About Valerian Fibres
I am Valerie Jukes and I make needle-felted animal masks under the name VALERIAN FIBRES.
When I first came to Bradford on Avon 34 years ago, I was lucky to be involved in the 1990 community play which centred around Bradford’s history as a woollen town. As a result, I learned the art of hand-spinning and my lifelong interest in wool was kindled.
I discovered needle-felting by chance about four years ago and I was transfixed by the process of transforming whisps of wool into actual physical objects. The properties of wool never cease to amaze me and I see my creative journey as a partnership with this wonderful natural resource.
The core of most of my creations is wool I have obtained locally and washed and processed myself. I love experimenting with different ways to felt and can never do anything the same way twice!
Mask making is a highly addictive craft as each face, whether animal or fantasy, is unique and I love the fact that people respond to them all in different ways.
I make masks for role-play, festivals and also as wall decorations. My masks all have a special mounting pad, containing the creature’s eyes, which can be removed when you want to wear the mask. Or you can hang it on the wall and have it looking back at you!
The challenge with animal masks is how to create a realistic animal face which will sit on the proportions of the human one. The end result is a unique creation which can be used as a mask or displayed as wall-art.
I undertake commissions of pets as well as wildlife and fantasy masks. Have a look at my galleries for previous work and masks that are actually on sale in the lovely "Made in Bradford on Avon" gallery. There is also an "Off the peg" shop where you can buy online.
Please don’t hesitate to contact me with questions, comments or suggestions.