Columbia Gorge Fiber Festival

This past weekend was the first ever Columbia Gorge Fiber Festival in Hood River, Oregon. This event is the brainchild of Yvonne Ellsworth of Lavender Sheep, and sponsored by local yarn store Knot Another Hat. There were classes in spinning, knitting, and fiber selection. I wasn’t able to take classes this weekend, but I did drive out to visit the market on Saturday. I saw lots of fiber friends, old and new.

Knitted Wit (Lorajean) was hosting my patterns in her booth. Thanks, LJ! I see my blue Pacific Shawl as a bit of window dressing here.


Lorajean’s Baby O was having a fine time crawling over this suitcase. Hours of entertainment!


I sent the new Sakura cowl and mitts with her, too. I liked my pattern so much that I knit another on Saturday and wore it on Sunday.


It looks good on everybody! (I can’t believe Mookie let me do this.)


Spindlewood had some very lovely hand spindles. I did manage to resist, but only because I haven’t been spindling at all. These could manage to tempt me back, though.


Cheryl Newhouse from New Hue Handspuns had the coolest little spinning “wheel,” the miniSpinner from Hansen Crafts. It’s electricity driven by a foot pedal so she doesn’t have to treadle (she spins huge amounts of yarn). It’s a very small setup, but it’s highly efficient!


I met another single-L Michele. This is Michele LeBlanc from Toots LeBlanc. They specialize in unique woolen blends in all natural colors, using fiber from animals raised on small family farms in Washington, Oregon and Northern California. Lovely stuff.


I stopped in at Knot Another Hat‘s booth, and saw lots of Lantern Moon bags, baskets, and notions in their center display. I also saw a swing bucket bag in a fabric I hadn’t seen before,and now there’s a new thing on my must-have list. I didn’t get a picture of it…what was I thinking?!


And I ran into Stevanie Pico from Pico Accuardi Dyeworks and Sarah, the owner of Knot Another Hat. Both were knitting away on their Lantern Moon ebony circulars.


I generally don’t buy much at festivals, because I like to have a plan for the yarn before I buy it, and I like to decide that just before casting on. But this came home to me:

luxe b

One skein of Alpha B‘s Luxe B fingering weight, 50% superwash merino, 50% silk. The color is stainless steel, with lots of shades of gray in it. It has a lovely sheen, and it’s really soft. No, it won’t be socks! I have a new design on the needles, and this will be another version of it. Anne Morrow, the dyer, didn’t want to be in the picture, so here’s a picture of the rest of the Luxe B yarn. Mine is on the bottom right!


It sounds like this was a successful event, and I’m looking forward to it coming around again next year. How was your weekend?

7 responses to “Columbia Gorge Fiber Festival

  1. Beautiful stuff. I had to refrain myself out of this one just because I have big spending plans at upcoming Black Sheep and Sock Summit!!! Spindlewood spindles are to dye for. I have at least 5 spotted out of the collection shown here and they are all filled with singles for various design projects.

    Great to see Cheryl here. I love the miniS but am holding out for the next improved model Kevin is working on. I believe there is even a waiting list on that now 😀 It’s a wonderful toy to add especially if you’re production spinner. I have to justify why I NEED one and finally convinced myself…if I replace at least 5 of the 8 wheels with this little box, I’ll have more money to spend and more room to organize my fiber stash LOL

    I do think Sakura looks better on you than Mookie…and knit one so quickly. That’s going to be the selling point besides of its elegance, portability, and practicality. Hope you sell a bundle!

    Baby O looks right in his element. What a ham! LJ booth looks fiberlicious with all those gorgeous dyed yarns. I haven’t played with Michele LeBlanc’s natural fiber but will look forward to seeing more of them in the future. Great purchase on Alpha B‘s Luxe B–silk and merino–it will be wonderful wear next to skin 😀

    I have a few of LM’s ebony circular needles but not too crazy about them. It could be that I was knitting a moebius project in 29″ cable. Stitches just didn’t pass through the joints smoothly as my Addis. It could be the mind trick…I’m just too loyal to Addi in the whole…hard to be unbiased now towards anything else. Oh well.

    Thanks for the fun cyber experience of the fiber fest, Michele! I felt like I was there 😀 As I’ve heard, looks like it has outgrown the venue already in its first year. Just to show, fiber artists/knitters ROCK!

  2. But big wheels have all the charm! Are you in it for production or for personal pleasure?

    Needles: We all have our favorites, and I’m so glad that we have all those choices!

  3. Thanks, Michelle for the purchase and showing my yarn booth. I can’t wait to see what Stainless Steel turns out to be.

    Next time you stop by my booth, I hope to have the Pacific Shawl knit in Luxe B to show you.

  4. That is an amazing event, especially for a first time! I truly admire your self-restraint on the stash enhancement front — and it’s not like you weren’t facing major temptation.

    The Sakura Cowl is really lovely. I agree it looks better on you than on Mookie, which isn’t to say it isn’t flattering to Mookie! I’ve got to get that pattern on my queue!

  5. Some gorgeous yarns and what sounds like a very successful event. Looking forward to seeing what your purchase turns into!

  6. Great post! It was a great time, wasn’t it? I bought the same exact skein of Alpha B yarn – couldn’t resist! 🙂

  7. This looks wonderful. It has me dreaming of a road trip for next year.