Saturday, February 18, 2006

My Stitches West 2006

Just testing new style statments ... no new content (2/20/2006).

Butte County Almond Orchards It takes about 4 hours to get from my town, in the middle of the blooming almond orchards, to the Santa Clara Convention Center.

When I stopped to take this picture a FedEx truck passed me by.  Maybe on his way to drop some yarn off at the Stitches Market??

When I arrived my room wasn't ready, so I browsed the market and picked up some yarn for a class on Saturday afternoon.  The people who were winding skeins of yarn into balls wanted either $3 or $6 US per ball depending on the size of the finished ball.  I figured I could wrap the balls by hand while I waited for my room to be cleaned. 

View from 13th floor

San Jose

All together it was two hours from arrival at hotel until arrival in room.  From the 13th floor my room had a good view of the area east and south (I think).  The photo on the left shows some of the cars parked for Stitches on Friday afternoon - yes, the market was very crowded and most classes were sold out.  The photo on the right shows San Jose.  It's a regular city now, and all of their orchards are gone.

My classes on Saturday

In the morning I took a class with Sally Melville, "First Choices", in which she talked about how to decide upon yarn and color.  Then she talked at length about pattern drafting, or as much as you can talk at length in a 3 hour class.  She said much of what she talked about in my class was in her book "The Purl Stitch".  I think I've taken most or all of her classes.  I recommend any class she teaches.

In the afternoon I took a class from Debbie New, "Cellular Automaton", in which she teaches how to develop a stitch pattern the same way Mother Nature does.  Each "cell" in a row is based on the building blocks that came before, so the pattern grows organically.  You can cause mutation when you make a mistake, or you can do some genetic engineering.  She is so smart I sat there with my mouth dropped open much of the time.  Cellular Automation is talked about in her book "Unexpected Knitting", which is a beautiful book.  I recommend Debbie New's classes for self starters, people who do not need to have their hand held but do appreciate being shown the possibilities.

Right after class Saturday afternoon I drove home and then promptly fell asleep.

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