Saturday, October 29, 2011

The Trip East Was a Blast...

...But I’m happy to be home!

During the NYS Sheep & Wool Festival
, I stayed at the Grand Dutchess B&B in Red Hook, just up the road a few miles from Rhinebeck. I love staying there. The festival houses a number of the workshop instructors at this charming establishment. This year, the group included Daryl Lancaster , Abby Franquemont , Donna Kay, and Andrea Wong – all absolutely delightful folks! I was, however, recovering from a cold, suffering from a very sore throat and overbearing cough, so I didn’t join in on the late evening knit and chat sessions. But! I did enjoy the conversations over the fabulously delicious breakfasts that proprietress Beth Pagano made for us – sometimes under unusual circumstances. On our first morning, the electricity went out. Beth improvised and we had a breakfast by candle light!

My classes were loads of fun, with really delightful and interesting participants. I didn’t get much of a chance to shop because of my teaching schedule, but I still managed to snag some very lovely Wensleydale locks from Crimson Shamrock
. I had met one of the owners, Lori Wall, a few years ago at the Mid Atlantic Fiber Association Conference in 2009.

One interesting sight at Rhinebeck: there was a spinner, Suzan Stapleford, demonstrating spinning on a pendulum spinning wheel. I’d only ever seen one of them once before (at the Octagon House
in Watertown, Wisconsin). Suzan’s husband built the wheel for her. I didn’t take a picture, but I did find a YouTube video of her at the wheel. Click here.

After Rhinebeck, I spent two days at my my cousin’s house near Scranton, PA. She loves fiber too. Trish now works full time for the Mid Atlantic Alpaca Association
. We did manage to have one “fiber day”, spent mostly spinning and knitting and playing with her new Hansen Mini-Spinner that she’d just purchased at Rhinebeck. I love that little thing! Here’s a picture.

Trish has an interesting Rhinebeck tradition: she gets a pedicure before going. This year, she had her toenails painted a lovely red, with special fibery images on the big toes. See? This picture is quite out of focus. I hope you can still get the idea…..

Trish has a new kitty too. It’s name is “Lucky Kitty”. Les, Trish’s husband, found the kitty under the hood of his truck – after he’d driven over 90 miles. The kitty was filthy dirty, but not injured. Lucky kitty indeed! And way too cute for words. So, here’s a picture:

After too short a visit, it was on to North Carolina. This was my first time at the Southeastern Animal Fiber Fair
, and I had fun! My classes went well. A few of the classes were quite full. My Sunday class, in contrast, only had 4 participants. That was my “Slip Stitch Knitting” workshop. You know, I really had the very best time with those four ladies. They jumped right in and played with slipping stitches this way and that way. I left that 10th-workshop-in-10-days on an inspired high. In fact, last night I had a dream about a really really cool sweater that incorporates slip stitches.

Love those knitting dreams!

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