Stitches Midwest 2014 will live in my memory for a long time. This was the first event where I was a published author and I was teaching 5 new classes that I have been working on for months. It was a busy, hectic few days, but everything went beautifully. I have many people to thank for that. First, I want to thank the students and participants at Stitches. I don’t have photos of them, because I was too busy living the dream to capture it. (I’m going to have to do better in the future. Next time, in class, someone remind me to take a picture!) You were all beautiful, smart, funny, kind, and persistent. Learning something can be confusing, but everyone was successful, and we all had a great time. I could not have wished for more.
Between classes, I spent time in the market. I caught up with friends and vendors, and spent as much time as I could with Yarn Barn of Kansas, where “Annetarsia Knits” was on sale at Stitches Market for the very first time.
Yarn Barn has everything – yarn, needles, DVD’s and books. And, they take selection seriously. If you want the widest selection possible of published knitting/crochet/weaving/spinning material, Yarn Barn of Kansas is the place to go. I’ve always looked forward to browsing their tables and picking up something new and interesting. But this year, after shipping and schlepping my books all over the place, I had a new appreciation for the difficult job they have. Books are heavy, and lots of books are really heavy. Sometimes they will only bring a few of a title, and you can’t blame them, because whatever doesn’t sell has to be shipped back home, and there is only so much space to put everything.
I was confident that more than a few people would want to buy my book, so I contacted Yarn Barn and asked if they would please take some extra copies of “Annetarsia Knits”. They did, and then I felt responsible. But it all turned out OK, because they sold a lot of books and I signed a great deal of them. At the end of the first day, I asked a helper if my books were selling and she said, “Oh yes, I’ve been writing it up all day. I think you should have given it a shorter title!”
I visited with Holiday Yarns, whose yarn I used in the Oaks Park sock. Jennifer’s booth was a family affair, as her mother and daughter were there to help with the booth. Some yarn had to come home with me, of course, especially since she had a skein in the colors of the U of O Ducks. The label says “Packers”, but I wasn’t fooled. I’m going to make a shawl and wear it whenever there is a big game.
At the Fiesta booth, a skein of Gracie Lace called to me. This is a yummy lace yarn – mostly superfine merino, but with a bit of silk for strength and cashmere for yummy softness. Fiesta does bold color really well, but the quiet tones of vanilla struck the right chord for me, this time.
Finding time to eat was a challenge, but fortunately I had friends who made sure that I didn’t skip too many meals.
Cheryl Scallon treated me to breakfast one morning, and roommate Marly Bird took me and Amy Herzog to Partillo’s, which was a hoot. I had a hot-dog “Chicago Style”, and it was terrific – spicy, salty and unforgettable. Thank you to everyone who made this a wonderful event. See you next year, I hope!