1. Do you raise fiber, animals or plant, or are a fiber user only? If you raise animals/plants...what do you raise?
I have two llamas (Garland and Mahogany) and three soay sheep -- Rigel, Meteor, and Deneb.
2. What's your favorite fiber & why? Which fiber do you like the least & why?
I love fine, bouncy wools -- CVM is a particular favorite since it is a rare breed on top of that. Most of my least-liked are color choices that aren't a current favorite -- so I stuff it in the back of the stash and expect to like it in a few years.
3. What's your worst habit relating to your fiber?
Procrastinating -- doing all the legwork to prepare, study, purchase, and arrange fiber but not carrying through -- scouring that fleece, spinning that roving, knitting that project, learning to weave! The saddest part of this is that I have not yet spun _my_ Soay fiber -- I've washed and carded two of Rigel's fleeces, but have only spun other Soay, not mine. And only about 4 ounces of Garland's llama fleece has been combed, a few yards spun (and that was to repair a moth-attacked alpaca sweater, LOL).
4. In what ways does your fiber habit make you a better person?
Fiber makes me calmer, gives me a sense of perspective on getting things done. It also makes me more willing to do things right -- anything, from cooking to talking to someone.
5. How would your life be different if you had to give up fiber?
Aaaaahhghhgggg. It would be alot more dull; there'd be less people in it -- a room full of spinners I can handle, but a room full of foodies? or football maniacs? eeek.
6. What tools, yarns, books or gadgets can't you live without?
Anything by Mabel Ross -- she's my professor-in-a-book! My spindles, my one-yard cedar niddy-noddy, my sock machine. I shudder to think about "retirement" life when we start travelling -- what will I take with me? Maybe I can layer 3 outfits so I can put more fibery things in my suitcase!
7. What was your first fiber project?
Spinning -- grey sticky romney roving and white slippery mohair roving, spun each one, plied them together, and knit up a felted hat. It has a terrific halo and is wonderful for deep winter wear.
But when I was a child I did alot of fibery things, knitting, embroidery, cross-stitch, sewing, you name it. I remember (and stil have!) latch-hooking a rose pillow cover. As an adult, I dug it up and knit an entrelac other-side for it, now it's on my hall settee, much loved by the cats, and me.
8. Do you have any fiber mentors? Who are they and why?
My local guild! they are awesome -- Susan and Cathy really "got me over the hump" when I was learning to spin. Connie models every day what a successful fiber artist looks like. Dixie and Kym are superb spinners. And more folks, too!
9. Are you a member of any guilds? If so, which one(s)?
My locals are Northwest Regional Spinner's Guild, Area 2005; and North Olympic Shuttle and Spindle Guild. Then there are the virtual guilds of email -- those are terrific; I especially love spindlers, splindlitis, TechSpin, spinning_camp, and others.
10. What's the most exciting fiber project you've undertaken?
My planned-not-really-progressed one to weave a twill scarf with a Shetland (from my own Shetland sheep) warp and Cashmere (from my own Cashmere whether) weft. Gotta get further than washing the fleece on that one -- maybe I will start the "practice scarf" this year, in alpaca commercial yarn.
11. How many people have you mentored? In which fiber arts?
I've helped alot of people at shows, from my booth. Lots of drop spindle lessons! I know I was/am a mentor to my now-best-friend, we met at the NwRSA meeting and it all went from there! She's a terrific crocheter, so it goes both ways.
12. Do you consider fiber crafts to be functional or artistic?
Yes. It depends how you use them. My work is mostly functional with beauty.
13. What, mainly, do you make? Do you keep, or give away, most of your projects?
Small things -- hats, mittens, gloves, small shawls. There's a sweater in my future, and I knit sweaters as a child. Most are for me and my family, immediate and distant, and my spinning friends. Sometimes I sell items, but not often; more often things like that are barter, with other artisans (soaps, candles that sort of thing).
14. Are fiber crafts an avocation or vocation for you?
Both. I love it so much, I am living my joy. It is also my occupation, in the supplier frame, at The Bellwether. People don't seem to realize that The Bellwether is "just me" -- one person! It's a blast, though, and I love when they learn that and seem amazed by it. It's so much fun!
15. How many people are you committed to being a mentor for in 2007?
As many as will have me! I'm teaching a spinning class in February, so this may be a "big" year for me. And I started and am keeping going a study group using the book PluckyFluff. It's terrific fun!