Portlandia

Portland

I had the amazing chance to visit Portland, OR last week before the madness of the Sock Summit would take over this beautiful city. I know, you're probably thinking WHY did you not wait another week? Well, while I know I am missing the West Coast Yarn Event of the year (outside of Stitches West, so I've heard) and Portland's Official Sock Knitting Week, I enjoyed having Portland ALL To my SELF. I kept imagining the hoards of sock knitters that would be walking the streets today! I bet is a glorious sight. 

Portland is a fascinating city. Located in the northern tip of Oregon it's got a bustling downtown with an undeniable vibe to it. It's definitely a crafters paradise with many yarn, fabric and art stores. Sadly, I only got to venture to one yarn shop this trip but hope to visit many more next time!

Knit Purl

Knit-Purl was steps from my hotel. Such luck! It was a beautiful shop. I especially loved the clear signs above the yarns showing you to what weight you were browsing through. Plus, they even have an automatic yarn baller.  

Alpha B

I purchased a skein of the Alpha B sock yarn. The independent dyer is from Vancouver, WA and apparently can't keep her yarn on the shelves. I bought this limey green to make a Stripe Study shawl for myself. Am thinking of adding a grey skein…  

Powell's Books

I also went to their gargantuan bookstore Powell's. I was totally unprepared for what was a mini city of books!! Room after room after room filled with everything you can think of. They were even preprared for the Sock Summit members by tagging all the instructor's books!

Powell's knew what was right!

If for nothing else I will SO be going back to Portland for another trip to Powells. Amazing.

I leave you with a little story. My husband asked me to check our flights going back to SF to see if we would have time to go visit one of our favorite wineries, Erath. I did and saw that we were leaving at 8:30pm. He was done at 3 which gave us plenty of time to go for a quick tasting! YEA! So off in our rental car we went!  

Can't go anywhere...

Their property sits on a high hill in the Willemette valley Region. SO beautiful. If you have a chance to get to Erath or to try their wine, DO! We had a lovely time and even got a few bottles sent to our home. 

Erath

So we make our way to the airport and begin to check in, only neither of us can find our reservation. We go to the airline agent and he gives us this quizzical look. "San Francisco? That flight left about an hour ago!"  

I certain of an injustice done to us by the airline* quickly got out my phone and began to search for my confirmation – I was positive that it said 8:30. When I got the email up I proudly displayed it to the agent and my husband who both looked at my phone then at me. "It says we arrive at 8:30 in SF. Our flight was at 6:30."

Woopse.

Hey, at least we got to taste some really good wine.

*btw, we flew Alaska airlines which has incredible customer service! They put us on the next flight out without making feel bad or having us pay a cent more. Quite a change from some of the other airlines we've flown with!

New Yarn on the Street: The Wool Dispensary

Have you heard of the Wool Dispensary? They are a new independent dye team of Bree Miller & Sam Boice (who look pretty fun if you ask me!). Their mission is to create gorgeous kettled dyed yarns sourced from small mills and farms from around the US.

Twd Sport Weight

Bree contacted me via Ravelry to help support their effort to get them to the Yarn Con!

Twd1

Their first batch of yarns are inspired by colors from the Circus. I really love the bright, playful colors. I can't wait to get a few skeins for myself!!!

Good luck Girls!

Help them get to Yarn Con via Kickstart!

Learn more about The Wool Dispensary!

A non-knitting adventure: Stella & Dot

Since my move to SF I've tried to answer the question of "what are you doing now?" I would love to tell people that I'm knitting and blogging and that's paying ALL the bills but that's just not possible (yet!). So as I began looking for a new job I knew I wanted it to be something fun but not tied to an office or a school.  

Enter my friend Jen and  Stella & Dot.

Stelladot1

At first, I wasn't sure if it was for me but after learning more about the company and seeing all the jewelry I really fell in love with it. It would be a great way to meet people & I could set my own schedule (a.k.a more knitting time!) The bonus: the jewelry is gorgeous!

I will be launching my new business this Thursday, June 30th and I would love it if you would help me kick it off!

Here's How:

Go to: stelladot.com/margaux

Click on Find Your Hostess

Enter the hostess "with the mostess": Margaux Hufnagel 

Shop! Check out the Sale Page too!! SO many great pieces at 20% off.

You'll get half off your shipping if you order by Thursday midnight! (ETA: comments will close at that time too!!)

I know you'll love what you find. 

As an added incentive, shop and I'll put you in a drawing for two skeins of Madeline Tosh DK, your color choice! Please leave a comment here once you've done any purchasing so I know who you are!

Go get yourself some BLING and look hot while you knit! 

xoxo,

PS. Live in the SF area and want to host a trunk show? Email me at margaux dot pena at gmail dot com!

(ETA: COMMENTS CLOSED! Will be choosing the lucky winner this weekend! GOOD LUCK and Thank you for ALL Your Support!)

Hi.

Vinya

I know you've been waiting impatiently for some Red Rock pics. My goodness it's a gorgeous shawl. I just need you to bear with me a little bit longer. I've been busy with a slew of friends who have made their way to SF to visit! There's simply not not enough time in the day for ALL the fun! 

To keep you from clicking away in a furor I give you my above stash enhancement.  Vinya from Artfibers. It's a soft bulky merino wool. 

Artfibers is a very cool shop in downtown SF. The studio space has all hand dyed yarns from their own supply. Everything from acrylic to silk to beautiful blends – they have something for everyone. They even encourage you to test the yarn by doing a "yarn tasting". It also a provides us knitters yarn in whatever yardage you want! How could I deny myself this gorgeous looking cone?

I haven't decided yet what I want to make with my new yarn but I'm thinking perhaps another- wait for it – infinity scarf. What can I say? I know what I like.

Off to more play time! Be back soon! 🙂

A Yarn Confessional

Dear Diary,

Road to China

I seem to have a little bit of a problem. I like buying yarn. No, scratch that. I LOVE buying yarn. It happens every time I go into a LYS. I look around, I touch a few and then BAM I'm hit with an idea that I can't shake and thus must get yarn to fufill the mania. It's an addiction, I admit it. That's the first step right? Can you blame me, Diary, the above was bought at a Fibre Co. Trunk show at a VFKW.

Diary, I don't even discriminate! I'll buy cotton, wool, silk, cormo! Alright, maybe not acrylic but if it's natural it's a done deal. I have visions of knitting these gorgeous yarns into beautiful sweaters, scarves, hats and even socks. 

Koigu

Remember, when I lived a block away from Patricia's Yarns, I went there everyday for yarn. Oh how she'd tease me with Madeline Tosh, Spud & Chloe or a new shipment from Koigu. She knew how to woo me and let's be honest, still does.

Malabrigo Lace

Even in California I am not safe. I bought these skeins of Malabrigo Lace at Article Pract in Oakland. My new knitty friend Erin and I went on a little "adventure" to the Tulip Festival in the Piedmont district of Oakland. Yet, where we were expecting fields of tulips we found only some potted examples in the shops we went to. And when they said "festival" they really meant a small gathering of tables and people. Well, two tables and about 6 people. However, we did get to see a group doing the capoeira! Which will always remind me of the cheesy early 90s B movie Only the Strong. (who's lead actor BTW just had a cameo on tonight's Hawaii 5-O, I digress.)

Diary, all I'm saying is that I'm not sorry for getting all this yarn. I'm only sorry that my hands are just gonna have have to knit it all.  They're gonna hate me and I promise to get them many manicures to keep them happy.

Thanks for listening Diary, I knew you wouldn't judge me.

xoxo,