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$2,142 pledged of $20,000 goal
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By Jennifer Elliott
$2,142 pledged of $20,000 goal
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About

Historic Venue + Internet Presence = best of both worlds. The Sandwich Textile Center will offer shopping, classes & fiber equipment rentals. There are several textile centers located around the United States, but none in New Hampshire, and this vintage building – with an online presence – will be an outstanding resource for nurturing the contemporary renaissance of handmade goods.  

The Sandwich Textile Center will be an in-person/online shopping venue and learning center for all things fiber arts related. There will be workshops for children and adults with lessons in:

• Raising and caring for fiber animals

• Fiber harvesting, processing and dyeing

• Knitting, crocheting, spinning, weaving, sewing

Also available: on-site sales and rentals of fiber processing equipment, both new and gently used such as fiber pickers, hand cards, drum carders, spinning wheels and looms. 

And, the space will also be perfect for hosting traveling textile exhibits and a gathering place for cottage industry textile enthusiasts to meet.

Funding for this project will go toward: 

• store fixtures

• on-site signage and tourism roadway signage 

• website upgrade 

• computer and software upgrade

• purchasing of fiber processing equipment for rental programs

• instructors/workshops 

With local farmers’ markets becoming the go-to place for food and goods, there is already a keen energy in all things handmade and locally sourced that will ensure this is a successful business venture. The Lakes Region area of New Hampshire enjoys a vibrant, year-round tourist economy. As Sandwich is centrally located in the Granite State, the Textile Center will be perfect as a central hub for the state and surrounding New England area. 

The Historic District of Sandwich, NH is on the National Register of Historic Places. One of the original remaining buildings in the Historic District is The Old Blanchard Homestead built in 1822. Augustus Blanchard built this home, as well as the homes located on either side of it. Augustus Blanchard and his son, Augustine, owned and operated a fulling mill on the river a short distance from the Old Blanchard Homestead. Fulling is the process of beating and cleaning cloth in water to shrink the loose fibers and make a denser fabric. Fine fabrics were usually fulled, dyed, brushed to raise the pile, and finally trimmed of loose threads to produce a finished surface of great quality. 

The Old Blanchard Homestead is one of three homes that escaped the Great Fire of 1934, which destroyed most of the Village of Center Sandwich. For approximately two years after the Great Fire, this property became the home of the Sandwich Home Industries, which to this day remains a part of the larger League of New Hampshire Craftsmen. The Old Blanchard Homestead has also been a quaint bed and breakfast operated by its most recent former owners, one of whom is a direct descendant of Augustus Blanchard. So, to complete the circle, the Old Blanchard Homestead is the perfect place for the Sandwich Textile Center to take up residence. 

I would like to thank Kindred Spirit Farm for photographs, and the Sandwich Historical Society for providing historical information concerning this property, as well as photographs. 

It would be a thrill for me to become the steward of this vintage property and re-energize it with a new life in textiles. YOUR donation – of any amount – will help BRING this into being! 

Thank you so much for your support.

Jen Elliott - Shepherdess and Fiber Artist 

Risks and challenges

If this project is successfully funded, a hurdle that I will have to successfully jump will be to obtain approval from the Sandwich Planning Board to operate a business at this location. I am confident that I will be able to successfully jump this hurdle and open the Sandwich Textile Center by July 1, 2014.

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    A photo of my Shetland flock and me, my eternal gratitude and that warm fuzzy feeling you get from being a part of reviving textiles in a small New England town. Thank you and please spread the word!

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    A beaded sheep bookmark to keep your place in a favorite read, my eternal gratitude and that warm fuzzy feeling you get from being a part of reviving textiles in a small New England town. Thank you and please spread the word!

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    A wool nesting ball for your avian friends to use at nest-building time, my eternal gratitude and that warm fuzzy feeling you get from being a part of reviving textiles in a small New England town. Thank you and please spread the word!

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    A set of 3 wool dryer balls (a natural, reusable, renewable, compostable alternative to chemical laden dryer sheets), my eternal gratitude and that warm fuzzy feeling you get from being a part of reviving textiles in a small New England town. Thank you and please spread the word!

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    A pair of hand knitted mittens of all natural yarn, my eternal gratitude and that warm fuzzy feeling you get from being a part of reviving textiles in a small New England town. Thank you and please spread the word!

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    A 200 yard skein of hand spun all natural yarn, my eternal gratitude and that warm fuzzy feeling you get from being a part of reviving textiles in a small New England town. Thank you and please spread the word!

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    A hand knitted hat of all natural yarn, my eternal gratitude and that warm fuzzy feeling you get from being a part of reviving textiles in a small New England town. Thank you and please spread the word!

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    A knitting workshop at the Sandwich Textile Center during 2015, my eternal gratitude and that warm fuzzy feeling you get from being a part of reviving textiles in a small New England town. Thank you and please spread the word!

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    A quilting workshop at the Sandwich Textile Center during 2015, my eternal gratitude and that warm fuzzy feeling you get from being a part of reviving textiles in a small New England town. Thank you and please spread the word!

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    A spinning workshop at the Sandwich Textile Center during 2015, my eternal gratitude and that warm fuzzy feeling you get from being a part of reviving textiles in a small New England town. Thank you and please spread the word!

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    A dyeing workshop at the Sandwich Textile Center during Winter 2015, my eternal gratitude and that warm fuzzy feeling you get from being a part of reviving textiles in a small New England town. Thank you and please spread the word!

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    A felting workshop at the Sandwich Textile Center during 2015, my eternal gratitude and that warm fuzzy feeling you get from being a part of reviving textiles in a small New England town. Thank you and please spread the word!

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    A crocheting workshop at the Sandwich Textile Center during 2015, my eternal gratitude and that warm fuzzy feeling you get from being a part of reviving textiles in a small New England town. Thank you and please spread the word!

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    A sewing workshop at the Sandwich Textile Center during 2015, my eternal gratitude and that warm fuzzy feeling you get from being a part of reviving textiles in a small New England town. Thank you and please spread the word!

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    3 months of studio space use at the Sandwich Textile Center (October 2014 through December 2014) where you can let your creativity in textiles come alive, my eternal gratitude and that warm fuzzy feeling you get from being a part of reviving textiles in a small New England town. Thank you and please spread the word!

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    3 months of studio space use at the Sandwich Textile Center (January 2015 through March 2015) where you can let your creativity in textiles come alive, my eternal gratitude and that warm fuzzy feeling you get from being a part of reviving textiles in a small New England town. Thank you and please spread the word!

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    3 months of studio space use at the Sandwich Textile Center (April 2015 through June 2015) where you can let your creativity in textiles come alive, my eternal gratitude and that warm fuzzy feeling you get from being a part of reviving textiles in a small New England town. Thank you and please spread the word!

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    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    3 months of studio space use at the Sandwich Textile Center (July 2014 through September 2014) where you can let your creativity in textiles come alive, my eternal gratitude and that warm fuzzy feeling you get from being a part of reviving textiles in a small New England town. Thank you and please spread the word!

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Funding period

- (28 days)