2012 Rhinebeck bound

In two days, I will start my two week vacation. That time off will begin with me making the trek upstate once again to the picturesque town of  Rhinecliff, NY for their annual Dutchess County Sheep and Wool festival. Known colloquially among us yarn addicts as Rhinebeck. See my post from last year here.

Last year was my first trip to the festival, and unlike my knitting friends, I wasn’t as organized. I didn’t arrive there with a shopping list of yarn, patterns, notions, etc. Spent the day randomly shopping, mostly for bargains and discount yarn, which is pretty much what I do when I visit yarn shops. Most knitters will find a pattern for an item they want to make, then look for a suitable yarn. I tend to do the opposite. I find a yarn that inspires me, and I think of what item would work with it. Then find the pattern that works with the yarn. Right or wrong it’s worked for me so far.

This year has turned out to be the same. Once again, I don’t have a specific shopping list. Over the past several months I started to pick up crocheting again so my options for yarn work have expanded that much more. I will simply be open minded as I shop and see what moves me.

One thing I can think of I will have my eye out for are fancy crochet hooks. Last year I bought what Nicky from D’NALI coined my sexy needles. Since I’m starting to dabble in crocheting as well, I’m working on adding to my sexy hook collection. I started off with a set of 3 domo wood crochet hooks I bought from Ebay. They’re beautifully carved, smooth finished and are a real joy to knit with. Much more interesting than the standard metal hooks.

I’ll maybe if I have time do a search tomorrow for some patterns to knit or crochet. Or I may just go there and wing it.


The Rhinebeck Stash

I’m a day late and a dollar short with this post, but life happened (aka vacation) between my trip and this post. But here goes anyway….

For the first time my friend Nicky and I made the trek up to the New York State Sheep and Wool Festival. Better known to all you avid knitters out there as simply “Rhinebeck”, named after the small town that hosts the festival every year. For those in the know, Rhinebeck is the ground zero of knitting festivals, that draws folks from all over the nation. It’s known for it’s variety of yarn and wool for sale, but also features a petting zoo and amusement rides for children, a farmers market, livestock for display and sale, so a bit of something for everyone.

kangaroo with joey in pouch

Someone was very much into the Halloween spirit & has some mean pumpkin carving skills.

We also checked out a museum featuring how life was lived in the good old days, when there was no electricity, running water, and folks really had to use their hands.

In those days, people bathed only once a week (!!!)

The general store

The museum reminded me of those school trips & family vacations I went on as a child to Pennsylvania dutch country and to my dad’s relatives in the south. A few of those things I could directly identify with.

But the main reason we came was for the yarn. Since I already had a huge stash at home, I decided to be very selective about what yarn I would buy, if any. In the beginning it seemed as if I made the trip for nothing because I had bought nothing but needles, including these exquisite glass beauties below.

glass knitting needles, size 7 straight, size 8 circular 29"

Nicky called the straight ones sexy needles, and indeed, they are sexy to knit with. You forget the fact that they are glass quickly once you start knitiing with them. I just pray I never drop them on the floor. Because one, they’re so beautiful I’d be heartbroken if one of them chipped or broke, and two, they were damn expensive!!!

A couple more booths caused me to add yet more needles to my collection. The vendor at this booth told us the woman who handcrafted these wood needles had passed away & left this collection. I don’t do much knitting with large size needles but she was practically giving the needles away, I mean, who can beat $2.00 a pair?! The ebony wood needles on the left I bought at a third booth that was selling them for 1/2 price. Those knit very well also. It’s a nice upgrade from the usual bamboo variety.

In this same booth, I bought 2 huge skeins of  homespun wool from their discounted bin. I have no idea what I will make with it. My tendency is to fall in love with the yarn and then match a pattern with it later. It’s a thick yarn that will knit up quickly on large needles. I’m hoping to maybe pull off a nice hat & scarf set.

I fell in love with this camouflage green wool yarn because of the color. I didn’t know what brand it was until I got home and looked up the tag online and found out it was Lamb’s Pride. But the skeins were priced right enough for me to stock up on about 6 skeins of this yarn. Again, I haven’t decided what project will be made from this. I’m taking suggestions.

This last one I bought also came from a vendor’s discount bin. I usually knit with either bright colors or browns & blacks. I liked the more neutral tones of this wool yarn which gives me something different to work with. And there were enough skeins left at 50% discount for me to knit up a scarf.

The yarn is Mocha’s fiber, uses size 9-11 needles. It knits pretty well. I’m working on this scarf with the size 10 ebony needles I bought at the fair. I’ve made significant progress since this pic was taken which I’ll update in a later post.

The scarf pattern here: http://wedonothaveaknittingproblem.blogspot.com/2009/02/puddlesaka-dog-walking-scarf.html

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