Maryland Sheep and Wool Thoughts

A lot of people talk about the festival, myself included, but this was the first year I’ve made it up. I missed it last year as one of my good friends from high school called me two weeks before to tell me of her impending nuptials, and to assure that I would be coming. I figured that MDS&W is every year, and that the wool would still be there.

Waking up 3 hours earlier than usual was hard, especially on Matt since he had finals this week. We picked up my friend Laura and headed up to the fairgrounds in Howard County, MD. [ We missed you Sheryl! Wish you could have been there with us!] We got there just as the vendors were opening, and managed to get a really nice parking spot. It drizzled on and off in the morning, but stayed cool and slightly cloudy all day, for which I was thankful, as there were a lot of people there.

Misty Mountain Farms was there, so I was able to say hi to some of the ladies from my spinning group. I saw all sorts of people in the wild, including Nancy Bush, that I’ve only seen in blogs.   I was a bit too shy to go up and say hello. Maybe next year?

I had a really good time looking around with Matt, and listening to the live music. If I go next year, I’ll head up on Sunday to miss the crowds and get a real feel for what MDS&W has to offer. There were a lot of vendors, but I felt a frenetic rush of having to see everything right now.

Enough of me grouching, yeah? Here’s the good stuff.

I was able to see and speak to Walter Turpening, the man behind the fantastic custom spinning chairs. I have been drooling over them for a few years, ever since I saw them on Anne’s blog. I really like the idea that he hand makes the chairs, as well as weaves the surfaces. I didn’t want to put a deposit down until I tried them out for myself, and was pleasantly surprised to find Mr. Turpening there. I tried all of the chairs he had there: the moving and stationary weaving stool, the rocking chair, and the spinner’s chair. They were some of the most comfortable chairs I’ve ever sat in. He answered all of Matt’s questions, was friendly, and knowledgeable. I’m going to start putting my pennies together, as I really, really want one of the chairs.

I didn’t actually buy much, but I am really pleased with the things I did purchase. I picked up two more bobbins for my Ashford, last. I’m going back and forth between the SeaWool and the Angora/Silk, but more about that later.

My first fibery purchase was from Tess Designer Yarns. I had heard about the microfiber ribbon on the Knitmore Girls podcast. I have to say, the idea of knitting with water is appealing. I poked into the booth and felt the ribbon, and had to have it. I was torn between the aquamarine and the copper, but someone snatched up the aquamarine. I can’t wait to knit something with this stuff. It’s my reward yarn for finishing a large birthday gift.

After tooling the Sheep Incognito booth, where we almost bought this, we headed over to Diane from Creatively Dyed Yarns.

I love Dianne’s color sense, and I love love love her SeaWool. I was surprised to see her there, as her Ravelry group had indicated she wasn’t going to get a booth. I’m glad she did, as Diane is a sweet, warm woman.

I rounded out my purchasing with an indigo plant. A friend of mine is really active in the SCA, and because I’m rather fond of her, and she promised me cheesecake, I’m going to spin and indigo dye yarn for her so she can knit a shawl to go with her garb. It looks a little wilted here, but I think a few days of sun should perk it right back up.

I left my camera at home, so I didn’t get as many pictures as I wanted, but, over all, had a good time and am looking forward to the shows this fall.

  1. Laura said:

    I planted my indigo in a pot outside. It is really enjoying the rain and looks like it has grown a lot.

    Did you not go up again on Sunday?

  2. Bead Sue said:

    the wrong airport!! Sounds like something that would happen to me! Thank you , Matt, Laura, for helping me get my keys out of my CAR at MD Sheep and Wool. I couldn’t believe that I did that! Sorry you didn’t get to come back on Sunday, BUT it rained all day and didn’t stop till 5pm when we were starting to pack everything up! Richard put straw down everywhere which helped alittle! But when the lady accidently knocked over some of Maggie’s book in a BIG puddle of water, we packed them up first!! See you wed! Hope you feel better. I think all of us had something happen to us this weekend! sue

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