Where cashmere and wool come from

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A couple weekends ago, my niece and brother-in-law joined me for a morning at the annual Shepherd’s Harvest Festival in Lake Elmo. I had never attended before (last year was the first time I remember hearing about it, actually) and I had strong desire to see all of the various kinds of sheep — to know more about the fibers I knit, of course.

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There was a lot of fiber spinning and spinning supplies going on. I have a drop spindle, but I’ve never tried it out. Maybe someday? I currently have too much to knit to want to try spinning, too.

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In the first barn we visited, Hannie tried out weaving with roving right away!

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Fleece judging was also in progress.

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We went over to the sheep barn before going into the other vendor-filled barns. Everyone was either already sheared, or in line to be sheared during the event. The photo above is a Gotland sheep. The photo below is cashgora goats: cross-bred cashmere and angora!

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Cashmere goat.

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Jacobs sheep.

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Hannie pet a romney lamb. (I think — it was so soft!)

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Leicester Longwool sheep.

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Romney sheep (this time I’m positive).

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Very hungry tunis sheep.

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Karakul sheep.

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Lincoln longwool.

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Wanna buy a cashmere goat-gnawed walking stick?

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We watched a sheepdog herding demo from afar.

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Then we met some llamas!

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Hannie got to walk a 6 year old llama named Susie through the llama obstacle course. That was fun to watch!

Hannie walks a llama from Amy Dalrymple on Vimeo.

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We also found several rabbits when we went to look at the vendor booths.

I didn’t have much time to consider yarn buying, but perhaps next year I’ll plan more time for browsing. It was mostly just fun to meet all of the different fibers animals this time around.

(Note: I did buy one skein that Hannie picked out. Hand-dyed purple with sparkles. It’s becoming a pair of legwarmers!)

Knitting two at a time using magic loop. Good thing because I can already tell I wouldn't have completed the second one if I was knitting them individually.