Sunday, June 7, 2009

Frolicking with Fiber

This was a beautiful day to head to the Maine Fiber Frolic in Windsor. Fiber enthusiasts from all over New England gathered for a relaxing day of petting bunnies, hooking on rugs, spinning under shady trees, shopping and enjoying workshops.It was all about texture, and everywhere there were bins, bags and baskets of fiber. Sheep fleece in all colors was available, and you could buy angora rabbit, goat and alpaca fiber too. I learned a lot from the vendors and exhibitors about the quality of fleece, lanolin content and staple length for spinning.There were demonstrations of shearing, sheep dogs in action, and everywhere there were artists relaxing with friends creating beautiful things. Many animals were exhibited for the show and many were for sale from the vendors. Anyone want to buy a llama or alpaca?Or perhaps an angora rabbit? They were soooooo soft and sweet to cuddle. Their fur was white, black, chocolate and tan. Many were being trimmed for spinning, or shorn for either felting the fiber or spinning the locks. Toenails were cut too. They didn't seem to mind the spa treatment.There were many breeds of goat and some had curly hair, some straight, and some were just for milking. Lots of kids around, both two and four legged!My friend Laura almost brought home a sheep herding pup, but since she doesn't own sheep I couldn't let her. What would her hubby say!!!One vendor had some large wool felted rugs and mats and I found this one quite pretty. This rug hooked rabbit was quite clever and well made. She was sitting in an antique crib along with a basket of hooked mats and pillows.If you are not motivated to knit your own socks there were several vendors who offered numerous styles you could choose from. Most of them had spun and dyed the wool from their own flock of animals.There were some cotton rag rugs and they would be soft and durable.Most people were making things by totally hand, but there were some knitting machines around too.There were amazing displays of hand spun yarn in glorious colors. I refrained from purchasing any, as I attended the Fiber Frolic to take a workshop on hand carding so that I can spin and dye my wool fiber. But it certainly was tempting, and I gathered a lot of business cards for future reference.

We had a fun and relaxing day and I gathered a lot of information that connected little bits of knowledge that I had in my brain about fiber. I'm off to play and see if I can do some of the things that I learned about. If I'm successful you'll see another post from me soon about blending and carding wool!


WoolenSails said...

Lots of great creations and products, looks like a fun place to go. I have seen some needle felting I like, but it is expensive for the materials and I have enough projects going on lately;)


craftingaplenty said...

Looked like fun!! I liked the hooked rabbit. She looked like she was having fun(lol). You sure find alot of interesting places. Good luck and let us know how it goes.

TamboinMO said...

Wow! What a treat! Such yummy eye candy....and I would just love to pet on that white angora rabbit...thanks for sharing

Lisa said...

Hi, I was looking for my sister's (Laurie Sybertz) rug on your site and found that we have similar tastes! I just went to the Estes Park, Co Wool festival this weekend and looks much like the one that you attended only I did not do such a great write up. I noticed that we each went with musical rug video on our blogs...did you use photo story?
Anyhow, link to web site if you like for pics from the Colorado wool festival and thanks for sharing. Have a nice day, Lisa :)