Several weeks ago Susan sent an email inviting me to join her and some of the eastern Washington knitters for a yarn day in Portland. Heck yes I was up for the adventure! Not that I needed any yarn, but what yarn-aholic could resist a day of wool fondling and good company. So after dropping my eldest off for a day of Speech and Debate I abandoned my husband and younger daughters then headed south to meet up with the gang. Upon arriving in Portland I discovered that my camera didn’t work. Darn it. I’m so used to taking lots of pictures that I suffered withdrawals. Once at home I fiddled around with it and got it working again… fat lot of good it did then. I wanted to take pictures of the gang, shops, etc.
Their train arrived early and we wasted no time loading up the van to hit up our first yarn fix. In addition to Susan there was Jessica, Kim, Nancy, Kelly and Susan’s husband, Dave. Dave knits. Dave spins. Dave weaves. Susan scored in the S.O. department. Sorry, I digress. They all 6 crammed themselves into my dirty, sticky excuse for a vehicle with a terribly narrow back seat. Susan sat up front and navigated. Perhaps the filth distracted the others from my erratic driving. I hate driving and unlike some people I’ve no delusions that I’m good at it.
Susan had a printed list showing the addresses of 13 local yarn stores. First on the list was the Knit Knot Studio. Sadly, it didn’t open to 11:00 so we moved along, intending to return later. Gale force winds, bouts of driving rain and temperatures hovering in the mid-30’s ruled out the possibility of walking even though a mere 10 blocks or so separated us from our destination. Next on the list was Knit Purl. Everyone oohed and awed over the luxurious offerings. The idea of spending $55.00 on a single skein of yarn makes my eye twitch though. Before leaving I did fall off the wagon and bought some Habu Textiles yarn. It was much more affordable than some of the others and equally beautiful.
Once everyone had sufficiently sniffed and stroked the fibers at Knit Purl we took advantage of a break in the rain and hoofed it several blocks to The Button Emporium & Ribbonry. What delights! Imagine an entire store specializing in buttons, ribbons, trims and assorted closures. I’d never purchased buttons from any place other than a fabric store or large department store. Now the very idea of buying mass-produced, ordinary buttons from a chain establishment seems blasphemous. I want to make sweaters just so I can go there and buy buttons. I purchased some blue ribbon with lavender polka dots (shown later) for a baby project in the works.
About this time everyone was famished so we dropped by a Lebanese restaurant called Habibi. Susan and Dave often visit this establishment while visiting the Rose city. The food was delightful and the server possessed an unusual sense of humor. Jessica’s combination plate looked tempting and she even had leftovers to take with her for the train ride home. If she’s smart she’ll keep one eye on her food throughout the trip. Everyone kept eyeballing it. They may tie her up and steal it. Susan insisted on paying for my lunch because I drove them around in my sticky, icky van. Thank you Susan, that was really, nice but completely unnecessary.
While at Habibi we met a knitter/blogger/yarn store employee at the next table named Rodger. The sweater he’s modeling on the blog was casually draped over his chair and we admired it wondering who knitted it. After meeting him and inquiring we discovered that he was responsible for the lovely cardigan. He works at Abundant Yarn and Dyeworks, which was further down on our list of places to visit.
After our meal we loaded up and drove across town to The Yarn Garden. I’d not been there in some time and was surprised to find the coffee shop missing. In order to keep things fair and support small businesses I purchased some Berroco Ultra Alpaca Light to make some warm, thick socks.
After the Yarn Garden we headed south to Abundant Yarn & Dyeworks. What a delightful establishment. I found some slipper soles to put on my DH’s felted Christmas slippers. Hopefully this will eliminate the dreaded mid-year holes.
Another score on my “to find” list was some Cascade 220 in a mystery colorway. I’d made this hat some time back and have wanted to make a matching sweater ever since. Unfortunately, I didn’t have a label and couldn’t remember a color name. Turns out that they carry every color Cascade makes!
Here’s a picture showing the hat, the new yarn and the ribbon picked up earlier at the notions shop.
After enjoying beverages in the shop’s cafe we piled into the van again and headed back to the train station. The day had flown by at warp speed and we didn’t even make it through 1/4 of the stores on the list. While driving through Portland my brakes started acting up so it was an exciting ride home. A quick check by my DH assured us that low fluid levels aren’t to blame. Tomorrow a trip to the dealership is on the agenda.
With the exception of the Cascade 220 and the slipper soles, the yarn has been wrapped and put under the Christmas tree. It’s my present from the family.
Thank you everyone, it was fun! I’m ready for a bath and bed.