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Archive for October, 2011

On Friday, October 7, Conway and I headed out to begin the 2011 Hill Country Yarn Shop Crawl. Our first stop was in Paige, TX at a wonderful Yarn Shop called Yarnorama. The shop is a fiber enthusiasts heaven, they carry all types of knitting, crocheting and spinning yarns, threads and fiber (from wool to Angora, with the bunny to prove it). I bought my pass for the Crawl at this shop, it was $20 in that you received a canvas tote and the passport for a total of 9 shops. At each shop they give away a free gift and an opportunity to win door prizes from each shop. The free gift from Yarnorama was a skein of hand dyed fingering wool, and a pattern for the yarn.

Each shop on the tour has a gift for each participant. These gifts range from small items to more like the skein and pattern. I like to try to find something to purchase at the shops as this is their way of trying to increase their customer traffic and income. They go to a lot of expense to put on the Crawl.  At Yarnorama I found a pair of circular needles I wanted and purchased them.

On Saturday morning, we headed out to San Antonio, TX for a full day of “Crawling”. Our first stop of the day was at The Yarn Barn, a favorite shop of mine over the past 30 years. At this shop they also gave away a skein of yarn and pattern for a knitted purse,  (though I may not make the purse the yarn is nice and will make a gift for someone). There I purchased a skein of the new self ruffling yarn in a bright pink, black and metallic. Will make a very fun scarf. The next shop was Yarnivore, another of my favorite places in San Antonio. The gift from this shop was a skein of undyed wool with the makings to do a Koolaid dyed yarn, (such fun). Unfortunately they were out of the item I wanted to buy so I did not buy anything from them.

After that we took a short break from the Crawl and went to Boerne, TX. We had found that there was a yarn shop there that was not on the Crawl. What fun it was! Ewe and Eye, is a yarn shop, toy shop, gift shop in the style of a wonderful German shop. (Or at least what I imagine as a quaint German Shop). The gentleman who runs this shop was so much fun to visit with, he showed us so many lovely (expensive) items. Then next door (more or less the same building) his wife runs a wonderful German Restaurant called Little Gretel’s. Oh we had a wonderful lunch there of schnitzel. Haven’t had schnitzel that good in a very long time.

Now back on track to the Crawl. On to Comfort, TX to the Tinsmith’s Wife. What a fun, shop it is. The gift from this shop was a lovely skein of silk, bamboo yarn in a vibrant wine color. The pattern is not one I will make but oh I will use the yarn. There I found a pair of bamboo cable needles I wanted and a pair of square knitting needles, these are supposed to be good for arthritis and other hand problems. Hey, it is worth trying, so I purchased those as well. From Comfort, we headed up to Marble Falls to Horseshoe Bay and Nan’s Needleworks. This is a very nice shop, with great folks that work there. The gift was a skein of very nice wool, alpaca blend yarn and a headband pattern. Once again I most likely will not use their pattern but I will use the yarn. I purchased two balls of self ruffling yarn of lovely colors for more Christmas gifts. We left this shop and checked into the Motel for the evening of going through all the goodies and a lovely dinner at a small family run Italian Restaurant.

Sunday, morning we headed to Austin, TX for the final leg of our Crawl weekend. The first stop was at Gauge, a small shop in northwest Austin, the gift was a small blank book with pencils. A small gift but this is a very small shop. Unfortunately there I also did not find anything I wanted to purchase. We went to Hill Country Weavers after that and it is the complete opposite of Guage, big with lots and lots of yarn, books, patterns and other items. The gift was a choice of 2 items from 3 selections. I chose a pair of needles and a hand balm  (it is lovely and leaves no greasy residue). I almost spent a lot of money there, and if they would have had the yarn I wanted I would have. As it is I did not buy anything from them either. On to the last shop in Austin further out Congress Ave., The Knitting Nest, not a shop I usually buy things from because the selection is usually limited. The gift, was a ball of cotton yarn and pattern for a needle book, (most likely will not make this pattern either). I did find a lovely hand dyed fingering weight yarn and lace shawl pattern that I did purchase.

We then, thought about lunch, but as neither of us was hungry, we headed out of Austin to the middle of nowhere, TX to the last shop on the Crawl, Old Oaks Ranch. This is a great place where they raise their Alpacas, have classes, and a fun shop. The gift was a hand turned wood shawl pin with a stone bead, this is a lovely gift. They had the pattern and yarn that Hill Country Weavers did not have so… I did purchase that from them. I then filled out my passport and turned it in at this shop. The Crawl, was for the most part over for us. At each shop I filled out an entry to win door prizes that each shop on the Crawl was giving away. So we headed home.

At home it was, make a large pot of Taco Soup, and jalapeno cornbread, settle down and go through all the wonderful items given away and purchased. All in all a very nice ending to a very fun weekend. So imagine my pleasure when on Tuesday at work I receive the call that I had won, one of the door prizes from The Yarn Barn in San Antonio. We will go on this Sat. Oct. 15, to pick up a lovely skein of Classic Elite Silky Alpaca Lace yarn and lace shawl pattern. Ahh, now that is a blessing indeed.

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What you might ask is a Yarn Shop Crawl? A wonderful fun way to spend a weekend going to different Yarn Shops, collecting gifts from each shop, getting your “passport” stamped and being eligible for  door prizes and grand prizes. That is pretty muchly what a Yarn Shop Crawl is. This one is in Central Texas ranging from east of Bastrop (in Paige) to west of San Antonio. Up to Marble Falls down through Austin and out in the middle of nowhere to Old Oaks Ranch. Nine shops in all this year.  It starts up on Friday, October 7th and runs through Monday, October 10th. Four days of yarn, needles, yarn, patterns, yarn and oh yeah more yarn. Will up-date this afterwards to tell how great it was for I know it is going to be GREAT!!

Now you might think that Central Texas would not be a hot bed for knitting especially with the hot, hot, hot temperatures we have endured this summer. But knitters are not daunted by hot weather there are always fun cool yarns to knit with, light weight, lace weight and cotton yarns to make fun cool items. Gone are the days of hot scratchy wools or just acrylic fibers to knit with. Wools are soft, lofty, and blended for all climates. We knitters will knit for all occasions and even Texas does get some cooler weather and holidays still roll around and gifts are needed for all our loved ones.

Yarn Shop Crawls, give us the opportunity to see the latest in new ideas for yarns, patterns and more yarns. Onward to the “Crawl”!

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