Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Vacation, Vacation Knitting and Yarn Store Crawl

I have never had such a lovely knitting vacation, ever. I got to visit too many yarn stores while I was gone! Yes, too many. Which means I spent too much on yarn.
First, I need to tell you what projects I decided to take on for this vacation.
I was in a predicament. I had too many WIPS (works in progress), but I always save a special yarn and special project for vacation knitting. So, I took both. I took yarn, a purple hand painted sock yarn, and irridescent purple beads for Gail, my Twisted Yoke Cardigan (I only lacked 12" on the body and both sleeves), my Lavender Field Shawl, and the band for my Twisted Stitch Cardi Wrap.
Our vacation started Sat morning May 16th. I had started my Gail the night before to make sure I would not have a problem with the pattern. We stopped in the Starbucks in Texarkana and ran into some fellow knitters! This is their blog. They showed me what they were knitting and I shared the projects that I had brought to knit on vacation. We exchanged Ravelry names and were exchanging emails that night. This was a great start for my vacation to meet other fiber enthusiasts.
We spent the night with some cousins in Dallas and I got to go to the Woolie Ewe in Plano, TX. I bought a skein of Noro sock yarn, this was my first Noro yarn purchase. It was not cheap, never is, but one skein of sock yarn will make a shawl!We left Dallas Sunday morning and two hours outside of Dallas, I ran out of beads on my Gail. I wanted to cry. I loved the rhythm of this pattern. I was in my knitting zone. I had only ordered 2 pkgs of beads to make sure that the color was right. I had ordered 3 more pkgs before I left home to make sure I would be able to finish once we returned from vacation. Here it is. I only have to bind off and I will be finished.
Everyone that truly knows me is wondering why I am making a purple shawl. This one is not for me. This one is for an artist friend, Mary Kathleen. I have commissioned a painting and she has commissioned a shawl. She has glorious silver gray hair and this will look fabulous on her!
I love this pattern. I, honestly, do not remember a more enjoyable knit. I have racked my knitting brain and can truthfully say that this pattern beats anything I have ever made. Now, I can start mine. Remember the silk I bought in NM?
Once I got over running out of beads, I started working on my Twisted Yoke Cardigan. I am using Lambs Pride Bulky in a wonderful granite heather. By Monday night, I had finished the body (its made from the neck down), one of the sleeves and 2/3 of the last sleeve and ran out of yarn. I had not brought enough with me. Two projects down.....
So that left my Lavender Fields Shawl as my main knit. I made great progress on it, too. I finished one half and only have 44 rows remaining on the last half.
I went to my yarn store in Fredricksburg, Stonehill Spinning. I bought 4 skeins of sport sock yarn. As we were shopping earlier, I told myself--Note to self-- never be without a pair of socks to knit. My legs and feet got tired and I sat down alot to wait on the boys to finish shopping. I don't sit and do nothing well. It was just what I needed! I finished part of a sock just fiddling around town. I love to knit sock while shopping.
On the way home, I got to go to 2 yarn stores in Austin, TX. One, Hill Country Weavers, was mind blowing. It was unbelievably huge. It was in an old house and every corner, alcove, crevice and wall was stashed with yarn. They had every yarn that I have ever wanted to see and touch. A hank of light finger weight mercerized cotton by Blue Heron came home with me. It has 1000 yards. I will probably make another Gail with it and have enough to warp my loom for a scarf, too. I let the boys pick out the color, so that means I had to go out of my color-block-self! That was a good thing. It is lovely.Then I went to a shop called Gauge Knits. I love the concept of this store. The yarn was sorted by gauge. I went straight to the sock and lace weight. I bought 2 balls of TyDy sock yarn in a coral, orange, bubble gum pink and yellow. It is a slow variegating yarn. I plan on using it to make Dianne.As you can tell, I got so much knitting done on this trip!
This was the best vacation for knitting! We did a lot of driving. Most of the places we went to see were scenery trips to be enjoyed from the windshield. We did not have a lot of time to get out and hike.
We visited Fort Davis State Park. The Davis Mountains were breathtaking. We drove up to the MacDonald Observatory. There was so much that we wanted to see in the short 2 days that we were near Big Bend TX.
Big Bend was mind-blowing! Pictures cannot take in the enormity of these mountain ranges. It kept unfolding and unfolding.
I am always so thankful when we come home safely. We traveled hundreds of miles and in some really desolated, isolated places and in our older van. I am also thankful that we were kept safe from wrecks and crazy drivers.


aprilquilts said...

So much beauty in one post!! You got so much accomplished. Good for you! Love the photos!

Delighted Hands said...

So happy you are now rested and satisfied with your vacation! I agree about the knitting to go projects..they make for relaxed waiting and you have something to show for your patience! Thanks for sharing!