It’s true: I was among the masses at the New York Sheep & Wool Festival on Sunday. And it was my first fiber festival ever, let alone my first time to the infamous Rhinebeck.
Was it everything I had imagined it to be? Yes, and then some. Where else can a person pose with bipedal sheep?
Sweetie and I arrived just after 10 o’clock in the morning. There were still acres of parking and we walked right it without waiting. After entering the gates we both just stood there for a moment, taking it all in. I was a little overwhelmed, and couldn’t decide where to go or what to see first. Sweetie guided me into the nearest building and said “Let’s just go up and down through all of them.” Quite a statement for a non-knitter, wouldn’t you say?!
Before lunch I didn’t buy any yarn at all. There was just so much to see that I couldn’t really focus on any one thing. Other knitting accessories did catch my eye however, and I came home with a new sock project bag and a circular needle case from go-Monkey Design. Sweetie and I picked out a great print from the artist Conni Togel called ‘Dare to Be Different‘. I also picked up this beautiful, completely unnecessary sock needle holder from Autumn House Fiber Works:
It’s already proven useful while knitting my Show-Off Stranded Socks (rav link).
The atmosphere at this festival was one of friendship and mutual excitement over all things wooly. There was a plethora of Ravelry swag roaming around, and I was constantly scanning people’s buttons to see if I recognized anyone’s user name. There was even a moment when I said to a complete stranger: “I need to touch your sweater.” Under normal circumstances this could get a person punched in the face, but at Rhinebeck she just smiled and proceeded to tell me all about the pattern and the colors she chose. Wonderful.
Lunchtime brought us to the Ravelry meetup, where I ran into some friends from my Stitch ‘n Bitch group. After several polite photos were taken, I asked people to pose silly for me. Thanks gals!
From left to right we have: Yankee Lagniappe, Mad Knitter, Me, KnelleyKnits, WifeMomKnitter, Kim, Denise, and CostumeChick
This was the place where another woman and I were eyeing each other’s Ravelry buttons when we simultaneously smiled and recognized one another.
It’s reader Lizzzknits! Isn’t her Kauni sweater beautiful? She was very nice, and encouraged me to go ahead and take that leap into sweater knitting. I hear November is Knit a Sweater Month, so I might just give it a try. Hope you made it home safely, Liz!
Then we had a large group photo, complete with Ravelry Royalty down in front: Casey, Jess, and Mary Heather.
Are you in this photo? If so, please leave a comment and say hi!
I eventually was able to buy some yarn. I was hoping to see something that I’d like to knit a sweater out of, but it was difficult to take your time and really look at things as the fair got more and more crowded. I did come away with 3 single skeins of gorgeous yarn:
Martha smells sheep and rabbits!
Clockwise from the front: Holiday Yarns Flock Sock Sock Yarn in Bubble Gum, Cranberry Moon Farm Homespun, and Jamie Harmon handspun/dyed merino & angora.
Overall my first time at Rhinebeck was a great success. I saw a lot, but left a lot unexplored for next time. Yes, there will definitely be a next time! For now I am content with the experience and looking forward to utilizing my new yarn and accessories. It just may take me a year to recover from all the fun I had!
**All photos that had me in them were taken by the infinitely patient and supportive Sweetie, who is welcome at Rhinebeck or Stitch ‘n Bitch anytime**