Hi, Anna-Liza again. Maybe a digital camera and an editor … or two. Warning, long post ahead!
So, yes, KarenM, you’re so right. Of course I bought stuff. However, now that Number One Son has moved out I have no digital camera handy to borrow and post pics! Well, I’ll tell you about it now, and if I get a chance to, I’ll get some pictures taken and posted later. I can tell you that Red has some pretty nice photos over on her blog, so go take a look. I’ll wait.
Yes, I know digital cameras are not that expensive anymore. Unfortunately, they are still expensive enough, and the list of higher priorities is long enough, that I really don’t know when it’s going to be in the budget. Anyway, I’m looking and narrowing down what I want so, when the time comes, I won’t have a lot of dithering to go through. (Although anyone who likes can take that as a birthday hint … I have been really liking the Canons).
The Wool Market was great fun! I do enjoy having time to myself, so not having friends to ride up with was not really a hardship, previous whining notwithstanding. I put on Ozomatli (Street Signs), opened the sunroof, and had a very pleasant drive through the mountains. My car may be scruffy, but it’s still way fun to drive. (I don’t know why I said “may be”–it is scruffy, and needs both front and rear windshields replaced. One of the things that comes ahead of a camera, in fact).
While at the Wool Market, I met up with my Aussie friend TechieAngel, and we looked at goats. She is thinking about buying a couple of Pygoras. First time I’ve ever been window shopping for goats! They were all very cute (we were looking at kids) and now I could probably tell you more than you want to know about the care of juvenile Pygoras. But I won’t.
Darlin’ K came up with a good way to handle yarn purchases in our budget. Yarn bought for gifts comes from the gift budget; yarn bought to make clothes for myself and my family comes from the clothes budget; yarn bought for personal pleasure (oooh, that sounds kinky, doesn’t it?) comes from my play money budget.
So I bought yarn for sweaters for Darlin’ K and the kidlets. (There’s a rock band name in there, isn’t there? Punk, I’m thinking). For Darlin’ K, some Textiles A Mano “La Perfecta” (or was it “La Paz”? I’ll fix it when I can find the tag–I looked at both for a long, long time before choosing) in muted, variegated earth tones. It may sound dull, but this is not a dull yarn, I can tell you–blues, soft greens, warm browns, all in perfect proportion. The colors made me think of Darlin’ K and his beautiful eyes the minute I saw it.
For the kidlets, I went to Plain and Fancy (Ken and Grayce Aggen from Henderson, Texas–no website, but there’s a nice description of their wares here–you’ll need to scroll down a bit). This booth was mobbed. They had two basic yarns in stock, both pure wool, both sport weight–a little bit of 2-ply, and a whole lot of lovely thick-n-thin singles, in gorgeous colors. They had a really great layout–just two walls of open plastic bins, on their sides, with the yarn stacked by color. Very effective, beautiful, and user-friendly. I went back three times trying to make up my mind, since even with the budget adjustments I have to at least try to be rational! (Her prices were averaging about $15 for 400 yards, so it was quite the deal).
I ended up getting two skeins of a nice intense (but not eye-searing) blue for Mr. R, and, for Mr. B, two skeins of “Forest Green”, which is variegated in greens, browns and some greenish almost-white. It knits up into a subtle camouflage pattern–perfect for a little boy like Mr. B! And for me, a single (400-yard) skein of “Heather’s Colors”, purples and greens and yellows destined to be socks. Maybe a scarf, but I can’t really wear yellow near my face, so probably socks.
That’s just what I bought. I had a great time
fondling petting looking at all kinds of great fiber in more forms than you can shake a stick at. Judy Ditmore’s Interlacements had, as usual, incredible colorways in delicious fiber blends. There was a simple Feather & Fan shawl knitted up in one of her yarns, and it looked like the Platonic Ideal of Feather & Fan. Brooks Farm was also there, and I fondled Acero and Mas Acero (not yet on their website, but it’s worth waiting for) and dreamed of the day I could actually buy enough of this yarn for a sweater without a fatal attack of buyers’ guilt.
