I’ve been to the Maryland Sheep and Wool several times but never had the chance to do any of the classes. Way back in 2007 I was able to do Stitches East when it was here in Baltimore. I loved the classes I took there. My favorite was definitely the Melissa Leapman class. She taught me all about cables. This year I got together with a few friends and headed to the Carolina FiberFest in Raleigh.
Carolina FiberFest: Classes
The first thing when we were ready for the FiberFest was to check out the classes. Wendy and I really wanted to work on something that would expand us. Okay so Wendy was really interested in getting me to do two color work. The classes we signed up for were Introduction to Brioche, Double Knitting, Introduction to Spinning, and Modular Knitting.
Overall the Brioche class was my absolute favorite. The teacher, Kim Garnett, was outstanding. She was very thorough in her details and instructions. We were walked through a beginning square and then added in a second color to make a cowl. I never would have thought I could have done brioche and I’m now working on Spumoni Cowl, which has expanded my technique even more.
My second favorite class was the Introduction to Spinning. Now if you’ve been here awhile you know that I am by no means a novice spinner but sometimes you need to go to the beginning to grow more. Julie was our teacher and she was fantastic. She of course was a little shocked when we started spinning lace weight but it gave me the opportunity to learn a little more about whorl sizes, how to use the fast and extra fast flyer on a Lendrum wheel. We also learned the 10 commandments of beginning spinning.
Our double knitting and modular knitting classes were taught by Jolie Elder. The modular knitting class was pretty good and is definitely a skill that I was able to catch on to easily as well as something I would do again. Double knitting is something that I may try again but I left the class extremely frustrated. I honestly would not take another class from this teacher. Her style may work for others but not for me. I felt we spent more of the class time hearing about her next event than actually learning.
Carolina FiberFest: Shopping
OH My the shopping! Now I have to say I was surprised at all the different options available for shopping. The space is definitely smaller than MD Sheep and Wool but it gave a large variety from spinning to knitting to weaving. A few of my favorites were
CottonTail Farm: Her stitch marker necklaces and bags are to die for!
Knits 4 Comfort: Okay her tumbler kit was the best seller for our group! Every one of us now has one.
You can see I shopped quite a bit. I will say that I did have a small issue with one store. They had some beautiful kits for the Suburban Wrap. I have wanted to make this pattern for some time but had procrastinated. Finally I was ready to go all in but I did not LOVE the colors they had in the kit. I asked if they could switch the yarns and was told no. It would make sense if I wanted to switch for more expensive yarns but I actually wanted cheaper yarns but was willing to pay more to have it the way I wanted. I actually just bout the three skeins and came home and bought the pattern.
Carolina FiberFest: Overall Impressions
The FiberFest was extremely well ran. Everyone we ran into or asked questions of knew where we needed to be. The shopping was plentiful but not overwhelming. The classes were amazing! I would say this would be perfect for all levels but especially for newer fiber artists that want to check out some classes and not feel lost.