Sunday, February 24, 2008

Madrona 2008 Part 1 & Nihon Homework

Wow. Time flies!

Has it really been a week since Madrona was over?

Ruth and I went down to Tacoma the afternoon of February 13, 2008. When we arrived I saw many familiar faces. It is so nice to walk into a hotel and see many people I knew. We checked into our respective hotel rooms. Ruth had some knitting she wanted to get done.

I met for the first time Jen Black, from Connecticut. She is a member of a group that I am also a member of, Fiber Traditions. She needed a place to stay just for Wednesday night so she shared the room with me, Ellen Gowey and Michale Crooks. We met and decided to head over to the Museum of Glass. To get the museum we walked over the Chihuly Bridge of Glass.

Most of the exhibits were closed but it was nice to get to know Jen better. I felt like I have known her all my life.

That night Jen, Deb, Karla, Ellen, Ruth and I went to Paddy Coyne's for dinner. That was really delicious! I remember Sandy raving about this place and it is very good.

From this point on, the whole Madrona experience becomes somewhat of a blur!

I met so many wonderful people it is a bit mind boggling.

I didn't sleep well a number of nights before Thursday. I knew I was going to be emcee/moderator at the Thursday night, Charity night. I was very nervous about it.

Despite my mortal fear of Thursday night, I had class all day with Janel Laidman. The class was Spinning a Painted Skein. It was an excellent class! I learned so much and am looking forward to practicing what I learned(you all my spare time)!

This photo is of her holding up the fractal stripe sample which was highlighted in Spin-Off magazine.

After class I went straight to the room to continue to practice my speech for that evening. Melinda came into the room and we talked until it was time to go down to the room where the evening's event was going to happen. She was also going to speak a bit about Shetland. It was nice to have a speaking buddy to share my nerves with.

This is what I saw when I entered the room. I became even more nervous!

The people on the panel that night are fabulous people. I felt honored to be able to share the stage with these folks. The evening was Charity Night but it was also about Global Connections and how we can use the power of the internet to benefit the greater good of our communities.

I spoke about how many of the people on the panel became connected via the I met Melinda last year in line at Madrona. Via her blog, Purlwise, I was able to see a design by Ruth Sorensen. I couldn't get a hold of Kauni yarn at that time so I emailed her and Ruth sent me the yarn. Then another reader, Margaret, in Manhattan, saw the Kauni Cardigan and had to knit it. Then Stephanie(yes, that Stephanie) saw Margaret knitting it at a yarn store event and she had to knit it. We all know how the Kauni Cardigan spread through the internet like wildfire once Stephanie posted about it! I connected with Ruth and asked her if she would like to experience an American knitting conference, Madrona Fiber Arts, and she decided that she would like to make her first visit to the US. Then I got to thinking....she is a fabulous designer so maybe she could actually teach at Madrona. Then I hooked Ruth up with Suzanne Pedersen and that is how Ruth got here!

Ruth Sorensen talked a bit about how the internet has changed her life.

The highlighted charities for the night were Doctors without Borders presented by Stephanie Pearl-McPhee.

The Mother's Day Project - Anne Landre. This woman is a dear. I felt a connection with her right away(she was good at calming my nerves, just by her peaceful face and kind smile). During her presentation the tears just flowed and I almost could not stop them. Seeing the names of soldiers that have died in the Iraq war, all embroidered on fabric, just hit me hard.

The Shetland Textile Working Museum in the Shetland Islands - Melinda Mullins and Mary Adams. Joyce James was also involved but she did not present that night. They have taken up the cause of the Museum to preserve the origins, history and traditions of Fair Isle Knitting for future generations after visiting the Shetland Islands.

Caring for Kids - Diane Formoso started this local group more than 15 years ago when, as a school bus driver, she saw so many children in need. It has blossomed to provide clothing and many essentials to young children in need.

After the Charity event, the folks that had their Kauni Cardigan on came up for a group photo. Here we are:

I have much more to write about but I have to get to my Nihon Homework so I will continue the Madrona post later.

Now a quick note about Nihon Homeowork....well...

I am a bit behind(what else is new?). Yesterday I had a setback. I had started the back of the round neck cardigan. All was going well.

Notice the seed stitch on the sides? I wanted to make things easier on myself with regard to sewing up the sides. I figured if I did seed stitch, it would be easy to match up the pattern for sewing.

So while I was watching Season 2 of 24, I realized the sides were not going to look how I wanted them. The seed stitch was going to be so glaringly different than the rest of the sweater patterning. I sat. I thought. I watched Jack Bauer. He is so I decided...hmmmnnn..maybe I could be brave in my knitting.

I could fit half of the leafy pattern repeat on the sides in place of the seed stitch and NO I was not going to rip out the whole thing.

I decided to rip out just the section that needed re-doing. Luckily I had just enough stitches for 1/2 of the pattern repeat. I have done this kind of fixing before. As all things related to Nihon, it took much longer than I had anticipated.

Warning: The next photo is not for the those affected by gory photos....

Now I am knitting back up in the new and improved pattern.

Now it is all better...looks a lot better, don't you think?

I have to knit all day today. Time is running out.

Next week is a big one at work. Beginning tomorrow I will be building our production budget database, filling it up with all kinds of good budget data. I'll have a number of late nights(hopefully not too many). I just hope all goes smoothly.

Ruth also just has a few more days here. I wish the "big" week at work was not coinciding with Ruth leaving. Even though she is staying with me and the boys, I probably won't see much of her!

Wish me luck!


threadingwater said...

Thanks for the kind words, Naomi. I enjoyed meeting you, too. You did a terrific job at the podium - so warm and genuine - everyone adored you.

-Anne Landre

Gail said...

Re: Nihon homework. Wow, you ARE brave! I didn't know that could even be done. Congratulations, it turned out beautifully. Thanks for sharing your special Madrona memories, too.

Arctic Knitter said...

The fix on the sweater is fantastic - it looks marvelous & a testament to all you've learned as a knitter. I don't think I could be that brave - I didn't even know such a thing could be done!

Thanks for bringing Ruth to Madrona - I took her last hat class & it was such a treat.

Your talk at charity night was wonderful - the internet is indeed such a powerful, connecting, force.

Carrie said...

Gaaaaaaaah, that reknitting--I think that my brain just exploded.

I was really sorry that I missed Thursday night, I didn't know that you were moderating! It sounds like it was a great event. Thanks so much for bringing Ruth to Madrona--I loved her hat class (and it was nice to have you there, too)!

margaret in manhattan said...

thanks for the mention, Naomi! and also, thanks for the recap of Madrona - one day I MUST get out west, and then we can meet!

PICAdrienne said...

The sweater is truly amazing and inspiring. Seeing that, I believe I can coax the one dropped stitch on my Mom's shawl up to the needles.

I wish I had seen you at Madrona, during the short time I was there. I would like to get a chance to meet you one of these days. :)

Sarah said...

N- what a wonderful post. Madrona was too wonderful for words. I can't wait until next year!

And your Nihon homework? Oh. My mind is spinning. You are so brave! Looks gorgeous, by the way.

Stephanie said...

That Jack is an inspiration.

(It looks way better. Totally worth it.)