Saturday, September 23, 2006

Wool You Be My Neighbor?

Do you see the person in the above picture? No no no... not me (the tall one), but the other one. Yes. That's Kimmie. And she is potentially definitely one of the most sweetest, generousest, kindest, wonderfulest people that I know.

Last Sunday, Kimmie and I went to the
Wool Gathering in Yellow Springs, Ohio. This event is comparable to the Great Lakes Fiber Show that Kimmie, Nicole, and I had attended this past Memorial Day weekend. This one was a smidge smaller than the other show, but this one took place at Young's Jersey Dairy, a popular hangout from when I was in college. So not only did we get scrumptious fibery goodness, we also got ice cream. Could a day get any better?

It could indeed. Let me back up a bit. Kimmie picked me up Sunday morning, and when I went to get in her car, there was a little gift bag on the seat. It was an early birthday present from Kimmie! I opened it to find a (creative, ATKIM-automated teller Kimmie) gift certificate to the Wool Gathering so that I could get something that I wanted while I was there. How cool is that? And then she told me that if there was a star on the back of the gift certificate, it was good for a free lunch. Shockingly enough, I had a star on the back of my certificate! Score!

When we got to Yellow Springs, we did a pretty good job of going through most of the vendors before making any decisions. I did buy some 100% silk pretty early on, but for $2 per 100 yard skein, it was pretty tough to leave there. Oooooh... shiny.

(If you were a fiber lover, and you were in the middle of interviewing for your dream editing job, would this sign offend you? Yeah, me too.)

We wandered around a bit more and found a sheepdog demonstration. I was pretty impressed watching this dog crouch behind the sheep, watching to make sure they stayed in a group.

He had to run around them a couple times to make sure all the sheep stayed in line, until he finally got those little woolies over the bridge...

And into the pool. I love the smell of wet wool in the afternoon, don't you?

At the Yarns & Fabrications booth, you could Kool-Ade dye a skein of yarn for only $5, and Kimmie treated so we could both dye some yarn. Hers turned out to be a pretty red/orange color, and mine is the butterfly vomit delightful variegated in this picture.

I liked it better when I got it home and dry and all balled up, because I remembered this lime green Kool-aid dyed yarn I'd bought at the fiber festival in Wooster. Don't they go together well? I think I'll use the two together for something. I haven't decided what yet. I could felt them, too.

There's a new shop opening soon in Shreve, Ohio, which is near where my mom lives, and also happens to be where I went to elementary school. We first met the owner back in May, and we saw her again in Yellow Springs. Her shop carries some really interesting Japanese yarns, and I had to try one out. This one is a 100% cotton yarn, sort of eye-lashy, and I think that all wrapped up it looks like a haystack.

Kimmie, however, convinced me that it looks sort of like coconut. I remembered I had some fingering weight chocolate brown yarn at home, and I've decided to combine the two yarns, probably for a baby hat. It will look like a Crohn's Medicine hat!

I also got some really cute buttons for a really cute baby sweater that I'll soon be starting for a
really cute baby's birthday at the end of November. But I can't show you those. Not yet anyway.

My favoritest, most happiest, gorgeousest, most beautifulest purchase, though, was this sock yarn from Artyarns. It's their Ultramerino sock yarn in potentially definitely the prettiest sock yarn color combination I've ever seen. This will definitely be socks for your very own drunken monkey, I just have to find the perfect pattern. (Oh, and finish those other dozen SWPs I have hanging around.)

Mmm, seriously.

All in all it was a very fun day with a very fun friend. We got to see Lisa and Wendy (hi Wendy!) and Nicole (hi Nicole!) while we were there, we had a great lunch with some screaming children and crazy old people at the Golden Jersey Inn, and we even got to listen to some quality music in the car. Hehe. Thanks again, Kimmie, for your generosity and fiber-excitement... both of which made the Wool Gathering an even greater experience. You're the best!!

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Two Pair Down, A Million To Go

Remember this? I have recovered somewhat and two of those pairs of socks can no longer claim monkey-on-my-back status. Behold:

The yarn is Trekking colorway 100, and the pattern is Toe Jazz from Fiber Trends, with a flat toe instead of a split toe to wear them with flip-flops. Brenda, you'll notice that these socks are in no way identical. I think Trekking does that on purpose.

The yarn is Lana Grossa and I can't remember the colorway. The pattern is from Sensational Socks, but I don't remember which one because I had to return the book to the library ages ago. Brenda, you'll notice that these socks are almost identical. At least in this post I'm only halfway neurotic. Right?

