Wednesday, October 12, 2011

All Shasta

I attended my first Spin-Off Autumn Retreat last week.  It was held in Manchester, NH this year.  During the spinner's marketplace I came across a vendor selling spindles made by the Cascade Spindle Company.  Several of their new spindles are named for mountains in the pacific north west.  When I saw the tag that said "Shasta"  I knew I had to have that spindle!!  The tags had fallen off the spindles so it took a while to figure out which one was the Shasta spindle, once the spindle was identified I held on to it with complete joy in my heart.  It's a 3/4 ounce spindle made of poplar balsam with a walnut shaft.  It's nice for spinning a lace weight yarn.   I'm loving this little spindle and am spinning my Shasta fiber on it.

Several years ago I was given a chance to purchase a bag of alpaca fiber from a friend of a friend who's husband raised alpaca.  After poking around in the different bags of fiber available, (my wallet said one and ONLY one bag for me. Evil wallet.) I chose one that had a nice fawn color similar to my dog Shasta's undercoat color. When I turned the bag over to pick it up, it had “SHASTA” written on the side. When I asked why it said that, the woman selling the fiber said her husband was from Northern California and named his alpaca’s for different places near where he and his family lived. The alpaca fleece I was buying came from an animal that was named for the same mountain that my Shasta was named for and it was close to the same color as my Shasta’s undercoat. What are the odds of THAT?
I blended some fur from both animals, 30% from my Shasta, 70% from the alpaca Shasta, on my drum carder and ended up putting it in with my fiber storage as life was a bit busy then and I didn’t get it spun. It has been in a cabinet for several years now. I actually pulled it out earlier this week and tried to spin it a little. I didn’t think I could do it, but when I discovered that I had Shasta hair all over me again when handling the fiber I felt happy (and yes, I did get a little teary eyed, too).  So now I am spinning my Shasta fiber blend on my Shasta spindle!  This was just meant to be.
Here is the label that came with my spindle:

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