Sunday, May 17, 2015

shawl, sheep and spinning

To answer the question on everyone's mind: the shawl is done, but not without a lot of personal sacrifice along the way. I flew way too close to the sun on this one, on a variety of levels. The picot edge binding, over 350+ stitches, gave me plenty of time to reflect on this project, and not all of it produced positive conclusions. BUT it is done, and blocked and drying as I type this. Into priority mail tomorrow, and I can spend the rest of the week trying to catch up on everything that has been neglected as I worked to finish it. I will post some finished pictures after it is in the recipient's hands.

Finishing the shawl was made slightly more challenging by the fact that: today was the local park's historic exhibit day, to which we are more-or-less permanently on the hook to bring sheep. Kali and Kevyn were this year's victims volunteers, mostly because they are pigs for grain, making them the easiest to catch. It doesn't hurt that they are among the best on halter, either.

They spent the day ignoring people while vying for shade in their pen, though there was one moment I wished I had on camera, when a little girl (about one year old) bent down to pet a lounging Kali, and Kali let out a little baa. The baby was so surprised that she fell smack on her rear end and laughed in an odd combo of delight and terror. Poor kid!

The sheep were temporarily distracted by this tiny weiner dog. I don't think they have ever encountered a dog that small and roused themselves up out of the shade to investigate, even though they usually ignore dogs at best and hate dogs at worst. I am not sure they realized this was a dog, however.

My job is to spin and talk about the process of making what is on the sheep into what is on people's bodies (though not today, way too warm for wool).  I managed to sneak in a bit of knitting on the shawl edge when I had a little break in visitors.

The best part of the day, apart from a few hours with Secondo while he volunteered with me, was this little boy, around eight years old. He was fascinated by the process of spinning and spent quite a while asking me very probing questions. I had started by talking about the difference in technology between a wheel and a drop spindle, for which I had brought along some old pencil roving. After a while, I handed over the drop spindle and he went to town, even re-attaching broken roving after I had explained the process to him. 

That is all his work! I gave him the drop spindle (it was a freebie from the North Country Spinners, made specifically to teach beginners) and the rest of the pencil roving when he had to leave. I have had both for over five years, so it was great that they found their way into appreciative hands.

At the end of the day, the sheep hightailing it out of the park so fast that I barely got a picture before they disappeared into the trailer. As usual, they didn't need a halter to move back into the pasture with the flock. They were almost as glad to get back as I was to be done with the shawl.

1 comment:

  1. Glad to hear the shawl is finished! Can't wait to see the photos.