Tuesday, November 30, 2010

San Diego

I had an 8 by 10 foot booth. It was the smallest booth that I have ever had, so it was a challenge to get it all in. Most of the supercoiled yarns from the front sold. Non knitters were buying them to wear as scarves. I have decided to take them off the wheel in smaller batches, so they will be less expensive. I will have multiples of the same colors, so knitters will have enough to make scarves. The price per yard/ounce will not change.
While in San Diego, we visited the La Jolla Cove to see the seals. I caught this pelican in the middle of a yarn.
The seal in the middle of the water was definitely an older male. Kind of ugly, if you ask me, but the water was a lovely color.
While at the San Diego Zoo, I saw this palm tree. I was struck by the owl formed by natural growth and tree trimming.
This was the first show for the San Diego group and foot traffic was not so busy that I did not have time to spin. I started spinning the single in the ball at the foreground, but switched to thick and thin as I saw the supercoils selling. I plan to coil all of these today. The dark blue single on the top is the same roving as the thick and thin blue at the back. The two blues at the front are also the same roving. I love how changing the texture changes the color of the yarn. I will post photos of the coiled yarn this afternoon, so you can see how they changed again.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Off to San Diego

Latest creations. Top and one below are the same skein - two sides. The last is one spun yesterday.
If you need to talk to me, please call my cell 520-572-3758. Marc is here at the home number 572-3758, if you need batts or roving. Happy Thanksgiving.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Shearing and Another Show

I discovered that the Art Institute of Tucson is more culinary-oriented than fine art. They do have a fashion design course, but graphic arts, video, and cooking are their focus. About the only thing that I accomplished by doing their show was to realize that I can pack a lot more in the truck than I thought, so I will not need to take the trailer to San Diego/Del Mar next week. A huge relief, since I don't think I could back the trailer up, if I needed to!
Penny came and sheared the rest of the goats and the sheep that I was planning to sell. She did a super job - very few second cuts - and now I have a lot of lovely fleeces! Above is Black Sheep Cup (BSC), the white herdsire. This is his fifth fleece and it is lovely. It is superb, when you consider that it came off a buck.
A close up of his fleece. He has a lot of curl for his age and it is still next to the skin quality.

Penny, Charles (her helper), and I started naming the goats that I am keeping and we decided to use names of comic characters. Since I was able to be there as they were being sheared, I was able to analyze their fleeces and determine which will be the best fiber producers. This red angora goat was named "Blondie" for her white hair on her forehead (obviously gone.) All the wrinkles on her body meant she had a very heavy fleece. It was the curliest and softest of the reds. If I had to pick the top kid doe, Blondie is it. Dainty and Brazen had lovely fleeces, but did not have the weight that hers did.
This is Monet. Marc and I picked her up at "FAIR" at the Petsmart yesterday. We went to buy a climbing tower for Pixie, so she would quit using our legs. As I was passing the kitties for adoption, I saw Monet and loved her coloring. As an artist, my eye was instantly caught by the unusual coloring. I mentioned her to Marc as the guys were loading the towers (we splurged and got two) into the car. He said I could get her, if I wanted. It was not an impulse purchase, since we had been talking for a week about how we had never had a sole kitten. Very cute and photogenic! Took a while to get a picture, since she is always in motion.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Pitiful and Inspired

Barbara is my oldest doe. She looks pitiful without her fleece. I have a picture that I took of her as a kid and she has not changed much - in terms of sad look. She does have the middle age spread!
I got inspired to finish my southwestern landscape. It was so close to done that I felt stupid showing it to people this past weekend. I will take it to the Art Institute of Tucson for their festival this weekend.

I am entering the Albuquerque Fiber Fiesta and had to send a collage of my work, so I played around with photo staging this morning. Time to get back to the carder and my wheel to fill my orders.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Tucson Wool Festival Anecdotes

Danny Smith, my scheduled shearer was not able to make it this year, so I talked my friend, Scott Scheyli, into filling in. He used to shear his angora goats, but now spends more time shearing his horses. He has not lost his touch and the animals that he got sheared are very grateful. So am I! I hate advertising an event and not being able to follow through. The shearing is always a highlight of the festival for everyone and I would not want to have disappointed.

Alpacazona - an Arizona alpaca farm with a wide variety of handmade items and raw materials for the fiber artists.

Yumiko Alexander from was here selling her book and patterns. Very original designs! She wants to learn how to create her own art yarns!

Celestial Designs traveled the furthest and had a wide assortment of fiber related products.

No festival can be a success without all of the volunteers who show up before and during the festival. Above is Judith Segel with her triangle loom weaving demonstration. She shows up every year - with no other motivation than to share her love of her artwork with passersbys.

Virginia John splits her time between Arizona and California and shows up to help, if she is in town when the festival takes place. This year she warped the loom and encouraged others to sit down and try their hand at throwing the shuttle. Even children were given the opportunity, so the rug will be a true community project. The rug on the loom will be raffled off at the April 9, 2011 Spring Shearing to benefit the Casa Maria Kitchen.

The Shawl raffled off this festival was won by Bethany Newhouse. A photo of her wearing/holding it will be published once she picks it up. The raffle brought in $148 which will go to the Casa Maria Kitchen of Tucson.

Other winners:

Isaac Barrios - $10 gift certificate to Unique Designs By Kathy

Windy Hunter - stitch markers

Kim Newhouse - yarn

Martins O'Brien - felted bag

Rhonda Grimaldo - stitch markers

Julie Olson - Batt of Rambouillet wool

I have a different shearer coming on Tuesday to finish the shearing. If you missed the shearing and would like to see a different style, come out after 11 a.m. She is supposed to be here earlier, but traditionally runs late.
Thank you to all who came out and supported the event. Without you, it would have been a dull day!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Crazy Lace and Tucson Wool Festival Project

We always begin the raffle project for the next shearing event at the one prior. We have decided to weave a rug for the April 9, 2011 shearing, so the weaving will begin this Saturday during the Tucson Wool Festival. You can see the colors that have been selected. One skein is ready and hopefully a few more will be, so the project can be completed in one day.
I began this crazy lace scarf/kerchief last fall. I spun the yarn for the ruffle on a drop spindle during the 4th Avenue Street Fairs. I like to have one new project for each show, so this is mine for the wool festival.

Side view.
This is all the spinning that I have done for the shop this week. I am busy spinning for the rug and cleaning up the workshop and the ranch, so it will look lovely for the visitors. Good thing we do this twice a year! Marc hit the dump this morning and will do Goodwill this afternoon. Amazing how much we can accumulate in 6 months!
I am doing the Art Institute of Tucson's Artisan Festival next Saturday. 10-3. It is on the north side of Grant just east of Swan. The shop will be closed as a result on November 13th.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Setting up shop

The worst thing about doing shows is the set up once I am back at the ranch. It takes a few hours and after standing around at a show, I am ready to be spinning or creating again. Fortunately I had Sunday to put the shop back together, although I admit that I did not finish till 11 on Monday. I am debating not putting it back up after the San Diego show, since I would have to take it down 2 1/2 days later.
There was very little foot traffic at the show, which was a real shame based on how many vendors made it. I used the opportunity to hand out flyers for the wool festival. Hopefully lots of people will show! The Tucson Home magazine has an entry about it, but the magazine was not available at Barnes and Nobles last night, so I was not able to pick up a copy.
I noticed that my check for Stitches West has been cashed, so I am going for sure. It will be fun to see a large fiber show - as well as participate.