Monday, July 20, 2009

Notes from the First Podcast... or is it the *lost* podcast....

First I have to say that it's very difficult to find a decent microphone at one of our local big-box electronics stores that will pick up sound well. So we started out with a lil' $14.99 special that the sales guy understood might not be appropriate for what we want to do with it, so this may require some more online sleuthing. But I'm up to the task!

But despite out lacking of proper equipment, we have recorded our first podcast episode and at least we got our feet wet and will have a better idea of what we want to do with future podcasts. We do have a poll on the blog site here, and hopefully we can attract some listeners through our Ravelry contacts and by listing ourselves on iTunes and some promotions from other knit podcasters.

However, in the event that our first recording session cannot be edited into something passable for podcast consumption, I'd at least like to post some notes here that were mentioned in the podcast but we don't want people to miss out on.

Coming Events
New Westminster's Heritage Picnic
July 25 11:30am - 3:30pm
Location TBA!
Demonstrations of knitting, spinning, weaving, and crochet.

Pic-Knit at the Surrey Museum!
Saturday, August 8 10:00am-4:00pm Drop in, by Donation
Join a summer picnic of knitters, crafters and suppliers in the Surrey Museum. Pack a lunch, watch the experts in action, and learn tips and tricks in our mini-workshops to inspire your own modern or heritage yarn craft. Tour the Museum’s Textile Studio and the Hooser Library to view our extensive collection of looms, weaving samples and rare textile books.

at Surrey Museum, 17710 - 56A Avenue (Cloverdale, just a block up and over from Clover Square Village) For information, call 604-592-6956

Gibsons Landing Fibre Festival Running annually in Gibsons on the Sunshine Coast for 10 years now, the Gibsons Festival is wonderful. If you've never heard of it before, check out the website quick to take advantage of any classes that are still open, but the merchant mall is open to anyone!

Langley Weavers & Spinners Guild Artisans' Sale Another great local event in historic Fort Langley at the original City Hall held on the first Saturday and Sunday in November (the 7th and 8th this year), at the Fort Langley Community Hall with items for sale produced by the guild members themselves and other invited local artisans (e.g. jewelry, accessories for knitting, sewing, soaps, treats, etc.), including local yarn and craft suppliers.

Fibres West
The first Fibres West event went well this year and is seeking to expand to include more classes, more animals (sorry Wenchlette, there is NO room for an alpaca in my car!!), more knitting vendors... bascially just expanding upon what started out well this year. Next year's event will run March 26th and 27th, thankfully after the Olympics but before Easter, so mark it on your calendar. Brenda from Penelope Fibre Arts would love more suggestions on how to make this a bigger and better show every year, and there's no reason why it shouldn't be!

Stores and Yarns We Talked About

One of our favourite shops to visit is Maiwa out on Granville Island, not just for their great yarn selection, but also for their selections of natural dyes and popular textile and dyeing classes during their annual Textile Symposium. Emily managed to sign up for one of their felting classes, but if you're thinking of taking any of their classes, be sure to sign up soon as they sell out FAST! Check out their list of classes, events, and lectures at Registration for the classes and workshops has already opened but there are a number of classes still available.

I mentioned that I recently finished my Absinthe socks from the Spring 2009 Knitty, and I knit them out of Kertzer's On Your Toes Limited Edition in colour #3842 because the green-y yellow-y colourway reminded me of absinthe itself. If you have a chance to pick up some of this yarn in any colourway, do so, there's aloe in the yarn for softness and they wash up so soft!! They're currently my favourite socks, even though it's too effing hot to wear socks right now.

Another one of our favourite yarn shops is Langley Yarns and Crafts which is owned by Barbara Braaten. It's a home-based shop so she does mostly online yarn sales and at local fibre shows, but if you give her a call to make an appointment, she is most accommodating. She's a member of the Langley Weavers and Spinners Guild, and is a vendor of supplies and finished items both knit and woven at the annual LWSG Artisans' Sale (see Events above). You'll recognize it, it's the big yellow-and-white Colonial-style building in all the movies shot in and around Langley. Barbara is a fabulous vendor and has great advice about fibres and hardware, but be warned! If you buy yarn from her, she wants to see finished projects! Last year's Pic-Knit (see the Events heading) she remembered I'd asked her about a spinning wheel my dad found for sale in Saskatchewan, and asked what I'd made with the previous yarns I'd bought from her. This year I have to have something to show her, I'm afraid she won't sell me more yarn!

If you head to Seattle, Washington for a weekend trip and you're a fibre-freak like us, do make the time to visit Weaving Works in the University District. Don't let the shop name fool you, while you can learn everything you wanted to know about weaving, they have a fabulous stock of yarns for all crafts; the best buttons, needles and other tools; spinning supplies; dye supplies; and a fabulous stock of books, patterns, and current fibre magazines. They have such a great stock of books that I actually found a tatting book that I didn't have yet! And because she was buying it they hollered to their tatting specialist that someone was buying a tatting book so she could come and witness the event! It was great, I rarely meet other tatters by chance, so she quizzed me about how I was introduced to it, how I learned, and informed me that she holds tatting classes! Be still my lacy heart.

Emily ventured south with her spinning teacher and another friend to Oregon's Black Sheep Gathering held annually in Eugene, and featuring about three entire shows' worth in one three-day weekend! A trade show, livestock show, fibre arts, sheep-to-shawl contest, wool/mohair show (really? cool!), and - of course - spinning! Emily said it was fabulous and I'm hoping to make it to one in the next couple of years. I am a huge fan of Oregon since our friends "Matter" and "Kansas" lived in the Alphabet District of Portland, and have had some memorable times there, even if I don't quite remember what happened :)

And if you visit Oregon, don't just hit the cities; there are some great smaller towns and coastal places to visit besides Portland and Eugene. Definitely make time to visit Cannon Beach and Manzanita. Both have beautiful ocean views, seaside restaurants, and unique shopping (I sound like a travel guide), and the best part is to go beachcombing for sea glass, shells, and sand dollars.

So this will do it for our first official posting, be sure to check back for future updates mid-August after we've been to the Surrey Museum Pic-Knit and perhaps have some more events and news from around the Terminal City. Hopefully the news is that the heatwave is over, but we'll just have to see!

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