It’s the end of June (almost), the Solstice (almost) so it must be…
From the outset the day did not disappoint. The weather was perfect.
I set off at just after 7am in brilliant sunshine (field’s still there no houses…yet!) and the views from the 555 Stagecoach bus were a delight of green hills, glimpses of water and charming farmhouses.
Even the wait at Keswick for the X5 Gold (it was rather special!) Stagecoach bus to Cockermouth was a pleasure.
All this sun must have gone to my head.
A short free link bus from Cockermouth to the auction mart and I had reached the site of my annual crafty pilgrimage. Woolfest.
With its avenue of bunting
Gaily adorning the Wool Clip stalls only a little bit of searching was needed for me to find ….
My needle felted sheep’s head! I love trying to spot this little fella I made him over 5 years ago when the Woolfest cry went up for bunting. Once I find him I know I am home.
This year I came with a new mission in mind. My 2018 project was to find plant-based fibres that could be used for felting. I was successful too.
Uppingham Yarns also had cones of plant based yarns like ramie (nettle) on sale.
DT Craft and Design offered several plant fibres together with a good quantity of dye kits. The stall holder was very informative and had plenty of samples to show the colour ranges and which dyes to combine to achieve best results.
All the stall holders were exceptionally helpful and I was pleased to find Adelaide Walker had a good selection of fibres as she is based close to No 1 Daughter so won’t be hard to visit.
Yes I know there is a distinct lack of colour. But lucky for me DT Craft and Design offered a solution to this…
I foresee a steep learning curve coming up. Yikes. I will keep you posted.
To be honest. My finds were tinged with a little sadness. All those beautiful sheep and their dedicated shepherds. I swear my Cumbrian heart broke a little as I walked past the rare breed sheep so lovingly cared for and I had to will myself not to buy any of their gorgeous yarns and fleeces. As to our local Herdwicks a tear came to my eye.
Lucky for me that this year’s Carolyn Rawlinson Memorial Stall showcased Izzy Middleton (aka Wildflower Weaver) who follows the ‘Slow Cloth Philosophy’ and as part of the Green Cloth Collective works with vegan fibres, recycled yarn from other garments and up cycled textiles that would otherwise go to landfill. Izzy does use both plant and animal fibres but her wools come from slaughter free herds such as those made up of rescued animals. A very inspiring and interesting woman.
Happily for me Izzy is based at one of my favourite places, Farfield Mill in Sedbergh. They too had a stand,
And a woven hanging that made me smile.
All too soon Woolfest was over for another year. But there is always 2019 to look forward to!
Until next we meet,
P.S. Next day I travelled to Penrith for a catch-up and making session with the Crafty Ladies. It seems at the moment that British railways are in meltdown (not one of the trains I saw yesterday were running on time) and the Lakes line has been abandoned by Northern Rail. But apparently there is an upside: the trains chartered to cover the route are so old that they attract hordes of spotters. Glad there is a silver lining for someone!
Well I couldn’t miss out now could I?! Mx