Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Splashing through Shenandoah

This weekend was the Shenandoah Valley Fiber Festival, one that I really enjoyed last year and was determined to visit again. For some reason, I always seem to hit the festivals on Sunday, as they're beginning to wind down. This time, I wanted to go on Saturday. My eagerness had nothing to do with any actual need for more yarn or fiber, you understand. It's just pure pleasure.

I got a nice early start this time. The weather report was not good, but I really wanted to go.

On the way, it's beautiful countryside, and the leaves are turning, and there were mists swirling fetchingly around some of the hills and farmland. I had to admit, though, the skies looked a little foreboding.

Sure enough. The rain soon began.

But was I going to be discouraged by a little thing like that? No! I had a good raincoat with a hood, and shoes I wasn't worried about, and a couple of extra plastic bags to protect whatever needed protecting.

It was a wet day, for certain, and I skipped from building to building avoiding the puddles. At times, from inside, you could hear the rain drumming on the roof. It did put a damper on some of the outdoor demonstrations that had been planned (though I believe they ended up having nice weather on Sunday). Also, I'm sorry to say, because of the rain, I didn't spend the usual time in the barns admiring the animals. I hope they weren't lonely.

But the weather did nothing to dampen my spirits. I was there to be dazzled by all the beautiful things the vendors had brought, and so I was. And there's something very homey about this particular festival that I really enjoy. Somehow, it really feels like a local community effort.

Here are a few of the sights.

Some hanging skeins of hand-spun yarn at Wild Hare Fiber Studio.

Tempting dyed rovings for spinning at Reflections at Roclans.

Triangle weaving at Foothills Spinners and Weavers Guild.

Scrumptious hand-dyed sock yarns at Beyond Basic Knits

I, of course, was happy to support all these fine booth-holders -- and more -- by making purchases. As I browsed one booth, I heard the vendors relaying how they'd been on their mobile phones, comparing notes with their compatriots at the Southeastern Animal Fiber Fair, the same weekend. In fact, I think the vendors at Shenandoah had a reasonably good show. We determined ones who had come in the rain were doughty festival-goers. Our numbers might have been a little fewer, but we had come to buy!

I, for one, drove home happy. Here's the Shenandoah River, still lovely, even glimpsed over a jersey barrier through the rain-soaked window of the car. A car well stocked with wool, I might add.

Oh, Shenandoah.


Robin said...

I haven't been to the Shenandoah show. Maybe next year. It rained in Asheville at SAFF, too - but did clear up later in the day. October is definitely FIBER MONTH!

Knittin' Diva said...

'Tis true that neither rain, snow, or sleet can keep a true fiber enthusiast away from a fiber show. When all was said and done, Saturday was actually the better of the 2 days for most of the vendors.

Thanks for your support!

Melissa said...

I enjoyed reading your review of the festival. Thank you for picturing my handspun yarns!