Friday, August 16, 2013

Spindles and Yarn and Goats, Oh My!

I know that my many readers were anticipating a blog post about Spillville and Dvorak, but they will simply have to wait; today it's all about Michigan Fiber Fest!

I completely missed last year's Fiber Fest, owing to a never-ending, all-consuming project from work. Happily, there was no similar obstacle this year. Jess and L and I attended a spindle-spinning workshop, taught by Nancy Shroyer, where we spun yarn using a drop spindle. Mine was not particularly stellar yarn, but it was yarn nonetheless.

Look - yarn!

Jess & L

After our workshop, we wandered through the vendors, and looked at animals. My goal was to buy no yarn unless I saw something I absolutely had to have. I really have plenty of yarn at home (including five still unused purchases from prior Fiber Fests). By not looking too closely, I avoided succumbing to the yarn fumes, although I was tempted at the Knitting Notions booth (but I have her yarn in my stash already, so....).

I did buy a yarn swift from Knitting Notions, something I've contemplated over the years. And, I bought a festival sweatshirt, which this year featured a pygora goat. Oh, I also bought the swift I used in the workshop - the price was right, and it will allow me to continue to play with drop spindling.

During our wanderings, this shawl caught my eye. The woman at the booth explained that it was knitted with short rows, using leftover sock yarn. I would love to figure out how to make this (she didn't have a pattern). My Pie Wedge Shawl is made with short rows, but is only a semi-circle; this shawl is a full circle, and hung nicely. Possibly I could just make more sections on my pie wedge shawl, and tweak it to use fingering weight yarn instead of lace. But this shawl seemed to have more shapes than just the pie shapes, so it will take some puzzling (or searching in Ravelry; this pattern seems similar.)


We admired rabbits, sheep, goats, and a camel - not as many animals as we'd see on a Saturday, but still a nice selection. Here are some of them (I'm at least moderately confident that I've correctly identified the breeds):

French angora rabbit - so soft!

Pygora goat

Lincoln longwool sheep

Shetland sheep

This hanging is made from t-shirts from previous years' Fiber Fests:

And we spotted this very appropriate license plate:

YO and SSK are knitting instructions

It's much less crowded on Friday than on Saturday, and we were trying avoid yarn temptation, so we made our way through the fair quickly, and arrived home earlier than expected. This gave me time to work on my Limited Edition Cowl. The last time I worked on it, I discovered Something Wrong - I had somehow switched patterns in the middle of a row. It was going to take some time to figure out where I'd gone astray, and get back to that point, so I had put the cowl in time-out.

This afternoon I was able to sit down and study it, knit back to where things were still as they should be, and then knit forward a couple rows. Now I should be able to make progress again, hurrah!

At the halfway point!

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