Monday, August 22, 2016

Allegan is Always Amazing

It was a whirlwind trip to the Michigan Fiber Festival this year. I left early Wednesday morning amid local torrential rains which forced me to drive well below the speed limit until I got south of US10. It had been very dry here for weeks so we desperately needed the rain – just not that morning. I was worried that I wouldn’t get to the fairgrounds in time to teach my afternoon class, thinking that perhaps I should have driven down the previous day so as to avoid this anxiety. It didn’t help that I spilled coffee on my white cotton pants even before I left the driveway. So, I wasted some time changing clothes. Then I promptly spilled more coffee on my shirt and pants. No going back that time; I just taught in spotted clothes on Wednesday afternoon. Oh, I threw away the offending (leaking) travel mug.

Wednesday’s class, Mechanics of Your Wheel, was delightful. As was Thursday’s class, Beginning Spinning on the Wheel, and Friday’s class, Spinning Wools of North America. I am always grateful for the warmth and attentiveness of the folks who take my workshops. I came home inspired and invigorated.

One of the students in Friday’s class told me she’d downloaded my Interweave videos. When she mentioned that, I got a bit nervous. Then she told me the worsted spinning video was great and that she’s watched it at least 10 times. Holy Hannah! She made my day, my week, my year! What a weight off my shoulders. I’d been fretting those videos for quite some time.

I had the pleasure of dining on Thursday night with Patsy and Rich Zawistoski and Kathleen Blake. They are all terrific dinner companions. We ate at the Grill House, just south of Allegan. I had the batter fried cod, which was just excellent!

I didn’t take any photos on this trip, but you can find lots of comments and photos on the Festival’s Facebook page.

Because I returned home Friday, I missed all the animal and competition action that happened on Saturday and Sunday. That’s not all I missed, however. On Saturday, there was a tornado warning that required all festival attendees to take shelter in the restrooms for an hour or so. No tornado damage was done and all were safe. In contrast, I hear that the weather on Sunday was near perfect. Oh, I wish I could have been there the whole weekend, even for the tornado warning.

I did get to shop a bit on Friday. With limited funds, I purchased some Eucalan, some lovely Teeswater wool roving, and some washed Navajo Churro fleece. I also picked up fleeces that I’d had Carol Wagner of Hidden Valley Farm & Woolen Mill card into roving for me. Earlier this year, I had bought 3 fleeces from Marie Glaesemann in Duluth, and at that time I had Carol just wash “Baby”, a Romney x Corriedale x Lincoln x Ile de France mix. I’ve been using this lovely wool in multiple shades of grey for classes that involve hand combing and hand carding. The other two fleeces – “Choco”, a Romney x Corriedale x Merino mix, and “Boy”, a Romney x Corriedale x Ile de France mix – I had carded into roving. And they are lovely!

So, with my annual Michigan Fiber Festival fix taken care of, I can now look forward to my September travels. More on those in the next blog.

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