Have Ewe Any Wool?

Monday, September 20, 2010

Bluemont Festival

The annual Bluemont Festival was September 18 and 19th. I volunteered for the whole day again this year at the Blue Ridge Spinners and Weavers booth. It was a lot of fun!

Although the festival is primarily a country fair, there were some fiber animals as well as lots of hand crafted goodies (spinning, weaving, and felting) for sale from our group. On the right, you can see the lovely afghan that was hand knit by our guild members and auctioned off during the festival. All the proceeds went to the Loudoun Abused Women's Shelter.

All the hand crafted goodies were so gorgeous! The weaving was absolutely beautiful - I love the color combos and textures. The knitted items were colorful and very snuggly. And oh, the felted scarves were absolutely stunning! I wish I had the money to buy them all!

I just love the Alpacas...and there were several at the fair. My favorite, though, was this little guy. He and Deb were having a "head-to-head" - LOL!

Being an outdoor festival, we were blessed with nature's beauty as well. The weather was absolutely glorious! The leaves are just starting to lighten...and sometimes gently fall to the ground and the dew was pretty heavy. This poor Swallowtail "limped along" unable to fly as the right wing was "sticking" a bit. As the day wore on, the wings dried and the pretty little swallowtail flew away.

Early in the morning, a stick bug thought our tent looked like a great place to "hang out". I haven't seen a stick bug for eons! Be sure to double click on the photo for a closer view of this fascinating insect!

One of primary goals during the festival was to demo spinning and weaving and to educate the public. Everyone...young and old...was encouraged to try their hand a both spinning and weaving. They could try spindle spinning, wheel spinning, and weaving on a loom. Melissa, Deb D., Deb F., and Ibby took the lead for the demos and "lessons". The kids liked trying out both the spinning wheel and the loom...and would typically walk away with either a bit of fluff or a bit of spun yarn.

Early on, there weren't many spectators - Sundays start out a bit slow. Melissa was able to kick back and relax - enjoying the process of spinning in the perfect weather! As the morning wore on, lots of folks stopped by. The group on the right was absolutely fascinated as Deb D. instructed them on the finer points of drop spindle spinning.

Deb F. was teaching the finer points of wheel spinning to this group of girls. Once instruction was complete, the girls "assisted" with the spinning and Deb tied the "yarn bracelet" made from the spun yarn onto their wrists.

The weaving instruction was VERY popular - everyone wanted to try their hand at that. This little girl was really going to town - weaving away like a pro under Ibby's instruction! (Note to self - if this little girl has mastered weaving in just a few short minutes, why don't I have my first project completed and off of the loom?!?!)

I was helping out as a cashier along with our fearless leader, Beth. When I wasn't busy "cashiering", I was busy spinning some very pretty Shetland from the Bransonas in the "Star" color way with my Shacht drop spindle. I had purchased the roving at the Shenandoah Fall Fiber Festival last year and the spindle at the Mid-Atlantic Angora Goat show earlier this year.

Hmmm....I don't seem to have a photo of my progress so far...so you'll just have to "imagine it". Trust that I've nearly finished spinning the first ounce, so the spindle is getting pretty full. I have a total of 4 ounces of this roving and plan to continue spinning it using one of my drop spindles.

I can't wait for the Shenandoah Fall Fiber Festival! It's a lovely small festival that's gradually grown over the years. Thankfully, I only have to wait for the weekend!


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