Saturday, June 19, 2010

Black Sheep Gathering in Eugene Oregon

I spent a few hours at The Black Sheep Gathering admiring all the beautiful fibers. I normally go with my spinning friends, but this year my husband said he wanted to go with me so he could spend the day walking around the festival, holding my hand. Ahhhh.... How romantic... Of course we all know he just wanted to make it hard for me to reach for my wallet.

My daughter made a beeline for the weaving looms at the entrance.

Susie Weaving at The Black Sheep Gathering

I liked looking at the sample weavings on the looms.

Some of my favorite booths featured handmade crafts from Africa. These are batik wall hangings.

These African Beads are made of bone and glass.

Handwoven Baskets from Ghana

Some rustic giraffes on a wall hanging:

I really liked these Kromski spinner's stools that have been hand painted and embellished.

This unusual spinning wheel looks like it was custom made.

What a pretty little portable spinning wheel. It's called the Wee Spin.
The Wee Spin spinning wheel is made by an elderly gentleman named Terry Korn. He and his wife, Donna live just outside of the Eugene area. Their email address is

KCL Woods had a wonderful display of turned wood tools like these drop spindles, orifice hooks, needle felting tools and lap bowls for supported drop spindling.

I never tire of seeing this gorgeous nuno felted coat made by Nancy Gilkesen, a member of our spinning guild.

Nancy's son, Jason, made these tourquoise buttons to embellish the coat.

The hood really adds to the beauty of the coat.

Bright colors make me look twice.

This is the pattern for the stained glass scarf.

Natural colored alpaca was used to make a hand knitted alpaca scarf.

Lots of interesting fibers combine to make a pretty wild scarf.

This froggy hat would look really cute on my grandchild's head (if I had one).

And here's a friend for froggy, a pink pig stocking cap.

A group of students from Lane Community College created this Knitted Feast. Wow!

These "Happy Dots" from Dyelots should add a smile to any spinners face.

What do you think of these giant knitting needles? They were used to knit roving, rather than yarn, to create an extra heavy alpaca rug.

These huge balls of roving really caught my eye because they were so bright.

This lady had beautiful curly hair almost long enough to be stepped on. Some people were petting her hair as if she were one of the fiber displays!

What would The Black Sheep Gathering be without lots of sheep?

The last room I visited held the live sheep. This Jacob sheep had a beautiful fleece.

I'm not sure how these Wensleydale sheep can see anything.

Peek a Boo!

This Romney Sheep needs to be watched. He's a pickpocket!

Friday, June 18, 2010

Spinning Guild Meeting- Fiber Exchange Projects

Everyone who finished their project for the fiber exchange brought it to our May meeting, the U-SPIN spinning guild's last regular meeting before our summer break. We always have lots of fun activities in June, July and August like the 4-H Lamb Show, our annual dyeing party, the Blacksheep Gathering in Eugene, a pot luck picnic at the farm and our booth at the Douglas County Fair.

Naomi, who is one of our newest members and has just started learning how to spin, did a beautiful job. She chose to make several different skeins so that she could experiment with spinning a variety of fibers since all of the fiber samples were new to her.

Pat divided all of her one ounce samples into 10 different segments and threw them all into a basket. She then reached down into the basket and retrieved one puff ball at a time, spinning them in a random order. I call that the grab bag method.

Cookie carded all of her fiber on the drum carder to get a more uniform blend.

This is the hat Cookie made from one of her fiber exchange skeins.

Cookie modeled her creation for us.

Maureen couldn't wait to knit this super wonderful purse from her fiber exchange skeins. She used a fun knitting method called Knit One Below. The inside of the purse is lined with pink satin.

This is a view of the back of the purse.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Iryna's Project for the Fiber Exchange Party

Iryna, one of the new members of our spinning guild has definitely been bit by the spinning bug! Although an avid knitter since childhood, she is just now learning how to spin. A friend of hers had a beautiful spinning wheel to give her but it was stuck in Portland, three hours away. Not one to be daunted by the lack of a spinning wheel, Iryna decided to make a drop spindle so she could learn how to spin right away.

Here is the first part of Iryna's fiber exchange yarn as a single ply spun on her drop spindle.

She also had fun learning how to dye the white fiber with Kool Aid dyes.  Linda, another member of the Umpqua Weavers and Spinners Guild lent Iryna her Babe electric spinning wheel so she could spin a bit faster.

Here is the Babe electric spinning wheel being used to ply Iryna's yarn.

Even though it's an older version of Babe's electric spinning wheel, it made quick work of the plying. The bobbin on the right ran out first, so Iryna plied the yarn on the left bobbin with itself.

Here is the finished 2-ply yarn wound up into a ball with a ball winder. Those aren't her knitting needles on top of the ball. They are toothpicks shown for size comparison so you can see how fine a yarn Iryna spun. I believe this is only her second or possibly third skein of yarn. Amazing work for a beginning spinner!

As an accomplished knitter, Iryna easily created this beautiful shawl from her finished yarn.

Her precocious daughter, Nicole loves to model her mom's creations. Beautiful job Iryna!