The New York State Sheep and Wool Festival at Rhinebeck last weekend was amazing! Though a little lonely, since I went solo. I really need to make some knitting friends! Still, it was so nice to get outside the city and see the autumn leaves, the rolling hills, the Hudson passing by outside the Metro North train windows.

And, most importantly, there were the sheep! And the wool! And the yarn!

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I came home with a whole lot of natural, undyed fiber … sturdy, white wool from two Hog Island sheep named Tessie and Holly, soft, marled gray merino, a fluffy, tan blend of bamboo and baby alpaca wool. I also got some beautiful maple-colored merino streaked with blueberry and raspberry shades. (Pancakes, anyone?) I’ve already started in on spinning the Hog Island wool, which I’m aiming to make into a two-ply woolen yarn. Not really sure what the weight will be — I’m just trying for as much consistency as I can achieve at this point.

(By the way, if you’re wondering what the heck a Hog Island sheep is, you can read about them here! This is the website of the mill I bought the fiber from.)

I also found a fair-trade basket that supports a nonprofit in Africa — totally vindicates my decision not to just cave and buy one at Target the weekend before.

I was pretty exhausted by the end of the day, though, so it was nice to come home to these little jerks.

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