The Black Sheep Gathering was awesome. And not just for the shopping: I am not a sheep farmer, and actually don't plan to be. But my friend is, and with her in mind, I started the weekend out with a Sheep Shearing class. It was kinda like cutting DBF's hair, only different:
This is the poor sheep before and after we got ahold of her (we drew no blood, thankfully!). The class covered shearers and clippers, some emergency vet care, blade care, and techniques for handleing the sheep, along with practice on our very patient model here. I went on and bought the Blue Moon yarn and some of the hand spindles the first day. Then I went in search of what I always search for on the mainland: Ethnic Food One Can't Find in Hawai'i! (That day I had Middle Eastern for lunch and Greek and Indian for dinner)
Saturday brought the excellent class of beginning spinning, which I have no photos of since I was trying to actually spin something. Ditto with Sunday's excellent follow-up class: Wheels and Plyers. Basically all three of these classes were way beyond my range. However, we have no mentors here on this island. So I figure I absorbed as much as I could, took photos and video and notes, and spent money on good equipment, and hopefully I have enough theory to practice on for the rest of the year! Knitty-Knoddy (Isn't it pretty?) and- could that be?- Is that a new wooden SWIFT in the corner of that photo?
Note the 2-color swatch. On Sunday I also took a class on color knitting techniques. This was my "skate" class: I figured that I knew most of it and could relax my brain a little after all the new knowledge I had gleaned. Indeed: I took the class specifically for some intarsia help (I have never done intarsia to my liking) and specifically the right-hand woven-in fair-isle stitch on the purl-side (got that?). I got both of these missing pieces, and a little practice in holding 2 yarn colors in one hand (both the right and the left). I decided I still love 2 handed woven-in Fair Isle best.
And of course: Some family-members of mine may maintain that I really went to Oregon for nothing more than the copious amounts of cheap blueberries. They might not be totally wrong. And just when you thought I couldn't possibly spend more money than this:
Stay tuned for the arrival of the Spinning Wheel! Shipped UPS!