Countdown to Stitches West!

Knitting universe’s Stitches West starts in only a few days in Santa Clara. Although usually I head to a fiber event with a list of specific things to look for, this time I’m rather “winging” it. Usually I tend to spend more time spinning than crocheting, I’ve been on quite the crochet kick lately. So Stitches West happens to be coming at a perfect time.

The following week, I’ll be spending time in an airport, and a week up helping family, so a To-Do list of crochet will fit in well.

Last year at Sitches West I took a great wet felting class with Cecilia Ho. It was a great hands-on class and with a little more practice I’d like to try a few more wet felting projects. I also took a product photography class with Shannon & Jason Mullett-Bowlsby. The information was good, and it was a very interactive and entertaining class.

This year I’m excited to be taking Easy Embellishing by Laura Bryant. As much as I crochet and weave, I’m really looking forward to getting some tips and techniques to add to items. I have a few more purses, coin purses, book covers, and bags that I’m creaing that this technique would really enhance. And that’s just a few items I can think of off the top of my head. I do need to come prepared with a couple of 6″ swatches. I guess I better get to that! I’d like to bring one crochet and one woven to see what the techniques look like on different types of fabric. But again, I better get started.

The second class I’m taking is Edie Eckman’s Understanding Symbol Crochet. I met her a couple of years ago and, I’m embarressed to admit, at that time I really didn’t know who she was during our conversation. Although she was very nice and even signed a book for me…yep, I STILL didn’t grasp who she was. But, since many of the patterns that I use are chart based, I have to admit that I end up referring to the written pattern far too much. I just don’t always trust myself to “see” what the pattern is telling me. I’m running across more and more charts that I want to try, but the directions aren’t in English. So, I need to get much more comfortable with reading the symbols.

There’s some new vendors that I’m looking forward to seeing and some of my regular favorites. Greenwood Fiberworks will be there and I don’t think I’ve ever gone to an event and resisted something from her booth. I picked up some adorable earings from A Needle Runs Through It last year, I’m looking forward to seeing “Buttons” I’m on a button kick lately and honestly, you really can’t have to many buttons. Clemes & Clemes is there. And aside from being some of the nicest people ever, they have the most wonderful products. I LOVE my little Clemes & Clemes drum carder and I always find something from their booth that needs to come home with me. Of course the “big boys” are there; Clover, Craftsy, Knit Picks, etc. I’m secretly hoping that Craftsy has a good deal on a class or two. Between Craftsy and Interweave, there are some fantastic online classes out there! Okay, the vendor list could go on and on. But there’s a full listing here that I plan to print out to make sure I don’t miss something.

February 22-25, 2018…only a few more days!

Stitches West 2017

While I was only able to go for one day, I packed as much as I could into that one day. 

The traffic was…well, Bay Area Traffic on a Friday….grueling. So, that did add four hours to the day. 

But worth it!

The class “Stitch & Click: Photographing your Fibers by Shannon & Jason Mullett-Bowlsby was fantastic. I really didn’t know what to expect….but they exceeded whatever it was. The amount of tips and tricks was worth it alone. But, they also took the time to help each of us get the best pictures of our projects. 

I even played with the very close lense that I had…Fun!


Cecilia Ho’s Welt Felt Soap & Pod Vessel was at the end of the day. So admittedly we were all tired, but we  learned how to wet felt and although I had tried it before, with her help it was a success! I’m planning on doing more of it. I just need a little time in my day. 

The marketplace was…well…I went through it three times because I just couldn’t get enough. I splurged on a new boat shuttle with the workmanship irresistable. I picked up a cute project bag from Front Range Bags, an exotic wood threading hook from Clemes & Clemes (and drooled over the drum carders), and …yes….I said I wouldn’t but I did…fiber. Okay, but in my defense; Isn’t it amazing!? I picked it up in this pink and a stunning silver. And I can justify it…sort of. 
I have about 10 oz of dark grey bamboo, which is wonderfully silky, but NOT fun to spin. I’ve been meaning to blend it with something…so, why not try this already blended bamboo to see if it’s worth the time to break out the blending board and start…yep, it is. It’s a little slippery as you would expect bamboo to be, but the addition of wool makes it more fun and less work to spin. So far it’s spinning up very nice!

After Stitches West my todo list is a little longer, I need to take pictues of several finished skeins, I want to spin up the bamboo blends, and I have some felted soaps and bags that I want to start, but that’s not a bad problem to have 🙂