Baylor alumni to open local rug tufting studio

Fuzz Lab Waco, a new rug tufting studio, is set to open mid-March. Photo courtesy of Ashley Newberry

By Kalena Reynolds | Staff Writer

For Baylor alumni Ashley and Alpha Newberry, entrepreneurial journeys have been a familiar pursuit. In October 2023, Ashley went rug tufting with her friends in Austin and was instantly hit with a wave of inspiration and a new business idea for what will soon be Fuzz Lab Waco.

‘While I was there, I was like, ‘Wow, this is a great concept,'” Ashley said. “I’ve never seen anything like it. And it seemed really simple, and so I actually talked to some team members, and I was like, ‘Is the owner around?’ And she was one of the owners, and I started chatting with her about how she got started with their business, and we kind of just hit it off, relationship-wise.”

Once the Newberrys discussed the budding business idea, they began working out the details and location. In January, the couple signed a lease in downtown Waco and set a goal to open the sister studio by the middle of March.

“Our plan is to do our soft opening of just the friends and family, … and then our thought is to gather all the information we get from them and implement it for March,” Ashley said.

The studio will include a variety of rug tufting packages available for purchase as well as bears available for acrylic pour painting.

“Our mission statement is to provide beginner-friendly rug tufting and drip painting workshops in a fun and inviting environment, equipping you with all the tools and guidance to create unique pieces you’ll treasure,” Ashley said.

Customers will be able to craft any design of their choosing into a rug or can pick from a catalog of options.

“We offer four rug tufting sizes, ranging from a mini all the way up to a large canvas, which is 40×40,” Alpha said. “So the smalls and minis are as small as a 17×17, and the medium is a 24×24.”

Meanwhile, the bears come in five different sizes, ranging from as small as a keychain to almost three feet tall.

Ashley said the rugs can be taken home after the completion of the session, while the acrylic bears must have a three-day drying period afterward.

“The idea is to start it and finish it all on the same day, meaning tufting the rug, gluing the backing on and shaving it, and then being able to take it home the same day,” Ashley said. “As far as the bears go there, it does require a three-day drying period, so they will likely either have to come back and pick it up, or we can mail it to them.”

Fuzz Lab Waco will be located at 930 Austin Ave.

Kalena Reynolds is a sophomore Journalism major from Phoenix, AZ with minors in art history and media management. In her first semester at the Lariat, she is excited to meet new people and continue her love for writing and story telling. Aside from writing, Kalena is also on the equestrian team at Baylor and has a deep love for music and songwriting. After graduation, she plans to go into the music industry.