about the essentials of life...knitting, designing knitting, yarn for knitting...you get the idea...

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I'm a knitter, knitting pattern designer, and spinner. I also dye yarn with both acid and natural dyes.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Taos Wool Festival!

Wet, windy and cold, but otherwise a great day for football a wool festival.

Sunday was an odd day for NM in that it rained all morning. And most of the afternoon. It was a Houston kind of day - even to the damp cold that blows right through you. Not the kind of weather I was hoping for for the Taos Wool Festival. Luckily, The Man Of The House knew how much I'd been anticipating this event so he was willing to drive the two hours there and two hours back in the pouring rain. I kind of think he'd been looking forward to it as well. There have been a few mentions of looms recently, and I'm not even the slightest bit into weaving.

There were only a handful of people at the park when we arrived. Interestingly, it made for tough exploring. The people that were there seemed to huddle at the entrances to the booths. There was a lot of visiting going on and I hated to disturb the conversations. I did, however, eventually investigate every tent.

The Man Of The House did a lot of standing under his huge golf umbrella, moving 6 feet or so down the infield as I changed shops. I overheard other husbands comparing umbrellas with him. That umbrella came with us from Texas, and you know what they say...

I was mostly interested in fiber this trip. The Taos Wool Festival is limited to wool and other animal fibers from NM, Colorado and Texas. I saw several exhibitors from Wyoming, though, and heard some discussion about expanding the geographically allowed area. No cotton or other non-animal fibers, even if natural. Thus, it seemed a great place to learn about the different breeds of sheep and their characteristics.

This being NM, there were plenty of places with churro. One sheep owner and I talked about churro's possibilities for the knitting community. We plan to keep in contact.

There were quite a few alpaca herders and I just had to pet the alpaca. I bought some llama roving, though, instead of alpaca. I was surprised at how very, very soft this stuff was and I loved the warm brown/grey color. I had been under the impression that llama was scratchy, so I just had to try spinning this soft llama. When I asked about the staple length (to evaluate how difficult it might be to spin), they told me that it was really easy to spin. They suggested to keep it loosely twisted so the softness will be accentuated. I also found out that the merino/silk combo that I've been spinning is supposed to be really difficult! Hmmm... I wonder if I'm spinning it correctly? It hasn't seemed to be that hard - I hope it's not a case of being ignorant of what I'm supposed to be getting!

Blogger has decided it's tired of loading photos, so to be continued...


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