Sunday, April 26, 2009

I've increased the fiber in my diet

To say that I've increased the fiber in my diet is an understatement. I just got home from Stitches South in Atlanta. It was amazing!

(Note: If you are allergic to wool, you may want to quit reading and go get a snack.)

Day 1 - We arrived at the convention center, checked in and grabbed a quick lunch. I attended a class on Japanese short rows taught by Susanna Hansson, it was life-changing! (Maybe not life changing but maybe more like technique-changing.) The market opened at 5pm for a 'preview' for those who were registered for classes. I thought I had prepared myself for the sensory overload, nope. I walked around on a meandering route, not really sure where to begin. I stumbled upon the Creatively Dyed booth and was able to get my bearings. Diane greated me with a huge smile and hug! I bought this:


8 ounces of some of the most amazing spinning fiber I've touched. It's SeaWool and is 70% wool, 30% seacell. The colorway was killer and it was the last one. It took me a long time to decide on the purchase. It wasn't easy parting with the cash I'd been stashing away since October.

By this time the market was about to close. I met up with Liana and Martha, we had a nice dinner and then crashed at the hotel.

Day 2 - I'm not going to give you an hour by hour recap of the weekend. I pretty much figure that the only reason you've read this far is because you want to see what else I bought. Let me just say this, after that first purchase at Creatively Dyed, it got easier to part with my cash stash.

Next purchase: a sweater's worth of Kauni. I've been lusting (yes lusting) after this yarn for several years ever since I had seen Stephanie Pearl-McPhee's blog about a sweater she knit out out of it. I know, I know! I live in Nashville, why in the hell did I buy wool? Some things just can't be helped. Let's not dwell on this...shall we move on?



Then it was back to Creatively Dyed for this: Beaches sock yarn. This is amazing. It looks kind of strange in a hank like this, but knitted up, it creates the most stunning pattern. She rocks!


Shopping was interrupted for a class on traditional knitting stitches and then I dodged back into the market for a little something for my spinning wheel from Susan Preuss of Basket Artistry.


Day 3 - YARN SHOP CRAWL! So much happened on during the yarn shop crawl that I'm going to save it for the next post. I hope that's ok, but I don't want to go overboard. (As if...)

Day 4 - The last day. I had another wonderful class on how to calculate the patterning on hand dyed yarn and then it was one last trip to the market. I had one more stop to make--Lisa Souza! I made two purchases. The first was a fiber batt that I'd been eyeing all weekend. A super fine merino in chocolate with sparkles. Can you understand why I had to have it? Chocolate? Sparkles? Fiber? (Duh!) The other is a 1500-yard skein of baby alpaca lace weight. (Yikes! Lace!)


Then we drove home. So, here I am, totally exhausted, wondering what project I'll start first and admiring what a lovely job the elves did mowing my lawn. I got it so rough!

Friday, April 24, 2009

In Stitches!

So, did you notice the countdown clock? Look slightly to your right. Notice something different? It's not counting down anymore! That means I'M AT STITCHES SOUTH!!

We got here yesterday around lunch time. We checked in, grabbed a quick lunch and then it was class time. I took a really interesting class on Japanese short rows. They are magic! (I'll post photos later.) Then we spent the evening at the Market. I can't even describe how overwhelming it was to see all that yarn, fiber, gadgets, buttons, jewelry, and baskets! I can't send photos of the Market because photography is not allowed.

It's too bad LeAnn and Debby aren't here with us! We toasted you last night at dinner. We miss you!!

Karen, I got the brochure for Stitches Midwest. I don't care what it takes, WE ARE GOING! Have a yard sale, auction off a kidney, whatever it takes.

I need to cut this short and get going for the day. I'm in the hotel lobby (only place with wifi) and am surrounded by a middle school concert band. Ah, band trips! I remember those days.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Don't look, it's not pretty...


This blog may contain crude indecent language and graphic violence. If you're easily offended by explicit photographs of knitting gone wrong, you should log off the internet and go to your safe

Saturday. For those of you who lurk on Facebook or Twitter, you know that Zack had a double header yesterday. It was a beautiful day for baseball and it gave me an opportunity to knit for 4 straight hours, guilt-free.
But we're not here to discuss baseball.

