Wilderness Road Regional Museum celebrated Olde Christmas today with the traditional King’s cake and the burning of the greens. There was story time at one end of the museum and my weaver friend, Kim and I at the other end. There were cookies, hot tea, and craft beer available. A roving fiddler to provide music. A Colonial toy set up by another friend, Mary.
The local militia gathered and fired off a multi gun salute.
We wove and spun for about 4 hours for visitors, discussing fiber in the Colonial era, visited with each other and guests.
I said goodbye to the wheel in my photo as it was donated today to the museum, reducing my herd to two, my huge Walking wheel and my everyday “in the style of” wheel. When I spin there, it will be one of my options for use.
Next time, someone else will take my picture, selfies don’t seem to work so well.
The blanket beat the baby. The weave was completed last evening, but I didn’t want to work with my sewing machine without very good light, so it rested on the loom overnight with the small towel.
After the morning Farmers Market run for some protein and veggies, which we did between the early morning rain and the arrival of the cold front with wind and more rain, the weave was carefully removed from the loom. The third panel was added to the other two, the ends hemmed. The other three pieces were also hemmed.
The crochet hook located and a single crochet edge applied.
With fingers crossed that there wouldn’t be too much shrinkage, the four pieces were put in a cool water quick wash in the washing machine and a dry on low in the dryer. The blanket shrank a bit as expected, but is still baby blanket size. I think the Lily Sugar and Cream shrank too much for the towel to still be a towel and the smaller one is a dish drying mat or hot pad size. The dish cloth is ok.
Maybe 3 more woven with the same warp amount and the three blocks, I will have a set of placemats. If packaged with the hot mat and 4 napkins sewn from a matching color cotton fabric, it will make a nice set to gift or sell.
As tomorrow is Olde Christmas at Wilderness Road Regional Museum, the rest of the evening is being spent making sure that I have clean fleece to spin, fiber on the ring distaff for spindle spinning, and a basic men’s hat cast on with hand spun Jacob on the bone DPNs. That will give me plenty to demonstrate to any visitors that tour through the museum. The militia will be outdoors and will fire off a salute to Christmas. There will be goodies to eat, craft beer to buy, some crafted gifts to purchase, and music. It is a family friendly event, so if you are a local reader, it should be a nice if cool day to come out for some fun.
Last weekend was the start of the season. As a volunteer at the Wilderness Road Regional Museum, I am usually the spinner. Sometimes events stack and I have to be elsewhere. Sometimes, my role is different. The last weekend of October, they plan a Spirits Along the Wilderness Road event. It isn’t a scary event, instead a Percheron pulled wagon travels a path through local history with stops for the “Spirits” of actual historical figures from the region to share their moment in history.
There were many spirits, Colonels, soldiers, gamblers, slaves, Seminole indians, founders, shop keepers, Politicians, a tiny Werewolf, and more. I portrayed an older Mary Draper Ingles displaying her angst at being away from the ferry and her home as dark descended.
In all there were 9 wagon loads of visitors, one every half hour and we could have filled more if there had been space and time. Last year the event was rain delayed to a week night and was less successful, but this year was especially great. The period depicted for my part was just after the Revolutionary War, so I wore that period clothing. As folks could wander the museum before or after their ride, I also was able to share some fiber history and demonstrate spinning on one of the old Walking Wheels that I helped restore to use.
The upcoming weekend, I will be with a friend demonstrating wool and spinning at the Booker T. Washington National Monument again in costume, but this time closer to the Civil War so a bit of change up to the clothing items. It will also be outdoors and a chilly weekend, so there may be some hidden woolen layers under the two piece dress, and my Shave ‘Em to Save ‘Em huge shawl and fingerless mitts to help try to stay warm. At this event, my friend and I can also vend, so yarn, knits, soaps, and salves will accompany my spinning wheel and baskets. When demonstrating in costume, I have a canvas seated wooden folding chair (a period camp reproduction) and a Jacob sheep pelt that I sit on. If I get too cold, the pelt can be in my lap.
After this weekend, there are a couple of weeks off, then the craft shows for the holidays begin in earnest with Catawba Valley Farmers Market Holiday event on November 23rd. The Blacksburg Farmers Market Holiday markets the first 3 Saturday’s in December. The first two Saturday’s and Sunday’s in December, I will also be back at Wilderness Road Regional Museum in period clothing, demonstrating spinning and vending at their Christmas Bazaar in the old German Barn during the Wassailing and tours of the museum in Christmas greens and candles.
This is such a fun time of year, never knowing what the weather may bring or the crowds that may show up.