Friday, November 25, 2011

Needle Felted Scarf

This past weekend I decided to go on a fiber vacation.  I live near Lancaster County PA, the famous quilting capital and I decided to visit several places I never seem to have the time to visit.

The first stop on my trip was the Weaver Orchard for fresh produce and home made warm cider donuts for breakfast. 

Weaver's Orchard

Then on to the Goodville Fabric Outlet in Goodville, PA (no website) which is a Mennonite warehouse for all manor of fabrics and textiles, nice and not-so-nice but an adventure every time.  I ended up getting some fabric to recover my messy ironing board and some waterproof fabric for making an apron for the holidays.  I didn't get the apron made and it's the next day after Thanksgiving - maybe by Christmas.
Next stop was Shady Maple grocery - the Disneyland of food shopping and eating. Tourists line up all the way outside and down the street to eat here so you might want to check it out some time.
 I just needed some supplies for Thanksgiving dinner and was full of cider donuts anyway so I didn't eat there.
Shady Maple Smorgasbord
Next stop was the "Mennonite Walmart", AKA Good's Store on the main campus of the Shady Maple complex.  It was recently remodelled and is a dry goods/hardware/whatever kind of store with good deals all the time.  I treated myself to a new pair of sneakers.
Then I made my way up to Hinkletown Sewing Shop in Ephrata, PA, where I needed some new parts for my Bernina sewing machine and wanted to see their new remodelled addition.  I teach quilting classes for this shop so it was fun to just be shopping and not working.  I couldn't find any pictures of the shop but here is some information you might find interesting:
Next, I visited Intercourse, PA with Zook's and The Old Country Store and Quilt Museum across the street - both Quilter's paradises. 
The Old Country Store Intercourse, PA

 I ended up purchasing some beautiful fabric and created a table center for my holiday decorations this year. This is not the best photo but I was in a hurry to catch a picture of it before it went on the table.
Holiday Table Runner
After a quick dinner, I made my way over to New Berlin, PA where I was staying overnight at a motel so I could attend a class at the Mannings the next day.  The Mannings is a weaver's, knitters Disneyland of fiber, classes, paraphernalia for fiber lovers in a beautiful rural setting.  I had known about this place but had never visited and when I saw their advertisement for a Needle Felting class I jumped at the chance.

Mannings Weaving and Knitting Supply and School

I have been wanting to create a fusion of wool fiber and silk to make scarves but didn't know how to go about it.  I have several books on creating wool scarves but they seemed to be a lot of work and too thick for the look I was after.  I wanted a scarf, made out of fiber, that was thin, drapes nicely and fun to create.  I also wanted to be able to create unlimited colors.  After taking this class, I could see all the possibilities of the scarves I've had in my in my head but wasn't sure how to get started.  The instructor was Debra Jo Tily and we had a fun, relaxing day working with needle felting hand tools and a scarf and fiber kit included in the class fee.  Here is a photo of the finished scarf:

Hand Needle Felted Scarf

I had planned to visit some Alpaca farms near Lancaster on Friday but it got dark too soon so I decided to visit one on the way home from the Mannings on Saturday.  I was able to pet the alpacas and even buy some silver fleece for my alpaca stash.  The Big Rock Alpaca Farm is located in the country near the Mannings, not too far from Rt. 30.  For more info. go to:

Here is the huacaya male whose silver fleece I purchased.  It is being soaked and cleaned as I write this.  I can hardly wait to see it all clean and carded.

Hillside’s Silver Ray

All-in-all it was a great weekend in the country and made me wish I could some day have my own alpaca farm. 

Have a wonderful holiday, everyone!!


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