SVFF on Saturday

Little Turtle wakes us up around 5 in the morning, so for the first time the morning drive to SVFF I wasn’t drifting off to sleep.  The three of us left our house around 5:50 am, and began winding our way through Virginia to the Shenandoah Valley.  We watched the sun bleed through the trees, and fog linger over the fields with the mist thick enough to obscure your view barely six feet into the field.  We wound through farms and orchards, Little Turtle talking and gurgling in the back.  Pulling into the fairgrounds, the air was cool and I pulled on my sweater while we set up.


Today I was teaching Helix Knitting, using my Circle Game pattern.  It was such a great group of ladies – interested in learning, willing to try, and determined in the face of mistakes.  I was a little nervous –  not about teaching the class, but having Little Turtle along.  It was my first time teaching in-person since becoming a mama.  Michael was a champ – helping with setup, wrangling Little Turtle, and driving us where we needed to go.

After class we got to visit with a good friend from the Washington, DC area who was taking Patty Z‘s blending class.  I’m so envious!  If I didn’t have a baby, I’d be all over Patty’s classes on spinning cellulose fibers.  Ah, well.  Another time.  Once we wrapped up and said goodbye to our friend, it was for a walk around the fairgrounds, where we could see vendors setting up and preview some of the wares.  The vendors don’t start selling until tomorrow, but it’s fun to see how various vendors have gotten their booth transportation down to a science – slotting in every piece into the back of a car or trailer.

This evening we’ll get a special treat.  The hotel room has a TV, and we’ll watch all the television we don’t at home (since we don’t have at TV).  I’ll work on a pattern that’ll be in Crochet World next year, and we’ll get to bed early.  I’m looking forward to tomorrow’s Duct Tape Dress Forms, and getting to see a bit more of the festival.

Have you been to any Fiber Festivals this fall?  Are you planning on going to any?


Shenandoah Valley Fiber Festival!

Tomorrow morning I’ll be heading off to the Shenandoah Valley Fiber Festival – one of my favorite to teach at!  Last year was my first year teaching at the fairgrounds, and I loved every moment of it.  The staff are great; the venue is lovely, and the drive to Berryville is a pleasure.

Last year I was so busy teaching both days that I barely had time to breathe.  This time I’ve got a little more flexibility –  I’m teaching one class on Saturday afternoon, and another Sunday morning.  Mr. Turtle and I talked about going apple picking on the way home.

If you’ve never been to SVFF, it’s a great fiber festival for kids, and a feast for the eyes for stitchers.  Last year Mr. Turtle was fascinated by the sheep dog demos.

I was glad to see some of my favorite vendors.  When you do the fiber festival circuit, various vendors become your friends, and it’s good to see them again and catchup for a few minutes between sales or setting up.  If you go to the festival, go and look up Turtle Made – a company that makes the most clever turkish spindles.  Also check out Dragonfly Fibers – they’ve been the lovely sponsor of a few of my designs!

Meanwhile, I’ll be in the instructor tents doing what I do best, teaching my heart out.  This weekend we’ve got a reprise of a constant favorite, Duct Tape Dress Forms, and also a class on repairing handknits.  If you have a spare moment, keep an eye out for me at lunch, as I grab a quick bite and say hello to as many people as I can!

Shenandoah Valley Fiber Festival Recap!

Another newsletter went out yesterday, if you didn’t see it, you can check it out here.

Last weekend I was at SVFF, and had an amazing time interacting with students, and finding a couple of new-to-me vendors.

Being a little closer to the introvert side of things than the extrovert side of things, after teaching for 3 days straight, I spent Monday and Tuesday happily working on my computer and not interacting with anyone.  I answered only the most pressing emails, and was unable to even contemplate a blog post.

This isn’t unusual – I normally need an hour or two after teaching for a day to “recover.”  This was just a more extreme example.

I thought I’d share some highlights from the weekend, in the form of a pictorial essay:

Mr. Turtle in a tree, looking smug.
Heading into SVFF – we managed to completely blow past the sign and had to turn around.  I was completely hopping in my seat I was so excited!

Being in the mountains, the leaves were starting to change, even though they haven’t in Ashland.  The contrast of the leaves against the sky was just stunning.

Teaching duct tape dress forms!  Always a tricky part – getting the seam of your dress form to match up!

Bethany, the chairman, hooked me up with an SVFF t-shirt.  Even though it was cool in the morning (and I had on my long-sleeve shirt and a shawl), by midday I was cooking, and eyeing the short-sleeved shirts.  Bethany noticed and got me one.  I’ve already washed it once so I could wear it again today.

Teaching Hairpin Crochet!  Keep an eye on those two red hairpin lace strips – they’ll show up again!

The hairpin strips all connected!  A little tiny piece of One Salt Sea.

I had a short hour after my second class on Saturday ended to check out the festival.  I had to stop by and admire Dragonfly Fiber’s Booth and say hello.  My eye was drawn to the shawl hanging up.  It’s Faberge by Laura Aylor, and simply gorgeous.

On Sunday I was teaching an all-day class called Heels, Heels and More Heels!  It was a terrible amount of fun to geek out about something I love.  In the morning I was so cold – I had a turtleneck on under my dress, and a shawl overtop it.  Recognize the shawl?  It’s the Silva Shawl!

On Sunday at lunch I got a surprise – my student from my hairpin lace class was back – with far more than two strips connected!  She wanted to share two helpful pieces of advice about One Salt Sea.  First, she found it easier to connect the strips if she left her guideline in until after they were connected on both sides.  It also helped when she didn’t stretch the strips out until after they were connected.  I thought it was good advice, so I’m passing it along!

I loved the class space at SVFF.  The class tents were set away from everything else, and I didn’t have to compete when speaking with anything else!  Every once and a while we could hear some whistling from the sheep-herding demo that went on slightly nearby us.  I was disappointed I didn’t get to see it, but Mr. Turtle took pictures – this was my favorite!

I’m looking forward to heading back to SVFF next year.  It was a lovely event, and very well run.  Did you go?