Black Sheep Gathering
Check back March 1, 2018 for the entire website to be updated with more information on this year's show and workshops. Thank you.


The Spinner’s Lead takes place in the Livestock Show Arena after the Potluck on Saturday night of the Gathering. Entrants wear their handspun garments or creations while leading a sheep, goat or alpaca or carrying a bunny.

The event is open to all producers and spinners of wool, mohair, alpaca, or rabbit fiber. If you wish to enter, please read the rules carefully.

Complete the Entry Form and mail it to the address on the form. We need a full description of your entry, including technique of construction, breed of animal and information about the artist and exhibitor.

Mail-in entries will be accepted until June 15th, however forms will be available at the information table until noon Friday.

If you don’t have livestock entered in the Black Sheep Gathering animal shows, we can arrange for you to borrow an animal. However, these arrangements must be made in advance so we can find a match for you.

Spinner’s Lead Rules

  • Articles must be 100% handspun, (commercial warp or canvas OK)
  • Entries may be hand or machine knit, hooked, woven, crocheted or felted.
  • The articles may have been completed at any time; it is not limited to items made in the past year.
  • Someone other than the entrant may make the article, although the maker of entered article must be identified in the entry form.
  • Articles must be at least 80% wool, mohair, alpaca or rabbit.
  • Garments should represent the breed of the animal being led.
  • Entrant doesn’t have to own the animal used in the lead.
  • Only animals entered in the Gathering are eligible for the Spinner’s Lead.

Judging Criteria for Spinner’s Lead

Originality and difficulty of design   30 points
Color, fit and style   25 points
Suitability of garment to use of fiber   20 points
Handspun by entrant   5 points
Knit, woven, etc., by entrant   5 points
Overall appearance of entrant and animal   10 points
Animal owned by entrant   5 points

NOTE: In case of a tie, judges will award bonus points on the basis of originality.


Judge: Scott Culver
Corvallis, Oregon

Hello, my name is Scott Culver. I am a second generation sheep- herder. My father, Morris Culver, introduced me to the Romney sheep business at an early age. Read More.


Judge: Dr. Fred Speck
Kerrville, Texas

Dr. Fred Speck is a 5th generation Texas Angora goat producer. His grandfather gave him eight registered angora does and one buck to start his own herd when he was eight years old. Read More.


Judge: Judith MacKenzie
Forks, Washington

Judith MacKenzie has worked as a textile artist for many years. As a spinner, dyer and weaver, she has traveled and worked throughout North America and abroad. Read More.


Judge: Melissa Harris
Surprise Valley, California

Melissa Harris has been involved in fiber arts for 30+ years. She learned to knit from her Welsh Grandmother and later became interested in spinning and dyeing in the late 1970s. Read More.