14 September 2015

A Little Too Ambitious?

I've just come off what was even for me a rather ambitious schedule. Cuddly Hubby was home for not quite two weeks. Hurray! Home really is home when Cuddly Hubby is here.

Also visiting was our dear New Hire Buddy. New Hire Buddy and I get along well, as we both LOVE board games. Plus, New Hire Buddy was working on a five-person cosplay of Mystery Men for Dragon*Con. He accomplished quite the scavenger hunt on Ebay to find all the pieces of his Mr. Furious costume; then more time with scissor and glue to make the costume just right. It worked well to be finishing up in our house, where I could supply half-a-dozen different types of glue, or paint, or other craft materials. He even got contact lenses so he could walk around without his glasses; and he shaved off his beard and had his hair cut and dyed to match his character. That's serious cosplay!

 Yes, we attended Dragon*Con, as usual. I did one new costume this year -- a rogue. I used a fabulous cloak I purchased at Maryland Sheep and Wool from Greentree Weaving. I purchased a black cotton pirate shirt in the Dragon*Con market -- a big thank-you to the merchant who brought shirts in sizes small to XXL and in a breathable material. (I did see someone faint outside in the heat while waiting in line. She was wearing something that looked good but probably was acrylic or polyester.) I also used a mask, which was strange to me as I would say, "Hello," in passing to friends who didn't recognize me. Duh! After the convention, I had one day to unpack/re-pack.

Then I took an all-day crochet class with Myra Wood. Thank you to Southeast Fiber Arts Alliance for offering the class. While I don't crochet often, I know enough to be past learning the basics. I appreciate the opportunity to move up the learning curve. I learned several things:
  • How to make a picot without a big ugly hole in the bottom.
  • How to work packing cord.
  • How to weave in an end as you work.
  • How to join motifs the Japanese way.
  • How to use a half-double crochet to join a motif in the round
  • How to read crochet charts.
  • Where to find Russian and Japanese crochet resources.

Combination of market purchases and swag from Georgia FiberFest 2015.
The day after the crochet class I headed down to Columbus, Georgia for the 4th annual Georgia FiberFest. The market was fairly busy on Thursday and some on Friday, but less so on Saturday. That was a shame, because the variety of vendors was excellent and they all brought good stuff. I was planning on buying very little, but failed to behave myself due to the wonderful offerings! (Notice the nice glass eyes for felted critters, or the beautiful monarch butterfly barrette.) Unfortunately, there was a lot going on last weekend. Atlanta Knitting Guild had Myra Wood teaching knitting classes. Chattahoochee Handweavers Guild had Madelyn van der Hoogt teaching deflected doubleweave. The Whole Nine Yarns had Purljama. And for our Jewish friends, there was the new year holiday of Rosh Hashanah. Even with modern technology, it just is not possible to be in more than one place at one time.

The Friday dinner was excellent this year. As the cost of food at the convention center had gone up, the organizers moved the dinner offsite and hired a five-star chef. The meal included both beef and chicken. The mixed vegetables were delicious and unusual, as they included edamame rather than lima beans. The dessert was especially interesting, as there was a thin cracker flavored with lavender. And pretty much everybody in the room won some sort of door prize. (Thank you to Yarnhouse Studio for those two lovely skeins of golden sock yarn!)

I do want to especially call out Kromski for a big thank-you! Kromski was the corporate sponsor of the show and until they did so, I did not realize that their North American office is based in Georgia. They had a nice booth with their full range of spinning wheels, rigid heddle looms, and tools. The vendors and teachers got unfinished travel-size niddy-noddies. I hope to get some clear polyurethane at the hardware store to give mine a proper coating. Kromski also donated fiber samples to the goodie bags. Since not everyone spins, a few of those migrated into my hands. Those chunks of ready-to-spin fiber will be handy come Spinzilla in a few weeks.

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