Sunday, September 30, 2012

Ahh, the end

The Shenandoah Valley fiber festival is over for another year. This year was my first vending there and we will be back! After selling 13 spindles yesterday and 6 more today, along with both roving and yarn and a shawl, it has been deemed a huge success. Compared to other venders, I have a minuscule inventory, three small table with items spread out to be easily seen. One of the things that sets me apart from the other shops (in both good and bad ways) is that because I work full-time somewhere else. It is not my livelihood, and so I experience no pressure to make a sale. I can afford to relax at a show and take time to teach the spinning lessons for free. While I think I would like to make and sell spindles and other fibery things full-time, it is unlikely I'd be able to, nor would there be enough income in offering the lessons as a free gift to the greater good. I really enjoy spinning and offer the basic knowledge of how to do it free of charge as a way to bring old information to light and a make connection to our past, perhaps even cultivate a respect for the old skills that still have validity today, if we take the time to practice them. Spinning forces you to slow down and enjoy the process by its very nature. It is hard to rush when you are hand-spinning your yarn.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Oh what a day!! SVFF 2012 Day 1

I am on a bit of a high after today. Hubby and I attended the Shenandoah Valley Fiber Festival today (and will again tomorrow). Sales were good and about 20 people learned to use the drop spindle with several others standing by to observe the process and ask clarifying questions. My newest spindles were the most popular of those sold, so I will continue making those series. One of those series was the "manly spindles" Hubby suggested I make. He located some pretty cool decals for me to add to some of the spindles to make them bolder. The decals can be a bit touchy to apply and then to add the polyurethane layers so they don't bubble is wonderful fun. I did a bit of touchup work on a few older spindles and will have them out again tomorrow with the new ones. Come out and see all the lovely fiber, fleeces, clothing, patterns, hooks, needles, llamas, alpacas, sheep, possibly sheepdog trials, soaps and oils and food (there was a bactrian CAMEL there today too)!! Sunday hours are 10AM to 4PM.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Just a bit further

I made 22 new spindles for the show Saturday. With only 7 more hooks to put in, I am nearly finished. I lost one spindle to a broken hook, no way to repair it by removal, so all the work sanding and layering the polyurethane is lost. Just one more pretty piece for the fireplace. Once the hooks are in, all the index cards for the new ones have to be completed noting their color, styles and marking, hook type and setting, identification number and date, weight, and the various measurements I use to track which concepts are more popular. Considering the show is Saturday, I'll be bustling a bit tomorrow night. It is too late tonight to do more. The newest concept I'm working on is one my husband suggested. He wants some "manly" spindles. Until now, this has translated as a few plain ones in dark colors. Now, thanks to his suggestions I have a new idea for some spindles, but have only been able to make two in time for this show. You'll need to come to the show to see them. :)

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Less than a week to go!!!

This coming weekend I will pack up my lovely spindles, roving, clothing items, camp tables, table covers, brochures, business cards, signs, and a host of other items into the back of my truck and head to my show. Until then, I will be dashing about trying to finish all the other things that need to be ready for the show. This evening I added two more layers of poly to the spindles. This finishes about a dozen of the spindles, but the others are still in need of one more layer on the shafts. Tomorrow I'll put in the hooks of the finished ones and do the last poly for the small batch. Now to print the spinning brochures and head to bed.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

7 started with 5 waiting

I am happily anticipating the SVFF on the 29-30 due to its location close to my home (no hotel stay required this time) and the chance to see friends while selling the spindles and roving. I have seven spindles in paint now, a few are gradients of black going toward midnight blue and there is a silver and a copper. I am debating how many to leave natural and seal with polyurethane. I'd like to treat a couple with the WoodBeams beeswax, but in a moment of insanity, I reorganized part of my craft room and haven't seen the WoodBeams since. That's what I get for trying to clean the space up. I will continue the search and this Friday evening and into the weekend, I'll be working on the spindles. I love the creation process, I just wish I could sell all the spindles so I'd have more space to create more of them. I picture my spindles as making the world a brighter, happier place.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Oops and next show

And I was so intent on keeping up with this blog regularly... But life gets crazy and since my last entry I attended and sold spindles and roving at the West Virginia Fiber Festival on Sept 8-9. A nice show, only a few years old and still growing. With all the vendors selling fiber, my spindles fit in really well. As a result of those sales, I finally have the confidence to make more spindles. So, I have a dozen 3-inchers in process at this point. There will not be any 2-inchers made in this round. At this point, the spindles are built and the notches cut into their whorls. Hand sanding is not my favorite part of the process, but it must be done and I don't trust a machine to do it for me. Although, I have to say, after the second sanding, they are silky smooth. After that, the multiple painting and polyurethane layers. And finally, the setting of the hooks. My next show which is the Shenandoah Valley Fiber Festival at the Clarke County Fairgrounds on Sept 29-30.