September 8, 2008
Well, it wasn’t “extremely artsy”, but it involved “Extreme” and “Art” – how’s that? First up was the Clayton Art Fair, which (if you believe the radio programs here in town) is one of the top five Art Fairs in the country. WH and I had a good time walking around several streets full of top quality artists (displaying things that we mostly couldn’t afford. And a few that we couldn’t understand…) I did love the band boxes in this booth and bought one with a handle. WH has some photo ideas for that. The whole stack was very impressive and could be yours for a cool $1800. (There is no doubt that it is easily worth that. The workmanship was amazing. I wish this guy had a website that I could send you to.) The other fun booth we came across was the one with the Didjeridoos. This guy always had a crowd around him as he was playing the instrument. This is a type of wind instrument from Australia. The gal in the booth was teaching someone how to play it and she said that you prop it at an angle against something (like the street, or a wall) and what you’re doing is basically blowing into it but “playing with the sound waves” as they go down the inside of the tube, hit the pavement/wall, and then move back up into the instrument again. You can read more about it here on Wikipedia and you can hear some sample sounds of this unique instrument here. After the Didjeridoo concert, we moved on to a glass blowing demonstration (where they were making paperweights) and a Lampwork Bead demo (seen in the photo here). I always thought Lampwork beads might be fun to make, but I have changed my mind after watching the demo. (Too much work.) What I think now is that those beads are fun to see and buy.
Then we decided to check out the house that Extreme Homemakeover is working on here in the St. Louis area. Do you watch that show? I think it’s such a great concept. There was an article in our newspaper about this and they said the family knew they were one of five finalists, but didn’t know they had “won” a home makeover until the bus pulled up outside their house one morning and called them out on the bullhorn. The house is worked on 24 hours a day for 5 days and will be finished on Wednesday for the “reveal”. The show will air sometime later this fall. It was a beehive of activity! All of the streets were closed off for several blocks (they picked us up in buses and took us in), but they were very welcoming to spectators. I’ve always wondered how the neighbors were affected, when the house is sandwiched in on a residential block. (This particular house had only 7 feet on each side, to the property line. Not a lot of room to grow!) You can see the houses on either side have basically become part of the workshop area, with all kinds of supplies stacked up there. And of course the houses across the street get to host about 300 people standing behind the gates, watching all of the activity. No wonder all of the homeowners in the area have to sign off on the proejct! (And I’m sure they get new grass when it’s over.)
Not much knitting went on for me this weekend. On Saturday I was mildly obssessed with filling in the cubbies of the Cascade wall (not yet done, but it’s looking so beautiful!). The little bit of knitting that I did do involved working on a new colorway that I just had to start. It’s our exclusive striping yarn from Lorna’s Laces in … red and white, of course! The stripes change about every row, so it’s making a fun looking sock so far. I’ll photo it later in the week. This new colorway will go up this week in the Sneak Up and we will continue to order it in. Right now we have it in the Shepherd Sock, and we’ll probably have them dye some up in the Shepherd Sport as well.
So – what were you up to this weekend?
September 5, 2008
Cool weather things! Here in St. Louis we’ve finally let go of the heat and humidity (at least for a few days) and settled into cloudy and cool. WH and I ate dinner on the screen porch last night and it was downright chilly, which made me happy. I love sweater and sweatshirt weather! In fact, I came inside and got my Loopy Ewe Sweatshirt and warmed right up. I think that means that fall is in the air. Today is more of the same – cool, cloudy, and wonderful. (Except if you’re trying to play in the PGA, which is also here this weekend. We’ve been inundated with rain over the past few days, which makes for soggy courses.) So here are the things that today is perfect for:
Loopy Ewe Sweatshirts (which will warm you right up)
Pumpkin Spice Lattes (which are now back in season)
And stocking 1400 lbs. of Cascade (which will take us a good part of forever to do. But OH is this wall going to look gorgeous when we’re done!)
What is today “perfect” for in your neck of the woods?
September 3, 2008
I know what I used to think of it. “No time for that. Barely enough time to knit, so definitely no time to add spinning in to my life.” My, how things change. I went on a little knitting weekend last fall with four really great pushers enablers spinners who were determined to get Janice and I spinning by the end of the weekend. That’s pretty much all it took, and now I’m hooked. (I did do another post, telling them just what I thought of their attempt to sneak spinning into my life.) I was right, though. I don’t have enough time for knitting and now I don’t have enough time for spinning, but oh well. It just means that there is always something relaxing to do! And honestly – aren’t there some days/nights where your eyes are too tired to pay attention or your brain is too tired to concentrate on knitting? No? Hmm. Maybe it’s just me. But there are some times when sitting and spinning is just the perfect activity. Of course once you get the hang of it, then you see some roving and can’t wait to see “how that spins up”. It is definitely an occupational hazard to have all of this pretty roving on the shelves at Loopy, because I see a lot that I would like to try out. I have these two all balled up and ready to knit into something. I’m not sure what. Any ideas? The top cake is some Tempted Roving, and the bottom cake is Creatively Dyed. I have no idea how many yards of each are in there. I ought to pay attention to those things.
Here’s a skein of Lorna’s Laces that I finished up over the weekend. I love how it turned out. I have about decided that I should be spinning more than 4 oz. of a colorway because it gives you so many more knitting options. I was also thinking that when you buy roving, you really extend the entertainment value of your dollar. You get several hours of spinning before you even spend several hours knitting it up. You can’t beat that. (See how my brain works in justifying these things?)
So I have some questions for you spinners and non-spinners. Answer one of the questions (or as many as you’d like) in your comment post by September 12th and we’ll randomly draw a winner for a Loopy Ewe Gift Certificate! Here are the questions you can choose from:
1. Are you a spinner? If so, what prompted you to learn to spin? If not, what has held you back?
2. If you’re a spinner, did you learn on a drop spindle first? And do you recommend that to beginners before moving to a wheel? (Note – we have drop spindles going up on the website next week and more on the way. Note #2 – I was a dismal failure on drop spindles, but I know there are a lot of you who like them.)
3. Spinners – do you like spinning 4 oz. braids, or do you generally like to spin up more of a certain colorway? (Do you have in mind what you will knit with it before you spin it?)
4. What are some things that you have made from your handspun (or handspun that you have purchased)?
Thanks for participating in the contest. As a newbie spinner, I am looking forward to your thoughts on all of this!