Saturday, October 30, 2010

SAFF 2010

I attended SAFF 2010, the Southeast Animal and Fiber Festival in Fletcher (near Asheville) this month. This was my first time vending for The Irresistible Ewe. Three of us traveled together and the car was packed, as they say, "tight as a tick." Strangely enough, even after good sales, it was just as crowded coming home. That must mean we did great shopping there as well. I'm very happy with a "new" old drum Clemes & Clemes drum carder I purchased from Rare Finds Farm and two fleeces from the Sales Arena fleece room. One is a Border Leicester and the other a Cotswold. I've washed the Cotswold and have it drying upstairs, and plan to wash the BL tomorrow. I can't wait to try it out.
I took a class in Core Spinning, and although the teacher, Ester Rogers, was very good, I found out that my spinning wheel is not really equipped to handle very bulky yarns. I do think I'll be able to do a downscaled version using techniques learned. I still enjoyed the class and came away with a greater appreciation of core-spun yarn. The technique involves using a core, or base, yarn and spinning this while applying an overlay of another yarn or fiber from a right angle to the core. It can be a very complex process, sometimes with the two yarns/fibers trading places during the spinning.
The customers at SAFF are a friendly lot. It's so nice to be surrounded by fiber enthusiasts doing what they love best. My favorite part of fiber festivals is always the animals in attendance. I didn't take hundreds of pictures this year, but still enjoyed walking around the pens seeing the different types of sheep and goats. The Sales Arena where we were also hosted several booths containing Angora rabbits. These were my very favorite. They are such sweet creatures and produce the loveliest yarn.
The trip home was tiring, especially having to get up early the next morning for work. I feel like I'm still recuperating, but very pleased with the experience and looking forward to next year.

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