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Wednesday, August 12, 2009

All Good Things...

...must, as we know, come to an end. (Insert sad face here.)

After a refreshing day of outdoor activities, it was back to the Convention Center for my final class and the Sock Summit Luminary Panel.

On Sunday morning, I had a Spindle Spinning Basics class with Abby Franquemont and Denny McMillan. They advocate the use of a bottom whorl spindle, which was a new experience for me. I equated it to writing with my left hand instead of my right. (At one point I pulled out a top whorl spindle just to make sure I hadn't lost my spinning mojo; thankfully, I hadn't, though you wouldn't have been able to tell from what I produced in class.) Now that I know some of the advantages of bottom whorls, I will be looking at spindles differently.
After that, it was one more sweep through the market where the big finds were Stranded in Oz, some of the softest merino evah, and a sweet Queen Bee Creations tote. I had to leave because every aisle was another shoppertunity. Step away from the cashmere!

Finally, it was up to the ballroom for the Luminary Panel. There was so much intelligence and wit up there on the dais, but here are a few gems:

When discussing the creation of EZ's first book, Meg Swansen said that it was typed on a rented IBM Selectric Typewriter. "You know, you make a mistake at the bottom of the page…shit!”

After being posed the question of whether being a woman made it more difficult to be taken seriously in her business, Meg responded, "I don't know, I've never been a man." (Love her!)

Barbara G. Walker was asked how she has managed to pack everything in that she has (feminist writer of many books, painter, foremost curator of knitting stitches, etc.), and she proceed to describe a lifestyle that is clearly motived by focus and drive. She admitted to needing very little sleep. She gave a detailed description of her routine, including how she took advantage of the six hours a day she had while her kids were in school to work on her projects, and how she once realized that her tv had been broken for five years before she called to have it repaired. After she left us all agog with her incredible discipline, Steph summed it up: "Recap, don’t sleep, and ditch your tv, right?”

There were so many other wonderful moments: Anna Zilboorg talking of the days when she did craft fairs, and realized she had crossed over to the dark side when her favorite part became counting the money at the end of the day, and Judith MacKenzie McCuin admitting she had moved a few years ago and part of the move was 6,000 lbs of fiber! I could go on and on...

There were questions raised about knitting as it relates to race, economics, gender, and social interaction. It sparked an all-evening discussion with the husband (who came with me to the Panel) that actually started on the Max train. (Another knitter on the train added her thoughts, too, which was great.) I'm so fortunate to have a husband who supports my interest and is willing to participate in it. (I also think might have a bit of a crush on Lucy Neatby, who was charming as anything, even dressed as she is as a punked out Raggedy Ann Doll! To prove it, here is a badly Kinneared pic of her.)

What's next? Tina told me directly that there will be other events, just not next year. She and Steph have formed Knot Hysterical Productions for these future endeavors. There are rumors that the next one will be in Toronto, Steph's hometown. (That part is unconfirmed--I did not get from Tina, though others have said they heard it from her.) Wherever it is, I hope to be able to go. It will be hard to top this one, and it is unlikely that it can be repeated, especially given the age of some of the teachers involved, but there are people coming up who will be dynamic forces in the field, to be sure. Counting the days...


The A.D.D. Knitter said...

Thank you so much for these entries, I've really enjoyed reading them!

Anonymous said...

Have loved reading your Portland posts! Next time, I get to be your roommate again (unless hubby finds a great candidate for me before then)