The homestead and workshop of master felter and ancestral skills instructor Jack Fee.
felt \'felt\ (noun) : a cloth made from the processing of wool with the use of moisture and pressure causing the fibers to mat together and create a smooth surface.
hollow \hol-low\ (noun) : a cavity or low part of a surface especially a small valley or basin.
Want to know what's going on at Felt Hollow?
Click the link for an update on Felt Hollow's Projects and Plans.
In 1993, after the break up with my youngest son's mother, I hiked up high on Mount Adams and camped with a friend who was the wilderness ranger at the time. That night I had an amazing dream, a vision of the future. This dream led me to believe there was a school of self-sufficiency here that I could be a part of.
The dream has slowly materialized and each day brings me closer to the school of self-sufficiency vision.
Sharing my knowledge with more than twenty Workaway guests which have stayed here over the past three years has been a wonderful experience for both me and my guests. Maintaining the opportunities that the 'simple living' lifestyle provides and require take up most of my time and resources. Schools take people and people need homes. I currently envision Felt Hollow being put into a Trust and the main house that is here becoming a shared space and teaching area.
I first moved to Trout Lake WA with my family in the winter of 1973. We lived here for three years until I decided to leave for Alaska. I settled around Homer and there I stayed for five years mostly working on boats. On a trip down to Mexico I stopped back to visit Trout Lake and ultimately decided to move back in 1984. At that time I started a new family and in 1985 moved to my current location - Felt Hollow. We started raising Angora rabbits and it was their amazing fiber that eventually led me to the felt making process! I gleaned information from any available source and was self taught (this was before the internet.).
By 1989 I was an accomplished felt maker and entered some of my art in the World Congress on Colored Sheep, held that year in Eugene OR. I took a workshop called the Russian Soap Method that revolutionized my felting style!
In 1990 I signed up for a flint knapping class in Hood River OR. At the end of the class all 3 students were invited to the first public "Glass Buttes Knapp-In". I met so many like minded people at this event that the course of my life was forever altered. My felt-making craft and skills were appreciated. I taught at the Knapp-In and was later invited to the Rabbit Stick Rendezvous, where I have taught felt making for many years running.
Being exposed to a great deal of instructors and classes at these gatherings has widened my knowledge of several ancestral skills: edible & medicinal plants, fire by friction, cordage, flint knapping, bow and arrow making, hide tanning, the making of moccasins and basketry. I don't want to portray myself as an expert at any of these skills. I am most notably a felt maker. However, I have taught all of the mentioned skills, mostly to beginners and children.
On the seventh day God rested, and took a sauna! Sunday saunas and pot luck have been a tradition at Felt Hollow for years and is a great way to end the week and unwind.
This began quite by accident in 2008. I covered the kitchen table with paper to process a road kill deer and Allen the Mason started drawing and making musical notations on a section of the paper! It has since been a tradition at Felt Hollow, minus the road kill most of the time!
I encourage all friends and visitors to lay down some art or words, and it often functions as a handy office note book as well.