Monday, June 11, 2012

yarnbombing with all the ingredients

Dateline New Haven, June 9th 2012:  International Yarnbombing Day recognized in the only way possible.  We had everything necessary for success.
Yarnbombing outside Knit New Haven Even a few raindops, so we could feel valiant as we carried on. 
Yarnbombing outside Knit New Haven  Julia-of Julia, June & Linda, our Knit New Haven hosts.
Yarnbombing outside Knit New Haven Yarnbombing outside Knit New Haven Stacey Fresh Stitches, flower provocateur. 
yarnbombing ingredients tools & fuel

yarnbombing details Note the refreshed door handle.
Yarnbombing outside Knit New Haven500" src="" width="355" />
That's Ruth Anne at work.
Yarnbombing outside Knit New HavenMy main contribution? This recycled mitten fella. I like its provenance: the yarn was in this batch, the mitten, a reject from this project.  Turning it into a wooly face , instigated by the sidewalk chorus on Saturday after I pointed out the way I was hanging it, unadorned,  looked a little....suggestive. (see? I told you I'd have some of my knitting on this post).
Cathy's working on the little heart, knit in the round. Metaphor alert!
yarncombingcomp1 Yarnbombing outside Knit New Haven Yarnbombing outside Knit New Haven
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 If this piques your interest, check out the yarnbombing in Craft Activism. And get going. There're plenty of surfaces left to cover.

Friday, June 01, 2012

shepherds harvest weekend

 I was invited to judge the photo contest and teach at Shepherds Harvest 2012, held last month in Minnesota. I jumped at the chance.  I've been hearing about this annual wooly festival for years.
1st place awardee
So there I was. I judged.  It was not easy. A thirteen year old named Rachel made this image. Talent!
Minnesota's a forcefield in the fiberarts world. Shepherds Harvest is a truly vibrant, lively festival with 5+ barns of vendors and an equal number full of livestock. You could learn saori weaving, dyeing, knitting techniques or how to breed colored fleeces and build a flock. Anyway, it was just a flawlessly wonderful two days, unless you count that the Scandanavian food truck ran out of lefse  before I had some. (Got my walleye chunks though, so no worries.)
I booksigned, alone for Craft Activism and Shear Spirit (missed you, Joan Tapper!) and with my Minnesota knit author posse from WearWithAll. Here I am with Scott Rohr and Mary Lou Egan. And that stole. (I want to steal that stole).
WearWithAll authors
Here are Theresa Gaffey and Shelly Sheehan. Shelly's working on the stole in an alternative colorway. In front? Those are stole kits. I still want to steal the stole, but perhaps I should just knit one? Speaking of WearWithAll, did you see this review from Clara Parkes? And, this one over at Mason Dixon Knitting? :-)))
PhotoSafari backgrounding I taught a large and diverse group for the Photo Safari class .  Knitwear designers, alpaca farmers, a dude who's photo hobby matched up with my class while his wife and daughters' indulged their knitting  jones, an Adobe PhotoShop engineer, someone who mostly knit & crocheted in all white, some friends...and a bustling festival to explore. I hadn't calculated how our group of photographers in action would draw a crowd, who seemed convinced they'd found a celebrity at the festival beyond all the lenses. (does Prince knit? That would be the local celeb sighting I'd be all over). So, what did we shoot on safari? All kinds of backgrounds, above.
sheepends Sheep, of course. Isn't this one's fleece magnificent? I want a sweater in just those gradations.
Photo Safari
Photo Safari My exhortations to get close and try unusual angles were heard!-Here's Ellen Silva photographing in the reenactors tent. She may have gone home with some spinning wheel burn marks on her forehead. But excellent images. All in the line of duty.

On Sunday,  I strolled the festival as a civilian with Ellen, who mostly stayed  upright. It was so much fun--first off, Ellen seems to know everyone in the upper midwest fiber world. And,  she's a decisive shopper, with great taste in yarn/fiber. That makes for a satisfying festival buddy right there.
ShepherdsHarvest One of my favorite booths, from Great Wool. Can't wait till Zoe is old enough for wooly tutus and felted fox ears. Also soft squishy Rambouillet yarn.
Misty Meadows icelandicsfelted More felting! My friends Judy & Tom MacDowell from Misty Meadows Icelandics were there. I hadn't seen them since I invaded their farm with the photo shoot for Shear Spirit. Judy is a felting artist, and had a wall display of these narrow scarves, I think she called them centipedes. One came home with me.
fundraiser fiber sandwich I said I wouldn't buy yarn,  I do not need any yarn right now.  And I don't do souvenir yarn. At least not until Ellen introduced me to this very cool fundraiser. See these bags? They contain fluff from all the vendors, who donate handfuls of their fibers. A committee divides it into bags (or, sometimes layers them into fiber sandwiches),  
bidding and a swat team of volunteer spinners turn each bag into a skein or two of yarn which is auctioned silently. All of the money goes to Heifer International.  So--do you get it? It's not shopping for yarn. It's supporting a good cause! (Yup, the cause clause).
yarny1 I'm thinking new mittens for next winter,  I will be so happy knowing where the yarn came from.
yarny2 And, a hat from this skein. I am slightly ashamed to admit I was bidding against the spinner who so beautifully spun the mix into a fat single, and plied it with a single laceweight strand of turquoise silk. I won't tell you how little I paid, even so.  As a non-spinner with a longing for handspun  , this is heaven.  So to sum up: Shepherds Harvest= good. Go if you can, next year.
 Next post--I'm going to show knitting. It's been awhile , hasn't it?