Monday, May 09, 2005

maryland sheep and wool 2005

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The MS&W Festival was very very very crowded!
I did not enjoy myself as much as I would have if there were not so many people!   Living out in the country as I do, I am not used to the crowds, and at times I felt disoriented and nauseous just looking at the sea of people swarming around!
We arrived on Sat. morning around 10:00am, and waited for approx. 20 minutes in traffic just to drive into the place and park.  By the time we made it into the festival, the lines to vendors and barn were starting to form.  I made a few purchases, one of which was the beautiful fleece from a ewe #P29 Border Leicester, that has lovely, long, wavy, soft lustrous opal locks.  I brought it from Betty Levin, who raises Border Leicester Sheep as well as working border collies.  She is a lovely woman, who spread the fleece out on a sheet for me to look over and examine before I made my decision.  She was very helpful, and taught me a few things I did not know about selecting a fleece.  She was planning on retiring the ewe this year, but all she produced were a couple of rams, so she will breed her one more year because she is so fond of the fleece that she grows.  It really is lovely.  She made sure to remind me not to let it in the sun or it would cot, and made me promise not to store it in the plastic bag after I got home.  Are you kidding?  This will not sit around for long, my fingers are having a hard time waiting for an evening to spin it out!  I mean just look at it!
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I also purchased some Mohair from Greta, that goes by the name of "Indian Corn" is lovely as well.  For Mother's Day, the guys brought me the T-shirt, and a wonderful book titled. "The Colour Cauldron"...all about the history and use of natural dyes and plants and tartans of Scotland...a wonderful book! I don't know what I like more...the description of the plants or the pictures of the women scouring and dyeing the wool!

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