This paper describes experiments undertaken to study in detail the control of vortex shedding from circular cylinders at low Reynolds numbers by using feedback to stabilize the wake instability. Experiments have been performed both in a wind tunnel and in an open water channel with flow visualization. It has been found that feedback control is able to delay the onset of the wake instability, rendering the wake stable at Reynolds numbers about 20% higher than otherwise. At higher flow rates, however, it was not possible to use single-channel feedback to stabilize the wake - although, deceptively, it was possible to reduce the unsteadiness recorded by a near-wake sensor. When control is applied to a long span only the region near the control sensor is controlled. The results presented in this paper generally support the analytical results of other researchers.