2014 Indiana State Fair – Finally

Sorry I’ve taken so long to get this written, but between work, teaching and a bad stretch of insomnia, I just haven’t been able to do anything extra.


This first thing we did upon arriving at the fair Saturday morning was head to the sheep barn to watch a couple of favorite kids show their Shetlands – they would be the middle two kids in this picture.  The one is red (E) won 2nd place, and the one to her left (our right) is her sister (L) and she got 4th even though the judge wanted to give her 3rd.  She made two rather critical errors, though, and got nicked for them.  She’s young, though, and she will know better next time.  Her sheep, Elsie, has a fleece to love.  They are going to show it next year at the state fair, and they know I now have dibs on it if L decides she wants to sell it.  I’m keeping my fingers crossed.


Then we walked around to check out some of the sheep there.  This lovely Tunis Ewe was waiting with her sisters before they were to go into the show ring for the Showmanship competition.  I love spinning Tunis.

After that, we watched some college girls’ pole vaulting until the Home and Family Arts Building opened.  While Scott was checking out the art downstairs, I got to see what people have been creating.

GC costume

This won exactly what it deserved.  There were other beautiful costumes there, but this one easily beat them all.  The work on the hat alone was enough to make me drool, but the pleating on the spencer was lovely.

textile display

I really loved the display cabinet next to where SWIFT (Spinners and Weavers of Indiana – Fiber and Textiles) demonstrated spinning and weaving.  I think they pretty much covered it all here.


Rug hooking is one thing I have yet to learn (and, yes, I probably will one day just to say I’ve done it), and I admire all of the designs and colors in these.  Starstruck Cat Studios in Greenwood has classes on this and, one day, I’m going to give in and take a class.

celtic knot quilt

Of course, there were lots and lots of quilts hanging from the second floor railing and this one really caught my eye.  You can’t really see it in the photo, but the knot design really goes over and under where the intersections are.  Beautiful!!


This lovely secretary got first place for a reason.  My, my, it was sweet.  It’s bigger than the antique one I have at home and I love all those little drawers and cubby holes.


I adore pottery and these antique ones had me drooling.  Goodness, I love to have ones like these (but newer so I can actually use them and not be afraid of breaking one).

SM GC single

Susan Markle of The Trading Post for Fiber Arts in Pendleton, Indiana, received Grand Champion on her hand spun singles and she deserved it.  They are fine, consistent and just the right amount of twist.  I wonder what she is going to make with it.

silage cutting

Over on the other side of the fair ground is the Pioneer Village, and Scott and I always spend a lot of time here.  This is a silage cutter driven by a belt from the Farmall tractor (BTW, my maternal grandfather had a tractor just like this one).

corn sheller

Next was a corn sheller driven by machinery mounted on an old pick-up truck.  It sure beat the way we did it when I was a kid – hated those thumb blisters.  I wish we had had one like this.

steam tractor

This steam engine was a favorite with Scott and I.  Scott has an alcohol fuel model of one very similar to this that his grandfather bought for him when he was a kid.  Scott still has the box and everything for it.  This one had a belt running to a…


…sawmill.  It was fun watching the bed slide back and forth so that the blade cut the log into planks.


Isn’t this wee tractor cute?

scroll saw

Inside the Pioneer Village building were several craftsmen and women working.  This man was using a beautifully made scroll saw and was cutting out puzzle pieces.

puzzle front

This is the front of one such puzzle.  It was about 6 X 8 inches.

puzzle back

And this is the back of that same puzzle.  Look at the shape of the pieces as they followed the details of the picture on the front.  He even did these types of puzzles the size of large postage stamps and they were just as intricately cut out.  He showed me a blade he used to cut the postage size puzzle pieces with and said it was 80/10,000ths of an inch.  It was so fine and so tiny that I could not see the teeth on it, although I could feel them when I ran my finger along the edge.  Wow!

yarn winder

Another man was making these yarn winders and was tickled pink when I knew what they were.  Most people thought they were spinning wheels.  Sigh…  We still have a long ways to go in educating the population on what is really important.  🙂

corn row width

And, I learned something while I was there.  I did not know this.  I would love to be able to discuss this with Pappy, my maternal grandfather.  He loved telling stories about farming with horse drawn implements back before and during WWII.  I miss him.

pb quilt

Lovely quilts, don’t you think?


This man was knapping flints into arrowheads, knife blades, axe heads and such, and had several for sale there.  We drooled over them, but, in the end, decided it was a want and not a need and left them for others to buy.

That pretty much sums up what all we did at the state fair on Saturday.  I can’t wait to go back this Sunday for the Sheep to Shawl competition.


One Response

  1. Barb Fessler Says:

    What great photos! The costume display was amazing, I loved the furniture and pottery and wish I could have seen the hand spun singles in person. I did not know that corn was planted at 42 inches apart because of the horses. I live with Amish neighbors and wonder if they plant their corn rows 42 inches apart. I guess I could take a tape measure and go out and measure the row.

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