2012 Wisconsin Sheep and Wool

A few weeks ago, my daughter and I spent a long weekend at the Wisconsin Sheep and Wool Festival in Jefferson, Wisconsin.  We went up Friday morning, and soon had our tent pitched. I was very glad I brought the tarp, as the weekend was pretty rainy and cool, and we would have been very miserable if we were wet.

We went shopping first, and I’ll get back to that.  Here’s the rest of the weekend in no particular order.  There are more pictures on Flickr, particularly of sheep, so click through if you want to see more.  You are welcome to borrow any sheep pictures.

Always a favorite at the festival is the ring with newborn lambs. These triplets were born before the weekend, and three sets of twins were born over the three days.

We enjoyed watching the sheep dog trials…..
Working dog

Everyone (well, except the dog’s owner) laughed when a dog became very distracted by the masses of birds in a nearby reservoir an decided to flush them.


And my daughter made a friend (yes, she had permission to pet her).
A new friend

We spent some time ‘flirting’ with the sheep waiting for shearing demonstrations….

And enjoyed watching David shear sheep. We could (and did) watch for hours throughout the weekend.
All done

We also toured the barns with sheep for the shows, and there were many breeds. This particular sheep really wanted to be petted. (Most preferred pictures only.)

And some other great sheep…..

We learned about rug hooking, and enjoyed looking at all the lovely examples….
Hooked Rug
Hooked Rug
Hooked Rug

My daughter took the Needle-felting ‘Wool Ewe Teach Me’ class, and had a fabulous time (while I got to take another tour of the market). She made this:
Needle Felting Class
And then the class made a banner for the sheep and wool festival to keep….
Sheep and border collie
Felting Class

Need more sheep pictures? We missed these lambs being born by minutes….we were watching shearing in the same building….doh!

I also enjoyed lunch with a friend, talked with several of my vendor friends (Hi Gale and Catherine), and staked out the fleece judging and auction with some FOAY’ers (Hi Erin and Ellen!) We saw the most beautiful coated Cormo (it won), and a fabulous gorgeous BFL fleece (reserve). There were some really nice fleeces there, but I was money and space poor by then, and thinking of the Clun Forest that I bought last year that isn’t washed yet. 🙁

So what did I buy in the market on Friday?

I picked up a belt and boat shuttle, made by Kessenich in Oak. She commented that I like oak, and I replied that our street name is even Oak. 🙂
Kessenich Belt Shuttle in Oak
Kessinich Boat Shuttle in Oak

I’ve had an interest in making inkle bands, so I picked up this new book. I’ll review it for you later.
Inkle Pattern Directory Book

I stopped by Mielke’s (probably my favorite booth), and looked at Adam’s spindles. My first ‘real’ spindle is one of his, and I still like it a lot, so I thought I’d add another. This one is fiddleback maple with a maple shaft and comes in at 20 grams.
Adam Spindle

And, who can go without new fiber for a new spindle? I got a lovely 8oz ball of Coopworth roving from Maple Row (my second favorite booth) in shades of green and brown.
Coopworth and Spindle

Also at Maple Row, I picked up this cool thing. It was suggested as an orifice hook, but could also be used for crochet or whatever. I bought it because…..cast iron sheep….cool! It was good that I did, they were gone soon after and I would have been kicking myself.
Cast Iron Sheep Hook
Sheep Hook Detail

And last (but actually the first purchase), I picked up 4 bags of lamb fleeces for dyeing locks. They smell wonderful. (Yes, I’m a farm girl.)
Four Bags Full
I’m washing this one today:
Mmmmmm, fleece!

And I couldn’t resist a black fleece for me.
One black fleece for meeeee!!

So despite the wet and wind and cold, we had a really fabulous time.  We laughed a lot, saw cool things, met interesting people, and ate and ate and ate.  My daughter highly approved and is excited to go again next year.  I’m thrilled to have a travel buddy!

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