Both pairs were gifted this afternoon at lunch to two of my goodest friends from my former place of employment. Both Kimmie and Leslie have been incredibly supportive to me, not just while I worked there, but especially after I was let go. So to both of you, thanks again for everything.

So what should I start now? (Don't you DARE answer that! I know you know how many works-in-progress I already have! Shame on you for even thinking about something new! Or wait... shame on me!)


A few comments about the comments:

* Joy, fingerless mittens are for people like me who don't have any dexterity while wearing mittens, can't stand to have their fingers trapped in gloves, yet still want to keep their hands somewhat warm in the winter. It's okay if you don't get it.

* GraceGirl, I think you've got something there. Sounds to me like you've thought about it enough that you could do a thesis on the monkey v. tiger argument. I'll always vote monkey. You can use me in your bibliography.

* A long time ago I said something about a prize for the 500th comment. That's still true. This is the last time I'm going to mention it until it happens. We're within 100 comments.


The birthday sweater was a success. Thanks for posting the pictures, Morgan! Go check out her blog for more photos from the 4th birthday.

When I was little, I had an aunt who would send a little something for me on Sean's birthday, and a little something for Sean on my birthday. So the little guy in Washington got a knitted ball to play with while he watches big sister ride her new bike. Good times.

Monday, September 11, 2006

FOs and Fair Findings

Be honest. How many of you didn't think I'd actually finish that felted striped tote? Go ahead. Raise your hand. I know there isn't always a lot of faith in me to finish projects. However, this was one thing I just couldn't put down. I finished it last week and this past Friday evening I felted it at my mom's house.

All the naysayers were right, the Noro (striped part) felted slower than the Lamb's Pride (solid black and solid red), and the felted Noro is sort of flimsy, but I think it will work out just fine since the heavier fabric makes up the bottom and will help to strengthen the top and handles. The Noro is SO much softer after it's been felted. I think it turned out great.

Lest I disappoint you, though, I did start two other projects before finishing the bag.

I started a pair of Fetching fingerless gloves and actually finished the left one. I'm using Rowan Calmer in the coffee shade, and I had to make a few alterations in order to fit my big paw. It's not quite a perfect fit, but I like it anyway and I'll make the right to match.

The other project I started is another
Shedir, another Knitty pattern. Click the link to see the first one I made this past Spring. The new one is in black, and I've just gotten to the first cable row. Not really enough to take a picture of yet.

I was in Wooster again this weekend for the
Wayne County Fair, which boasts itself as the largest junior fair in Ohio. I know it's the best one I've been to in the state. The most important feature, of course, is Pat's Italian Sausage Sandwiches, and a close second is the fried cheese-on-a-stick booth. I found some other goodies this year, too.

I found an alpaca booth! How cool is that? LongHedges Estate established itself in Wayne County about six months ago, and had some really great items in their booth. I was tempted to take home some gorgeous alpaca yarn, but somehow avoided the urge. I did get a cool brochure and a pen! Wooooo!

I also found a young lady (maybe 16 or 17) knitting dishcloths in one of the industrial buildings. She was selling her dishcloths for $2 a piece and she got to keep the profit. I couldn't deny supporting a dishcloth knitter, especially one who would knit at the fair, so both my aunt and I picked out our favorites. This is mine.

I found a cute sleeping piggy with his tongue sticking out. Aww.

I found some cute Jacob Sheep that wouldn't look at me. I think they may have been talking about me.

I found some gorgeous sunflowers that almost looked like a negative image. I couldn't believe what a deep rich color they were.

I found a lap-size log cabin quilt made with what seemed to be neck-tie fabrics. How cool! I wish I could have gotten a better picture of it but it was too far away.

Lastly, I found a really cute monkey hand puppet for only $4. Aww! She's so cute. Hey! Who's that up in the corner? OH... it's Stubby*. He's been crushing on the monkey ever since I brought her home.

This morning I caught them in a strange giraffe/ monkey embrace. Bet you don't see that too often.

*Stubby is a giraffe hand puppet that I bought for my dad when I was in college. He is so named because, well, he has no neck. I thought the identifying feature of giraffes was a very long neck. Stubby, appropriately, has no neck. He is also only one of a number of stuffed giraffes that my dad collected or was given over the years, and I would have to say there were at least a few more of them with no necks. I often have wondered... if there were a battle between long-necked giraffes and no-necked giraffes, who would win?