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DFW Fiber Fest 2018

April 16, 2018

Hello, everyone! I hope that you are all doing well and that the weather in your state has decided what season it wants to be in. Mine has not. But the bluebonnets are blooming and the Hubs and I are planning some adventures anyways.DFW Fiber Fest 4

Speaking of adventures, this month I got to experience the DFW Fiber Fest for the first time in several years! The last time I have attended the DFW Fiber Fest is was in a little old convention center. This year, the DFW Fiber Fest was held at the shiny new Irving Convention Center. The truly amazing thing though, was that the DFW Fiber Fest actually used up the whole convention floor!

To be fair, a lot of that area was a big sitting area, but for the DFW Fiber Fest, that was perfect. It meant that when you got tired of walking around to see all the vendors, you could sit and knit a little bit. There were lots of big groups  of knitters gathered there. I don’t know if they all came together or met there, but I thought it was wonderful. I didn’t take any of the classes because 1. money and 2. time, but I did get a good look at the vendors. Let me show you!

The Vendor Hall

Just like at any convention, the vendor hall is the main attraction for me. It’s even better when it’s knitting. Since knitting has had such an explosive growth through the online community, it can be difficult to see certain items in person. Events like the DFW Fiber Fest make this a possibility. Not only did the DFW Fiber Fest have lots of yarn to shop with, they had yarn tasting!

DFW Fiber Fest

If you’ve never done yarn tasting before, I think it’s a great idea. The DFW Fiber Fest had balls of all sorts of different yarns from different vendors available for you to test knit. They were all congregated in a nice open area with tables and there were so many nice options to test! My favorite was the Independence Wool, which contains mohair grown (raised?) in Texas. It was so soft! Their booth was easily one of the cutest too.

DFW Fiber Fest

The only issue I had with the yarn tasting was that the only needles available to use were super flimsy plastic ones. Like they were bending while you tried to knit with them. As serious knitter know, it takes both yarn and needles to make a sublime knitting experience. So, I wish that the needle options hadn’t been so dismal at the yarn tasting. That being said, I get it, needles aren’t cheap for something like that. I can’t really blame them for picking the more affordable option.

My Top Picks

In terms of actual vendors selling yarn, I’m pretty sure I circled the hall several times. All I know is that my feet hurt. Out of everything that I saw, there were a few vendors that stood out to me.

DFW Fiber Fest - October House

October House

October House took the cake for me when it came to consistency of artistic vision. They know how to work a color palette! The muted pastels were so lovely. The whole booth reminded me of a china shop. All of their branding was just so in line with what I like. The pinks and mints and watercolor signs got me. I actually bought some October House this past weekend when I found it in Austin. A repeat appearance was too good to pass up!

DFW Fiber Fest - Independence Wool

Independence Wool

I already mentioned Independence Wool earlier, but like I said before, they booth was seriously the cutest. They had a whole roof and exterior on their booth, like a little house! Like I mentioned before, Independence Wool specializes in a lot of mohair, but not the mohair that you are used to. It’s silky and shiny and curly! The rest of their yarns are beautifully rustic as well. I also enjoyed their bin of samples – little bits and not quite skeins that they were selling for $3.50 each.

DFW Fiber Fest -Olive Yarn Dye Co

Olive Yarn Dye Co.

Olive Yarn Dye Co. was part of the Park Avenue booth, but I wanted to give the yarn itself a shout out, because it’s *gasp* the only thing I bought at the DFW Fiber Fest (because 1. money). I had come to the DFW Fiber Fest on a mission to buy some DK weight yarn for a wrap sweater. I was leaning towards a nice gray or a total millennial pink. You know that pink that not quite taupe, and not super bubble gum pink? If it doesn’t look like a color Lauren Conrad would wear, I don’t want it. Olive Yarn Dye Co. had the perfect pink. In DK, no less! (By the way, looking for DK at the Fiber Fest was like going to the State Fair looking for health food. You’ll find it, but it’s in short supply.) They were so nice and sweet both times I came into the booth. I can’t wait to show you what I make with their yarn!

