Last weekend I visited the Sheep to Shawl Festival at the Willamette Heritage Center. It was a warm day and lovely, and I enjoyed the music, the festival food, the animals, and the obvious joy of creativity that was occurring all around.
The thistles outside this building caught my eye:
I’ve always thought thistles interesting, texture- and shape-wise.
These are also known as teasels, a specific variety of thistle, considered a noxious invasive plant in some areas of the country.
Inside the historic Mill, I learned something new about thistles and how they were historically used in the manufacture of woolen fabric. How fascinating to learn this!
Hand Raising – This slow and tedious operation was accomplished with a hand raiser mounted with teasels which was drawn either warp or weft directions of the fabric.
Such a cool use of a plant in manufacturing!!!
The grounds were full of folks enjoying the beautiful day, the music, the demonstrations of art and craft. I came home with a couple of skeins of fibery goodness – a skein of Shetland sock yarn for me, locally raised and milled, and another skein of local, speckled bulky yarn which will eventually end up a prize for the Ravellenic Games this summer (more on that in future posts). It was a lovely way to spend a Saturday afternoon and I look forward to next year’s festival!