Thursday, January 10, 2013

Felt Rivers for the Tabletop

    As I was setting out the troops and terrain I would bring to Ellis Con for our Snappy Nappy "Campaign in a Day" project back in November, it occurred to me that the number of rivers needed would be very large. I already planned to bring my large collection of Wizard Kraft rivers, my old Flex Terrain streams, and even the Plaster of Paris on artist board modular rivers I had made back in 1984 (seen in my Eyalu Battle Report), but I still wasn't sure it would be enough.

   I recalled that I had several sheets of blue felt that I hadn't ever used for anything; I could make almost 12 feet of rivers by cutting them up. Having just finished making my new sets of Felt Roads for the Tabletop, I figured I could apply a similar technique as a quick way to make them look a little less boring (and unnatural) than the plain felt sections.

First, the trusty Paper Cutter was brought out once again, and the 8.5 x 11" sheets cut lengthwise into 1.25" wide strips...

yielding six sections per sheet, as seen above. 

Using some thinned down Folkart "Teal" (blue-green) paint and a large artist's brush, I made broad curvy lines to suggest areas of deeper water.

Next, the same was done with thinned down Delta Ceramcoat "Timberline Green", a greenish brown color, to suggest shallows.

Finally, watered down Ceramcoat "Carribean Blue" (a light Turquoise shade) was applied with a sponge in a quasi-linear fashion to suggest surface turbulence.

The finished product; no masterpiece to be sure, but cost was negligible, total time to make the set was less than 2 hours, and  looks fairly presentable, I think!  I'll have to use them on the table with some figures to give a better idea how they work in "real" life.


  1. You've been busy in your basement!

  2. Replies
    1. Thanks, Rafa. Nothing fancy, but cheap, easy, and practical. WR (Michael)'s idea of painting the edges tabletop green is a simple, further enhancement. Obviously one can get fancier with flock, etc as well.