OFFF: or Maude's Facelift

Howdy folks! Try as I might to sound chipper, I am a wee bit pissed (still) this week. I've been taking it out on those around me (sorry) and I'm sure I've been a general delight to be around.

Nevertheless, I managed to get my butt down to bootilicious Canby, OR for the 10th annual Oregon Flock and Fiber Festival (OFFF) to increase my strategic stash reserves. Surprisingly, I only bought half of one llama fleece and under $100 of yarn (most of it for other people). I was shocked and amazed too!

The day started off well at about 8am for the drive down to Canby from Seattle. Jon went with me, we took turns driving, and played all day with go-karts waited patiently while I took far longer to get through it all than I had anticipated. Luckily for me, I was rescued form the overwhelmingness of it all by the fabulous Duchess and her friend S. It was really wonderful to have two other amenable fibernerds to sort through the piles and piles of wool/llama/alpaca/angora/cashmere/cotton/flax/dog/goat/etcetcetc.

The one thing I wish I could have done was make this entry an audio entry. The sounds of OFFF were amazing. From the ridiculous voices of the different sheep ("baaaa" to "mehhh" to hoarse staccato bleets) to the muppety "Beaker" noises of the baby alpacas (seriously, the little squeaks, sighs ad beeps alpacas make is a reason to buy one). So, without further ado, the pictures!

The coated Robosheep with leather horns. Creepy!

A Jacob with and obscene number of horns

Bunnies on the move!

DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince. I just love these two!

The Beaker twins

And now, the fiber stash augmentation!

Socks that Rock

Dyeing A.R.T. in cotton perle for x-mas sox

Sarah Johnson and Rachel Iverson have it going on! How cute is this pattern?

Sporfarm baby alpaca laceweight in copper.

Ella Jean, the llama

And the piece de resistance, fiber from Sara Anderson in colorway Autumn Joy:

So pretty!!

Great Balls of Fiber!

And, of course, since I can't just leave well enough alone, we are also giving our house Maude a little shot of botox. She really needed a central focus for the main floor bathroom. You see, before, she was an era slut; a little from the '20s, a little from the '50s, a little from the '80s... We're restoring the bathroom to the '20s with a euro-style vanity and new fixtures and subway tile. Maude should feel a little less confused when we're done...

Maude sez: "Peace out!!"



Oh my sweet goodness, folks, I am happy to be home. That trip was a marathon boondoggle of global proportions! It was the most poorly "planned", ridiculously scheduled slog of a sixteen days that I have ever experienced. My time was scheduled down to the half-hour by people who apparently think that graduate students = 14 year olds. Although I was explicitly asked about dietary restrictions, absolutely NO arrangements were made to ensure that I could eat the food that was served at our mandatory dinners. Many dinners I had to make do with nothing or specifically ask the chef myself if he could make something "senza glutine" because "sono allergica a glutine. Mais, patate e riso [are] tutta bene, [but] NO FRUMENTO". Yeah, I also now *totally* rock the speaking of Italian.

Where I was...

Highlights of the trip were all centered around the town's annual Festa. The "men in tights" (sbandiatore) were the best part of that and those guys are not shy about what they have to offer the world in the Package department, if you know what I mean (lecherous wink). We have some pretty spectacularly lewd shots of them from the various parties we attended. They are a fun bunch, though and I now know that the Italian World Cup chant can be cut into *any* song. And I know it by heart. For such a chic culture, they sure are giant dorks when it comes to the music they like to dance to (fast techno, dance hits from the 70's and 80's). I think the only new song I heard the entire time was "Crazy" by Gnarls Barkley. It's a giant hit with rural Italians.

So many things went on during this trip, it's going to be hard to write a general synopsis, but here goes... I had a good time, even though it was really hard to not be able to eat anything and have to be away from home. The entire living situation was totally miscommunicated (had I known I would be battling scorpions, bedbugs and spiders the size of my fist I would have at least packed a sleepsack and my own sheets. The 65-euro-a-night hotel that I indulged in the last 5 nights was the best money I have ever spent. Italians are a sweet, hospitable, dorky and quirky bunch and although I came to love them, I have no desire to ever go back. Also, one of my two classes was a total waste of time and tuition.

Busatti luxury linen weaving machine from the early 1900's...

So! Did I do any knitting? You betcha! I started the Icarus shawl, and a secret project for the upcoming holidays. I am really really trying to be good this year and do like the Yarn Harlot and put things away as I knit them during the year for holidays gift purposes so I'm not left flatfooted on December 24th (as usual).



The Land of Pasta

Hi folks,

So the Land of Pasta is incredibly unadvanced technologically. I am in an internet cafe that has two computers and runs pirated copies of Windows. Sweet, eh? There is a LYS here and I'll be hitting it up tomorrow (everything is mostly closed on Sunday and Monday). We've been here for the Festa which include flag-waving performances, crossbow tournaments and Renaissance dress. It's really rather neat! I have, of course, been knitting through all of it. But since I have no network access for my computer, you'll have to wait for pictures... :)

That's all for now, time for Siesta! Peace out!


Off On a Jet Plane (again)

Hi folks,

I'm off early tomorrow morning to the Land of Pasta and Pizza (and Gluten). I will be back on the 18th just in time for Oregon Flock and Fiber. I've started the Icarus shawl this week as well as a new pair of socks and as usual I am bringing waaaaaaaay too many knitting projects with me. Oh well!

Have a wonderful next two weeks; I'll try to post as I can!

Peace out!