Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Withers Ranch to be a Farm on April 1, 2012

Withers Ranch to Become a Farm on April 1, 2012

Wool Festival March 10, 2012 9 a.m.-2 p.m.

After 12 years in Tucson, we are moving to a 22 acre farm in Woodbine, Maryland at the end of March. I will be keeping my website, blog, e-shop, and current cell phone 520-401-6117, as well as my business and animals. I am sad to be leaving friends and loyal customers in Tucson, but I am also very excited about having pasture, a cooler climate for the animals, and a place where people will not look at me funny when I say I deal in wool in the desert! My husband will continue to work for his current company, but he will be home a lot more.

Spring Wool Festival - I am scheduling a Tucson Spring Shearing/Wool Festival for March 10, 2012 from 9-2. I do not plan on spending a lot of time publicizing it, so please pass the info on. The crowds and attendance will probably be less than in the past. I will only be giving one tour at 10 a.m. The shop will be open all day. My physical shop will close at the end of the day on March 14, 2012, as I need time to take down fixtures, pack fiber, etc.

I am not going to be giving animal tours except under special circumstances, so plan on the shearing day for bringing friends and family to the ranch.

Classes need to have 3 or more persons for it to be worth my time. I am listing classes currently scheduled. All classes must be prepaid. I will refund all, if I cancel the class.
January 28 - Freeform Knit and Crochet 10-12 $75 at the ranch
February 4 – 5-6:30 p.m. Drop Spindling - $60 at the Doubletree Inn on Grant and Alvernon.
February 5 – 9-10:30 a.m. Nuno Felting a Shawl - $100 at the Doubletree Inn
February 5 – 5-7 p.m. Freeform Knit and Crochet - $75 at the Doubletree Inn.
February 6 –9-10:30 p.m. Nuno Felting a Shawl $100 at the Doubletree Inn.
February 11 – 10-1 Wet felting a bowl, bag, or flat piece. $25 instruction fee plus cost of materials based on project selected.

Shop Closures
February 4-6, 2012 Tucson Bead Show
Noon February 21 through noon February 28, 2012. Stitches West

I am selling my three llamas (asking $100 each) and I am looking for a home for Shep and Herd, the Golden Retriever/Australian Shepherd dogs. Call me at 520-401-6117, if you are interested. We will be taking the dogs, if I cannot find them a home, but they will not fit in at the new farm. If you take the dogs, we will throw in the Igloo doghouse that we recently purchased.

Kathy Withers

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Withers Ranch to be a Farm

The first week in January, Marc and I found a farm in northern Maryland that pretty much has it all. 22 acres includes a fully remodelled house from the 1820's, three pastures, a barn, a garage, an old bank barn, a pond, and 6 acres of hay.We plan to move in early April. I am tentatively scheduling the Spring Shearing for the 31st of March - just depends on whether we have to actually fly in for the closing.

I am doing the bead show in Tucson the first weekend in February and the Stitches West the last weekend in February. I am scheduling some classes. If I don't have at least 3 people in them, I will cancel them, since my time is valuable. I will let you know when I will close my shop doors. I am going to sell some of the older fleeces at reduced rates, but I am not going to dump my fiber or my animals. I have a friend with a stock trailer and he says they will all fit.

I would like to find good homes for my three llamas, since they will no longer be needed as guardian animals. Let me know, if you know someone looking for llamas as guardians. Fillip, the male, has usable hair, Brillo has a lot of guard hair, and Emmy's is compost.

I am also looking for homes for the herd dogs. If I do not find takers, we will take them with us. They are very friendly and require attention, which I no longer have to give. The Great Pyrenees that I bought as guardian dogs are more in line with our new property.
I just got back from the Pasadena Bead and Design Show. Nuno felting was a hit. I came home with three dyed silks and some black. I really enjoyed teaching it and had some super students. I was too busy to take photos of their work, so I am hoping that they will share photos.

The shop is set back up in a slightly different style. I always try to find a different focal point, so you will see something different. I also plan to start listing my yarns on my etsy shop as I spin them. I will mainly be online once we move. I will be doing shows on the east coast, but I will fly back for the July Pasadena Bead show. I have made quite a few friends among the vendors. They are inspirational.

This batt was created from all of the leftover Merino Tussah silk and kid mohair from the nuno felting classes. It will be the next yarn I spin - after I coil the thick and thin yarn that I spun Sunday. A show is successful when I don't get a lot of spinning in! I sold 4 of the six skeins that I spun in Pasadena.

Monday, January 2, 2012

New Colors for a New Year

I have been busy washing fleeces and dyeing them, as well as silk for nuno felted shawls. I have also been spinning up smaller skeins in a lower price range for the upcoming Pasadena show. They all have enough yardage to knit a scarf. I had a few days of purple and then amethyst. I am currently spinning a skein of natural red kid mohair with seacell. The last few weeks have been pretty busy between classes and visits. The Arizona School of the Deaf and Blind came out on the 21st and 22nd of December. It was a challenge until I realized that they did not always needs words or sight to appreciate what I do.

A black and white angora goat are best friends. You can see that they already have a lot of growth since the wool festival. I have tentatively scheduled the Spring Shearing Festival for March 31, 2012. A lot depends on whether we find the right place in Maryland.

Kristie and Kyle (in the middle) came for Christmas. The cats provided a lot of entertainment. Kyle is holding his Persian cat - it has no ears. They were bit off by a dog before Kyle got him. The black cat that Tonia (far right) is holding is also Kyle's cat named Licker. Abe is holding Monet and Kristie has Pixie. Our big outing was to the Festival of Lights in Winterhaven. We have never been in 11 years and figured this would be our last chance. The one voted best was awesome. Hate to think about their electric bill!