Sunday, February 19, 2012

LYS: Village Wools, Albuquerque (NM 2012 part 3)

When I can sort out how to do it, I'm going to put up a little map on the sidebar with all the LYS's I've visited. In the meantime, you can all wander through them one by one.

Kateri and her mom Julie took me to Village Wools, in Albuquerque. Aren't they so mother-daughter-y and cute?!? They are both knitters; Julie has fallen down the slippery slope and is also a spinner, shhhh.
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I couldn't find a yarn store in ABQ during my last trip and couldn't find it, because it is in a strange parallel universe sort of commercial quasi-strip-mall compound thing outside of normal maps. But now that I have been, there, holy cow! This is not even 50% of the space.
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It is so big you can run around like a crazy person and no one bothers you. Just look at this separate ginorm room devoted to weaving classes. (See what I mean by spinning = gateway drug to weaving?)
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More yarn!
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Usually I struggle to get "local" yarn at the LYS's I visit. This time, the selection was overwhelming.
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Also, I had just purchased so much local yarn in Taos. So I ended up getting "regular" yarn instead: a lovely variegated green laceweight from U-knitted nations (Pagewood Farms, in CA) and a gigantic (950 yards) skein of copper-orange from Madelinetosh.
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Despite getting multiple packages shipped home, I still had way too much souvenirage this trip to fit into my luggage. So I just had to get a new bag to carry everything home.
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What an awesome knitting bag! It's by Latern Moon, which I have not purchased in the past, but now I am a huge fan. In addition to the great black-and-white fabric on the outside and the robin's egg blue fabric on the inside, and the adjustable cloth straps, there are four huge pockets built in between the layers all around the sides, to organize and to hold, til death do us part. The green yarn is in one of the side pockets.

What a super-wonderful spree! Even the sheep and churro dolls by the checkout seem cheery.
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Thursday, February 16, 2012

Two skiing FOs

In preparation for skiing (my first time!) the primary task was to make warm knitted accessories, of course. Here is a Sugar and Cream cowl made from the leftover Dream in Color Starry from this Nightscape Cardi. It's hard to see but there are little sparkly bits in the yarn.

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What a sweet little staghorn cable pattern! It was 100% delightful until I ran out of yarn a few rows from the end, totally my own fault, grrr. So I did the top with some Shalimar Yarns from a Boston Yarn Crawl, and it turned out quite nice because the part that touches the face is really soft. Someone took a picture of me wearing it but it's lost! So look at the pattern photos with Julie, gorgeous as always, modeling  this cowl.

For DH, I made a balaclava out of this wonderfully free (whee!) pattern from Knitting in Color. Balaclava balaclava balaclava! It's one of those words that just saying out loud makes you smile, like zamboni or squeegee. It's a super simple pattern that takes just a skein of Cascade 220. I did not go up on the actual ski slopes, but I hear other people were jealous of DH's balaclava and its heat-conserving properties.

He is on the right, the poor man on the left has no balaclava, so sad.

Being absolutely atrocious and quitter-ly about skiing means I got to go exploring (in regular shoes, thank heavens) and see cool things like this spaceship cloud formation.

And 2 more LYS's... next time!

Friday, February 10, 2012

New Mexico 2012, part 1

Yikes about the bloggy break! DH and I went on another trip to New Mexico. It's been 3.5 years since the last trip, and this time we went ostensibly so I could learn how to ski. (IMHO, knit > ski.)
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Beautiful Sandia Mountains just outside Albuquerque.


To make up for the bloggy break and general negligence, I'll share some wonderful LYS's and other fiber-art-related goodness from the trip. This is the most time-sensitive one, because it's going to close at the end of the month! La Lana Wools, in Taos New Mexico, carries a HUGE selection of locally spun and dyed yarn. Eee!
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I got some bright yellow worsted weight wool for a sweater, and now I regret not also getting the variegated green on the lower left.
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Also, I got some DK for a scarf or hat or shawl. (Un)fortuately I got so much yarn on this trip, that I don't even remember what color it was (it is being shipped back home, so we'll see when it arrives).
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There are also these nubbly things and roving and related spinning products, much of it dyed in very tempting colorways.
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All of their dyeing is also done locally, mainly by store employees. All colorways are plant-based and generally local also.
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Oh, and the hand-woven rugs! I refer to knitting as the gateway drug to spinning, but really, the truth is that spinning is the gateway drug to weaving. (Right now it's unclear clear where dyeing fits into the gateway paradigm.)

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Wow! I did get one, but as a fru-gal, of course didn't get one of the rugs on the wall. If anyone would like to buy any of these rugs for me I would not be offended in any way whatsoever, just sayin'.
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More juicy ropes of yarn!
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Many patterns for sale are designed by the shop staff, and are packaged with shop yarns. 
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The sad news is that this store is going to close. The good news is that this means great deals for everyone!! They take phone (1-888-377-9631) orders, so if you have something in mind, give them a call, or go to Taos in person and feel the fuzzy goodness in person. Most everything was about half-off, and surely the discounts will get steeper as the final day approaches. La Lana is having a store-closing party on Saturday, Feb 18, so if you live close by, that would be a fine time to visit Taos. Also, I hear there is something called "skiing" there.