DFW Fiber Fest -McKinney Knittery

McKinney Knittery

Of course you know I’ve gotta rep my local yarn store! McKinney Knittery had a great set up at the DFW Fiber Fest. They had the largest selection of both Yoth Yarns and Magpie Fibers. They also had an amazing array of samples. I could have dressed myself for a week out of the sample they had available. I was especially interested in a cute and comfy looking pair of shorts out of the new Magpie Solstice. They are totally going on my list for the summer. McKinney Knittery also wins for having the cutest shirts. I am personally saving up for a “Gettin’ Knit Done!” shirt!

Did anyone else attend the DFW Fiber Fest? What was your experience? Did you find anything you couldn’t live without? I want to hear about it!

 

Knitting Lifestyle Local

Yarn Crawl Prize – What I Won

October 12, 2017

If you remember, I was having a bit of a rough week last week. The Hubs was sick. The world was falling apart. Tom Petty had died.. Well the world is still falling apart, and Tom Petty is still dead, but my little world is looking better. The Hubs has (mostly) recovered from his mystery illness. We never found out what it was, and I never caught it, but thank goodness it’s over. Then, on Friday, in the middle of all his sickness and my worry, I got an email. I’d won one of the prizes from the DFW Yarn Crawl! Silly me, I never remembered to check the website, so they emailed me to tell me I’d won!

DFW Yarn Crawl Prize

I like to think that the timing was not accidental. I found out about my prize on the week that I needed it the most. After a few emails back and forth with Cindy, I was able to pick up my prize the next day. And what a prize it was! 

Yarn Crawl Prize – The Bag

DFW Yarn Crawl Prize - bag

The first thing you need to know about this yarn crawl prize is that it came in the cutest little project bag! It’s made by Diana Couture in her Serena style. You probably know from my Instagram that I’m a fan of the Fringe Field Bags. However, I’ve found that they’re actually a little small for some of my growing projects, like my Find Your Fade shawl. This project bag is just a bit bigger, but not too big to make me feel like I’m carrying another purse. It’s got great pockets on the inside and a cute little place to draw your yarn out of the bag when it’s closed. I’ve transferred my Fade into this back and definitely recommend it.

Yarn Crawl Prize – The Yarn

DFW Yarn Crawl Prize - TO

Inside the (super cute) bag, there was yarn. Oh boy, was there yarn! I was lucky enough to win not one, but TWO skeins of Twisted Owl Lux Sock yarn. I had loved Twisted Owl when I saw the trunk show at Holley’s Yarn Shoppe, but didn’t have room in the budget for it. It made me sad to have to pass it up, but now I’ve got my hands on some! The bright springy colors are so pretty and the watercolor effect of the blending in the yarn. Plus, these are 600 yarn skeins! The possibilities are endless. I love the color names too. One is called Darkwing Duck (love), and the other is Koi Pond (even more love).

DFW Yarn Crawl Prize - Brazen

Even though the Twisted Owl yarn would have been a prize enough, my yarn crawl prize contained even more yarn! I also received 2 skeins of Brazen Stitchery sock yarn, in the Afternoon Delight colorway. Its a great blend of reds and blues that I can’t wait to see knit up. The Hubs saw it and immediately said, “I would wear socks in those colors.” So, I guess I know what that yarn is going to be used for…

Yarn Crawl Prize – The Rest

DFW Yarn Crawl Prize - Thing for String

I know, there’s still more to talk about. Can you believe this is the 5th prize that I won? Not only did this yarn crawl prize come with yarn, it came with roving! It’s a beautiful bit of roving by A Thing for String. The color is a gorgeous purple, and even has a slight bit of shimmer. At first, I wasn’t sure what I was going to do with it, because I spin very poorly. Then, I remembered that you can use roving in weaving projects and that idea excites me a lot! 

DFW Yarn Crawl Prize - Shawl Pins

Yarnz2Go included some of their fascinating shawl pins in the yarn crawl prize as well. A chicago screw connects two plastic disks in this shawl pin. You push the screw between the stitches of your knitting and it secures the shawl with no damage to the fabric! It’s so clever. I’m so glad to have these, since they’re basically my first shawl pins ever.

DFW Yarn Crawl Prize

The remaining prizes in the bag includes a book on scarves and shawls and these sweet little designs that someone made. I don’t really know what they are. Cindy at Jacob’s Reward Farm told me that they were potholders, but knowing how we dirty up potholders, I’d hate to use them for that! I’m not sure how I’ll use them yet, but they’re adorable and I can tell that a lot of great work went into them. 

