Thursday, May 03, 2007

Que sera, sera

Over the past few days, I've been googling MDSW and "Maryland Sheep and Wool" and not getting much in terms of blog entries. I wonder why? Last year, it seemed EVERYONE was buzzing about the festival and making plans and the anticipation all over Blogland was just plain palpable. Maybe, though, it was because it was my first time and I was so hyped up I just couldn't stand it? So what will this year's festival be like?

For me, it will be an interesting venture. I have the pleasure of accompanying a MDSW virgin around the show. She says she's excited to be going with someone who knows what they're doing (I didn't have the heart to tell her...ha!). I gave her her first spinning lesson on Monday at lunchtime and she's very enthusiastic. I think we'll have fun -- I love to show people new things and she's eager to see.

I also have a much more precise list this year than I had a year ago. Last year, the festival for me was all about the fibers -- I was a novice spindler at the time who was scoping out spinning wheels, new spindles and sampling fibers like a madwoman. This year, I know what I like and what I don't. I know what I can deal with, what colors I will actually use and, believe it or not, what I'd like to actually knit with the homespun.

I have a small list. It's tagged with vendor names so I know where to go for things directly, and I'm planning on keeping myself to the list with only one exception. If I find the booth where I bought Sugar Pie last year, I'm picking up more of her wool. Other than that, there are only five or six things there besides the Hitchhiker.

Last year for me, the hype around the Koigu mill ends and The Fold's booth (for the Socks that Rock, or STR) were an enigma. We wandered around looking for the postage-stamp-sized Koigu booth FOREVER and didn't find it until very few mill ends were left. (For the record, I got some, just to say I did.) I ended up getting my Koigu at the Mannings booth and I left with no Socks that Rock. This year, the Koigu and the STR are no longer mystery yarns. You see, this is what Stitches East did to me. Koigu mill ends were quite plentiful there (this is why they vaporized at MDSW last year, apparently -- vendors bought them to sell elsewhere I'm sure) and I had no problem whatsoever securing STR. I bought three skeins of lightweight (maybe the mayhem is over the mediumweight? Well, I've got news for you folks, they have it on-line and no elbows will jab you).

So I'm avoiding the mayhem, taking my time and having fun without shopping stress. What will be, will be.

Which brings me to the actual knitting content of this post. Firstly, the Moc Croc sock is nearly done. The pattern has a six-row repeat, and I try not to work on it unless I can do all six rows (I'm keeping track of the repeats so the second sock is the same) and work and life just haven't given me that kind of time. One more repeat, though, and I'm off the finish the first and start the second.

Now the STR sock is a different story. Let me tell you something about this guy. It is stubborn and resisted every time I tried to make it do what I wanted it to. What will be, will be.

I bought this yarn ("Downpour" colorway in lightweight) at Stitches East in November and it's been marinating in the stash ever since. I pulled it out a few weeks ago and wound it up. I cast on for a toe-up sock with a figure 8 cast on. I knit a few inches and decided that I hated the toe. Rrrrip! Did a rectangular toe (provisional with pickups) and went for a bit and realized that I hated that one too. Ugh. Put the yarn and needles aside in the UFO pile. This weekend, in my frenzy, I picked up the yarn again and tried it in a cuff-down Moc Croc. Too stripey -- hated it and ripped again. Started the Moc Croc in Fleece Artist instead. Found the lacey scallops pattern and gave that a try (that's what was in the other post). I went two pattern repeats and really hated that one too.

Finally, two nights ago, I sat the yarn down and gave it one last chance. Where these patterns not fancy enough for it? Is it too good for a lace motif?

Not at all. Turns out it just wants to be a plain old, cuff-down, stockinette sock. Que sera, sera.

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