Wednesday, May 12, 2004

As a former high school English teacher, and writer "wannabe," I have always thought that "writing is mind traveling, destination unknown" (Anonymous). As I was getting thinking about this month's letter, I revised it to simply mind traveling, destination unknown.

First, I thought about the theme of this letter; THEN I thought about all of the neat things we saw at Sheep and Wool and discussed at our meeting last week; THEN I thought about the yarn I allowed myself to buy so that I could make myself two things to keep, and all of a sudden it dawned on me, "I DON'T HAVE MY FISH PATTERN."

So, off my mind went on another tangent: if the vendor who sold me the yarn and a "promise" of a pattern got home on Monday, spent Tuesday recovering from Sheep and Wool, sorted her receipts and sent out patterns on Wednesday, I should have my pattern NOW. Of course, my calculations do not account for "snail" mail (from Canada to the U.S.) or the fact that I have a P.O. Box, which I go to only 3 times a week. But, like any spoiled rotten brat, and/or yarnaholic, I want my pattern NOW! Oh well, good things come to those who wait!

While at Sheep and Wool, Sharon and I ran into Genia and her daughter, Myla, and Valerie and a friend of hers. I know that several others of you were there too as evidenced by your show and share loot: Sharon bought a sweater kit, a pattern or two, and Koigu for bookmarks; Christine bought a kit for a blanket and a book; Mady, who planned ahead by perusing her stash first, bought only one skein, a really BIG skein that is, of silk and merino; Jeanne resisted most of the yarn -- she only bought one kit -- but she couldn't pass up the roving (including hand painted alpaca and bunny fur!!) and tools for dyeing and spinning; Kathleen bought some wool for socks and a sweater and three enormous skeins of mohair; Kathy G. bought some yarn for scarves and vests and lots of Koigu; and, Valerie was thrilled with the spinning class she took.

But, the prize for the most self-control goes to Marilyn, who cut herself off from Sheep and Wool this year, because her stash is too large. Marilyn, I applaud you and aspire to both of these issues - a huge stash and self-control to know when to quit adding to it!!

So, while we as a guild didn't really break our collective banks, we certainly contributed our fair share to this year's festival and, I am guessing the vendors will welcome us again in 2005! How many days are left???

It was also good to see Ruth, Cassandra, Lorena, Kathleen, Christine, Dallas, and Donna J. at the May meeting. And, special thanks to Ira Thompson, of Handwoven by Ira, for stopping by with lots of yarns from Harrisville Designs. As usual, my favorite was the natural color alpaca, but he had lots of wool blends too. Ira's shop is located at:

Studio 102A, 6925 Willow Street, NW
Washington, DC 20012
Hours: M, T, TH, F - 1:00-5:00 PM (Closed Wednesdays); Sat - 10:00-5:00; Sun 2:00-5:00. Of course, if you can't make it to his shop he will take orders by phone, fax, and email. He accepts cash, checks, and credit cards.

Show and Share
As usual I sat in awe at everyone's creativity.
Sharon showed us a poncho she made out of scrap yarns, primarily reds, as well as a Portofino shell.

Ruth is working on a Wallaby and a beaded bag.

Cassandra is working on a design project - she is modifying a sweater pattern for her husband. I was amazed at the number of stitch markers on her circulars. I don't think I will ever have that kind of attention span!

Lorena showed us a picture of the beaded bag she made for her daughter-in-law's wedding and described various types of beads and which ones work best for different effects. She also mentioned that her husband thinks she knits too fast because he can't push the yarn and beads out to her fast enough!

Mady completed the sampler scarf for the reversible stitch article that she and Lauri are working on. She also completed a vest made out of wool and mohair and a child's sweater.

Christine finished making a jacket and is currently working on a bag.

Dallas is working on a shawl that has to be completed by May 14. She also mentioned another baby blanket (I guess last summer's fun - remember the April newsletter --spilled over into the Fall???). And, she wants to finish 5 sweaters that are currently in progress, preferably before she dies!

Donna J. showed us a baby blanket and two sweaters that she recently completed. She also polled the group for ways to repair her husband's favorite sock. Unfortunately, she is probably going to retire them and knit him a new pair.

Kathleen made two sleeveless tops, one in 2 pieces (yuk, seams!) and one in the round with a three-needle bind off at the shoulders. She has one more too make, I'm guessing it will be knit in the round?!

Valerie wore a sweater that she made from scratch, literally - she carded, spun, and knitted the yarn into a cardigan. And, she lamented the fact that she has a baby sweater to make for a baby that has outgrown the sweater she started when he was a newborn. At least the new sweater will feel nice to the touch as it is made out of a super wash merino.

Kathy G. made a scarf using a fun fur and cotton just because it was fun. Now, she has to figure out what to do with all of the Koigu she bought at Sheep and Wool, because she "just loves it!"

Contact the following members for more detailed information about these events, activities, and lists:

Jeanne mentioned the Knitter's Day Out in Summerdale, PA on 9/18.

Mady had coupons for "InKnitters" magazine.

Valerie said lots of good things about the Ample Knitters knit list.

Marilyn concurred, but said that you "commit your life to them." I guess they are addictive???

Lauri mentioned the ad days on the Sock Knitters list on the first and fifteenth of every month.

The Yarn Garden in Annapolis is having their Spring Sale this 13, 14,15th of May. Everything is at least 10% off. Also Debbie Bliss will be in the store on June 17th to chat and sign books.

Join Capital Crocheters and Knitters at Capital Yarns as we knit and crochet for charity on Tuesday, May 18, 2004 from 7:00 to 9:00 pm. Melissa is opening her shop especially for us on the third Tuesday of every month (except for September and November) so we can knit and crochet for charity. You can work on a charity project for your favorite charity, for a charity sponsored by your guild or for one of CCKs featured charities (CCK will provide supplies for CCK featured charities)

Meeting time and room
Our meetings are held at the First United Methodist Church, 6201 Belcrest Road, Hyattsville, in the youth room of Ensor Hall, lower level. They start promptly at 7:30 and end at 9:00. The most accessible parking is in the lot on the side of the church; enter the building through the door by the playground; the youth room is the first classroom on the left.

As always, I encourage everyone to promote MMK. Knitting is very popular these days - people even take their stitching with them on cruises. As Marilyn pointed out, it was a great way for her to identify and introduce herself to others with whom she had something in common - she could tell by looking for those who were knitting on the decks! Remember, we really do have the best deal going - $15 a year buys you more knitting tips and tricks than you could ever get from reading books or magazines and hundreds of years of experience in our membership.

June - Sharon will be showing us how to turn everyday utensils into works of art using wire and beads! I can't wait for this class. I always need simple, attractive gifts to give at the office.
July will be a trunkshow by Bonnie Franz.

We have tentatively scheduled a retreat for November 11 thru 14. This, of course, will depend on the number of people who would like to attend and whether or not Mady and Marilyn get fall rentals for their Rehoboth condos. So, if you enjoyed last year's retreat, and are looking for more of the same this year pencil these dates in your calendar and let's start finalizing the details over the summer.