Monday, January 2, 2012

It's a New Dawn, It's a New Day

Happy January! This blog is not so much a new year's resolution as something I've wanted to do for a while & only now have time to dig into. Winter is the slow season for those of us working in video production & many of us use this time to catch up on or start hobbies we don't have time for when things really pick up in the spring & summer. When I was traveling in Greece last year, our tour guide in Santorini told us that people who work in Greece's tourism industry spend their springs & summers working non-stop for up to 18 hours a day with no days off for 6 months straight. That sounded a lot like my work life. In exchange, they get the next six months completely free to live on their own terms & many of them take classes, start hobbies, travel & basically do whatever they want. With that as my inspiration, I've decided to set aside my excuses and forge ahead with blogging. I've had many fiber adventures recently & can't wait to share them!

Currently I'm preparing to embark on what Brenda of Cast On refers to as "selfish knitting month". Once all the holiday gifts are completed & distributed, January is her month to pick up long-neglected projects or cast on something for herself for the first time in a while. And while I do still have one last belated holiday project on the needles (or more accurately awaiting it's turn on the blocking board), I've picked up my Central Park Hoodie again, with all intentions of finishing it this year (yes, this is a multi-year project, please see my first paragraph regarding my work life). But my real goal for January is to make this "selfish spinning month". I was gifted with some Knitpicks Wool of the Andes roving in Tidepool Heather & Merlot Heather. Tidepool is a color I've been salivating over since the first time I saw it. For my partner's dad to pick this for me with no help on my part is pure kismet. I'll need to sit with this roving for a bit before I start spinning it, as I like to see the finished yarn in my head before I break out the wheel. I also purchased 2 oz. of gorgeous kettle-dyed lavender corriedale roving from Nancy's Spinning Fancies in Cornwall, NY during my annual holiday trip back east. I envision this roving as a thick-&-thin single ply & I expect this will be the first selfish spinning project I tackle.

This trip to Cornwall was one of my aforementioned fiber adventures. My mom recently took up knitting so I got her 101 One-Skein Wonders for Christmas. She chose a few projects & wanted to pick up the required needles. There are not too many LYS's in the Hudson Valley & those that do exist are a bit far-flung but she'd heard about a shop in Cornwall called the Cornwall Yarn Shop so we decided to make the 30-ish minute drive over & check it out. It's a cute little shop in a converted house in historic downtown Cornwall. There's a great yarn selection & I picked up a skein of Punta MeriSock Handpainted sock yarn.

The very knowledgeable & personable owner helped my mom find the needles she wanted & even got her to try some rosewood square needles. Neither my mom nor I had ever knitted on square needles so I'm looking forward to getting the low-down on how they feel. The shop has an upstairs & downstairs, separated by a foyer full of samples & a narrow little staircase. The downstairs has two rooms chock full of yarn plus a kitchen area that was in use for some sort of class or community knitting. Their FB calendar shows that they have a good selection of classes & events including the KnitSwirl! truck show coming up on January 21st.

The upstairs had more yarn & a back room full of beautiful in-progress samples & back issues of knitting magazines. Being in there had all the thrill of snooping in someone's stash!

After we finished up there, we walked down Main St & stumbled across Nancy's Spinning Fancies. Nancy was at lunch when we first stopped by so we grabbed some lunch ourselves & came back after she'd returned. Her shop is a delightful cacophony of wheels & fiber with a table in the center for hanging out & getting help with your spinning. Nancy hand-dyes all the fiber she sells & also stocks the occasional skein of her own handspun. The fun is in digging through the fiber to unearth these skeins & well as other buried treasures like additional colors. Her prices are very reasonable ($3-$4/oz) & I can't wait to see how this fiber spins up.

Next time I'll have some photos of my holiday knitting & stay tuned in February for some further fiber adventures, namely the Madrona Fiber Arts festival!


juniperjune said...

okay, i lied -- i did have time to read this before going out. both that fiber and yarn are gorgeous! and how fun that your mom is learning to knit. i'm so excited about this blog and about seeing you soon!

V! said...

Thanks for the read & the support! I totally plan to blog about your visit, we'll have to take some pictures while you guys are here! Looking forward to seeing you soon!

Susan Moskwa said...

Are you taking any classes at Madrona? I'm waitlisted for a couple, fingers crossed...

V! said...

I'm hoping to sign up for some mini-classes. Their really strict cancellation policy doesn't work for my constantly-changing freelance schedule so I usually just hit the market but some of this year's mini-classes look amazing. Hope you get into the classes you're waiting on!