Sunday, July 15, 2007

A ranching we will go, a ranching we will go...with yarn content

Up for adventure on a Saturday afternoon, the Pattern Whisperer and I headed off for the backroads and a ranch about an hour south of town. Once off the highway, we wandered down farm roads like this, under a brooding sky...
past a little church...
down a dusty street...and ended up in front of this shop...through the screen door and into this... Walls and walls of colorful cones of various yarns, past a display of cones and cones of Zephyr, tripping over looms and wheels and various spinnerly, weaverly goodies. This, fiber friends, is Heritage Arts on the Beaumont Ranch, run by dear Sue, who ducked out of the pictures, and dynamite Lorelei, a German married to a Sicilian and somehow planted in the backwoods of Texas.
This is barefoot Lorelei, modeling some roving...
and this is Lorelei doing her Princess Leia imitation with linen roving waiting to be spun. One inquiry about spinning and Lorelei hopped up grabbing spindles and roving and quickly answered some of my burning questions about the art. Easy peasy! If peasants in the Himalayas can spin while walking down Mount Everest, then why can't I?
And then I stopped dead in front of this display. Well, to be honest, this is the display after we raided it. And this was only one of many clusters and bags and boxes of various goodies. There was buffalo and possum and cashmere and silk and merino and alpaca and cotton and mixed fiber and even a bag of perfectly nasty feeling nylon to be spun in with the merino or whatever for stronger socks. Fleeces and pencil rovings and carded bats. From the full of lanolin to the most beautifully prepared.
This fellow observed it all. Lorelei said she had two old goats and one of them was her husband! Now Lorelei claims she doesn't really knit, and though Sue seems to keep a pair of socks on the needle, her passions are elsewhere, so all of our ravings were met with tolerant smiles. But humor us they did. They are weavers and spinners and braiders and Civil War re-enactors. They actually have a workshop coming up where for two or three solid days, they will prepare Civil War costumes from scratch. I suppose that includes dyeing and spinning and cutting and sewing. They say it is great fun, everyone is welcome, and there is even a cot or two somewhere for those that need a bit of shut-eye. This place is crammed with goodies, it is tiny, but that doesn't seem to slow them down.
Last time I visited them, I so extased over this lovely ferny plant that Lorelei gave me some seeds, which I took home to plant and every single one germinated and grew to about 20 feet tall. These are Cypress Vines, feathery but hardy. This time she had a bag of white, red and pink seeds ready and waiting for me when I walked in the door.
Another view, OK, so I love this plant.
And this is how they light the place up at night...
and this was a lovely old typical house that had been transplanted to the property. Love the roofline and the porches.
Notice anything strange about this horse, mule, animal? Can you see the seemingly painted eyelashes in this small photo?
And does this one remind you of something?
Well here's the daddy! Not exactly what you would expect on a ranch in Texas, and the two offspring above are zebra/donkeys called Zedonks, oh you of curious minds. There were alpacas, too, but for some reason none of their photos came out. The Beaumont Ranch is outside of this little town of Grandview, as you can see, 11 miles from MayPearl and 22 from Waxahachie.
And we ate tacos here at La Campasina, the only eatery in town and quite good if not fancy. We pulled out our knitting at the table and everyone in the restaurant had to come see what we were doing. The mother/cook was quite cross-eyed and spoke no English, but she loved what we were doing, especially when I showed off my birthday chick, who is waiting for a name. He/she (not decided yet) was a huge success.
Pattern Whisperer made for a great companion and partner in crime. Since we both bought new spindles and roving, I can see we are committed to mastering this spinning thing. I scored a KniddyKnoddy, the last one, a magazine on turning my roving into sock yarn, and various other treasures. Since I got home so late, I had no good light for photos. So with the next post, you will see the newest goodies. It was so fun, I shall not wait so long for my next trip back. They have a spinning/gossip day once a month, and sock yarn dyeing happens there, too. I'm going!

10 comments:

Micki said...

What a great day! I can't wait to see your loot.

Jeri said...

Now, you be careful with your colorful descriptions. We may have been unfaithful to some extent to our yarn stashes but buying fiber and spindles is not a crime. Have you any twisted fiber 'round your new spindle?

Jo at Celtic Memory Yarns said...

Oh why wasn't I there, why wasn't I there? I WANT to go there RIGHT NOW! When did you say that dyeing workshop is on?

bookgrump said...

It sounds like you had a great time! I can't wait to see your prizes (and what you spin it into!).

Connie said...

Your birthday chick is so so cute!

Awaiting pictures eagerly - ay, with bated breath!

Carla said...

I live in Texas and I wanna go! This looks like such a wonderful place. Out of Waxahachie, you say? And... we used to have a cypress vine. Lovely plant.

cindy said...

I'm in Texas too, only an hour from Waxahachie, and I've never found this place. But you can bet your last pair of cowboy boots I will. And keep an eye on that cypress vine. Mine threatened to take over the world. Given the right water conditions, they become megalomaniacs.

Connie said...

In case no one has told you this recently enough (5 seconds ago would be about right), Angeluna, you find the best links! All hail the Link-Finder!

And I shall have to add *yarn finder* to that too. Happy knitting, spinning, everything!

On a related note, have you *seen* the link in Jo at CMY's latest post? My reaction was highly unoriginal -- the stash looks like a yarn store. Amazing.

Angeluna said...

Dear Connie, Cindy and Carla, I wish I could respond to you but I have no way to get e-mail addresses through blogger. Unless someone can tell me how.

Follow the link in my post for Heritage Arts, they give directions on their page. I will give a follow up description, clarification of what they are about in a few days. Just too busy right now.

rho said...

Oh loved everything in this post but I love love love the Cypress Vines - Somehow I don't think they would do well in NY would they - I will have to lust after them from afar...