Still Kicking!

If only just barely. I won’t do the whole lapsed-blogger-excuse thing–I suspect most of us have been there at one point or another, so I’m guessing you mostly understand. What I will say is that I really, really miss blogging regularly and am holding out hope that I’ll be able to get back into the groove soon. I often find myself starting to write blog posts in my head, so I know I still have stuff to talk about!

Today, I mostly want to talk about one thing: Rhinebeck. The sheep and wool so ballsy and ubiquitous its url doesn’t even mention what state it’s in (NY). I’ve been to the Maryland Sheep and Wool festival a couple of times, but I haven’t been to Rhinebeck. I wasn’t really even aware it was a thing for a long time, somehow, but after last year’s festival I got the bug. So many people talked about how amazing it was, so many blog posts showed pics of happy knitters wandering around in the snow flurries wearing everything they’d ever made, that I decided I wanted to try to go. Partly by chance and partly by design, I ended up with a whole week off work around the festival dates, so my mom and I started talking plans. I invited the wife and kid, rented a cottage, and now we’re almost ready to go!

I’m horribly behind on reading blog posts, but I do manage to stop by Mason-Dixon Knitting now and again (they have a brand spankin’ new website that I highly recommend). I happened to stumble across a post about an open studio being held by Jill Draper on Saturday evening post-fest. Now, I’ve never met any of Jill’s yarns in person, but they look lovely on ravelry. Plus, Ann and Kay of MDK rave about it, so it must be good. Tickets are free but you have to register beforehand. Looking at her etsy site, linked above, it seems like there might still be tickets left. Also, it says that not only will Ann and Kay be there, but Stephen West will too. It sounds like it will be a good time.

So, moral of the story is that I’m going. I’m not taking any classes or anything. I just want to soak up the ambience and squish lots and lots of yarn. And see lots and lots of knitting.

I have been finding time to knit even though I haven’t blogged about it much. Right now I’m pretty much just doing commission stuff (by sheer chance). I just got Christmas stocking #1 of 3 off the needles last night. It needs to be sewn still, and a couple of duplicate stitch details need to be added:

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Oh, and a few ends need to be woven in:

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Aaaagggghhhhh!

More details later, but I’m happy with how it’s worked up so far. Lots of intarsia, a few sections of stranded knitting, and some interesting (read: downright strange) construction. The “leg” is worked flat and stitches on either side of the center panel are put on holders. The first part of the instep is then worked flat. Those two bunches of stitches on holders are then used to shape the heel. Then, you join the two sections and work the rest of the foot and toe in the round. I know this is a pretty common way to do stockings. I just think it’s bizarre.

Someday I’ll tell you all how I tracked down this 40+ year old pattern. Until then, happy knitting! And if you see me at Rhinebeck, feel free to say hi! I’ll be the one wearing a handknit shawl. Snort.

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