The Southeastern Animal Fiber Fair, held annually Halloween weekend at the WNC Agricultural Center in Fletcher, marks the unofficial start of sweater season in the Southern Appalachians. It also brings together a top-notch assortment of our area’s most high-profile makers: fiber artists.
“Creating a distinction between high-quality homespun fiber and store-bought imitations is at the heart of the Southeastern Animal Fiber Fair,” writes Jen Nathan Orris in an article in this month’s Bold Life. (http://www.boldlife.com/from-farm-to-yarn/) Orris talked to felter Faith Lane-Johnson of Three Girls Fiber Company, a small Etowah-based operation that turns the wool of its Cotswold sheep into blankets and other heirlooms.
“Our animals really do make our clothing,” said Lane-Johnson. At SAFF, that “farm-to-yarn” philosophy is displayed in its entire spectrum, from vendors’ wares back to the real llamas, sheep, and alpacas that hobby farmers bring to the event. The event tends to be heavy on live demonstrations, spinning the ancient textile arts into the future.
The Southeastern Animal Fiber Fair happens October 30, 31, and November 1 at the WNC Agricultural Center in Fletcher. 9am-6pm Friday and Saturday, 9am-4pm Sunday. $3/general admission. www.saffsite.org