I started swatching the Textiles a Mano and the “Forest Green” Plain and Fancy pretty much as soon as I had a chance, and I have to say I am extremely pleased with how they are knitting up! I don’t really know why, but I love knitting singles and the Plain and Fancy is knitting up beautifully. The Textiles a Mano is plied, and it is a little bit softer, and the colors are just as beautiful knit as in the skein. I haven’t tried swatching the blue or the “Heather’s Colors” yet–I’m saving those for later.
After all the walking and standing, looking at goats and llamas and alpacas, getting bitten by flies and eating lamb kibbee for lunch, I was ready for a little break. After TechieAngel left, I headed into Estes Park downtown for something to drink and a place to sit in the shade. The Stitchin’ Den is there, a store I really like, and I remembered from last year that there’s a little coffee/tea place right next to them, so that’s where I went.
On my way up the stairs, I saw a store marked “Fiberlicious”. Well, let’s be honest, I saw some really intriguing yarn, wondered if The Stitchin’ Den had moved, and then saw the sign. You know, I had just come from total wool immersion, and yet I found myself standing in the middle of the store, looking at more yarn! I am clearly an addict (as if we all didn’t know that already). Fiberlicious is owned by the same person who owns The Stitchin’ Den, but it’s more … different. Sorry, hard to describe. Fancier and more complex fibers, higher end … schtuff. Best I can do–go see it for yourself. The lady at Fiberlicious handed me a bottle of water and told me that I could get my Wool Market purchases wound, for free, at The Stitchin’ Den. I don’t own a ball winder yet (on the list, believe me–that’s a birthday hint) so I went there, handed over my yarn, got a mocha next door, and then sat on their inviting deck/patio thingy, got out the cotton bucket hat to work on, and
yakked chatted with all the other knitter-types sitting there.
I met several very nice ladies with very interesting projects, but the one whose name I remember (because she gave me her card) is Ana. She gave me a very nice handspindle lesson, during which I learned what I’ve been doing wrong (the main thing, at least), and gave me some of her really lovely, functional stitch markers. You can see some of them here. (Click on “Entrelac Stitch Markers”).
I love pretty stitch markers, but I have to agree with Ana that the dangly kind can get in the way. I mostly use those to mark things along one edge of the knitting or the beginning of a round, that sort of thing. Hers are more like little rings, with a pretty bead which helps keep them visible as well as attractive, but nothing dangly. She says she uses what are basically chainmail rings. I like them a lot!
All in all, a very enjoyable, if tiring day. Driving down from Estes is even more fun than driving up. I got home to find Mr. R. had gotten a drastic haircut (basically a buzz with a lightning bolt along one side of his head) and I didn’t even recognize him when I first saw him! What an excellent Mom am I! Darlin’ K had four little boys in charge for most of the afternoon, and still had three when I got home, but said it had been really fun. Now there’s an excellent dad, and I let him know how much I appreciated him later … much later, much appreciation. If you’re reading something into that, be my guest. Oh, and I made him bacon and eggs and cinnamon rolls for breakfast on Fathers’ Day, so I figure I’m a little ahead at the moment on the “what a good/bad wife am I” scale. We’ll see how long that lasts!
Most of Sunday, we helped some friends move. They are, needless to say, extremely good friends. Their new house is beautiful and it looks like they’ll have plenty of space (five kids. I know, I have four, but five just sounds like a lot more! And theirs are all still living at home). We didn’t get home until midnight! I desperately needed a shower and a snack before sleeping, so got to bed around 2 ish. That’s an explanation and possibly an apology for any rambling, mistakes, or vagueness in this post.
I’ll try to wangle the loan of a camera, so I can get some pics up. You really need to see this yarn! All I want to do is play with my new yarn, but I have to go earn some money to pay for my habit. And maybe I should consider FOing a couple of almost-done WIPs, and free up some needles. HAHAHAHAHAHA!!!