Hoosier Hills Fiber Festival Recap

It’s the day after the Hoosier Hills Fiber Festival and I am tired, but what a great time we had.  This fiber fair is about 1/4 of the size of the Kentucky Sheep & Fiber Festival and there is no fiber animal section like at Kentucky, although there were a couple of BFL lambs there entertaining everyone.


Say hello to Iris.  She is a sweetie and she has the prettiest face.  She was there with her half-brother, and the only time neither were nice was when they were pushing each other out of the way of the hay rack. 🙂

We were in MacGill Hall this year, and were in the center section near the back.


Left side of booth…


Right side of booth. Our booth was 10 by 24 and it was great!  We had aisles on three sides, and people would walk by, touch and check out the fiber on one side, shop for tie-dye on the other, or come in the front and shop it all.  Our new tie-dye designs have gone over very well, and I think about half of the adult shirt sales we have had are the new discharge designs.  It’s so nice to know that you are providing items that people like and enjoy.  One man saw Scott and I Friday night in Bob Evans, Scott with his tie-dyed shirt and me with my Dyed in the Wool shirt and asked if we had a store.  We told him that it was online, but we were just down the road at the Johnson County Fairgrounds the next day.  He came and bought three shirts and ordered two more custom ones.  I was teaching my class at that time, but he recognized the Dyed in the Wool logo on Sandy’s shirt and knew he was in the right place.

By the end of the day, after two fiber fairs, our price board looked like this:


Look at all of those Sold Out signs!  Sandy and I are already buying fleeces for next year’s shows as well as for the Fiber Binder Club.  We still have quite a bit left of A, D, E, F, I, J, N, T and U, which we will put up for sale as soon as I can get the weights so I know how much to put in the store’s inventory.  We have very little left of O, R and W.  I’ll let you know as soon as they are posted.  The remaining fleeces we have are top quality, and even the black East Fresian is a good fleece for mittens and its being a good black would be handy for tapestry and rug weavers.  I’ll go into more detail of each fiber when the time comes.

Saturday afternoon, I taught a spinning workshop from 1 until 4.  I had one student, which means she had my complete, undivided attention for three hours.  She brought an antique wheel with her just in case she’d be able to spin on it.


It wasn’t in bad condition.  It is a double drive-band wheel.  I plied together some rug warp to make the drive bands, and oiled it up, then I noticed this:


See the angle of the wheel?  Well, it should be straight up and down and this one is several degrees off – enough that treadling it quickly slipped off the drive bands.  There is a 1/2″ grove worn on the back drive wheel support which can easily be corrected.  The only other problem with this sweet wheel is that has but the one, small bobbin and with it being a true antique, you’d have to have some more custom made.

I had taken my Lendrum wheel with me, so I sat Marta down and began working with her once we realized her old wheel was not going to work until it could be repaired.  After about an hour, she stopped and said, “Would you help me buy a wheel today?  I want to continue this when I get home.” So, off we went looking for a spinning wheel to buy.  I recommended her getting a wheel from a local store for ease of warranty issues, also I recommended getting a Schacht since there is a Schacht dealer within a few minutes of her house and getting extra bobbins and such would be more convenient for her.

The only place there selling Schacht spinning wheels was The Trading Post for Fiber Arts, my own LYS, and Susan had a Ladybug all assembled and ready to go.  Marta sat down with it, gave it a bit of a test drive and decided to buy it.  Back at the classroom, we oiled it up, and Marta started spinning on it.  One thing I recommended was getting a chair that was taller than the folding chair we were using at the fair because she is tall and her longer legs made it harder for her to treadle whereas if she could have a more comfortable angle to the wheel, she’ll be better able to keep it going.


By the end of the class, though, she had filled about half a bobbin of Romney, learned how to change the bobbin, how to add a leader string to a new bobbin, and start and stop efficiently.  I could tell she was a bit overwhelmed by all she learned, but I expected that.  I threw a lot of information at her in those three hours, besides she became the owner of a brand-spanking-new spinning wheel to boot.  She is planning to attend my monthly spinning class at the Starstruck Cat Studio beginning June 11th, so she can continue to grow her skills.  I know she will be a good spinner in no time.  Her yarn is already becoming consistent with very little thick and thin spots.

One thing about being a teacher who has taught many different fiber-art classes over the past several years is having former students come up and say hi and tell me about all they have been making.  These former student made my day many times over and I am so proud of them with what they are accomplishing.  One former sock knitting student is talking about teaching a niece in Oregon how to knit socks while she is there on a visit.  Pay it forward in the truest sense!  I am so happy!

Of course, now I need to go and update the inventory for all of the items that sold the past couple of days.  Then, Sandy and I need to take pictures so I can upload the new items you haven’t seen yet.  That will come soon, I promise.

I hope you had as good a weekend as we have!


2 Responses

  1. Cindy in FL Says:

    Sounds like a wonderful time and you were a life saver to the woman needing a wheel! Good advice to her-she looks so happy!

  2. thecrazysheeplady Says:

    Boy, talk about getting your money’s worth. She got a deal :-D. What a great way to start spinning!

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