Rose City Yarn Crawl

This past weekend was the Rose City Yarn Crawl. The yarn crawl involves visiting 18 Portland area shops in 4 days (Thursday-Sunday). I was able to hit a few Thursday and Friday after work, but I hit most of the shops this weekend. My husband came along for the ride on Saturday and we hit 10 shops. I hit the rest on Sunday. You print out a passport to take to all the shops to get stamped. Once your passport is full you turn it in to the last shop you visit and are entered into a prize drawing. Ever since we moved to Portland I have wanted to visit all of these yarn shops, but hadn't made it to most of them. So, the yarn crawl was the perfect opportunity to see all the yarn shops in the area.

I ended up with a good bit of new yarn and fiber.





Clockwise from top to bottom:

  • Mountain Colors Hand-painted yarn in the Harmony Sweet Grass colorway
  • Debbie Bliss ecobaby in Brown and Denim colorways
  • Sweetgeorgia sock yarn in the Boheme colorway
  • Madeline Tosh Vintage in Teddy Bear
  • Blue Moon Socks that Rock in Aurora Borealis
  • Woolgatherings fiber 70% BFL / 30% Seacell

I am super excited about all of these yarns. With the exception of Madeline Tosh I have never knit with any of these brands before so they are all new to me.

This year they even had a tote bag that you could take from shop to shop and pick up a pin for each shop you visit.



I had an awesome time participating in the yarn crawl and can't wait to do it again next year!



Playful Stripes

It has been busy, busy, busy around here lately. My husband finished his PhD and was offered a job. I'm so proud of him! This also meant a move to the Portland area for us. We wanted to be able to stay in the Pacific Northwest and it is so nice to be near a big city again. Not to mention that there are TONS of yarn stores in Portland. I'm so excited to go explore and find out which are my favorites. Once we get settled I plan on trying to update the blog more often. We have been flying around the country visiting family. Had an awesome  (but extremely hot) time in Florida with my grandma and are now hanging out back home with our parents.

Right now the majority of my yarn is packed in boxes along with my spinning wheel, drum carder and loom. I kept out enough yarn for a few pairs of socks, a shrug. This seems like it will be a good amount of yarn until I can unpack my boxes. Once I get back I will show you pictures but in the mean time I have a project to show you from my backlog of projects waiting to go on the blog.

This was designed by one of my favorite designers- Alana Dakos. I am also a huge fan of her podcast "Never Not Knitting." The pattern is called Playful Stripes and it is super cute. It also ranges in size from newborn to 8 years which is nice.

I mostly used Knit Picks Brava sport weight yarn because it is acrylic and easy to wash. The great thing is that you can use small amounts of leftover yarn for the stripes. The yellow stripe happens to be some leftover Cascade 220 superwash from the flower sweater that I made earlier.

The color quality of the next 2 pictures is horrible, but you can get an idea of the construction. It was knit from the bottom up. First the body then the 2 sleeves. Then the stitches are knit across up to where the arm joins, arm stitches are knit onto the same needle then this is repeated for the second sleeve.

I kept knitting in the stripe pattern up to the top while decreasing. Then ends needed to be woven in and arm seams needed to be sewn up.

Also, the picco trim on the bottom and sleeves needed to be sewn. It started off looking like this:

Then changed to this:

Finally, a button band needed to be knit

and buttons attached.

Yarn Fest '11

Last weekend was Yarn Fest '11 AKA a trip to Portland with my husband and his parents. Did you know that there are more than 15 yarn shops in Portland? This doesn't even count the ones in the cities around Portland. So, once I found out that there are so many yarn stores in Portland I began doing my research. I visited their websites and made a list of shops that I wouldn't mind visiting if we had the time. The one thing that I wanted to get from one of these shops was a pair of sock blockers. These really don't have too much of a purpose (for me, anyway) except that I would like to start making more socks and I think that the pictures of socks just look better when the socks are on the blockers. Of course I ended up with much more than just sock blockers.

These are my 2 new pairs of sock blockers (large and small). Also shown here is a magnetic notebook from KnitPicks which is awesome for keeping track of where you are while reading knitting charts. But there is more.

The yarn! On the left is yarn that Mary and I just couldn't pass up. (She got some, too.) In the store it was knit up into a spiral scarf. I don't know how else to describe what this scarf looked like. I will just have to show you someday when I finish it (but don't hold your breath I have lots of projects going on...). Up at the very top is some hand-dyed blue faced Leicester (a kind of sheep) roving. While I have quite a supply of spinning roving, I just couldn't pass this up. It is so pretty! Below that, there is some pink yarn. This yarn is in the collection because it is superwash merino that was 40% off. I just couldn't not buy it. Below the pink is some green lace weight yarn and below that is some purple lace weight. I have decided that I love knitting lace! Yet I have never actually knit with lace weight yarn, so this yarn was a must. :)

While all of this is great, the best part is still to come. When visiting Portland, a visit to Powell's Books is a must. This is the best bookstore ever. It is HUGE. We had been exploring for quite a while when Jason and I decided to venture up to the top floor. Halfway up the stairs there is a sign announcing author events. I skim through the list and notice a familiar name. Stephanie Pearl-McPhee. I say to Jason "I know who she is, that's cool that she will be here. Wait, is today the 28th?" Yep, it was. She was there the day we were. If you don't know who she is, she is a knitting writer and blogger, and she is hilarious. She is also known as the Yarn Harlot. I read her blog ( on and off and she is a fantastic knitter and writer.

My husband and in-laws were kind enough to stick around for 2 hours until she showed up and read from her new book All Wound Up. Mary even sat with me and listened while the boys went to more interesting places. This lady cracked me up! And Mary even seemed to enjoy it. If you check out the Yarn Harlot blog post from Portland you may even be able to spot us. There are 4 audience pictures at the beginning of the post. Look at the bottom right corner. Mary is between the man with white hair and the lady with the light blue sweater. I am to the left of her (right next to the big white beam).

Overall, it was a great weekend. We had a fun time visiting with Jason's parents. The Yarn Fest part was really just a bonus. Anyway, I think Mary ended up with more yarn than I did!