Sunday, September 16, 2018

Fingerlakes Fiber Festival Sunday

Expecting a quieter day today, and preparing for the heat with lighter clothes and a fan.  It was really hot yesterday, but still managed to peddle some wool.  Here are some photos from yesterday. 

Hat made by Marina using Whispering Pines Soft Shetland Wool

Saturday, September 15, 2018

Fingerlakes Fiber Festival

It is the nice quiet morning of the festival, Rich and I set up the booth yesterday so we can leave here at around 8 and arrive in time for the vendor parking.

The two new arrivals are doing well in their quarantine pen.  I tried to get some nice full shots but turns out they are both so friendly it was nearly impossible.  So here are some closeups of our pretty new girls:

Looking forward to seeing everyone today, looks like its going to be a nice day for a festival!

Monday, September 10, 2018

Wisconsin Fiber Festival

 We are driving home from the festival, we drove to LaGrange Indiana last night and had to break.  Joining us in the van is this little peanut who we bought from Kelly B at the show.

Today we pick up our 2nd new lamb and then head on home. She is from Whispering Pines Wentworth and May who are now living in Michigan.

Really enjoyed our time at the Wisconsin Sheep and Wool festival.  I got a lot of spinning done on our grey katmoget ewe's fleece, Ivy.

Saw so many good friends and had time to catch up on important wool/sheep/fiber crafting news from the past year.  Looking forward to connecting with everyone on their progress with the projects that involve our soft shetland wool.

This pretty cowl was shared by Sue who used yarn from we think Pearl and Edith.  Sue is headed to the Shetland Islands soon, so very excited to share her work and have a shetland wool item to keep her warm during the trip!

Saturday, September 8, 2018

Wisconsin Sheep and Wool Festival

Day one of the festival is done and dusted, had a terrific day.  I love this festival so much.  Today we have to get to tractor supply before the show as we need to get a crate to bring home certainly one and maybe 2 new additions to the flock!

Saturday, September 1, 2018

Spin off article

I had two business trips in August.  Which is very bad timing as I am also frantically preparing for 3 fiber festivals in September.
I'll be marking this yarn today

Lots to mark and organize!

 Yesterday I got home from an international business trip to find the Spinoff magazine in the mail.  It has a pattern featuring our commercial processed ram wool.  So that was pretty cool.

And it made up for the disappointment of this morning's cup of coffee at home compared to the cup I had in Germany yesterday morning.  Why is their coffee so delicious?  At least I got to drink from my favorite fancy mug rather than a boring hotel one.

Anyways, I don't hand card adult ram fleeces.  Most of the time I just toss them in the trash.  I know this is shocking behavior but other than the first year lamb fleece, ram fleeces smell really bad, and we don't coat rams so the wool is really dirty and gross.  However, when there are particularly nice ones we send them to Acorn fiber to be processed into roving.  So when the editor of Spinoff asked me if I would donate ~ 2 lbs of wool for this project I was very happy to have a large amount available from a recent order we had processed.

Normally I hand card everything I sell, but this year I will have the commercially prepared roving in my booth in the next three weekends of back to back fiber festivals if you want to try making this pretty shawl for yourself!

Sunday, July 15, 2018

Signs of wear

One of the unique aspects of the wool I provide, in addition to being incredibly soft and bouncy (thanks to our flock of lovely soft shetland sheep) is that I hand process pretty much everything I sell.  I think it makes for a nicer experience for the knitter/spinner.

The equipment I use to hand process is starting to show its age, and as I am using the tools of this trade I reflect on the volume of wool that has passed over the guides, cards and hands.  I wonder where all that wool is across the world and if it is providing use as a decoration, a source of warmth or some other type of value.

Every lock is flicked.  My flicker tines get a little misaligned over time.

Clean dirt build up.
That callous on my index finger is from holding locks while they are flicked.  I think it could stop a bullet.

This guide has a groove worn into it from the yarn passing over it, it still has some use before I'll need to replace it 

But this guide has just about worn right through.  I'm going to keep using it until one day it will just break in two.  I wonder what it will feel like when it happens

My doffing tool is all crooked

I use my paddle cards to pack the wool onto my drum carder like so

And one day realized that it was getting grooves worn into the back of it from the tines on the drum carder.  This observation is what inspired this post.

Wednesday, July 4, 2018

What I am working on

Happy 4th!  Part of my day off will be spent in the nice cool basement fiber studio.

Here is a fun video of our twin lambs bottle feeding.  More like racing actually.

Beginning steps of the gradient yarn from Lyanna


Lyanna's gradient yarn ready to wash

Finished carding Baxter

Pretty single from Baxter
Finishing off the second try of a barn hat from Elara

Carding Ygritte, our moorit ewe who is actually for sale

Ygritte's washed fleece on the carding table