sock porn for knitting voyeurs.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Stitches West 2008

I had the best Stitches West weekend to date :) Sore, drained and hair left in knots... but what a great time! I took the Stitch and Ride train down, had a wonderful seatmate (whose Megaboots Stretch socks-in-progress were gorgeous!) and finished up a chemo cap the on the ride. The best part? I finished and the ladies around me cheered :)

Rushing around the market, I saw Jenny and Nicole from Stash and Burn and Christina all at the same time (eee!) and the COOOLEST THING EVAR by a knitter who had taken the bmp chart (or something close?) and translated it into a hat... I told her I thought it was rad and meant to remember her ravelry name to fav it, but I forgot what I read off of her button in the rush of the day :) Malia stopped and showed me a hat she knit from roving I dyed for my shop and spun by her and I just thought that was just so f*ing neat, and Kristine had me all !! when she told me people had stopped by A Verb for Keeping Warm/Tactile Fiber Arts wearing socks knit from patterns I'd written...


Seriously, those exclamation points hovered over my head ALL WEEKEND LONG. I am such a shy dork in person but seriously had the best time among so many people.

Oh, and fiber! :) I *only* stopped at booths that were selling spinning fiber... it was the only way I could pare the experience of the market down, as easily overwhelmed as I get.

Mulberry silk/merino, 3.75 oz by Blue Moon Fiber Arts-- "thraven"

Blue Moon Fiber Arts did have several Sheep2Shoe kits for sale, and try as I might to convince myself I could see the colors peeking thru the black in their raven series of the same I couldn't justify the 8 oz purchase of superwash merino for socks (not enough to want to spin a 96% black yarn, anyway...) I did find this really pretty silk/merino in one of the ravens colorway that wasn't too black, but black and green. Really nice colorway, and a testament to how hard these colorways are to photograph.

60/40 merino-bamboo TOP by Creek Wools, 4 oz

I saw lots and lots of fiber but it was the blends that jumped at me this time, like this one from Sweet Grass Wool. It's sort of a rusty-grey color and the bamboo hasn't taken the dye on, so it should spin into a yarn with a lot of sheen and a lighter color when drafted with the white bamboo. Exciting stuff, someone said it was the second-most exciting thing I bought :)

Silk/merino by -- "mombassa", 4 oz

It's funny, I'm a little surprised looking over my purchases how many have silk or shiny-lending blends... I need to come to terms with the fact I like spinning types these a lot but don't ever have a good project to use them in. Nevertheless, this gold and black mix by Lisa Souza Dyeworks is just beautiful and will make a really awesome yarn... her spinning fiber display was just decimated Saturday morning, I'm glad I didn't get there earlier :)

I think that, especially for the fibers I don't have an idea what to do with, that it may be fun to just aim for a particular weight in yarn when spinning and hold onto them... one day I may be ambitious enough to knit a handspun blanket :)

IMG_8838 Superwash BFL-- sold by

This is much more my typical alley purchase!! I had a REALLY hard time deciding which Pigeonroof Studios fibers to bring home from Article Pract... many I picked up to put down later, I had already spun so many of those gorgeous colorways and figured I should leave some for someone who hadn't! :) I opted only for this one since Article Pract is going to be carrying PigeonroofStudios regularly now (yarn and rovings, as well as fibers/yarn from A Verb for Keeping Warm), so I can get an easy fix at the best yarn store in the bay area soon and not have to brave Stitches crowds for it :)

Naturally dyed (?) merino, 2 oz each of "northern lights" and "plum" by A Verb for Keeping Warm

I swear I stood in the Verb for Keeping Warm/Tactile Fiber Arts booth forever trying to decide on what *needed* to come home with me. If I blocked you when you were browsing, I apologize... I was seriously mesmerized by the display! I said I'd be back and should have been, but was just wasted after finishing the entire market floor. Still, these two together will be spun in alternating colors for a simple singles yarn-- perfect mindless scarf spinning and knitting, I'm thinking.

I found my favorite-favorite purchase of the day in that booth, too...

Polwarth, dark grey 4 oz by A Verb for Keeping Warm

It looks totally unassuming, right? To touch it though is just a dream... and looking at the color, from grey to darker to almost a red in individual spots is just wow. I want pounds of it to spin into a sweater for someone who loves it just as much as I do. Seriously. I'm glad my pictures aren't doing it justice cos yall would be bugging Kristine for it and there'd be none left, as awesome as this fiber feels.

I'm not sure if it is naturally dyed, if not this was the swankiest colored sheep (short of a California Red lamb) ever.

...and that's it! :) Not bad for eleventymillion sq feet of fiber and yarn and the BEST WEEKEND EVER, if I do say so myself :) I did finish my Imogen Jacket and wore it Saturday-- but I haven't been able to take pics yet so that'll have to be later :)

Til then, miss you (tho it's only been this long)!

(PS! I skipped Etsy Friday last week in the rush to finish Imogen-- but picked Elinor for the white alpaca. Elinor, can you drop me a line so I can get the fiber out to you? My contact info's at the waaay bottom of the page, or you can leave me a comment with your email address. Thanks!)


Anonymous said...

Wow, what a haul! I can't wait to see how this spin/knit up!

Micki said...

Wow, I needed a moment to catch my breath before commenting. Awesome fibers!

Kathryn said...

Aah, polwarth! I knit a hat out of some yarn I got at SOAR two years ago (it's awesome), and I still have a skein of powarth-silk that just begs to be made into a scarf, so I know exactly what you're talking about!

Anonymous said...

Wow! I love your purchases! My kind of colors! I bought some fiber from A V for K W at a craft bazaar - it is such gorgeously dyed stuff. Ah! I'll have to make it over to Article Pract - your post just decided it for me! Hope your markers did well! Terry

Anonymous said...

I love the 'thraven' black and green. Ravens carry every color, if one cares to look close enough.

Elemmaciltur said...

You make me all twitchy now...I need to sit down and spin. :-p

Stacey said...

I was shocked to see not one single skein of sock yarn! what a difference from the last few years, huh??? :)

lexa said...

Great haul! Oh, to hit some sort of fibre festival... Maybe someday...

Can't wait to see your jacket. I started one of my sweaters last night. Not really my color, but for $1/skein (clearance on discontinued yarn), who can pass up a $14 hand knit sweater?!

Have a great day!

Chris said...

It sounds like it was a wonderful weekend!

Anonymous said...

It sounds like a fantastic trip! What amazing fibres you brought home! It will be great to see how they spin up.

Unknown said...

I'm on the East Coast so this was never going to be on my agenda but boy am I envious. All the fiber you got sounds amazing. And I'd never heard of the California Red sheep before, but I just bought some of their roving to see how it spins up. Thanks for the tip!

Kyle William said...

wow... THAT amount of roving should keep you busy for a while :) congrats on all the amazing finds

Kristine said...

A! Your purchases are gorgeous! I have bad news for you. I have more Polwarth in exactly the color you purchased! After all the hard work that went into Stitches, the one gift I am giving myself is Polwarth. And, more importantly the gift of time to spin it. Like you, it is my dream to spin and knit a polwarth sweater.

p.s. Yes! That is the sheep's natural color.

Unknown said...

That's it! I'm going next year!

I have to start making room...

WonderMike said...

I see my strategy for dealing with Stitches has worked for you, too. I love everything you got and had a similar religious experience with AVFKW/Tactile/PRS. I'm glad I didn't see the other spots you found. I wouldn't have been able to pay the rent. :-)

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