This yarn crawl prize created a perfect end to my first ever yarn crawl. I feel so lucky to have won, and can’t imagine what they other prizes looked like, since this was the fifth prize! It came to me at the perfect time when I needed some encouragement, and I’m so thankful to have won. Now, any suggestions of what I should knit with those Twisted Owl skeins? So many possibilities!

 

Knitting Lifestyle Travel

DFW Yarn Crawl 2017, Part 2!

September 2, 2017
DFW Yarn Crawl 2017 - Part 2!

Yikes, ya’ll! I switched my knit night and I can’t even remember what day it is! Lucky for me it’s Friday and the office is closed Monday! Last week feels like a long time ago, what with Hurricane Harvey and The Great Dallas Gas Shortage of August 31, 2017 (Spoiler Alert: There was no shortage. People just like to panic. Including me…). Even though last weeks feels like forever ago, it’s still important, because it was the final weekend of the DFW Yarn Crawl. I lucked out and was able to visit three more stores, so  now you get to hear about them!

Fleece

DFW Yarn Crawl - Fleece

I didn’t know that Fleece existed before the DFW Yarn Crawl. When I saw the name on my passport, I kinda wrote it off as someplace that would sell more roving and raw fleeces than yarn. Boy, was I wrong! Fleece is a very neat and tidy shop near my old school, SMU. If you’re not looking for it, you might miss it, but be sure to stop because it’s a great little shop. Fleece is bright and clean and organized well.

DFW Yarn Crawl - Fleece

I was happy with their selection, which included Dream in Color and Malabrigo. They seemed to have a large selection of novelty yarns as well. If you need yarn for those arm knitted blankets, they have it here! There was a class or knitting group going on when I went in. Another lady nearby was taking signups for a needle felted pincushion class (they looked super fun, by the way). The staff was very friendly.

DFW Yarn Crawl - Fleece

The other thing that I loved about Fleece was that they have a little coffee station set up with a Keurig and some other options for beverages. I love the idea of knitters gathering in the winter with their coffee and tea and hanging out. I thought it was a sweet touch. It gave the atmosphere a very welcoming and hospitable character. I’m excited to go back.

Holley’s Yarn Shoppe

Despite being somewhat further out of the way, I have been to Holley’s Yarn Shoppe before. In fact, The Hubs has even been to Holley’s Yarn Shoppe before! It was at Holley’s that The Hubs first realized that there were male knitters. It blew his mind. 

DFW Yarn Crawl - Holley's

Holley’s Yarn Shoppe has a large yarn selection, though they do tend to be very faithful to certain lines. They have a huge table for classes and knitting hours and there was a group busy at work when we were there. Holley’s is also one of those blessed stores with a clearly discernible clearance section. I love them for it.

DFW Yarn Crawl - Holley's

Holley’s Yarn Shoppe was having a Twisted Owl Trunk Show during the yarn crawl, and I was loving the bright colors and speckles. I wish I could have brought a skein home with me, but I had to be judicious with my yarn choices. Totally had my eye on some colors though…

Yarn and Stitches

DFW Yarn Crawl - Yarn and Stitches

Yarn and Stitches has the distinction of being the only yarn store on my way home from work. It’s also open late on Tuesdays and Thursdays, which means I can actually stop on my way home. Yarn and Stitches has a fun selection of yarns. They have plenty good staples, but some fun locally dyed yarns as well. I always feel like I have to circle the shop 10 times before I’ve seen it all.The staff at Yarn and Stitches is always really friendly. Sometimes it’s hard to tell who is a worker and who is just a regular, since they’re all so familiar with each other. It’s fun to hear them chatting while you shop though. 

Knit Picks Interchangeable Tips

The other thing that I like about Yarn and Stitches is that they carry Knit Picks interchangeable needles. I have an interchangeable kit, which I love. However, over the years, I’ve rubbed the finish down on some of my tips. They were starting to feel really rough! I bought new size 4 tips for my current project and oh my gosh it made a difference! Everything feels much smoother now!

I’m losing the race against time to finish my summer knitting list (though I rocked my reading list!). The 19 inches of straight stockinette in the Del Sol Tank is killing me. In a cotton blend, too! But the end is in sight, and I think I finally found my fade, so I’m looking forward to some good fall knitting soon! What about you? Any exciting projects coming up? I’d love to hear about your plans!