Monday, May 06, 2013

MDSW 2013: The Wrap-up

The festival this year was, in a word, fantastic. The weather was absolutely perfect -- sunny, clear skies, low humidity, and even cool enough to wear a shawl and be completely comfortable. We got to the fairgrounds at about 8:25 and headed right to the main exhibition hall, where most of the vendors we wanted to visit were located. The lines were rather unbelievable at some vendors, but throughout the course of the day, we were able to stop at every booth on our list, I think. We went back for just a bit on Sunday morning to stop at a few booths that were much too crowded all day on Saturday before we headed home.

But enough about our schedule. You want to see the haul, right?

I had a list of several things I was looking for and managed to find all of them. Chief among these was some natural Jacob fiber (already washed and processed, as I'm still working through last year's fleeces). I found an 8 oz. bundle of two shades of fiber at one of the Jacob-specific vendors:

This actually looks to be two strips held together, so I can spin them separately or ply them together as I wish.

I was also hoping to get another Into the Whirled batt and got there early enough on Saturday to snag one of the Firefly-themed batts. This is Falkland in a colorway called Captain Tightpants.

The colors are a little more vibrant in real life; the sun seems to have washed them out a bit.

I had to head back to one of my favorite fiber vendors, Gale's Art. Her colors are always pretty, her prep is always excellent, and her prices are always a good value. Her booth was calm enough when we got there that we were able to chat with her (and I showed her a picture of my Velvet Elvis from last year, which she told me I had to knit up and bring next year to show her!). This year, I bought two braids of fiber from her. The first was 4 oz. of BFL in bright, cheerful colors (the colorway is called Crayon Box) that will be spun and knit into a hat for Rainbow:

Then, for me, I found 4 oz. of 85% Polwarth/15% silk in a colorway called Winter Is Coming (I've only seen one season of Game of Thrones, but it's enough to get the reference):

Usually MDSW for me is about buying fiber, but this year I did have some yarn on my list and was able to find exactly what I wanted. I braved the enormous crowd at Miss Babs for some of her Yowza -- Whatta Skein! in Indigo Bunting. This will become a Cabletta Cardigan.

My one other yarn purchase was a bit of an impulse buy. I happened to walk by the Fold's booth and it was not at all crowded, so I picked up this skein of Socks That Rock lightweight in Twitterpated (I felt the need for some superbright socks).

The last thing on my list was a gradient braid of fiber from Fiber Optic, because last year the booth was too packed to get in. I scored this 80% merino/20% silk braid in Thunder & Lightning.

My only other fiber purchase was not planned. When we went back on Sunday, we were able to get into the Spirit Trail Fiberworks booth. They're known for their luxury blend yarns, but what I discovered along the floor was a huge bag of natural CVM fiber. I'd loved spinning this breed in the Crown Mountain Farms fiber club last year, so I immediately bought 4 oz. of it in a dark brown.

Finally, the tools. Although I technically didn't have more spindles on the list, I was interested in looking at them and was open to buying more if some called to me and planning to visit the Bosworth and Golding booths. I especially wanted to check out the Spanish Peacock's booth, but the line there was absolutely insane on Saturday, so I didn't get to go look until Sunday morning. Fortunately, there was still some merchandise left (though the proprietors told us that there was one woman there the previous day who'd bought 14 spindles!). I came home with two:

On the right is a Bosworth Mini with a Bloodwood whorl; it's 26 g/0.91 oz. and will be perfect for spinning laceweight spindles. On the left is a Spanish Peacock Russian in Bolivian rosewood that weighs 32 g -- my first support spindle! I even got a quick spinning lesson from the owner's wife (something that couldn't have happened if I'd tried to fight my way in on Saturday). I'm very excited about expanding my spinning repertoire and hope to at least get proficient in support spindling during the Tour de Fleece.

So there you have it. I'm taking the day off from work to recover from a whirlwind weekend and do some knitting and spinning before I have to back to the craziness of my day job. I'm doing my best to remember how relaxed I was all weekend and trying not to think about what'll be waiting for me tomorrow morning!


  1. wow you got a great haul! i love my bosworth though i don't use it much.

  2. I drove down saturday as it's only a bit over an hour for me. I was walking around wondering if I would spot you, but I didn't!

    I love Miss Babs booth. I was in there digging around too. I went easy this year and came home with one bar of handmade soap, enough yarn to make the bf's mom a sweater, and that's it.

    I was proud to not over spend this year!

  3. Oh wow. Good choices. I approve of everything. I have a Texas Jean russian that is very similar to the Spanish Peacock one. I enjoy support spindling much more than drop spindling. There's a lot less dropping and swearing...

  4. Ohhh you got some seriously pretty fiber yumminess!!!

  5. I missed sheep and wool this year since hubby was working and I didn't want to haul Emmett all that way. I am still getting used to leaving the house with him, lol!