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Foxford fabric found in Florida

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TICKLED PINK American artist Anne Hall contacted Foxford Woollen Mills when she found the old piece of fabric.

A glorious pink wool fabric caught the eye of visual artist Anne Hall in a second-hand store in downtown Niceville, Florida, and started a search that ended in Foxford. The beautifully woven fabric swatch still had an original makers’ tag attached, printed with ‘Providence Woollen Manufactory, Foxford, Co Mayo’. The young artist was curious and, discovering to her delight that it was still in existence, made contact with the company, now called Foxford Woollen Mills.
Anne Hall was intrigued by Foxford and the history. “What a company history! Started by the Sisters of Charity to provide jobs for the poor … and today still providing jobs as well as quality contemporary designs,” she said. She posted a photo of the material on Instagram and received a flurry of attention on the other side of the Atlantic Ocean.
Joe Queenan, Managing Director, did some research on the swatch: “This particular piece was manufactured in the Foxford factory between 50 and 70 years ago. It is a 100 percent wool dress cloth or flannel, which would have been used for kilts and skirts. It would also have been used as báinín for cushions. The numbers on the old makers’ tag relate to the quality (7407) and colour (786) of the fabric.”
How the pink material found its way to Florida is a story yet to be uncovered.