MAFA - Mid Atlantic Fiber Association
MAFA - Mid Atlantic Fiber Association

Welcome to the web site for the MidAtlantic Fiber Association (MAFA). MAFA is a non-profit organization whose objectives are to promote education in the fiber arts, to plan, organize, and conduct conferences, and to facilitate communication among member guilds.

MAFA represents nearly 60 guilds from 8 states and the District of Columbia in the Mid-Atlantic region. Our member guilds are located in NY, PA, MD, VA, NJ, DE, DC, NC, and WV. Individuals become automatic members through membership in a participating guild.

Associate membership is open to commercial enterprises, institutions, organizations, schools and individuals not in affiliated guilds. Associate members have the same status as guilds, with the exception of voting.

Any organized guild of handweavers or related fiber activities located in the Mid-Atlantic region may be considered for membership in MAFA. Membership consists of timely payment of annual dues and entitles members to participation in the biennial conference, the MAFA newsletter, and the opportunity to apply for grants, which support mini-conference venues.

Each guild is allowed one representative and one alternate representative to send to the two annual general meetings held in October and May.

Guilds, individuals, or organizations wishing to join MAFA should go to the Joining MAFA page for further information.

The MAFA Express is rolling down the track!

On board is the dynamite crew who are busy, busy, busy, getting everything ready for your arrival at Millersville University on July 16, 2015.  First on was the fabulous line-up of first-rate instructors coming in from around the US, Canada, & UK.  Next, we have a collection of vendors to knock your socks off with a prime selection of goodies you won’t be able to resist.

And now we have the passengers jumping on while the Express barely slows down.  These are fiber folks from all points of the MidAtlantic area eager to learn a new skill, enhance skills they already own, and just have fun exploring. 

The classes are filling up nicely.  Registration is now open to non-members.   Remember, your registration fee covers one 2-1/2 day workshop as well as room and board – such a deal.

The Express pulls into Millersville University for Registration Thursday from 2-5.  Classes will be all day Friday & Saturday and until noon on Sunday.  Thursday evening we will have Jennifer Moore as our Keynote Speaker, followed by a mix-and-mingle reception.  Friday night will be the Fashion Show, which is our version of a guild’s Show-and-Tell with a bigger audience of folks who can appreciate what you’ve done!  On Saturday evening is the Open Studio tour, where you can meet the instructors and all see what everyone else has been doing.

All Aboard!

Ellen L. Turner

MAFA President

Ellen May Dorosh
May 21, 1941-Dec. 7, 2014

Ellen May Dorosh, 73, of Cascade, Md. died Dec. 7, 2014. She was born May 21, 1941, in Morgantown, W.Va., to Horace L. and Irene R. Sturm. She attended elementary and high school in Shinnston, W.Va. and additional education in Fairmont State College, Fairmont, W.Va.~ and Hagerstown Community College, Hagerstown, Md. She is survived by her sons, Mark E. Dorosh of Shepherdstown, and Phillip L. Dorosh of Boise, Idaho and five grandchildren, Will and Kirsten of Shepherdstown, and Isabel, Emma and Audrey, of Boise. Ellen s major career was as sole owner of Antietam Press for 19 years. During that time, she freelanced for CBS Educational Services, Frederick Praeger Co., and Greenwood Press, in the capacity of project editor for college textbooks. In addition to her editorial responsibilities, she formatted the camera­ready copy for the books. Ellen thoroughly enjoyed many different types of crafts, including weaving and knitting, and was the owner of Ellenweaves, selling her hand­woven items at small craft shows throughout the area. She was a member of Hagerstown Weavers Roundtable, Central Pennsylvania Guild of Handweavers, and Blue Ridge Spinners and Weavers. She also enjoyed music and dancing. Her ashes will be laid to rest at the discretion of the family.

Contributions to the Allen Fannin Scholarship Fund should be sent to: Dina K. Callow, MAFA Treasurer, 7633 Riverside Farm Road, Marshall, VA 20115.


MAFA lost a good friend and committed advocate with the unexpected death of our President Ellen Dorosh on December 7, 2014. Ellen loved weaving from her first lessons through several years as a production weaver and into more recent years of selling her work at area craft shows. She was one of that rare breed that enjoys weaving the same thing over and over, and her signature tea towels are used in homes up and down the East Coast. She was a member of three weaving guilds, Central Pennsylvania Guild of Handweavers, The Roundtable of Hagerstown, MD and the Blue Ridge Spinners and Weavers Guild of VA. She was very interested in strengthening MAFA’s outreach to the weaving community and especially focused on helping make every recent MAFA Conference the very best combination of classes, shopping and fun. 

But Ellen had so many other interests. She loved to travel and learn about other cultures, especially the textiles of those cultures. She had travelled to Scotland, South East Asia, many places in Europe, and this past summer to Guatemala, and had pulled a trailer holding her loom all across this country visiting our national parks. She worked at many of those parks in various capacities and demonstrated weaving on old looms. She taught weaving whenever she had the chance. She gleaned cotton bolls from a field out west and taught herself to spin cotton.

Those of you who have been involved with MAFA for any time will know that Ellen has been an integral member of the leadership team for many years. As Education Chairperson, she organized all the workshops for the conferences of 2007, 2009, and 2011. She carefully managed our finances as Treasurer from 2011-2013, and has served as our inspirational president since 2013. Her dedication, enthusiasm, and hard work have been a model for us all.

Ellen was determined to make our 2015 conference the best one yet, and we hope we can still make that happen.  Our job is much harder without Ellen to lead us, but we hope we can rely on our guild reps and other members to help us make this upcoming conference a great one, as a tribute to Ellen’s desire to spread the love of fiber arts in our community.

The Board is united behind our Vice President, Ellen Turner, as she takes on the role of President, as directed by our by-laws.

The MAFA Board of Directors

Ellen L. Turner

Lori Wall

Karen Miller

Dina K. Callow

Mickie Schneider

Craft Emergency Relief Fund (CERF+)

The Craft Emergency Relief Fund (CERF+) was founded on a single simple premise: people caring for one another during tough times. Building upon the grassroots gesture of passing the hat at craft shows for artists dealing with emergency situations, CERF+ created an ongoing pool of funds that are available to professional craft artists when they suffer career-threatening emergencies. In addition to the financial assistance, they help acquire donated goods and services for beneficiaries from individuals, organizations and businesses. CERF+ also provides resources for artists, including a new tool just announced: The Business Insurance Guidebook for Artists distills the key points of business property, liability, and disaster insurance into a pocket-sized booklet.

Thanks to the generosity of MAFA guilds and individuals interested in helping fiber artists with emergency needs, CERF+ now has a Fiber Arts fund. The Harmony Weavers Guild, which led the initiative to get this fund established with $2000 in donations, encourages MAFA guilds to continue donating to this fund, to ensure funds are available if a fiber artist has an emergency situation.

You can learn more about CERF+ here:

MAFA By-Laws May 2012 (pdf version)