So, Jillian was going to the Michigan Fiber Festival in Allegan, Michigan. She was taking a Thursday class from Esther Rogers. I had no plans to be there because I hadn’t signed up for any classes and I didn’t think there was anything I needed. But then there was the phone call. It went something like, What are you doing next Thursday and Friday? I said, spinning. She said come with me! I have room in my car and an extra bed in my hotel room.

So, what would you do if you were me?

I did a fleece inventory incase you are wondering.

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Every year I make a spreadsheet. This one isn’t complete yet. It only includes the raw fleeces I have. I still need to weigh all of the scoured bits that are on my shelves in the studio. Plus there are a few more columns to add which will calculate how much I need to scour to get the clean amounts I need and it will also have a column that will calculate how much clean fleece I have left after I complete a teaching weekend.

This spreadsheet includes the classes (except one I forgot to add) that I’m teaching from this coming October through November 2016. It’s really the best way for me to keep track of my fleeces and even my prepared fiber. It helps me make sure there are no surprises since my class prep needs to begin several weeks before any class due to the scouring issue.

Anyway, the three breeds that are highlighted were the ones I needed the most, plus Corriedale. I expected to come home with maybe one fleece from the Fiber Festival for three reasons. One is because the festival isn;t completely open for business until Saturday although maybe about 2/3 of the vendors are open on Friday. Also the fleece judging doesn’t happen until Saturday. And, because one breed is Tunis and one is Polypay and I’ve never seen those at this festival.

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So, there may have been more than one fleece purchased.

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Actually, there were seven.

Only one of them was a highlighted fleece. But 5 of them were in the endangered category (in danger of not actually having enough.) I still need the Corriedale but I may be able to use a different breed in place of the Polypay.

Here’s the thing. Jillian was there for every bit of this shopping. She was an instigator. Here’s the other thing, Jillian doesn’t have any raw fleeces. She doesn’t like to hand process. She likes color. I know this. I don’t bug her about it even though I think she’s crazy. But she was choosing fleeces. She was telling me which ones were good.  What this says to me is that by nex year don’t be surprised to see her  carding a fleece for a sweater’s worth of yarn! I will keep working on converting her quietly.

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Wanna see what I got? Icelandic is above. Icelandic is a fleece that I use a lot because it’s great for an example of dual coated fleeces. The only draw back is it felts so easily. I try not to wash too much of it too far in advance. Sadly, sometimes things happen. But then I have an opportunity to talk about how some fleeces just felt in the bag without any help.

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Shetland! I almost always buy multi coated Shetland fleeces because I love them! And I need them for classes. And because so many people walk by the Shetlands with obvious multi coats that I feel like I need to show them some love.

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Jacob! I didn’t really need this. I may keep this one for myself. It’s very beautiful.

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Coopworth! This is a breed i have a hard time passing up. I don’t even have any plans to use Coopworth in classes but I may change things around. This one has so many colors and the locks are perfect Coopworth locks. This particular fleece was on the bottom, pushed back behind some other things but I saw it. I’ve done that fleece hiding myself before so I know that often those fleeces are the most awesome.

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CVM; California Variegated Mutant. My word. this fleece is pristine. Super fine and super clean.

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Romeny. I know but I was down to only one Romny fleece! Two years ago I had 8! I use Romney in a lot of classses so I really needed it and I was able to control myself. I only bought one even though there were several that would have been great.

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And finally, the surprise. It’s a cross of Romney/Corriedale/CVM. Jillian insisted and the crimp and lock structure is fantastic so I went for it. Then Jillian had an idea, like usual, for a new class for me using this fleece along with some other cross breed fleeces. So look for it in the future at a festival or guild near you.


PS I’m still looking for a little help with a logo if anyone is interested.

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