My ragtag band of yarn hooligans left Philadelphia around 7:00 a.m. I realized how obsessed I had gotten with quilting when I found myself taking a photo of the wall of a Maryland rest stop because I thought it would make a great quilt design:
Our trip down was fast and uneventful, and we arrived at the fairgrounds before 10:00 a.m.
When we arrived, it was relatively uncrowded. (Here's a shot of the back end of the midway early in the day.)
I made my way to the big building at the back, but not before running into Ms. Maleficent Knits herself (Hi, Regina!!) and some of her knitting homies from Maryland:
The big barn was loads of fun, and I made my first and only yarn purchase of the day at Woolstock: a full bag of Cash Iroho for halfprice. (Cash Iroha is like that good-looking frat boy you meet at a party: you suspect you won't be 100% crazy about his performance but he's just so pretty you can't help yourself. )* I also had the great good fortune to run into PoorLuci
Wait -- that's not PoorLuci! Here she is:
I really didn't have much cash for shopping, so we spent most of the day wandering around looking at the pretty yarnz and snapping photos of cute animalz. It seemed to me that the organizers have been making various changes over the years in response to constructive criticism of the vendors and attendees. For example, in the last two or three years, the number of portapotties has increased exponentially, so if you don't mind using them instead of a regular bathroom, you hardly ever have to wait in a long line to answer nature's call. I saw a noticeable increase in the number of portable ATMs in various spots. There were also new areas where tents for vendors were added, either increasing the overall number or at least spreading them out more to avoid the crowding. All good.
We ran into Rhichard of Koigu fame while exploring one of the expanded sections of vendor space:
Laura's sister on the left, Dickie, and Lovely LauraRhichard is always a hoot and was in rare form that day. I hope he didn't get into trouble in the Auction Tent....(Note to Rhichard: when it said "Shepherd Auction" it means they are auctioning off items FOR shepherds, not the shepherds themselves!)
By about 1 p.m., the crowds were at their height. Here's a midday shot of the crowds:
One exciting moment for me was stumbling across some preview copies of the upcoming Noro book by Sixth & Spring -- it will be out soon and features patterns knit in Noro yarns. I got to see my fair isle earflap hat
in print for the first time -- yay!
I was very very pleased to run into B.J. (a.k.a. the M&M Lady)
who is always a pleasure to see, and the most faithful blog-reader. BJ and I have been at the same events but not running into each other for a while, so we were both happy that our paths finally crossed.
Next post will include a photo montage of some of the pretty things we saw.
* Yarn freaks, I am referring to the likelihood of pilling, given how soft and loosely spun the yarn is. I still love this yarn, though.