Snowmass Alpacas

Genetics by Design


Snowmass Kumari rugs has officially launched their collection of Hand Knotted rugs for sale.

After a long journey from the bailing room of Snowmass Alpacas in Sandpoint to the high Himalayas of Nepal our first hand knotted sample rugs made exclusively from Snowmass Alpaca fiber have arrived.

They are everything we expected and more.

This is the first time ever that the Nepalese people have ever worked with alpaca. This is a historic moment for “alpaca” and the beginning of a wonderful relationship.

Please read the story on the process by which these beautiful handmade rugs are made below.

If you are interested in prices and ordering one of the treasured collectable Snowmass-Kumari Alpaca wool rugs please email us

Snowmass Alpacas joins partnership with Kumari Rugs and Tapestries in the  first production line of Nepalese and Tibetan Alpaca Hand-Knotted Rugs and Tapestrie

Snowmass Alpacas joins partnership with Kumari Rugs and Tapestries in the  first production line of Nepalese and Tibetan Alpaca Hand-Knotted Rugs and Tapestries
The journey of the Snowmass Alpaca fiber began with a precious load of 24 bales 6,480 lbs. with Sandpoint Idaho USA to Nepal.

  • The bales were loaded onto a truck container and then sealed at the Snowmass Alpaca Ranch, Sandpoint, ID Fall 2012
  • They were then transported by truck container to Los Angeles, CA
  • When they arrived in Los Angeles, the container was loaded in a shipping vessel and was transported through the Ocean to the port of Singapore
  • After the container arrived in Singapore, the vessel was further transferred to the port of Kolkata, India by sea
  • After it arrived in Kolkata, India, it cleared Indian customs the bales were transferred by rail to Birgunj, Nepal. In Birgunj, they then cleared Nepalese customs and the bales were loaded into a truck and transferred to Kathmandu, Nepal.
  • At present, the fiber is in Kirtipur, Kathmandu, Nepal a suburb of the capital and a historic ethnic Newar community.             
cu_white_rugs.jpg Advantages of Tibetan Hand-Knotted Rugs and Tapestries from Nepal
  • Made with natural fibers
  • The entire process is completed by hand with each knot tied
  • Can serve as a great insulator and noise reducer
  • Repels dirt and is easy to clean
  • Hand Knotted rugs and tapestries are like pieces of art that you can pass on to the next generation
  • Each hand knotted rug and tapestry is unique and one of a kind
  • Unlike machine made rugs and tapestry, hand knotted rugs and tapestry provide great value and will last a lifetime as heirloom pieces.
  • No two handmade rugs and tapestries are alike and each one has a story
About Snowmass and Kumari Rugs and Tapestries
Our Alpaca rugs and tapestries are handmade in Nepal by Nepalese and Tibetan artisans. This is the first time Tibetan style rugs and tapestries will be introduced in Alpaca fibers. For many centuries, Tibetans have been weaving rugs for the use in their house as bed set, saddle blankets for horses and carpets for prayer halls, huge pillar covers and wall hangings in the monasteries, etc. Thus, rugs formed an integral part in the lives of Tibetans who had to endure pretty harsh weather conditions in the vast and high plateau of Tibet.
After the Chinese invasion of Tibet in 1959, hundreds of thousands of Tibetans escaped and took refuge in parts of India and Nepal. Gradually, they settled and formed communities all across the region; with their propensity for trade and their amiable nature, they blended in cordially with the native inhabitants of Nepal and India. Pretty soon, bustling bazaars and lively neighborhoods began springing up with a distinct flair of Tibetan hospitality and cultural identity. Under the leadership of their charismatic and revered leader the Dalai Lama, the Tibetan refugees extended their culture and tradition into means of livelihood and profession: sculpturing, architecture, painting etc. Among these, the art of rug weaving proved very beneficial for many Tibetans who were skilled and well-versed in that area of trade. Thus, Himalayan Rugs were introduced to Nepal.
The history of rug industry in Nepal began when the first Tibetan settlers started to sell their rugs, either antique or otherwise, to curious tourists. While earning their livelihood with different skills of arts in a new land, these hard working Tibetan refugees received the support of the Swiss government and began a cottage industry of rug weaving in early 1960s. This industry was intended to sell rugs to the growing tourist trade in Nepal.

The rugs produced were hand carded, handspun, and hand trimmed using only traditional designs in smaller sizes. This process of rug making still continues today in Nepal. 
In the late 70's, German rug dealers came to Nepal and began purchasing rugs in larger sizes and in volume. Subsequently, the German market became the hub of distribution for unique Tibetan rugs throughout Europe. Due to the high demand of European buyers in mid 80's, Tibetan rug production in Nepal became the nation's second leading industry.
Later on, leading U.S. importers began to buy Tibetan rugs made in Nepal, with specific design and colors for the U.S. market. The rug industry in Nepal has come quite a long way from its early days of small bazaar sales to now large scale industrial production. At present, Tibetan rugs have become a leading commodity within the hand made floor-covering market in both Europe and in the U.S., and still continue to grow with fame and popularity to other parts of the world.

Snowmass Alpacas is excited and proud to be the first to introduce Alpaca and Alpaca fibers to the people of Nepal and Tibet in their craft which will send a long lasting message to the world through the beautiful pieces these artisans will create.

Please stay tuned for updates on the progress of the Snowmass/Kumari project.