We're here to discuss this:
Do you see it? Right smack-dab in the middle of the photograph. About 12 rows down. Maybe the arrow will help:
You were warned.

I found this little misplaced decrease at about 7pm last night. I tried ripping out just that portion of the sweater. I've done this before with great success, but never when I've had decreases, YOs and K2TOGs going on. To make this even worse, this is the decrease in the front of the cardigan.

I got to the misplaced decrease and was able to reroute the wayward stitch. Knitting back up through the pattern was a bitch not fun and it looked like hell crap when I got back to the top. So I swore like a knitter who won't let a stupid @#$&^*ing pile of lime green yarn get the best of her on a Saturday night sailor, pulled out the needles and ripped back to the YO/K2TOG row. The yarn in my lap resembled green ramen noodles. Man, I was pissed mildly upset.

Sunday. It's all better now. I'm happy with my decision to rip and reknit. I'm not going to beat myself up any more. It's a new day and I have a lot of knitting to do. (Please ignore the dog hair on the sofa...I do.)

Upcoming events:

Stitches South 2009 (in Atlanta). I'm driving down with Liana and Martha on Thursday morning, which is why I want to get this cardigan finished. We'll be there through Sunday. My expectations are pretty high. If I have the opportunity, I'll blog. If not, I'll update via Twitter.

The Tennessee Fiber Festival is coming up in May at the Dickson County Fairgrounds. I'm teaching a finishing class. My first foray into the teaching aspect of knitting. Whee!! I enjoy a well-finished handknit so this class will be fun. (I'm starting to get nervous...but a couple of friends have agreed to let me practice on them.) Come on out to the festival if you're nearby!

Later, folks! I have a lot of knitting to get done today.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

In Which There are 10 Days Left

Whoa! Only 10 days left until Stitches South 2009!

That means I have less than 10 days to:

  • finish knitting my Sitcom Chic sweater (in lime green)
  • weave in the rest of the ends on my cabaret raglan
  • find the ultimate knitting project to take with me
  • find a back-up ultimate knitting project in case the ultimate knitting project ticks me off
  • plot my plan of attack for the market floor
  • buy a few more travel space bags (I plan on bringing back some stash enhancements)
  • decide on the perfect project for which to buy souvenir yarn (no snowglobe for this gal!)
  • figure out if I should "tweet" or "plurk" while at Stitches (sounds like maybe I should take some Rolaids, too)
  • pack

The toughest thing I'm working on right now is trying to decide on the souvenir project. There are so many lovely patterns out there that trying to come up with "the one" is proving difficult, if not impossible. I'm working on a top 10 (or 11) list. What should I knit? Clapotis? Cable Down Raglan? Central Park Hoodie? They are all on my list. And they're are pretty heavy contenders. Then there's the February Lady cardigan, Mr. Green Jeans, Hey Teach...maybe a lace shawl? See what I mean? The possibilities are endless.

So you see, I'm planning on buy some serious yarn. It's been a long time since I've made a major yarn purchase and I've been saving up for this for months. I'm going to do it right.

Go big or go home!

Thursday, April 2, 2009

I'd Make a Gin and Tonic...

...if I only had some tonic.

The liquid options in my fridge: Sunny D, milk, flat ginger ale, white wine that was uncorked about 6 weeks ago, and some blue Gatorade. Nothing fizzy and nothing tonic-y. Drat.

I would have stopped at the store on the way home, but we're having a typical spring bout of tornadoes and flooding (seriously). And here I am, stuck in the house with no tonic, but I have some really good gin. That makes it even worse. This is pathetic.

It should probably be mentioned that my parents arrive tomorrow for a weekend visit. No countdown this time because I can only do what I can do. Besides, housework just cuts into my knitting/spinning time. So I'm not really going to freak out over anything...well...except the garage. Maybe I'll just board up all doors and windows leading to the garage and pretend it doesn't exist. What garage? No....I never had a garage. Have you been skipping your medication? You must be thinking of Karen. She has a garage. Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain.

I must get back to preparing for their visit, and I think a sheep just exploded in the guest room. Dang, I wish the tonic fairy would show up. Maybe if I put the bottle of gin under my pillow....