I count myself lucky to have a fiber community in my area, the Springwater Fiber Arts School. I live in Maryland, but Springwater in Alexandria, Virginia, is only about 15 miles away and the route, all of which is along the picturesque George Washington Memorial Parkway, is a beautiful drive.
Springwater is supported by grants, donations, a well-stocked yarn-and-fiber store and, of course, the school. Donations are sold at the store or used in its outreach program. Recently, it found itself with massive bags of scoured fiber donations. Springwater's Sylvia Delmar and Linda Hurt, who teach spinning and weaving, respectively, recently set about to further prepare the fibers by picking and carding, and dyeing them before putting them out for sale.
In the photos are Linda, working on her Pat Green Triple Picker, and behind her, Sylvia, carding away.
Linda shows how to feed wool into the Triple Picker safely. There are 600 long, sharp nails waiting to claw at you if you're not careful.
If you live in the DC-Maryland-Virginia area and have fiber supplies, tools and equipment sitting idle at home, consider donating them to Springwater to support the school, and avail of tax deductions. The Springwater Super Bowl Sale is coming up on February 4. This is when designated items are sold at 60% off when the shop opens at 7 am. At 8 am, the discount go down to 50%, then at 9 am and the rest of the day, shoppers get 40% off.
If you are thinking of getting spinning and/or weaving equipment, this is a good time try your luck at bargains. Loyal shoppers are known to camp outside the store as early as 5 am with their mugs of coffee.