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Let’s Cuddle With Sheep, Llamas and Goats at Fiber Arts Festival

It might snow this Sunday but that’s another reason to come to the fifth annual Fiber Arts Festival this weekend at the Powerhouse.

Screen Shot 2015-01-28 at 8.34.25 AMKnit1 Oxford and Yoknapatawpha Arts Council are both hosting the annual Fiber Arts festival. There will be classes and workshops for all levels of skills from novice to experienced artist. One does not need extensive knowledge of fiber to enjoy the merchandise or the animals there.

There will be goats, sheep and llamas there. The llamas are provided by Nathan and Sandy Shaddinger who have a llama farm in north Mississippi, a short drive just outside of New Albany. The couple said to The Invitation Oxford that the first time they participated in a community fair with their llamas, people were too afraid to come near them.

There are several classes available for those who want to learn more and perhaps make their own clothing and blankets. The schedule below reflects only the classes that are currently available for registration. Those interested will need to call Knit1 at 662-238-2829 or email them at knit1oxford@gmail.com to register for these classes.

Friday, January 30

Saori Weaving Demonstration costs $18 to attend but people will learn not only the SAORI weaving philosophy but will design and weave their own wraps at the loom. A range of weaving techniques will be taught and at the end of the workshop the students will leave with a finished piece of cloth they created during the workshop. The workshop will be available all day, every hour from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. It will also be taught Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Saori - Knit1 OxfordThe 9 a.m. Tomato Heel class taught by Jennifer Miller will cost $40 but people who actively knit socks will enjoy learning how to master the tomato heel technique.

Crotchet 101 costs $40 to attend and those arriving to the 11 a.m. class will need to bring smooth, light-colored worsted weight yarn and a crotchet hook size H or larger. This class is recommended for “absolute beginners,” with people who need a refresher and any one else interested. The class spans three hours in one session. Finger crotchet, hook crotchet and using a chain and single crotchet will be taught along with an intro to patterns. The students can learn how to make a coaster or a washcloth to take home.

For $40 students can learn how to make a barn-raised knitting quilt. Those attending the 2 p.m. class need to bring an US 3 double pointed needles, sock yarn and markers. The students will learn to work with afghans made of sock weight yarn as well as knitting and piecing together 7.5″ squares. It’s a good way for experienced quilters to use leftover yarn.

There will be a reception at 5:30 p.m. that Friday evening. Jennifer Miller, a knitting and crocheting instructor from Newnan, Georgia, will talk about working with colors in her lecture “Building Your Color Confidence.” She will address basic color theory and combining, her personal journey with color emotions and experimenting with new combinations. The reception is free for all to attend.

Saturday, January 31

shawl shaping knit1oxfordThe 9 a.m. class focuses on creating a striped optical illusion scarf. For $40 registration the students can learn chart reading and intarsia techniques. Required materials are two color choices of yarn measured at 200 yards each and appropriate needles (preferably straight needles size 5).

The festival will have the 10 a.m. class on the latest weaving craze: zoom loom. For $60 registration students can experiment with the zoom loom they will take home. In the class basics for making 4×4″ squares on the zoom loom as well as discussion on joining techniques, project ideas and reference materials.

There will be another 10 a.m. class that will be a short introduction into using and stitching fabric to create a bird on a burlap canvas. The registration is $50.

There will be yet another 10 a.m. class on beginner’s level of tatting. For $50 students will learn two halves of the tatting stitch, how to create a picot for decoration and sewing fabric rings all with a butterfly pin. Materials will be provided and the students can take home a tatting shuttle. The class size will be small so registration is limited.

This 10 a.m. class will give students a hands-on experience in dyeing wool fabric for use in rug hooking, wool applique and quilting. ProChem dyes will be used. For $35 plus additional costs for materials the students will learn how to abrash, spot-dye and overdye textures. Wearing old clothes is recommended for this class.

The 12:30 class will explain and demonstrate the blanket stitch on flannel fabric. Participants will learn the proper technique of holding crotchet needle and thread.

HapShawl knit1oxfordAt 2 p.m. students will figure out the mystery of Tunisian simple stitch (also known as afghan stitch) and its many variations including a simple lace patterns. Participants should be comfortable with either basic crotchet or basic knitting before tackling this odd yet lovely project. The recommended materials are smooth, light-colored worsted or DK weight yarn with a crotchet hook at size J or larger without a thumb rest. Price of registration is $40.

There will be another 2 p.m. class on shawl shaping. For $50 the participants can learn how to design their own shawls without math or charts. Basics of shawl shapes, texture and color combining will be taught as well as basic geometry of the triangle, crescent and heart-shaped shawl with focus on personal design. Topics of easy lace and picot edgings will also be covered. Participants should know how to knit, purl and make basic increases from yarnover as well as working back and forth on circular needles. Materials required are two colors of coordinating fingering weight yarn with double point needles size 5, size 5 and 6 24 inch circular needles and stitch markers.

The third class at 2 p.m. will focus on basics of needle felting by participants creating a hanging fairy or an angel. The felting needles are sharp so children enrolled should be at least eight years old with an adult accompanying and 10 years old to be allowed to participate without an adult escort. All materials will be provided and the students can take their fairy or angel home with them.

The fourth class at 2 p.m. teaches weaving: basket weaving. For $40 the participants will learn how to make a rounded woven bottom style basket. The technique is challenging but promises to be easy once the basics are learned.

Sunday, February 1

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe first 10 a.m. class will be needle felting with participants learning how to make a small penguin or a ladybug. All materials are provided and the participants can bring their little creature home with them.

The second 10 a.m. class will be on Kool-Aid dyeing. For $40 students can learn how to create permanent colors on yarn without need for separate pots or open fires. All dyes, one skein of yarn per student and rubber gloves and a microwave will be provided. Additional yarn will be for sale from the instructor. Old clothes or an apron are recommended wear.

This third 10 a.m. class requires homework! Students will learn to knit the traditional Shetland Hap Shawl with jumper (fingering) weight in the natural colors of Shetland bred sheep. For $50 registration the instructor will discuss traditional techniques and color placement as well as adding little twists to the traditional design. Students will work on a swatch for the basics of modern Hap Shawl construction. The class will wrap up with discussion on how to block / dress a Hap Shawl. The homework will be provided via either the Knit1 Oxford shop or within email after registration.

This 1 p.m. class will teach faced method of applique for $15. Students can learn how to use applique by hand or machine stitching as well as discussing various embroidery stitches that can be used to embellish the top and edges of the appliques.

The second 1 p.m. class will teach how to make the centuries-old craft of thread-covered buttons: Dorset Buttons. These buttons were used to decorate clothes or made in jewelry before the Industrial Revolution. For $40 students can revitalize the tradition by making one Dorset button and a jump-start on the second Dorset button which can be turned into a small bouquet using French knots. All materials are provided with a detailed handout. This class is at beginner level.

The third 1 p.m. class will be egg basket weaving basics for a registration fee of $40.

There will be several vendors from within and outside of Mississippi selling their merchandise. Visit Knit1 Oxford’s website for more information on those vendors.

All in all Knit1 Oxford is excited for this weekend. And y’all should be too!

Callie Daniels is a staff reporter for HottyToddy.com. She can be reached at callie.daniels@hottytoddy.com.

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