Friday, March 28, 2014

Field Trip

It wasn't our field trip, we were part of the field trip!  Lou Ann and I made our way this morning, once again, to the Museum of Appalachia.  There was a school group coming in, and we like nothing more than talking to fresh young faces and finding fellow fibre junkies that are just getting started.

On our way to the Peter's Cabin we ran into a batch of ewes with their lambs.  Well actually, we saw the ewes and wondered where their lambs were.  We had just put our cameras away when we heard the thundering of hooves behind us.  Here came half dozen lambs that had just realized that it was time for second breakfast!

On our way to the cabin we also found a big flock of peacocks and hens.  All during the day the boys were strutting their stuff and the girls could have cared less!

We settled into our cabin, with the fire blazing in the fireplace.  This fireplace has been our treasured companion this past winter.  We would get as close as we could safely sit, and we were thankful for it!  Today however, we found ourselves moving the chairs away from the fire a bit.  We kept it going to keep the dampness away, and to encourage visitors to come and sit a minute with us.

On the porch outside, our peacock stood on guard, just to make sure that things were going as they should.  As I uploaded this picture, I realized I got a shot of Lou Ann as she was returning from a trip to the loom house with visitors.
Lou Ann made several trips to the loom house today, but while she was in the cabin with me, she worked on a few more linen heddles for the loom house loom, and she also showed several kiddos how an Inkle loom works.

I don't think you can tell it from the photos, but it rained off and on all day.  I did not want to get one of my old spinning wheels wet, so I brought  a bag full of fiber and spindles.  One of my projects is a little unusual.  This year, I have been researching Nigor fiber goats.  That would be a cross between Nigerian Dwarf dairy goats, and Angora fiber goats.  I will be getting a little one shortly, but I got to thinking about the little bits of fluff that my Nigerian Dwarfs have for their winter protection.  I had noticed it last year, but it was too late to harvest the fluff, cause it was almost all gone.

This year, I kept an eye on it, and as soon as the fluff started letting go, I combed it out instead of letting the birds get it.  From my big mamma goat I got a gallon sized ziploc bag of fluff, and from the smaller daughter goat, I got a quart sized bag.

Mamma's fluff was gray/brown/white, and daughters fluff was white.  I found that the fibers were no more than 1 3/4 inches long, so I chose to spin them on one of my support spindles.  Today, I was ready to ply the singles into a yarn with 2 plies.

The photo cannot begin to tell you just how soft this yarn is!  I have a scant 100yds of very fine yarn.  I suppose I may get 30 yds of the white fleece.  I am not sure what I am going to do with it, I will probably have to knit some lace with it, or maybe weave something with it, adding other yarns as well.
I could possible wait until next year and harvest that fleece too, but by then I should have at least one Nigora goat to comb out.  That fleece is much longer fiber, and much easier to spin.  I probably won't want to fool with the short fibers.

That was today in a nutshell.  Before you know it, it was almost 4pm!  We don't usually stay that long!  Once I got home, I skeined the fiber that I had plied, and I washed it.  In the picture it is still a little wet, so not quite as fluffy as it will be shortly.

I finished 3 blankets this week, I am liking the new pattern very much, and 2 of the 3 blankets are already spoken for.  I have an order for another boy blanket for next week.  I think I will be sad when I come to the end of this warp after all.   Let's see, when I finish this 40 yd warp it will make 120 yds of baby blanket warp I have gone through.  That is a lot of baby blankets!

I'll get these ironed, tagged and inventoried by Monday, then out they go!

That is all for now, we have a big basketball game on tonight.  The Tennessee Vols have made it to the Sweet 16, and we will be watching!

Until next time, Happy Spinning and Weaving, Tina


LA said...

Between the visitors, the lambs and the peacocks, we had a lot of entertainment today!!!! (And, the chocolate cake was to DIE for!!!!)

Bonnie said...

A very busy day.