Wednesday, June 30, 2010

As I always do each year at Black Sheep, I entered some of my handknit and handspun creations into the fiber arts show. These are my entries and I was so tickled to have gotten three blue ribbons and one red ribbon. The first entry was a pair of socks I knit using the Waving Lace pattern from the Interweave Knits 25 Favorite Socks. I spun my colorway Sargasso Sea which was handpainted on Blueface Leicester Wool/Silk.
I received a red ribbon on a capelet I knit with 100% pygora handspun yarn. This was my original design. I bought the fiber from a small flock in Oregon owned by Wendy Hallman.
A blue ribbon was awarded to my wet felted scarf. This again was one of my originaldesigns.
I entered one handspun skein. This is 100% pygora and I received a blue ribbon.

And, of course, no Black Sheep Gathering is complete without the purchase of beautiful fibers and such from the many small farms and vendors who attend the show. One of my favorite booths is Rainbow Yarns Northwest from Kelso, WA. Susan Prechtl and Terry Mattison have beautiful batts and their specialty is pygora fiber. Terry can be found on Ravelry as "Spinpygora".

I bought two lovely batts in a deep rust color called "Adobe", of 50% pygora, 40% merino, and 10% silk. I can hardly wait to spin these. I will probably ply this blend with one of my handpainted baby camel/silk rovings.
One of my objectives in shopping at BSG this year was to find some hand-dyed mohair locks. These kid mohair curls were purchased from The Pines Farm of Maple Valley, WA.

Next was a beautiful batt of jacob wool from Kenleigh's Fiber Studio, This batt is actually quite dark charcoal, even though my camera shows it dark gray.
A continued search for mohair locks turned up Cloudspun of Monroe, OR.
Here are a couple of Blueface Leicester wool rovings from Kelly Ward of Ward Farm from Schoolcraft, MI. Lovely fiber from a small farm.
Mini batts of alpaca and silk from Beacon Bend Alpacas from Eugene, OR.
A bigger batt from Beacon Bend -- alpaca and silk.
Much to keep me busy for a while. And looking forward to the 2011 BSG show.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

One of the events not to be missed when you attend Black Sheep is the Spinner's Lead on Saturday night, emceed by Trish Anderson of Tanglewood Fibers. This is where participants wear a garment that they have made from the fleece of the animal they are leading around the arena. All entries are made of handspun wool or mohair or felted from fibers of their animals. This year there were some especially beautiful garments. And it is always fun to watch the participants leading their animals, sometimes wresting a bit with those that are squirming around and don't want to stand still. Here's a young gal with her handknit vest.
Here are some of the other entries. A handwoven blanket of Jacob wool.
Beautiful handknit shawl. I think this was Blueface Leicester wool.
Handknit vest -- also BFL, I think.
Another amazing handknit shawl.
Beautiful handknit sweater -- and a bit of wresting.
A felted capelet.
A magnificent handknit Estonian shawl.
A cape of Jacob wool. And a felted bowl to feed the sheep.
A handknit lace shawl of Shetland wool.
A beautiful handknit swater with images of sheep -- again Shetland wool.
A very whimsical felted hat.
A sheep wearing a braided rug.
Later, one more post about Black Sheep -- fiber arts entries and swag.

Friday, June 25, 2010

After spending Tuesday night in Ashland, Miryha and I made our way to Eugene, checked into our favorite La Quinta Inn, relaxed a bit and headed over, by way of a nice path, to a P.F. Changs for a glass of wine and dinner. Over and back to dinner, we marveled at how perhaps it might be February and not June in Oregon, with a brisk, chilly wind cutting through us. Cooler weather is actually a plus for Black Sheep Gathering since it can get to be sweltering in the marketplace barns at the fairgrounds if the temps are high.

Thursday morning, before heading over to the fairgrounds for set up, Miryha and I took a nice walk around Eugene, heading over the MacKenzie River into the downtown area.

Love the wide MacKenzie River. We just don't see such waterways in Southern California.
One destination on our walk was Soft Horizons, a cute yarn shop on 13th Street,in an old two-story Victorian house. Lots of wonderful yarns and spinning supplies, too. Then over to Full City Coffee to fortify ourselves with a latte for the walk back.
WooHoo!! We have arrived to set up for the 2010 Black Sheep Gathering.
Here's our marked off area and our "stuff" ready to be assembled into a booth. The buildings look so austere and empty before everyone gets set up. On Friday, when the show opens, the rooms and the booths will be full of all manner of fibery things and will be bustling with people.
Big bags of rovings waiting to be hung up.
The sign goes up. Next year, we'll also have a sign for Miryha's "Blarney Yarn".
TA DA!!!! We're all set up and looking very colorful. Yarn tree full of handpainted sock yarn.
Many racks of Blueface Leicester and Silk -- handpainted by both me and Miryha. A big hit at the show.
I don't know how she did it,but Miryha managed to fill this rack -- front and back -- to the max with our Blueface Leicester rovings.
Cloths on the tables and racks full.
Baskets of our colorful handpainted merino/silk rovings.
More yummy merino/silk rovings.
Handpainted Polwarth wool rovings.
Mid-afternoon, our friends Margie and Karen showed up. By about 6:00 p.m., the booth was all set up and we were ready to relax. Our little group headed over to have dinner at Johnny Oceans, one of our favorite restaurants in Eugene. Coconut curry, the best.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Miryha and I set out at 5:00 a.m.from San Juan Capistrano on Tuesday morning to head up to Oregon for the BSG. After many hours of driving, Mt. Shasta looms in the distance.
Out the window and on the bridge overlooking Lake Shasta.
Woo Hoo!! Mt. Shasta -- we're almost there.
Downtown Ashland, Oregon.
Wednesday morning in Ashland, Oregon. We visited a great yarn store, The Websters.
And our favorite soap store.
At noon, we hit the road again with Eugene as our destination. More later.