22 August 2011

returning from an unintentional break

I didn't plan to take a blogging break. But I did (call me Captain Obvious) and I realized what I really did was just plain take a break. From everything.

Earlier this year, Kate and Cathy and I decided it was high time we hung out with the sheep (or as I like to call them, "yarn donors") and all the groovy yarn at the Michigan Fiber Festival. It was this past weekend and for a few weeks before hand, all I could think was, "Can't wait to go! Can't wait to take a break!"

Guess I didn't figure I'd fall off the face of the planet. But I shouldn't really be surprised by that, yarn has that effect on me. Might sound strange to non-yarny folk, but knitting is pretty much like mediation for me, it has a very strong sedative/calming effect.

So much so that apparently I don't answer emails or blog when I am surrounded by large amounts of it or even the prospect of it.

Wanna see what we did? Here goes: :)

Meet one of the lovely yarn donors that was at the festival:

I don't know what breed he is but I call him cute. He wasn't interested in me. Perhaps because I was commenting how lovely he would dye up.

Kate got an impromptu drop spindle spinning lesson from one of the vendors:

She ended up getting the spindle (how could she pass it up? She was obviously enjoying it) and I wish I remembered the vendor because its a cool one. It has little skull beads on it for the weights, very unique. Kate's becoming a spinning fool.

We admired the flowers on the fairgrounds:

And on Sunday when we were done gorging on yarn and fiber, we wandered a little farther away to Saugatuck:

Its right off the water and boy was it ever pretty. A completely relaxed town, as evidenced by sunbathing bear statues:

We wandered around through some of the art galleries and then decided to eat on the patio of a restaurant on the side of the water. Cathy decided she couldn't wait anymore to wind off her yarn and pulled the skein out at the table and set about her work.

A gentleman passing by was enamored by this and brought her back a flower which looked pretty darn good when she put it behind her ear:

We dined, talked, and then parted ways. It was a fantastic way to end a very relaxing weekend.

But wait? Did you think I spent two whole days around 135 yarn vendors and bought nothing? I'd worry for you if you did. ;-)

Here's the majority of my haul:

Let's break it down.

On the far left is a lovely fleece that I plan to get back into spinning with. Obviously I have autumn on the brain, those colors will soon be on the trees around us.

At the very top is some yarn from Briar Rose. I secretly feel like she dyes yarn just for me, its all muddy and deep rich tones and there's not a single thing she sells that I don't want to own. I kind of had to fight my way into the booth but that was okay, once she was in my sights, I was on a mission. Its sort of a miracle that I came away with only one skein.

In the middle there just below it are two skeins of Blue Moon Fiber's Socks That Rock yarn. I nearly jumped up and down when I saw the booth carrying these, I've never spotted these in the wild before. Always had to obtain them through the magical mailbox portal. Kate was knitting socks all weekend so I blame her for snapping up two skeins without blinking twice. (Didn't take much convincing to get her to try it too. Perhaps it was the drool I was trying to wipe away over seeing it that caused her to cave.)

On the far right there, the knit in progress, is one of my favorite finds for both the yarn and the needles.

The yarn is Zauberball, which I have said more then once I'd like to marry. It transitions into all the different colors in such interesting ways, its a beautiful soft yarn. I'm making a basic garter stitch scarf from it so I can enjoy the color unobstructed by a pattern (which in all honesty the color shifts would probably eat anyway) and its super squishy. Yum.

Kate is using Knit Picks Harmony Wood circulars on her latest pair of socks and I've always been curious about them. I've got a lot of circs but they're mostly Addi, I've always kind of eyed the wood ones from afar - not sure how smooth the joins would be.

I can't tell you how pleased I am with these circs. They are pretty, smooth and the joins are just as good as about anything I've come across. Love 'em.

And that's where I'm at. I'm tired but my mind feels clear, like the cobwebs got cleaned out well and I can't really ask for much more then that. Must be the yarn power. :)


Approachable Art said...

Fun stuff with fun people, what could be better?

Jeannie said...

Oh my! First, is that a goat? sheep? Whomever it is, it is beautiful. The bear statue sunbathing had me laughing. The yarns and roving is drop dead gorgeous. I can tell we would be trouble shopping together. Although I need a few clarets, burgandys and blues. Now I want to go to the yarn shop and get started knitting again. Have fun with your new treasures.

Laura said...

The sheep is an Icelandic ewe from South Dakota.

Took said...

Wow that sheep is really something -- just gorgeous!

I like the bear statue, too.

Great post!

Kathy said...

If you go to that festival and aren't tempted into something 'yarny'...but you must have iron will power to only have purchased the yumminess you posted!

elegant_flea said...

Earthy colors? How could I possibly guess! LOL Looks like you had a great weekend! I'm sorry I missed it, but life goes on.

Have you ever frogged another knitted item to make what you want? I started doing that because I couldn't afford new cashmere. It's amazing what you can get on eBay! I search for extra large thick men's sweaters, and if it isn't the color I want -- well, what do you think? I dye it! Wonderfully warm and usually fuzzy too!

And hey -- I have an 1850's wool wheel that needs a new home -- anyone interested?? It spins beautifully.

Von said...

Totally Jealous :) Ya gotta love those Harmony Woods... I use them for everything except the silks.

Anonymous said...

Checking out the yarn links right now in tandem to commenting. Wish there was more stuff like this readily available!

HollyM said...

I also love to knit and find it more meditative than actually meditating. I keep trying it but I keep thinking of everything I want to do.