Don Bowles and Lanette Freitag raised alpacas, llamas and sheep for years, and had a passion for making creative and useful products from their fibers. However, it seemed nearly impossible to fully utilize the resources these animals provide. They knew there had to a better way! “It became our mission to find a tool or process that could help us. In our worldwide search we met people from many countries and learned plenty about fiber production all over the world, but we never found the process or tools we were looking for.”
Their journey ended back on their farm in Kentucky. “We brainstormed what we could do with a series of needles, and wondered why a machine for creating non-woven fabric on a smaller scale did not already exist. We knew that idea would change our lives, and it has.”
“It became our mission to find a tool or process that could help us. In our worldwide search we met people from many countries and learned plenty about fiber production all over the world, but we never found the process or tools we were looking for.”
With backgrounds in engineering, farming and several years of creating with fibers behind us, Don and Lanette designed, engineered and produced their first FeltLOOM® in 2003. They worked with The University of Kentucky, Center for Manufacturing to refine the original designs. The Center for Manufacturing provided the engineering and modeling expertise required to build new production prototypes.
FeltLOOM, Inc. has worked with the Kentucky Agricultural Development Board, Kentucky Science and Technology Corporation, and the Innovation and Commercialization Center to guide them through the process of new product development and market preparation. They are grateful to all of these organizations for their support and guidance.
FeltLOOM® is now found in 17 countries, and more are selling every day. Now each day the sun rises over hills of our farm, we see the animals go out to pasture, and we think back to where we started.
We are amazed at how far we have come. Frequently our customers share wih us a similar story about their experience searching all over the world for this product. It seems to be a common problem for so many in natural fiber production. Only now their story has a happy ending like ours.
The FeltLOOM® offers endless possibilities and will forever change the future of fiber. And it all started here in Sharpsburg, Kentucky!
The FeltLOOM Promise
When you decide to purchase a FeltLOOM® machine for your felting projects, you can expect consistently high-quality results. We take pride in the fact that our machines are all user-friendly. Whether you want equipment for your small business or for personal projects, you can easily learn to use your needle felting machine.