4.08.2008

Bits and pieces

I had a really fun yarn shop experience the other day. I decided to stop in to my most local shop (I am lucky as I have a few to choose from) after work last week to see if they carried the Berroco Chinchilla that the Whidbey bear pattern called for.

I wandered in and the lady whom I know to be the owner greeted me enthusiastically. She and another lady were sitting at a high-top table knitting and gabbing. (I believe the other lady works there too...what a sweet job! Not only do you get to play with yarn, you also get to knit!) Anyway, she asked if I needed anything and I just said that I'd like to look around, and she welcomed me to do so. So I wandered around and tried to find their Berroco stash (while stopping to pet a few other skeins along the way, of course). I did find their Berroco but no Chinchilla. Then the store owner wandered over so I asked about the yarn.

She said that she did not carry it and unfortunately would not be able to special order any as I only needed two skeins. I understood this and so we set about finding a suitable replacement.

She suggested a few different ones and then came across this stuff called Gedifra Serano (if you scroll down to the bottom of that page there's a photo of the detail--click for big too). It was so delightfully soft it was just calling out to be made into a bear.

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Thing was, it's not exactly the same style of yarn...it doesn't have uniform fuzzies...it has a core yarn which then has really soft little bits coming off it, like an eyelash but in a less hairy way and very very soft. Then, every few inches is a little soft tuft of furry stuff. Here is what it looks like as a strand:

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Anyway, then the nice LYS owner asked me if I had time and would I like to sit and knit a swatch with it to see if I liked it? I said yes that would be great, so she loaned me some needles and told me to have a seat. So I did! Let me just tell you...I am a shy person who normally will wander into a store, do my looking or shopping, and quietly leave. Even though I would love to create a rapport with people at a LYS, I am normally too shy to do so. But this lady was so friendly and nice that she brought out the less shy side of me. That's what I need, someone friendly and I'm much more comfortable and less shy.

(Speaking of being shy...one day I was at my local Barnes and Noble bookstore and while perusing the knitting books, I noticed a group of knitters in one of the sitting areas! I peeked at them out of the corner of my eye...and a part of me wished I was outgoing enough to just walk up and say hi. But that is SO not me. I made a mental note of what day it was and decided to try and look it up or inquire elsewhere...was it just a casual group get together or a guild meeting or what? I never found anything out but someday I hope to.)

So anyway, back to the LYS...I sat on the stool and chatted with the ladies while I made a big enough swatch of the yarn that I could tell this was going to make a fabulous bear. Not cheap yarn, really, but as I only needed two balls of it I decided that was fine. Plus by this point I really wanted to buy the yarn from her and not the internet.

I took it home and dug right in, and here's the completed bear front, on the stockinette side:

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And this is the "back" or the reverse stockinette side:

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Once I am done with all the bear parts, I will need to decide which side I want to be on the outside. Since it is stockinette, as I expected most of the fluff and fuzz is ending up on the back side. But seeing as there is no right or wrong as far as front and back go, I will just need to decide which I like better. At first I thought I might want to use the back on the outside, but I'm not really sure yet. That answer will come to me eventually. :)

So far the bear is fun to knit although it isn't exactly what I'd call relaxing, since it's a little hard to see what you're doing, what with all the fuzz. But the pattern is very well-written and clear.

Since I needed a little break from the bear knitting, I finished Pink Flamingo sock #1. I love it! It's definitely a tight sock, but it fits.

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So...that's it from here for now. I hope to get back to the bear knitting next, so hopefully I'll have more bear parts to show soon.

8 comments:

Dee said...

Your flamingo sock looks great!!! Of course, I'm really partial to anything flamingo!

You got lots done on the bear. That is a really interesting yarn. I can't wait to see it put together. Is it easy to knit with?

peaknits said...

I think we share a personality - because you just described me and my own shy hang-ups:) The bear will be wonderful, that yarn is really cool - and how awesome the shop owner encouraged you to "test drive" it before you bought! Great socks too!

Lynn said...

Tsk tsk
You know we knitters don't bite! Just wave some yarn as a introduction and all will go perfectly. :)
Can't wait to see the bear competed!

Knitting Kris said...

I love it that she let you knit a sample swatch. To me that's a nice yarn store. Some won't do that. But like you, I'd be shy about it. I do not knit very quickly, and always fear that someone will grab my knitting out of my hands and tell me how to knit "better."
Lovely sock!

Too Little Time said...

What a great experience! That is what I'm hoping for in our new yarn shop thats due to open here soon. Its wonderful when they're nice without you spending a TON of money in there first. Hope you go back.

See if I were close I would just drag you along with me. I'm not sure I know the meaning of the word shy, even from the dictionary.

Love the bear -- are we voting? I like the back side best - either way I think the yarn is great for the bear -- Cheers - karrie

Nell said...

I like the reverse stockinette myself. But you decide what you like.

You should definitely go talk to the knitters next time. They probably aren't an exclusive "club." And you can always lead with "what are you knitting?" But I definitely get why you didn't.

castingaway said...

My husband probably wishes I was a little more shy. I've walked up to people waiting to get on planes, in a Panera, and countless other places to ask what they are knitting. Watch out...you might be next!

camillaknits said...

Life is too short to let shyness spoil the fun. I routinely snarggle in on knitters, when I spy them out and about... I meet the coolest people that way!