Monday, February 21, 2011

Madrona 2011

All I can say about yesterday’s Madrona adventure is: wow, what a ride! I took a knitting machine to the biggest hand knitting event in western Washington, uninvited and unsure of the reception I would get. I did my best to find a spot where I could set up to knit and not be in the way or distract from the demonstrators. Judith Marie Smith of the Selah’s Blanket Project immediately invited me to wiggle into their space and join the demonstrators! I was completely surprised and unprepared for this turn of events, but I grabbed my big-girl panties and dove in. Or more like floundered. I did the best I could with zero preparation. Sometimes I felt like it went really well, sometimes I felt like an incompetent boob. It was exhilarating and exhausting. I was sooo happy to see Mo and Kathy, even tho’ I was too tired to carry on intelligent conversation. Friendly, familiar faces were most welcome. By the end of the day, I was completely incoherent and satisfied. One of the very busy organizers (Lisa, I think) ran by and told me that if I let them know in advance next year, they will make a space for me. (!)

Sunday, May 31, 2009

A sunny day in Edmonds

This is what I did this past weekend. Instead of working on any of the three sweaters I have going at this moment in time, I chucked it all and went to the beach with friends with children. The riffle where the girls are playing was warm as bath water. We splashed, yelled, filled buckets with sand, and just basked in an early taste of summer. I will get back to working on Both Ways, Celtic Dreams and Hanover; this day was just sun, sand and seawater.

By the by, I have been keeping a low profile since the registration for Sock Summit this past Tuesday. By some miracle, I managed to best the server monster, and scored a spot in Stephanie's Knitting for Speed class. I know this is the class that every one wanted, including me. After the lesson of Madrona, I had steeled myself for getting shut out. I know (now) better than to get too excited about these conferences, until you are actually confirmed in a class. So when the server for SS09 went down, wouldn't load, and kicked me out repeatedly, I knew what to expect. Then the carnage was over, and I was left holding a confirmation email that said I was enrolled in Saturday morning Knitting for Speed and Efficiency. I still can't quite believe it, and am trying not to feel guilty. The disappointed howls from Ravelry are deafening. Stephanie and Tina have actually received threatening emails!!!!! I will not feel guilty. I couldn't get Knitting for Speed at Madrona; this time is my turn, and I hope for others they will have turns too. Now just have to save up and wait for August.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Close encounter of the Harlot kind

Okay, I confess. I love everything Yarn Harlot. I have all her books, the calender, and even the audio version of "At Knits End" on my iPod. In between blasts of classic rock, Stephanie will pop in to share wisdom about the advantages of stash enhancement. So yes, I was looking forward to seeing her at Madrona. I tried to get into one of her classes, but got completely shut out. Still, I knew that she would be speaking, and I would make sure to be there for that.

Yes, I am a huge fan, but I still have my dignity. I told myself firmly that if I were to bump into Ms. Pearl-McPhee in the course of the 4 day retreat, that I would just smile in a friendly way that says "Welcome to the Northwest". I would NOT gush, gibber or in any other way act like some weird overgrown yarn groupie. She is at Madrona to enjoy herself, not to entertain me. I was very pleased with my own maturity. It's taken me a long time to get here. I have since learned that the universe laughs at my maturity.

I thought I might catch a glimpse of her. I was wrong. She was everywhere. In my class for Knitting Ganseys. At the urn wh
ile getting coffee. Coming in doors I was going out of. Behind me in the hallway. On the elevator. In the restaurant. I wouldn't doubt that she was in the stall next to me. I was tripping over the woman, all the while grinning my "Welcome to the Northwest" smile. She must have thought I was some kind of mute, grinning idiot.

Finally, the snickering knitting fates just pushed me one too many times. DH, who looked unbelievably handsome in the "Cobblestone" that I made him for his birthday, was with me in the Blue Moon booth at the market on Valentine's Day. In walks the
Harlot. I'm there, he's there wearing that, she's there, we're all surrounded by some of the most incredible hand painted fibers on the face of planet, I've got a camera right to hand...I caved. F*%k maturity. I asked her if she would please stand next to the handsome guy in the blue sweater and smile.

She's a good sport. Probably figured it was the only way to get rid of the weird grinning woman.

Welcome to the NW, Steph. I hope you had a good time.


P.S. If you happen to read this, I was the woman who climbed into the luggage cart on the crowded elevator so you and your friend could get on. So much for dignity.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Madrona-better late than never

Madrona. Amazing. Yes, it's a month later, and I'm finally getting around to blogging it, but I didn't want to add this event to the growing list of "damn, I wish I'd blogged that." That list is already waay too long.

