Family, fiber festivals, Knitting

Shenandoah Valley Fiber Festival 2017

Yesterday was as close to a perfect day as I am likely to get! 😊🍁🍂

The weather was beautiful and it was Shenandoah Valley Fiber Festival day in Berryville, Virginia; and I got to go with my sister-in-law, Annelies and my two-year-old niece, Vera!

We met up in Harrisonburg to carpool to the festival; and truly, the brilliant smiles with which they greeted me totally made my whole week! 🙂

Well stocked with fabulous company and good coffee, the 1.5 hour drive flashed right on by and before we knew it, we had arrived at the festival just in time to get a prime parking spot! (An unusual occurrence for me! 😂)

I showed Vera how to politely examine the soft and luxurious yarns on display in the vendor booths. Not only was this fun, but it helped re-direct the two-year-old urge to pull all brightly colored skeins off of the shelves and hooks! 😂💗

But of course, the biggest hit of the day, by far, was the animals: Alpacas, sheep, and angora goats!

These adorable alpacas were so friendly and calm!

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The white one is named “Fenway”, and the brown is “Carpe Diem.”

 

They were just chillin’ and people-watching, and socializing with whomever came by to say hi!

Vera took a couple of minutes to warm up to the alpacas since this was her first time seeing them up close! Watching another child petting them certainly helped. 🙂

 

Once she had a chance to get to know them a bit, she absolutely loved them!

 

I swear she was having lots of fun – right up until we asked her to smile for a photo!

 

Fenway was very cooperative and photogenic! 🙂

Later on, the sheep really wanted to share a popcorn snack!

 

And across the isle, a super nice girl brought her goat right up close so Vera could pet it!

 

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In addition to enjoying the wonderful animals, I was also excited to snag a great book…

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…some gorgeous yarn…

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100% alpaca and SO soft! 😄

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…and a blending board!

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My plan for the blending board is to use it to blend my Angora Rabbit’s wool with Alpaca wool so that I’ll have enough to knit something special once it’s all spun up!

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Annelies was on a mission to find the perfect yarn to crochet a hat for Vera to match her new Winter coat! Here’s the yarn!

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And here’s the hat!

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By mid-afternoon, Someone was completely worn out from so much fun, and took a very good nap all the way home!

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A hand-knit shawl does make an excellent car-seat blanket, don’t you think?! 😉

Do you go to fiber festivals? Do you have a favorite? Got plans to visit any this season? We’d love to hear all about it!

I’m excited to be heading to the Fall Fiber Festival @ Montpelier this coming weekend! Stay tuned for updates! 😊

Family, fiber festivals, Knitting, Maryland Sheep and Wool

Maryland Sheep & Wool 2017!

It was another great year at The Maryland Sheep & Wool Festival, folks!

This year I went with my sister, Hannah, brother-in-law, Everitte, and niece, Claire!

There was SO much to see and take in!


Hannah, Claire, and I fell in love with these amazing fluffy purses…


And this very nice lady was kind enough to allow photographs AND point us in the direction of the “Everything Coopworth” booth and these AMAZING sheep-head-ears!!! 😍 🤣😍

Clearly, Everitte was the black sheep of the family… 😉🐑


We saw some sheep shearing…


And so many lovely sheep! ❤️


And of course, I couldn’t resist picking up a few new additions to my yarn stash… 😄 


This stunning sock blank by Knitty and Color is a birthday gift from Hannah & Everitte! (Thank you so much, guys!! ❤️) I can’t wait to cast on some socks!! 😊


And of course I couldn’t pass up these 100% Merino wool beauties…

Next year, I want to take a class or two… I’ll need to check out the classes earlier than I did this year because they were sold out by the time I even started looking! 

Were you able to make it to the Maryland Sheep & Wool Festival this year? Do you have a favorite fiber festival that you attend regularly? I’d love to hear all about it! 😊

~Happy Knitting!!!

Christmas, Family, fiber festivals, Knitting, Weather

Fall Fiber Festival

Last Saturday, I enjoyed a day of bliss at the Fall Fiber Festival at Montpelier with my lovely Mother-in-law, Phyllis!


As you can probably tell, it was windy, cold, and damp…


… for most of the morning, the wind blew a chilly falling mist around and around. It was rather impossible to stay dry and we were so glad we’d brought our rain coats!


Even with the chill, wind, and wet, we had a marvelous time walking around,…


…chatting with friendly vendors,…


…admiring handsome animals, …


… gazing at gorgeous yarns…


…and samples,…


… and examining knitting, crocheting, spinning, weaving, rug hooking, and dying tools and equipment of every sort imaginable!

Phyllis was in need of a yarn swift and ball winder, so we kept an eye out and we found the most gorgeous yarn swifts at the Knitting Notions booth!


These swifts are made out of beautiful wood – you can choose between oak, cherry, and walnut. The craftsmanship is superb as they consist of four carefully shaped pieces that fit together with wooden pegs holding them in place.


The other neat thing about these yarn swifts is that instead of clamping onto the edge of a table, these sit serenely on the table top! (I ended up getting one too)!


