norichan knits!

fiber festival

Black Sheep Gathering

Noriko HoComment

At the end of June, I went to Black Sheep Gathering in Eugene, OR.  It's a cute fiber festival that focuses on the animals, fiber mostly for spinning, and a small amount of yarn.  I went for one day with a couple of my friends.  :o)  It was so much fun, and I would love to go again, though it may not be a yearly event for me... It ended up being a longer drive than I originally expected.  >.<  Anyways, here are some pictures from the event.  

The animals were adorable, getting to hang out with friends (Marilyn, a local PDXer, and Ari, a Seattle-ite... and many more not pictured) was great, there were some amazing felted pieces of art there, a wall of handspun yarn (of many different breeds of sheep) then swatched for us to ogle over, and a new favorite shop (Stick + String)!  :oD

And, of course, the haul.  I couldn't resist getting one Stick + String's batts, so I nabbed the one I was eyeing all day (the gorgeous desert-y colored one), some black wool with a rainbow of sparkles from The Fiber Addict, and some natural colored wools (a wool sampler pack and Shetland/Alpaca) from Woolgathering.  I also got my very first Jenkins spindle, an Aegean.  Eeeeee, so excited!!

As far as the wool sampler pack goes, it contains 30 different breeds of sheep!  My friend, Marilyn, and I split a pack (full pack is 1oz/breed, so we now have 0.5oz/breed), and we will be spinning them up and will be putting up blog posts about our thoughts on each of them.  I'm very excited because I haven't even heard of some of these breeds!!  :oD 

Challenges

Noriko HoComment

Working a lot, traveling, finding myself with more deadlines (most of them self placed pattern writing deadlines), etc has started to wear on me.  So, I've found ways to create small challenges for myself to keep me motivated and staying positive.  :o)  Here are a few of the challenges that I have recently started.  

We can start with the pretty challenge!  At this year's Madrona Fiber Fest, I purchased this roving.  It's super soft and so cool with the alpaca staying it's super dark color and silk becoming ultra intense in color!  :oD  I decided to drop spindle this fiber so I can really enjoy it.  Because of the fiber content, I decided to spin from the fold (a technique I haven't tried in probably... 8 years!).  I haven't gotten past that yellow tail you see there, but I'm enjoying it so far!  

Next is the StitchJones Neon Design Challenge that I've blogged about in the past!  I've figured out what I want to do, and I'm already 1/3 the way done!  Can't show the design just yet, so you'll just have to trust that I'm really liking the results.  

Oh and speaking of challenges... capturing that neon green is definitely a challenge!!  That color above is not quite right... but I couldn't get the camera to get it just right.  :op  

The last challenge for the day is one that's actually really hard for me.  It's downsizing my stuff.  I have given myself an attainable feeling challenge of removing five items from my life each day I have off.  That can be something like a book that I haven't tried to reread in years, a piece of clothing I am not excited to wear anymore, a tote bag I got for free but never use b/c I have better quality ones, or even a piece of junk mail that I should have recycled when it came in, but instead it went into a pile of "to be sorted."  I am even counting a wrapper that I left on the coffee table instead of throwing out day of because it's still getting something that is cluttering my life, and getting it out.  

This last challenge is hard for me because I will always find a reason that something is useful, sentimental, or "needed."  However, with each move, I find myself in a smaller apartment, smaller closet, less storage space, etc.  I need to be able to free myself of the things that I am not using so that I can actually get to the things I do want to use!  I'm actually remarkably pleased with my results so far, and plan on continuing.  One day, then it'll turn into having just what I need and then only removing things that are wasteful that have come in, like recycling ads.  :o)  

Knit Fit!

Noriko HoComment

There was a small fiber festival this past weekend in Seattle called Knit Fit.  While there were some classes available, I did not partake.  Instead I perused the vendor hall.  There were a good number of amazing booths, and while I wish I could have supported everyone, my wallet did not agree with me.  :'o(  Even still, I feel like I got a lot of amazing things, and I'm very excited about it! 

Clockwise from top:  bright orange bag (Knit Fit bag that I won as a doorprize), green speckled yarn from Seattle Sky Dyeworks (worsted weight), purple needles are Signature DPNs in US 1.5 (my favorite size for my very first set of Signatures!), sunset colored roving is Targhee/Silk from Huckleberry Knits (this blend is a special blend that she asks the mill to make for her!), both the red ball and the cream colored skein are recycled cashmere, and lastly, the beauteous bag of minis from Three Fates Yarns (in my favorite color combo!!)!   Oh wait, how could I forget?

This gorgeous pendant was made by a local ceramics artist who also does buttons, yarn bowls, and other pieces of jewelry.  I fell in love with her work immediately.  I had about 5 of her pendants in my hands at one point, but in the end, this was the one that I narrowed it down to.  It makes me so happy, and I can see me getting some good use out of this necklace.  :o)

So, in the end, despite smaller than some fiber festivals, there were a ton of high quality vendors there, and I am actually relieved that it wasn't larger.  If it had been, I don't know what I would've done.  I already had to hold back on many many other gorgeous yarns, fibers, and other crafts!!