Arriving at SAFF on Friday, 21 October 2011. We are fresh, energetic, and lively. A scant 24 hours later we will be considerably less perky,but we will be tired, content, and laden with wonderful yarns,
The indoor arena is filled with vendors and shoppers.
It is a large arena mainly used for livestock shows.
There are shops on the main floor and on the upper level. There are even a few shops on the mezzanine,
Susan strikes gold first. She finds this amazing yarn within the first 15 minutes we are there. These skeins did not merely call her name -they veritably shouted out to her. Yarn is like that sometimes.
Barbara consults patterns, looking for inspiration. She will find it later in a major way.
These felted hats catch our eyes,
None of us has done much felting,but these hats are cute,
We each have a plethora of wool yarn that we have purchased for various classes we have taken.
Barbara says, "Knitting and felting cute hats for ourselves and for our friends is a great way to learn new skills and use yarn we already own. Eureka!"
The weather was gorgeous and despite the fact that the turning leaves had not yet reached their full autumnal glory, we saw many motorcycles in Asheville. These 2 touring bikes are clearly built for comfort.
After a delicious dinner at The Corner Kitchen in Biltmore Village (coincidentally and quite conveniently located just across the street from the Yarn Paradise yarn shop), we are ready to cruise the shop and head back to the hotel. We need to get an early start tomorrow.
As Barbra once said, "The sun spat morning at the sky!" It was a very frosty morning (ice on all the car windows) but after a surprisingly good breakfast (included in the rate) at the hotel, we were off to the showgrounds.
Atlanta Knitting Guild (AKG) members are out in force early. We spy Debra in the Shed where she has scored the perfect little basket for her spinning wheel.
These angora rabbits are like medium size turkeys. They may be sized like turkeys but they are priced like tenderloin! Not that anyone would ever eat these babies - their fur is much too valuable
This little bunny will go home with its new momma. Angora is expensive, so why not grow your own...
This stuffed lamb is very appealing but none of us want it baaaa-dly enough to take it home.
Surroinded by Eve's creations, the Charmers are well dressed to stay warm in the early morning mountain chill.
Having explained that silk hankies are not really handkerchiefs (neither for show nor for blow), Eve sells me a pack she has dyed in especially lovely colors.
Bidding Eve a fond farewell, we set off to see the animals without whom SAFF would not be possible.
There are more kinds of sheep than we ever knew existed. This fellow has 2 pairs of horns.
This Romney is quite the handsome sheep.
It is a real treat to be able to see the different kinds of wool produced by different types of sheep. The fleece on this sheep is quite long and wavy. This wool will make yarn that is strong and sturdy, likely of worsted weight.
Llama and alpaca are also well represented at SAFF. This handsome llama has been painstakingly groomed right down to his polished black toes.
Barbara makes friends with a young llama. Luckily we have no room in the car for another passenger.
Their stalls and enclosures are padded and carpeted to protect their coats and to help keep them clean.
These young alpacas grab a light snack before heading off to the show ring.
A little tete a tete about the competition too...
Llamas are reputed to be more aggressive than their mild mannered cousins, the alpacas, but this handsome llaama seems to be quite curious and friendly with his perky ears and rakish smile.
The natural fleece from this fellow will make wonderful yarn. No dyes are needed here. And the profile is positively regal; he will surely win many good ribbons.
Preparing an animal like this for a big show can take months of preparation - grooming and specialized handling.
Don't you wish that you had eyelashes like these?
Herd animals are naturally social, and even an inter-species gossip is interesting.
This is the Triple S Shawl.
This is Sherry's Vest.
And this is the Ellie Vest.
Twenty-four hours after we arrive in Asheville, we have filled the trunk. We are tired and ready to head home.
On the way home, we will discuss our plans to return next year for 2 nights (instead of just 1). We never did get to the Biltmore Dairy Bar for legendary ice cream treats nor did we have time to check out the major craft and art show at the Asheville Civic Center. The proverbial good time was had by all, and we know that we will have many more road trip adventures together.