I couldn’t resist this lovely skein of mohair/wool/nylon boucle in the Dancing Leaf Farms booth… The texture and colors (the color way is called “Sapling”) just calls to me!


I also purchased this lovely skein of Beezigns B’Luxor, in alpaca, silk, and linen. It’s a wonderfully soft, yet hardy 3-ply hand painted in rich blues, purples, and greens.


Now I just need to find time alongside work, house chores, and all the baby and Christmas knitting (yes, I’m working away at a bunch of Christmas gifts that I hope to finish on time!) I’ve got going on, to work on two more knitting projects!! Piece of cake, right?! 🍁😉🍂

It’s become a favorite little tradition now between Phyllis and I that we shop for each other’s Christmas gifts together each year at the Fall Fiber Festival! It’s always worked out super good for us – we have lots of fun, we neither of us have to deal with any stress or pressure about finding the “perfect” gift, and last but not least, we get to enjoy giving a gift that we know the other really wants/needs! (And of course, let’s not forget that we get to enjoy a gift that we really wanted and can/will use!!

What about you? Been to any great Fiber Festivals recently? Got any clever little Holiday traditions you’d like to share? Do you gift handknits to your loved ones? If so, how’s your Christmas knitting coming along? Feel free to share in the comments, we’d love to hear all about it!

Family, Knitting, Maryland Sheep and Wool

Maryland Sheep & Wool 2015

I’ve been looking forward to sharing with you all about one of the biggest highlights of my year: The Maryland Sheep & Wool Festival! 🐏🐏🐏

Mom and I go every year; it’s sort of become our Mothers Day tradition. 😊💕 This year, my sister in law, Annelies, and little niece, Vera, came too!

It was so nice to have them along, and we had such a marvelous time!

And yes, I stayed up late the night before, blocking my Lace Leaf Shawl on the floor of my parent’s guest room so that I could wear it to the festival! 😉




There was a lot of fabulous yarn bombing going on at the festival, and I am a huge fan of yarn bombing!…

There were beautifully yarn bombed trees and fences…


… all along the path leading into the festival…


…and adorable little knitted and crocheted sheep dotted about here and there…

…even the entrance itself…

…was decorated with colorful knitting!

Here is one of my very favorite things about the Maryland Sheep & Wool Festival – so many fiber-arts-loving people relaxing outdoors and working on their projects together! I always find myself wishing that I had brought my camp chair so I could sit down and join in!

There were more vendors than I could count, and they were all amazing!…


The sheer range of colors on display was staggering!



This vendor (Woolbuddy, I believe) had adorable and fascinating felted items; and just look at that enormous felted giraffe!!

Many vendors had items made from their yarns on display; this particular vendor (Scandinavian Weave and Knit) would give you the pattern for free with your yarn purchase!

In addition to those outdoors under tents, there were also many vendors inside the vast tunnel-like buildings…

Aren’t the colors amazing?!

We could not get over these booties! Aren’t they precious?! We would have gotten some for Vera, but she’s growing so fast that they would have been too small in just a week or two… Nevertheless, they are totally adorable!

Another thing I absolutely love about the Maryland Sheep & Wool Festival is the people. All the many people wearing lovely handknit or crocheted garments they crafted themselves, or perhaps were gifted by a friend or loved one…


We met these two lovely ladies and their gorgeous handknit shawls just inside the entrance!


Just look at these amazing hats! Aren’t they fab?!

I love the colors, shapes, and textures on her vest…

…and this lovely lace knit sweater!


This stunning circular shawl had to be the most spectacular sighting of the day, though!

And then there were the animals, the wonderful animals!

We saw angora goats…

…keeping cool in the shade…

…lots of lovely sheep…


This friendly little guy just wanted to play!

And it looks like he found the perfect buddy! 😊

Sheep are very social…

…clearly, they like to be together! ☺️

And let’s not forget the angora rabbits!…






And what treasures, I’m sure you’re all wondering, did I bring home with me from the Maryland Sheep & Wool Festival?…



These lovely gradients are from the Fiber Optics booth! I’m planning to knit an Echo Flowers shawl with the lace weight neon gradient, and the lovely fingering weight raspberry gradients are going to be a pink and white shawl for my sister Melody!


These beauties are from the Scandinavian Weave and Knit booth! Their yarns were absolutely stunning, and so were all of their knitting patterns! It was really hard to leave their booth… I haven’t yet decided exactly what to make with these gorgeous skeins…ideas…suggestions…?


I’m good at spinning in the worsted style, and now I’m learning to spin in the woolen style. I picked up these gorgeous balls of roving from Riverside Farm’s booth and plan to spin some nice soft yarn once I get a bit more practice in!


These are some lovely gems I picked up at the festival as well…

This lovely glass bead was hand made by Kris Schaible. Isn’t it stunning?! I got a second one for my aunt-in-law who is into beadwork, and she loved it! Kris was kind enough to mount both beads on lovely ribbons for me so they’d be ready to wear!

  

This lotion is the best!

It’s all natural, smells heavenly, and feels even better! It even works wonders for sunburn! 😊❤️

Does anyone else enjoy the Maryland Sheep & Wool? If so, we want to hear all about it! What do you like best?