Each year on the last Saturday of March the Log Cabin Spinners host an annual Spin In at the Templin's Red Lion Inn in Post Falls, Idaho. [caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="829"] Our booth at the Spin In[/caption] Every year is a little different, but there's always a marketplace and a spinning area. We hosted a booth featuring our spinning fiber and spindles and a few other fun things like our rigid heddle looms. It's always fun to check out the other vendors and see what everyone is interested in. There are always farms with their raw fleeces, people selling yarn, and of course lots and lots of fiber. Mohair, alpaca, different types of wool - you name it, it's probably in the marketplace. And lots of different preps - unprepped, roving, batts, and lots of handpainted braided top. [caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="466"] The marketplace.[/caption] The main feature of the event is the spinning area. One section of the conference hall is reserved for the spinners to come and spin. There are wheel spinners and spindle spinners. They sit in large circles and smaller groupings and spend some or all of the day spinning. It's a great way to meet new people, learn more about spinning, and reconnect with other spinning friends. We got to see some beautiful spinning wheels, and some beautiful spinning. [caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="466"] Lots of spinners[/caption] [caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="466"] Spinners spinning.[/caption] [caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="466"] Small group of spinners.[/caption] I didn't bring my spindle with me this year. I think next year I'll make sure to bring it along and make time to sit and spin for a while. I did wander around the marketplace quite a bit. I got to meet some lovely fiber producers and see some tools I'd never seen in person. One booth had a picker, and they were using it to prep fiber on site. A picker is used to get out most of the vegetable matter and fluff the fibers from a clean fleece. After it goes through the picker it is ready to be combed or carded. [caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="829"] The picker in use.[/caption] In one of the smaller rooms they had demonstrations of different types of wheels. They even had a great wheel, which is also known as a walking wheel. [caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="829"] Great wheel demonstration.[/caption] The great wheel is a type of early spinning wheel. It's similar to the kind of spinning wheel you see in the Disney version of Sleeping Beauty. On a great wheel you turn the wheel manually, which turns the spindle. You then have to wind the spun fiber around the spindle, much like you do with hand spindles. Modern wheels use a treadle to turn the wheel and a flyer winds the spun fiber onto a bobbin. I always enjoy the neat things available at the Spin In. The marketplace is a great place to find fibers that you wouldn't normally have in person access to. And it's always fun to see the fiber enthusiasts in the area gathered in one place. If you're local, did you make it to the Spin In? What was your favorite part? What other fiber festivals do you like to go to?
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