Friday, October 17, 2014

Postcard from the Road: The Wool Festival at Taos

As the New York State Sheep and Wool Festival kicks off tomorrow, I thought I’d share some photos from a recent visit to another fall fleece and fiber celebration far away from the fair grounds in Rhinebeck. 

The Wool Festival at Taos, New Mexico, held annually during the first weekend of October, is considerably smaller in scale than Rhinebeck, but the Southwest has its own rich fiber arts story to tell, and it’s hard to beat stand after stand of Navajo-Churro roving, Colorado yak, Navajo weaving demonstrations, and countless other tantalizing offerings for the spinners, knitters, crocheters, and weavers. 

With a gorgeous backdrop of the mountains (the festival takes place in Kit Carson Park) and free admission, it’s well worth the visit. —Emily Spiegelman, Digital Features Editor
It’s a modest sign at the entry to the park.
There were beautiful wovens everywhere.
Toadlena Trading Post had handspun Navajo wool.
Weaving as a political and cultural statement: I’d love to see her finished product.
There was plenty of yak to be had.
There were angora rabbits for sale, of course.
Ample amounts of Navajo-Churro roving, ready for spinning; I’d heard of these sheep, thanks to An Introduction to Heritage Breeds.
Hand-crafted Navajo spindles
The Elsawool tent was filled with clothes, accessories, and skeins of yarn made entirely from purebred Cormo sheep. I came away with a few skeins of worsted fingering weight (such restraint!).
A tender moment between alpacas

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