This is way late for posting this but I spent the last half of last week in Madison, WI. It was a pretty great knitstravaganza time. Andrea (ravname: Selkie), co-Mod on the Anthropologie Knits group on ravelry, hosted me in Madison and she was definitely the hostess with the mostest. Her husband Jason was lovely and while Kaiser wasn't too happy with me, he was such a cutie that I didn't mind.
The lovely Kaiser [ganked from Andrea's flickr]
Andrea was lovely and took the day off on Friday for us to go yarn crawling. We started at Off the Beaten Path but it was not a happy place. It was a yarn shop caught in a time warp - like going back into the 80s. The yarn choices were sad and the colors were worse. It just wasn't a shop to inspire.
We then headed to The Knitting Tree which was a huge improvement on Off the Beaten Path. I was hoping to buy some Malabrigo there but they had about four skeins in the store. They were waiting for a new shipment. They had tons of pattern booklets, magazines and books there. I bought Made in Brooklyn which I'd really wanted but couldn't get at any of the yarn stores I frequent in NYC. Ironic, I know.
After that was Lakeside Fibers. That store was just sad. They had so little stock and the shop just seemed like it was weeks away from closing. The cafe was great and busy. The baristas engaged us in some convo about zodiac signs. I mentioned I was Scorpio and the guy working there stared me deeply in the eyes and asked if we scorpions had piercing? seductive? eyes. That's the problem with waiting too late to post, you forget the exact words. I also met up with my ex. He lives about a 5 min walk from Lakeside Fibers. Had plans gone accordingly, I too would have been living around 5 min from Lakeside Fibers but plans changed.
Our final stop was The Sow's Ear in Verona. That was a much better stop. The Sows Ear was friendly and warm and I enjoyed my Chicken Salad sandwich. I also got the yarn for my Little Birds cardigan. I got Jamieson Shetland Spindrift in maroon as the main color. Then a lovely aqua blue for the birds and for the leaves, Isager yarn in gold.
That evening we went to Tex Tubbs which was yummy. I haven't found any good Mexican food in NYC so it was nice to have some good food (even if it may be deemed TexMex). The wet burrito was delish and the Frito pie was strange but tasty. It was an open bag of Fritos covered in cheese, beans and other yummy nacho toppings.
After that we headed to the movies to see Alice in Wonderland. It was good fun. It was especially great when Andrea burst out laughing during the scene between the red queen and the frogs. No one else was laughing and she was losing it. It was great. It got quite a lot of people in the theater laughing to (including me) just because she couldn't stop the laughter.
Later on that evening, I was not feeling well. I'm allergic to dogs and my breathing was really, really bad. I was starting to panic a bit because I felt like something was very wrong. Jason drove me to Walgreens where the surly pharmacist suggested that I go to the ER for an epinephrine shot and some prednizone. Due to my recent return to the US and being unemployed, I'm also without insurance so I wasn't too thrilled at that prospect. Jason and Andrea called their friend Carla who we'd run into at the restaurant earlier to see if she'd let me use her inhaler. Thank goodness for that. Ventolin was my savior.
Me admiring this rug knit by Ann. She just happened to be signing some books next to me and was roped into taking a photo with me. Also, I'm wearing my Ulmus which was a huge hit with the Madison knitters.
On Saturday we went to the Madison Knitter's Guild Knit-in. There we listened to a presentation by the two women of Mason-Dixon knitting. They were very folksy and funny. I especially loved their clip "Grey Garments". It's hilarious!
Here's Andrea checking out some of Ann's and Kay's knitted blankets:
We then hit the vendors. I bought some yarn from Sun Valley Fibers, a local Madison vendor, for a sock design that I'm hoping to enter in the Sock Revived contest. I also got a gorgeous shawl pin seen here in my Elysium photo. I finished knitting this cardigan while in Madison. It was my traveling project.
I also got a lovely project bag and some lovely, soft Peruvian Tweed from Ewetopian Fibers.
After fun at the knit-in, we headed to the UW Memorial Union to wait for my bus to Chicago. Jason showed up. During breakfast I bragged about what a great scrabble player I was and Jay, a competitive spirit, wanted to show me. :-) Andrea is also very competitive and we got to playing. I'm going to sound a bit conceited but I schooled them both. (I'm super competitive and pretty much only watch competitive TV - sports, game shows and reality shows like Project Runway and America's Next Top Model). Andrea and I also managed to cast on our Little Birds cardigans.
It was an awesome trip and Andrea and Jason were awesome hosts and I def want to visit again.