Amazing. In these tough economic times, it's great to know people are still finding a way for what is important to them. Over and over I heard...'I've been saving all year...this is my big splurge... this weekend is just for me." And from the number of bulging shopping bags I saw, people aren't afraid of a little stash-enhancement.

This year, I have resolved to knit from stash and only pay cash for what I do buy. No more credit card carnage. At the market, I resisted Blue Moon and Noro, said no to Cascade and O-wool. (sigh). I did, however, turn into a gibbering idiot in Toots LeBlanc. I knew that I would, so I budgeted for it and I forgive myself. Ye
s, I have grown. I also had a nice surprise on the first day of the retreat: I won a doorprize! I won a $30.00 gift certificate to Carolina Homespun. I am not a spinner, but their arsenal of spinning accoutrement was impressive. And this is what bought with it:
A very beautiful skein of Atropos special green silk.
Not quite sure what I'm going to do with it yet, but I'm having fun thinking about it.

I had a great time! I took a couple of classes, did some shopping, ate great food, and had a Yarn Harlot encounter, which I will save for next time.


Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Boo-hoo Bohus

So I have to face the truth; my Bohus Green Mist Jacket will not be ready in time for Madrona. For weeks, I have been grinding away, sacrificing time with family, friends, pets and household chores, pursuing the single minded dream of proudly wearing my beautiful Bohus among people who would really understand and appreciate its wonderfulness

This dream came to a rude awakening this past weekend, when I was forced to acknowledge what I have been firmly deluding myself about: the gauge for the hand knit fronts and the machine knit back and sleeves do not match. I was forced to confront my knitterly denial during assembly. Even I couldn't ignore the pucker factor in the side seam/back join. This garment would not hang straight and dignified around my hips in the best traditions of Swedish couture knitting. No, it would, instead, comically ride up in back, perhaps to accommodate a pair of clowns pants. Not the look I am striving for.

The disappointment was crushing, but I want this sweater to be done right. I consoled myself in a very mature way-I rolled on the floor playing with the Badgerman, then I packed the thing up and hid it in the darkest corner of the UFO bin to be dealt with another day. (Right)

But now I have nothing to wear for Madrona.

Friday, July 4, 2008

I have just passed my one year blogiversary. It's been a year of ups and downs. Okay, first the downs.
  • Blog 365-wow, did the wheels come off the wagon big time here. I think my (short) time participating in the insanity of blogging everyday was really a wake up slap as to how tough it is to be a consistent blogger.
  • MS3; Swan Lake-this was a cautionary lesson in the seductive power of a blind KAL. I sank a lot of time into the stole, but once I found out it was an asymetrical design, I just ran out of steam for the project. It now languishes in the UFO bin.
  • Puyallup Project-er, ahem. Yes, I do remember shooting my mouth off about there not being many knitted entries at the fair last year, and I would defintely have something to enter...yeah, ok, so if a big block of knitting time dosen't fall out of the sky and hit me on the head, I won't be able to produce something of fair quality in time, which also includes

  • Monroe Fair-see Puyallup Project above.

Now for the good news:

I have an FO for July. This is a tuck stitch baby blanket with a hand crochet edging. And I have it done in time for the shower.


Monday, June 30, 2008

Put up time

Well, well. Time sure does fly when one is not blogging. I've been trying to get my rear in gear, but mostly I've been whining to myself that many of the fabulous NW blogs that I have been enjoying have all gone into hibernation at about the same time. Sigh. In order to get blogs, one must post blogs, right? Like Christmas cards. So I am going to try to fill some of the vacuum. Time to put up or shut up. If nothing else, I may send some of the real bloggers running (screaming) back to their computers. Hey, whatever it takes.

Yes, I have been knitting, but no, I haven't finished much. If there is a poster for the Startitis foundation, it must have my picture on it. Speaking of pictures-

This is like a summer dream. I have the LK 150 out on the deck on the first beautiful day of our NW summer. I am working on "Purly Girl" from the summer issue of Knitwords magazine, don't know the issue number off the top of my head.

Notice that I am keeping the knitter in the shade at all times. The LK 150 has a very sturdy plastic frame, but I don't want to find out the hard way that I shouldn't have left my expensive little knitter out in the sunlight. The demise of crayons comes to mind. I also cover it with a towel when I have to step away to keep tree crap and bugs out. I spent a lovely afternoon out in the fresh air, listening to the birds (...and my MP3 player when the dog next door wouldn't stop barking at me. It's like he'd never seen/heard a KM before...?)