Hey Rhineback-SUCK it! Down here in the south we had SAFF and it rocked. There were animals to pet, friends to chat, new things to learn and of course, yarn to snuggle. Oh, and corrupting one of my best friends, the Noob Knitter. (She has a blog, but it's never updated and it doesn't show yarn. do you really want me to link it?)
So, Let' start shall we?
First Noob and I headed into the heart of the show, the Arena. This was the first time for either of us to come to SAFF or to any fiber festival for that matter. We stepped through the double doors and nothing happened. I am really, we both grabbed an information book with a map and bantered with an older gentleman putting them out. I have expected fireworks to take my breath away or something. Then we passed the table and stepped forward. That's when I gasped because my adrenaline kicked in. TWO LEVELS all dedicated to fiber in some way or any other. Noob might have had to hold my hand to steady me. I as so blown away that I forgot to take a picture. oops.
Being the anal retentive friends we are Noob and I quickly decided to use a looping search pattern to progress forward. First the top level counter clockwise, then the bottom level also counter clockwise.
About a quarter way through our first lap we found angora bunnies. I so wanted one, so soft and cuddly. But then I remembered that I don't spin. And the house is too packed with animals anyway. Plus, if I recall correctly I picked out all pets that I wouldn't have to groom. Poor angora bunny I am too lazy to take you home, but I will love on you for the next twenty minutes.
We circled the floors a few more times like vultures for petting pretty yarns and making purchases, all the while I forgot to take pictures in the excitement. Next year ladies I will be an experienced SAFFer and I will take pictures, next year. Then we headed over to the animal barns. Where we found this attractive fellow right at the entrance.
and these sheepies segregated by farm. Noob had recently (last Friday) declared her new favorite animal to be the sheep based on their poop and 'bah'ing. (Noob is a very practical person and she was an Animal and Dairy Science double major in college. She's allowed to pick favorites based on poop, okay?) I love that this sheepie is snuffling me in this picture.
At the end of the row we found lambies for sale!! We really wanted this little guy who would come over and lean through the bars for pets. Look at his little tail wiggle!***
When I showed this video to my husband at home after the show, he replied, "Oh look at that cute little tail. I want him too!" Y'all, learning that I might have gotten away with bringing home a few of these little cuties for myself, I was devastated.
After visiting the barns we stopped for lunch outside the sales hall where our lesson was next.
I don't think I got everyone's name, so if you're in this picture give me a holla. There's Noob, who's blonde head is barely visible about the knitter in peach, four more people, Cristy, a knitter whose blog I know I've read but can't remember, Aimee, a very friendly gal casting on for a shawl and lastly, the girl in the funniest shirt ever, which had the words "i love" printed on it and a velcro strip below it for spelling out whatever you loved the most that day. And some yellow jackets. They wouldn't go away.
Then Noob and I traipsed off to class. We attended Nancy Hamilton's Natural dyes from your back yard. (HAHAHA! I just typed yarn instead of yard! Even my fingers are still reeling from wonderment.) Which was nice and relaxed. Nancy was a doll. She was so short and sweet. Her teaching style was very natural as she didn't lecture, but rather spoke and invited questions. She encouraged experimenting to discover the answers yourself. I was so busy worrying whether I was helping enough, that I forgot to take pictures of the cooking of yarn. So you get stuck with the one from my bathroom.
From left to right (2 skeins each) we dyed with and ingredient and Alum as a mordant unless otherwise mentioned: Oak Leaves, Golden Rod, Marigolds, Pokeberries in Vinegar, Black Walnuts in water. I will discuss what I learned about natural dyeing later this week as this post is already going on forever.
After class and cleaning up Noob, and I headed over to the Blue Barn to visit with our fellow bloggers. First a big thanks to Claudia for getting us this space! I wish I had gotten a picture of her and the hubby's hair, which I recognized him by. First, up Jen and TrailingYarn. Elizabeth was in the Natural Dying Class with us. And she is every bit as great as you think form her blog. Jen was her usual hilarious and wonderful self. I am so glad to be internet pals with these ladies.
Then there's me looking mighty retarded, but what's new? and EvilScienceChick with what I believe is her nose warmer. She wasn't doing so well that day, but I don't think hell or high water could keep most of us away. What's a little pneumonia? (I hope your doing better today.)
I was really suprised that HockeyMom remembered me from the Yarn Harlot event. She is a riot. We briefly discussed dyes and she lived right up to her reputation by informing me that squished cochenille bugs are in red lipstick. I will never wear red lipstick ever again, not that I wear it or any other make-up now as you can tell in these pictures. Thanks HockeyMom.
Whew! I'm pooped and PoPO is whining to go on a walk. Tomorrow, I will show up the purchases.
***Please let me know if you can't view the video.