Monday, September 26, 2011

More Adirondack Fiber Festival

As I was finishing setting up in my classroom at the Washington County Fairgrounds on Sunday, I was told by Festival personnel that my class had been cancelled.  The students who had signed up pulled out.  They blamed the economy; folks want to save their dollars to shop instead of take a class.  I get it.  I had a free day at a fiber fair, and no obligations to be anywhere else.  I could stay and enjoy the festival. 
Into the Whirled Sock Yarn
Enjoy I did.   There were 120 vendors, and I visited every single one.  Into the Whirled, shown at right and below, is a dyeworks run by the magnificent Cris.  She and I chatted about environmental friendliness, color, and the many uses of sock yarn, and I was fascinated.  Dreamy colors and great personality come together in her entire line.  The two skeins that came home with me will soon be mittens.

Into the Whirled booth at the fair

Next, I met Jill Draper.  Yep, the Jill Draper.  We were chatting at her booth, and all of a sudden I said, "You're Jill Draper!  I love you!"  Her mother, sitting and spinning quietly, burst out with a belly laugh like Santa Claus.  "Well, I love her, too."  Jill showed me some of her recent designs, and we chatted about festivals we've worked, classes we like, and of course, yarn.  I picked up some cerulean blue angora/silk, and I can't wait to make it into a cozy cowl for the upcoming chilly season.  I thought I'd give it to my daughter, but I just might keep it for myself!

I also was lucky enough to meet Jennifer, intrepid owner of Holiday Yarns.  Jennifer is like a caffeinated version of the knitter I want to be when I grow up.  I love her spunk, her joyful colorways, and the fact that she has a little bit of an edge to her.  After chatting a bit, we decided to collaborate on a menswear pattern with her "Super Sheep" yarn. It's DK weight sock yarn, and it's very "shproingy".  It's got great loft, which makes for toasty toes.  I'm so excited!  And check out her new "Bacon" colorway.  Delicious and no animals are harmed because it's all wool.

Julia, from Dirty Water Dyeworks
Across the aisle I met the owner of Dirty Water Dyeworks, Stephanie.  Her yarns have a wonderful watery quality to their coloring which lends itself to designs in subtle jacquard and damask styles.  Well, at least in my head it does.  I chose Julia, a 50/50 merino tencel blend in a sock weight.  Sock yarn is great for colorwork, as it allows for more stitches per inch, and therefore more complex designs.  As I went to check out, Stephanie said some very nice things about my idea, and gave me the yarn as a gift.  (I know!  How cool is that?)  The design is feeling a little French Provincial in my head right now.  I can't wait to start swatching.

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