Friday, January 20, 2006

Holy Crap!

In the famous words of Frank Barone...

Tonight was the Knit Salon at the Grove, and instead of having our usual knitting group, most of us took a class from Annie Modesitt on Combination Knitting. Prior to taking this class, I had no idea what Combination Knitting was. I thought it was a combination of Continental and English knitting, maybe doing knits one way and purls the other or something. But it was simply a way to knit quicker and with less strain on your wrists. The Holy Crap part comes when she demonstrated the process to us. She's like a knitting machine! She is so fast that the yarn is a blur and you can't even see what she's doing. She does a combination of picking, throwing, Eastern, Western and whatever the hell else knitting. It's the most bass-ackwards, random way of knitting that I've ever seen, but damn, THAT's what I want to learn! I couldn't even get a handle on what she was doing. She said things like, "Well, I sort of pick the yarn and then throw it over there and pull it through while standing on my head and singing the Star Spangled Banner." Everybody in the class was completely floored. Man, if I could knit that fast, I would NEVER have the feeling that I needed to quit my job in order to knit full time so I can do all of the projects I want to do. Of course, if I did that, I would end up needing to use the grocery money to buy all of the yarn I'd need for all of these fabulous projects. Naturally, in my fantasy world where I quit my job to knit full time, the government gives out yarn subsidies, yarn companies and LYS's have as much power as oil and pharmaceutical companies, yarn is tax deductible, and I get paid to knit fabulous garments for myself. I'm sure the Bush Administration is hard at work on that yarn subsidy right now...

But I digress.

In the end, I'm not sure how I liked Combination Knitting. It did seem faster and it involved less movement of my wrist. These are very good things. I think my expectations were a little screwy. First of all, I thought it would help me with fair isle, which it won't. Secondly, I was hoping that it would neaten up my ribbing, but it really didn't seem to. I'll keep trying it and see how it goes. Maybe I'll get better at it and everything will fall into place.

Before the class, though, I had one of those out of body experiences. Of course, I met Annie Modesitt today, which for a knitter is like meeting a rock star. I mean, this woman is famous. She's been published in Interweave and Vogue a million times. She designed that shrug on the cover of the Fall 2005 VK for cryin' out loud! Which brings me to my out of body experience.

The owner of Circles, Jeanette's LYS in Boston, is out here in San Diego for the TNNA, and she's staying with the owner of the Grove, Susan. Of course, I've already had my moment of trippin' about that one, about how frickin' small the knitting world is. I mean, they didn't meet through us at all. They met completely by accident.

But I digress.

Anyway, Circles is doing a knitalong for the aforementioned shrug, and I want to participate. I wasn't sure if Allison, the owner of Circles, would be up for me participating remotely in the knitalong from San Diego. Well, tonight, we all went out to dinner together, Susan, Annie Modesitt, Allison from Circles, me and fellow Grover Allison. So, I had a complete out of body experience when I went to ask Allison if I could participate in a knitalong in Boston for a pattern that was designed by the woman sitting across from me! A pattern from VK, no less. Isn't that wild?!

Well, I was impressed. Maybe next I'll get to meet Evelyn Clark or Sharon Miller or Kim Hargreaves - oh the mind reels! I already got to meet the Yarn Harlot. I remember when I saw her crossing the street from Rebecca's coffee shop to go into the Grove, I felt like I was having a Paul McCartney sighting or something. Yarn groupies, that's what we are.


Blogger Theresa said...

My dad thinks this blog thing is "weird," and wants to know how I'm sure all these people out there really exist. Seriously, who's going to spend all that time taking photos of knitting if they don't exist? But there is something so cool about meeting someone in person - a hey, they really DO exist kind of thing.

9:17 AM  
Anonymous Cora said...

So what did she say about doing the knitalong from San Diego. I am so bummed I missed it last night. Blasted head cold I didn't think any one else wanted me to share. I'm so jealous! Anyway... If you are really interested in the VK sweater, Alpine has all the yarn for it and I know she just got a shipment of the pictured color on Wed. I know it's not cheap, but I know she would hold it in the back and let you buy it in small bits.

12:04 PM  
Anonymous Melissa said...

woah! That sounds very cool... sorry I missed it last night, but I just wasn't in the mood to go out last night for various reasons I wont go into. Anyway, I can't wait to see your progress on the VK jacket! That thing is gorgeous!

12:24 PM  
Blogger Disentangled said...

Look at you and the hob-nobbing! (I have no idea how to spell that, but you get the point :-)

It sounds like you had a great time! My friend and I often talk about the strangeness of the knitting celebrities! I'm still bummed I didn't sign up for the class in time.

12:58 PM  
Anonymous Lissy said...

I had a similar out of body annie experience. I copy-edited her most recent book, "Cheaper Than Therapy," and when she was passing through MA to give some classes, we met for dinner. We also shared dinner with blogger extraordinaire, Grumperina, and it was so weird to be having dinner with two women whom I felt like I "knew" but whom I had never actually met before! Both ladies were delightful and we had a great time. But I really did get a hoot out of the concept of the whole experience.

1:19 PM  
Anonymous Allison said...

I am still wrapping my head around everything from last night. It's taking all of my will power to get through the work day so I can get home and practice all the stuff she showed us. I just can't believe how freakin' fast she knits! And while I got the basics of what she was saying, I think it will take me some time and practice to figure out the nuances.

I'm so excited about cabling without a needle!

3:29 PM  

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