NOBO Handweavers

Category Archives: General

Anything of general interest.

Viking Twill Towel

Hello everyone,

I received an e-mail recently from Kim Caufield who was spreading the word about some talks scheduled for the Big E in Springfield, MA:

#1 Fri. Sept 25 at 3 PM  on Early Development of Textiles

#2 Sun. Sept 27 at 3 PM on the History of Cotswolds and the Medieval Wool Trade.

Link to the Big E is oddly enough

This is a big B (bummer) because it conflicts with the Common Ground Fair otherwise I’d definitely go. I promised Kim I’d get the word out. Maybe you all are aware and this is redundant?

Also Kim has been raising Cotswolds for 15 years so I asked her about getting some yarn for the bookmark exchange. She tells me that it’s difficult to find a commercial spinner due to the long staple length.  I may be switching to Lincoln for warp and am off to Vermont to find some during my vacation.

I also wanted to say how much fun I had at the Fiber Revival earlier this month. I am late to post this remark, but hope more of you will attend next year.  My completed dish towel (of cottolin) is attached. Refer to the latest Handwoven ; it’s a twill pattern used by the Vikings in the 10th century!!

A big thank you to Kathy James who provided a wonderful talk on color at the last NOBO meeting . It was impossible to get any sleep after that. I hope to see her again at Historic new England.



Bookmarks, the Amish and goats

Yes, these three things have something in common- Groton, NY!

Recently, Margaret heard back from a UK guild about exchanging
bookmarks, woven from rare breed wool. I thought I had some gray Cotswold but it turned out to be gray Border Leicester.
So after doing my homework, I chose Clun Forest for numerous reasons.
The most important being there’s a Clun farm (Rocky Top) in Groton, NY and we happened to be going there.
My in laws live a mile and half from the farm.
So having made arrangements, we were Groton bound.

Groton is lovely rolling farmland. Mostly dairy but there’s now a thriving tomato crop compliments of the Amish. Within the past ten years there’s been a big influx of Amish families buying up the abandoned farmhouse and farmland in the area. It’s provided a rebirth to a dying town. The Amish farm stand down the road always has the “English” stopping to buy fresh eggs, home made bread and, of course, Amish variety tomatoes. Yum!


My goal of buying my bookmark fiber was finally realized when my daughter, Kelley and my sister in law, Pauline, and I visited Rocky Top on Sunday.
Mary was as kind as can be and took us on a tour of the farm.
There were chickens, roosters, goats, cows, Great Pyrenee guard dogs and beautiful Clun Forest sheep. I’d never seen this breed before and I was thrilled to be seeing my choice, up close and personal.


Then there was Angelina and her Mom:


We spent over an hour with Mary and her sheep.
When we were getting ready to leave, Pauline started asking about the goats. Turns out Mary was trying to give some away, so  they’re going to move in with the in laws!
Since they probably wouldn’t enjoy the 6 hour ride home in our car, it’s better that my sister in law’s taking them.
This is one of the two she’s adopting:


My quest to find rare US breed wool took me into the heart of Amish country, I met a lovely breeder of Clun Forest sheep and Pauline got two cute goats.
Who knew the first phase of the bookmark exchange would go there?
Now, I’m anxious to discover what other adventures lay ahead!

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