Dag van de Wol

You might think that every day is a “Day of Wool” chez Underdutchskies, but today was the official “Dag van de Wol” in Oijen, Brabant.  DB even came along for the ride.

I had never been to this event before so I didn’t know what to expect.  I was hoping for lots of spinning wheels to try out, sheep shearing, lots of different kinds of wool from many sheep breeds.  But I was also realistically thinking that it could be much less than this.  It turned out to be less, but still worth a day out.

Here’s what it looked like.

There was a display of lots of spun fibers from lots of different animals, from sheep breeds to yak and even brown bears, to different dog breeds.

And a few animals who were very shy.

But there was no sheep shearing and the only booth selling spinning wheels was LowLandsLegacy, and they only brought Kromski wheels with them.  I did get to try out a Kromski Minstrel wheel which was lovely to spin on.  So smooth and silent and I took to it immediately.  It was like we were old friends. I guess this wheel has jumped to the top of my wish list!

I did of course buy some fiber to spin.  Here’s what I bought, but not all of it is for me.  I bought 2 of the little buckets of sheep breed samples for W. who has loaned me her spinning wheel.  The rest is mine.

The sample buckets, A and B, are filled with 20g bundles of different sheep breed wool to try out and see what you like.  I already had B at home so bought A for myself. Here’s what you get.  These are from LowLandsLegacy.

The big blob of wool, all 500g of it, is Merino, but look how lovely it is! Not just plain white Merino, but this lovely mixed grey and white super soft fluff.  Maybe if I get really good at this I can spin enough for a sweater.  We’ll see.  But it’s a lot to practice on anyway.

And then I did get 200g of super white Merino.  Both the above grey and this white I bought from Meervilt who happen to be located in Haarlem! Oooo dangerous.

Actually, the first thing I bought, was this gorgeous combed top of Merino and silk blend, from Q-art.  The second I saw the lighter ball, I had to have it.  She only had 1 of this color, so I bought a second one in a kind of darker sister color.  I’m sure they will look great together if I want to end up using them together.  I haven’t spun with silk yet, and I think it’s going to be more challenging than the merino and blue faced leicester I’ve spun so far.  It’s going to be fun to try out!

Lastly, I bought this 50g group of rollags, in the first photo at the top of the post.  I can’t remember the name of the shop I got them from. These are to practice long draw drafting.  The videos I’ve seen of people doing this, well, they make it look so easy.  I don’t think it’s easy.  But I want to try.

Oh and I also bought a jar of hand cream and anti-moth spray.  And that was it.  I really wanted to buy some Texelse wool to spin, but no one had any.  Not a one.  That was a surprise.

We got there early and as we were leaving at noon, there were a lot of people still arriving, so I guess we missed the crowds.  Also fine!  We drove to Oss and had lunch there and then came home.

And now I need to show you what else I recently bought to spin and just got in the mail from Fondant Fibre in England.  All of these items were on sale in her web shop and after paying shipping from England (which is very reasonable compared to postage prices in NL), it was all a bargain.

I got this cute dark pink and white merino/nylon blend, which I’ve already started spinning.  I am hoping to make some nice 3ply (my first 3ply) from it.

I also bought this batt of Shetland wool, white yak, and silk blend. Wow!

She also had some sock yarn on sale and how could I pass up a skein of sock yarn in a nice color way for £7?

AND she threw in a little sample of some special fiber to try out. This is blend of Norwegian wool and bamboo she calls Norboo.  Hmmm. Interesting.  I really recommend her web shop for some lovely fibers to spin up. Great service too.

And now it’s time to stop writing and start spinning! I can’t wait to get my hands into all this fluffy stuff!  More photos to come as I make my way through it.

Weversmarkt

Today was the yearly Weversmarkt in Hoorn (weavers market).  There were, at last count, 140 vendors selling everything from weaving looms and supplies, to knitting yarn, to felting stuff, buttons, spinning supplies and more.  We were 7 and stayed all day.  Luckily it was sunny and very warm all day!

I bought a few things.

Two skeins of Kauni in blues, purples and greens and a skein of grey to go with it.  I’m going to make a “swing knitting” shawl with that.  I bought 2 skeins of undyed sock yarn for, well, dying.  I bought a pair of felted baby shoes my hair dresser (her baby of course).  And buttons.  Just look at how fabulous these buttons are!

And I bought a hat.  I don’t wear hats, but this hat is just perfect.

Here are some photos from the day….

You can see all my photos from the day here.  I will definitely go again next year. This was the best market I’ve been to in the Netherlands, for what I’m interested in anyway.  I didn’t get to try any spinning on a wheel, but I did get to see a few, which was also pretty interesting.  I’m still thinking about getting a wheel.  Yes, I need a new hobby like a need a hole in my head, but that’s never stopped me before!

Road Trip

Next Saturday I’m making the long train trip to this event.  I’m very tempted to go by car, because I have a new car, but N. has convinced me that we should go by train so we can knit.  Knitting trumps driving a new car.

I’m not sure if there will be a lot of knitters that I know going to this event.  It’s pretty far away.  It’s going to take us 3 hours by train to get there (only a little over 2 hours by car however).  Dutch people think that traveling an hour to go somewhere is already a big deal.

The event is held in a “manege” or horse arena.  It will be cold.  It will be full of people and wool so I hope that we heat the place up with our enthusiasm and woolliness.  I’m hoping to find some really nice local yarn (which is a new thing actually) and some interesting sheep breed specific yarns.

If you live in the Netherlands, or northern Germany, or even northern England, make a fun day trip out of this and come along.  It’s good to support our local wool!