Gift #1093: Fiber Festivals

During the warm weather months you may not think that knitting would be on the top of anyone’s mind, but I assure you that it is.  Spring and summer are hosts to various fiber festivals throughout our area and I love attending.  Local dyers, spinners, weavers come to share their beautiful yarns and fibers with us.  If we’re really lucky, local farmers will bring out some of their alpacas, sheep, and angora rabbits and we can pet the animals!  This year I was fortunate enough to attend 2 fiber events.  I always go to the Greencastle fest in April.  We’ve been during snow, rain, or 80 degree heat.  (April is a variable month in the Midwest).  I’ve been attending this show for several years and by now am friendly with my favorite vendors.  I look forward to visiting with them again and also seeing their beautiful yarns.

I’ve discovered the collage option on Instagram and thought this was a good way to share the shows with you without having to post 12 pics.  Here’s a snapshot of some of wonderful sights from the show.  These festivals are so inspiring because you see so many beautiful yarns and projects to knit with them.  It’s certainly intoxicating.

Just last weekend, my mom and I went to Hoosier Hills Fiber Festival.  We’d been once before but were not as impressed as with Greencastle and hadn’t been back in a few years.  Since several vendors we knew were going to be there this year, we decided to give it another go.  And I’m so glad we did!  We had a wonderful time, found some beautiful yarns, and I’m still on a “yarn high” about the whole experience!

One of the big surprises was the photo above.  One of the companies I knew from online, Twisted Fibers, had a booth – they are very special in the yarn industry because they dye their yarn so that the whole skein is a gradient of color.  And it makes spectacular projects.  I’ve long admired their yarn, but have never bought any or seen it in person.  I literally couldn’t breathe or speak for a few minutes in surprise.  And at that moment, the resolve about visiting all the vendors before spending money evaporated and I made a purchase – the green/purple skein pictured in the shawl on the upper right.

As I mentioned, it’s very exciting to see knitted shawls and garments and hats and gloves every which way you look.  One vendor in particular has a slam-dunk selection of knitted lace shawls to show off her yarns and I took pictures of several so I could remember the projects for later.  I can’t tell you how many times all it’s taken is a look at such a shawl to make me purchase the yarn and pattern on the spot.  Sigh.

So here’s a look now at some of the yarns that came home from these events.

These were the Greencastle yarns that I purchased.  From top left, these 3 hand-dyed skeins from Good Yarns blend from dark brown to pale pink/coffee/cream and I plan to use these for a gradient project which are really popular in the knitting community right now.  The top left skeins are from a favorite vendor, Yarn Daze, that do some remarkable dyeing.  Their skeins are rich with natural colors and have a complex dyeing to them that leaves one mesmerized and completely defenseless against their wiles.  These skeins melt from green/gold to rust/brown and, quite frankly, I just want to look at them.  I’m not sure what they’ll become yet – if I want to use them together or separate – but regardless of what they’ll be knitted into, I’ll look like I’m wearing a forest.  And that makes me very happy.  The bottom two photos are yarn that I purchased from Deep Dyed Yarn, formerly LunaBud.  I love this dyer so much.  She’s very sweet, interesting to talk to, and we’ve got a good relationship.  I’ve found a couple of patterns already that I’d like to make with these beauties.

From Hoosier Hills, here are my yarny treasures.  Up left was my non-yarn purchase, some leaf trays handmade by a local potter.  He impresses them with leaves from his yard and the bottom has a beautiful lacy texture from his mother-in-law’s doilies.  The potter was a fascinating person to talk to and so kind – he invited my mom and I to his studio and gave us a brochure with class info.  A secret desire of mine has always been to make pottery, so that is very tempting.  We’ll see how long I can hold out on that one.  I really don’t need another hobby.  These two leaves will decorate my room.  My mom bought a green set.  Middle left are some more yarns from Deep Dyed Yarns.  She had a blue mini-skein set this time and I also procured a full skein of white, blue, grey, teal colors.  On the bottom left are three skeins from Knitting Notions.  The middle and right will definitely be combined for a shawl – I have several options for a pattern.  The orange skein on the left can’t decide if it wants to throw in her lot with the other two or stand alone on her own.  Decisions, decisions…  Bottom right are the two skeins from Twisted Fiber – the green/purple is called Wilderness.  The other skein is cream, yellow, pink, purple.  It instantly reminded me of an orchid (they are a current interest of mine) and I bought a pattern reminiscent of orchid petals.  And the skeins on the upper right are the spontaneous purchase.  I was in the booth (it was actually a trailer full of yarn!) looking around and my hands just sorted through skeins and pulled these matching ones out of a couple of bins.  It happened before I even knew what was going on.  And then there were these three fetching skeins ranging from brown to yellow to orange and pink.  Gasp..  They were made for the “Free your Fade” shawl that just released.

And that my friends will have to conclude the majority of yarn purchases for the year and will undoubtedly keep me busy for quite some time.  Next posting, I’ll show you the projects I’ve completed recently and yep, I’m ready to cast on some more.

Until then, have a happy weekend.

Blessings to you,

Sarah

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