Friday, April 14, 2006

Spring Fiber Festival 2006 - Part 1

Isn't it annoying how work gets in the way of life? Since I was out of town for business for most of the week, this is my first chance to post about last weekend's Spring Fiber Festival at the Sedalia Center in Big Island, Bedford County, VA -- my first ever event of such kind.

Friday afternoon I drove to Lynchburg and stayed with my sister Anne's family. Rain was forecast for the weekend, and sure enough, a whale of a thunderstorm rolled through that evening. We woke to spit-n-drizzle the next morning, so Anne & I came to the festival prepared with golf umbrellas, which were handy in the morning but thankfully became unnecessary as the day progressed.

The drive to Big Island, VA from Lynchburg is just lovely - rolling hills, winding curves, picturesque farms with cows and red barns, mountains in the distance, and the occasional abandoned house, which always fascinates me:

It's "open-air", but what a pretty view the owners have....


Oh, the stories this place could tell, if its walls could talk....

Neither of us ever having attended a fiber festival, Anne & I were not sure where to start, so we worked our way from the parking lot, past the animal exhibits:

Alpacas have the cutest faces!

Who knew that baby emus were so cute and stripey?!


Or that their eggs are so big? (I'm guessing the white one might be an ostrich egg?)


An angora rabbit demonstration


And this little guy stole our hearts! I thought he was a lamb, but turns out he's a baby angora goat.


We then took a quick tour of all the vendors, with a special stop at the Lawre's Laine booth to say hi to Jane and her sister Lawre, who were both busy selling Lawre's wares.

Lawre and Jane

Anne had to leave shortly before noon to attend a wedding, and left me to my own devices to do some real damage to my bank account. But first, I grabbed some lunch and a seat for the fashion show, where some of the models were four-legged:

That's an alpaca modeling a scarf. I wonder how it keeps its model figure?

The fashion show's M.C. (on stage in photo) is Kim (Harrison, I believe, is her last name), a weaver and vendor at the festival, who also had a few entries in the fashion show. Kim is from the Richmond area, and I first met her last fall during the Knit-In I attended. Like many of the vendors, she lives on a farm, raises her own sheep and processes their wool for her weavings. If you like woven items and missed her this go-round, Kim will again be a vendor at Maryland Sheep & Wool.

After the fashion show, I took a more serious look at all of the vendors' wares, and snagged a few nifty items, which I'll display in tomorrow's Sunday's "Part 2" post.

Before I close this entry, however, I will leave you with one final picture:

That is (L to R) Jane, Bess, and Margaret Radcliffe, heatedly discussing some fiber-related topic or other....

(Be sure to read both Jane's and Bess' accounts of the day's events.)

Since I had to travel for work on Sunday, I drove back to Richmond straight from the fiber festival Saturday afternoon. By late day the rain was back, and my windshield wipers never stopped during the entire drive, but other than the rain, it was a blessedly uneventful return home.



emmy said...

Hi Mary
I am so sorry that I didn't get to meet you at Sedalia. We were so close too!! In your Fashion Show Picture there is a pink clad arm wearing a green watch in the right hand corner.Not me! but it is one of my friends and I was 3 people you were just behind me and to the side.

We will get the chance again I am sure! We thought that baby goat was a lamb at first too. :)

jane said...

You took such great pictures!!! I have promised myself to get better! Happy Easter, Jane