harmed except maybe your hands and arm muscles!