Monday, September 21, 2009

The Knitter as Hunter-Gatherer

I sat down several times last week, well, off and on, trying to turn this post into something other than a tale of greed and acquisition. I failed. Let's just admit that Sunday at Stitches with no class meant a full day at the Market. A full day at The Market is not an activity inclined to elicit one's best instincts. Herewith, I give you "Stitches, the Story of a Knitter Run Amok."

I am a Stitches geek. Or maybe a junkie. I started last year's post, "I love Stitches" and it still holds true. I have loved Stitches since Diane dragged me to my first one when I started knitting. The next year Clare came. Last year I snookered my sister in, along with her daughter and our non-knitting mother.

Perhaps I should make clear that I do the essential Stitches. I've heard -- let's just say -- mixed reviews of the fashion show and the dinner. Mixed enough to make me avoid them.I'd always confined myself to a class or two and the Market. For the last two years, ever since they changed the venue, I've added The Hotel to the essential list. Staying on site is the best fun. Besides, I've always gone in good company. See above.

This year, for a not-change, let's start with The Market. I did. While we didn't get in early enough on Friday to scope it out, we were down bright-eyed and eager-fingered, wallets at the ready, Saturday morning (before my class). Even better, this year I didn't have to be anywhere Sunday, and none of us (my sister, her daughter, my daughter) had a class. Sunday we were dangerous. We didn't close the Market, but we certainly cut quite a swathe through it.

Some of my favorite people were missing. Jennie the Potter wasn't there. Neither was The Fold or Philosophers Wool. The economy maybe? Too bad. Philosophers Wool has some great-looking new designs up on their website. I would have loved to have seen them for real. Oh, who are we kidding? After last year, when I bought a pattern book, I was looking for a yarn fix. I was going to promote myself to a kit. Maybe next year. Besides, I managed to console myself quite adequately.

Coloratura Yarns (previously known as Hand Painted Knitting Yarns) was there, in an even bigger space. Behold Clare's Christmas present. It's a Giant Skein in Aqua (how did I buy something not named after an opera?).

She's promised to act surprised, again.

Fine Points from Cleveland Ohio was there. My husband was born in Cleveland. It would have been disloyal had I not bought something from them.

It's a Claudia Hand Painted Yarns kit. A Claudia Hand Painted Yarns shawl Kit. Not just a Claudia Hand Painted Yarns shawl kit, a Walk in the Woods shawl kit. What, I was supposed to resist? It's got mohair, which makes me a little nervous. I have not, as yet, attempted mohair. Oh, of course. That's it. I needed to buy the kit so I could broaden my skill set to include mohair yarn. I knew there was a good reason.

I discovered Tess Designer Yarns.

This was not the indulgence you might think it is. My neighbor of 20 years is moving in with her other daughter. I need to make She needs an afghan from me us.

The disconcerting thing? Once I went to take pictures for this post, I was forced to recognize that this is not everything. I'm too embarrassed to list the rest. Okay maybe not. I mean really, didn't I need a set of buttons (yes, but two sets?) for Lake of the Woods? Would Fenna be complete without a shawl pin? You did know they only sell shawl pins in Pennsylvania, where the vendor I bought it from is located. Nope, no shawl pins in Illinois. And what if I had skipped Yarn Barn of Kansas? I might not have picked up Wrap Style and my collection of "Style" books would be forever incomplete (there's not a Sock Style is there?). And then there was Green Mountain Spinnery. Am I the only one who read Understood Betsy and is therefore delighted that GMS is in Putney, Vermont? Of course I had to buy a book from them.

Come to think of it, except for my class (I'll tell you about that next time) the one thing I didn't do much of was knit.


PghCathy said...

Sounds like a wonderful time! I'm jealous!! How soon before we see some of this lucious yarn made up? No real pressure.

Now to check out Understood Betsy...never heard of it & can't imagine why not.

Jess said...

Jennie's got one of those baby things. I bet she'll be there next year. I want to go to Stitches someday - I only went to the market when it was here.