Monday, March 23, 2009

Fibres West Report

I’ve got a photo-heavy report but they’re only my purchases and nothing else. I had a rare case of camnesia while I was at the Fibres West extravaganza on Saturday. I brought my camera but never took it out once! I was having way too much fun chatting, ogling, shopping, schmoozing, hugging, demonstrating spindle spinning, shopping some more and generally having a wonderful time. I went with the thought that I didn’t need anything (except one particular book) but of course a bunch of stuff followed me home anyway. It was the wool fumes, I swear! Or in my case maybe it was the sparkle.

I got totally carried away with things sparkly. Right off I jumped on a green triple dragon resin spindle by Dragoncraft from Twist of Fate:


I had to modify it slightly by tweaking the hooking and adding a notch (hated to file into the lovely shiny resin but it was necessary) and now it spins quite well. These are little spindles but on the heavier end of the scale at 40-45g each.

I found 3 balls of sock yarn (Mega Boots Stretch) in pretty colours at Knitopia’s booth (no website):

MegaBootsStretch 502 MegaBootsStretch 707 MegaBootsStretch 720 They were only $10 each! Couldn’t resist. Yeah, I know – not sparkly, but I also got a bag of sari silk for spinning:

SariSilkFibres I have no idea whether or not I can make anything out of these because they are very tangled fine silk thrums but we’ll see. They were too pretty! From Aurelia I got some Ruby Blue Sparkle and Silky Pearl Sparkle to spin:

AureliaFibres The photo doesn’t do the white one justice because it’s really pretty and subtle when spun up and takes dye beautifully. And I already have a project in mind for the Ruby Blue. It’s going to be a gift so mum’s the word till it’s done. Still sparkling, I got some more angelina from Penelope Fibre Arts:

Angelina These will likely be blended into something for spinning rather than heat bonded. I just couldn’t resist the colours.

BTW, Brenda (aka Penelope) was the mastermind behind the Fibres West show this year and she is already planning the next one. Guess she got enough good feedback. I think it could use a lot more publicity and more participation. Some vendors did well and others not so much. I thought there was lots of room for many more vendors and way more shoppers. Some knitters were complaining that it was too much for the spinners and weavers and maybe that side could be increased some. There are a lot of knitters out there who haven’t crossed over to the dark side of spinning and weaving. Anyway we’ll see what happens next year when we are promised some classes as well as lectures and demos. That might encourage more participation. Finally the fact that it’s an hour-plus drive from Vancouver in what some of us might consider the middle of nowhere might slow a few folks down but apparently if they have it in town it costs a lot more for the venue and there’s even less participation from the public. Go figure.

But there’s more shopping! At Jane Stafford’s booth I got some small spools of Colcolastic (cotton and elastic) thread for collapse weaving:


I also got Anne Field’s book on collapse weaving and will be taking a class with her at the conference in Spokane this spring so more on that anon. I got a couple of other books as well and will be reviewing them individually in future posts. Meanwhile back at the purchases, I got one more item:

Woolcomb clamp The clamp pad for my Forsyth mini woolcombs. I’ve been debating over this one for some time because a) it’s pricey, b) I thought I might get away without a clamp and c) I thought T-Man could make me something suitable instead. However, I finally convinced myself that a) better to have the thing made by the same person as the combs so the wood matches, b) Andrew’s design is quite involved but very functional and not at all something T would make and c) I got tired of waiting. Now I’m all set. I have all the fibre prep tools I can imagine ever needing! English woolcombs, mini 2-row woolcombs, blending hackle, 2 drum carders with a total of 3 carding drums, handcards in several densities, and a flick carder. What else could a fibreholic need? No. Don’t answer that question. But a girl’s gotta stop somewhere – at least for now.

The demo that my friends Beryl and Diana and I were supposed to do turned out not to be terribly exciting. It was really preaching to the converted. We got a few folks coming up to chat but when there’s nothing for sale, interest is small. I got a great visit in with Milady Daughter though and helped her through her first sock heel. I um…kinda slipped and bought her an expensive present: Sharon Miller’s Heirloom Knitting book from Homespun Haven (Armstrong, BC, no website). She’s been doing a wonderful job learning lace knitting and this book just answers so many of her questions. Since her Milord is between jobs at the moment, she couldn’t afford it so I pulled a “mom” card and got it for her. Hope she isn’t expecting a birthday present next September! Hope she enjoys the book too.

Well I need to get some lunch and some paper knitting done today so… later, ‘gators!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I love Jane Staffords fibers and yarns. She always has what I need in stock. I bought a variety of supplies from her booth at the fiber west show in Abbotsford.

Great blog by the way, keep up the good work, I enjoy it.