Posted on 3/10/2015
By Staff Reporter
Espanola Valley Fiber Arts Center Announces “Thumper II” Felting Machine Launch Event
ESPANOLA: The Espanola Valley Fiber Arts Center (EVFAC) is inviting the public to join them on Thursday, March 12, from 4 – 6 pm to celebrate the opening of the Thumper II, EVFAC’s proprietary wet-felting facility. This facility houses a unique machine that has been made exclusively for the use of the growing felting community in New Mexico, and will expand the already wide-ranging education and member driven programs that EVFAC offers.
Community members and interested parties are invited to view a demonstration of the equipment, meet the development team, and learn from felters about the benefits this equipment will offer. During the evening the EVFAC team will unveil the supporter wall of Felted Bricks to honor all who have contributed to the project. Additional Felted Bricks will be available for purchase by anyone who wishes to support this unique program. Attendance is free, refreshments and light snack will be served.
About the Espanola Fiber Arts Center’s wet felting operations
Several years ago members of the Intercultural Navajo-Churro Alliance (INCA) began initiatives to build connections between growers, mills and fiber artists so that fiber could flow efficiently from hand to hand, offering economic opportunities along the way. Numerous members of this alliance are recognized business owners within the fiber community, and their vision and engagement have provided the blueprint for this wet-felting machine project.
Supported by EVFAC and many generous donors, the development team planned and developed a wet-felting machine prototype, affectionately named “The Thumper”. Today the second generation, Thumper II, a significantly improved version of the original wet-felting machine, has been constructed for the use of EVFAC Members and the entire fiber arts community.
Felters at work
The Española Valley Fiber Arts Center was established nearly 20 years ago by local fiber artists and today operates as a tax-exempt, nonprofit Membership organization with 501(c)(3) status. Our mission is to promote the rich textile heritage of Northern New Mexico, and provide a center for learning, encouraging aspiring fiber artisans and fostering economic sustainability in the fiber arts.
With the installation of this community felting facility we anticipate growing the felting community, increasing the demand for wool, improving income generation for felters and driving the demand for handmade felted products from New Mexico.