1st October Roadrunner Farmers Market

Published by Gwynne under on 11:28 PM
So it was a little bit warm for wool in our early October Roadrunner event. The trade-off was a feature I'd forgotten about: wildly green grass! It was a vibrant, lovely day under the trees. Our location was moved since last year to a more central location in the middle of the market. I knew we were in for a treat when I called Shay to find out where our booth was this season and he said, "I'm over by the baby goats!"
Well, it goes without saying that "Darling" was an understatement. They were TWO days old! 
And of course a huge crowd gathered next to us all morning because of the little baby cutie-pants pile of cuteness. It really was unexplainable, the black one kept just hopping and jumping for joy in the air, just because. Looking at them all day was refreshing, they just kept on saying "It's so COOL to be alive! Hello! Woo-hoo! Neat!" I suggest clicking on the image below to blow it up and see the joy on people's faces. Everyone is just tickled and charmed all morning long, so refreshing!
 The weather managed to stay crisp and cool throughout our whole set-up. The temps were great in the shade, chasing the shade with our camping chairs became our M.O. for the rest of the morning.

Karen took the opportunity to knit up her next felted purse. Here is one of her projects in its "Before" stage:
And here are some of her projects in their "After" stages:
 Cora was able to put out her cowl that she finished up the night before at First Friday. Mostly alpaca, and most of it handspun yarns, and mostly awesome. She put her latest new project out on the dress form in the front of the booth.

In the mirror below, you can see several of her pom-pom scarves hanging on the dress forms on the other side.
As the morning wore on, it got warmer and the babies got sleepy and assembled themselves in a miniature monster pile of more cuteness. Killing me softly with cuteness, killing me softly, with cuteness ....
We dressed up the mannequins inside the booth in our unintentionally-matching finished items. This is Cora's cute hat with Gwynne's scarflette.
And this is Gwynne's alpaca hat (the giant curly ringlets are from my first-ever corespun yarn made from kid locks). It matched quite nicely with Cora's big chunky mossy cowl.
We also had a basketful of handspun yarns.
We sat in the back as long as the shade hung around. Here's a pic of me under my shaded chair (I'm a huge fan of the shaded Kelsyus chairs!) with Shay behind me.
Our next Roadrunner event is this weekend, and for the rest of winter we'll be up and at em at dawn every Saturday after the 1st and 3rd Fridays! The Greek food is really incredible and so is the iced tea. If you come, I promise you won't be disappointed :)

Thanksgiving Weekend Event!

Published by Gwynne under on 10:54 AM
The weekend after Thanksgiving, Bewilderknits will be showing at the 3 Tarts Holiday Trunk Show in Phoenix. It's located between Greenway and Thunderbird just East of 44th Street. We'll be there along with many other local artists, here are the details (click to expand):

Season Debut Fall 2010

Published by Gwynne under on 11:26 PM
October's First Friday was a remarkably hot and unbelievably busy way for Bewilderknits to make our debut for the new 2010-2011 season. When we said last Spring, "We really need to start our season earlier than December next year," we really hadn't been thinking about things like 100 degree nights in early October.

In terms of foot traffic, I hadn't known what to expect, because the politics regarding First Friday street closures went on all summer - I guess, while we were knitting - and the final word was: no more street closures. The apparent upside of the street closures had been the "Wow! There's loads of people!" effect which is just generally fun. The downside had been that there'd been vendors last fall reselling imported wholesale items made in Nepal. While the knitting was not a bad product by any means, it wouldn't have been very fair to compete against that booth. Particularly when I found the products they were selling on the interwebs for wholesale prices of $3 apiece ... Not to say people shouldn't buy products from Nepal, but First Friday needed to figure out what it was trying to be, and if the big idea was "Local and Handmade," then they should stick to that. In order to raise enough money to pay for the street closures, they weren't capable of being too selective about the vendors.

By not doing the street closure, so many booth vendors like ourselves needed to partner up with the local businesses, and this was, from what I could see, a pretty cool thing. There were SO many artists set up in front of Revolver Records. MADE had so many vendors out front that Cindy had to build a map of her yard so everyone would have space for their displays. What I liked about this set up was that only local handmade booths were likely to get any real estate in this situation. This meant that all the people we met at booths, like Chadwick who was next to us with his Broke Street Jewelry, were the people who make the items they sell.

In Chadwick's case, the jewelry of the night was bangle bracelets and rings and earrings made from recycled skateboards. Very nice.

October 1st is nowhere really near Halloween on the calendar, but in First Friday Fashion, of course people acted like it was. I determined I need to take more risks with fashion down there. I'm beginning to feel old and conservative. Shay caught a picture of this really creative steampunk guy with his family. I was very fond of the neon green goo and the obvious time spent on the details of his shoulder ... thingies.

And we ran into Nathan Blackwell who was wandering around with some of his zombies, who were further Halloweenifying the place by handing out flyers promoting Zombie Team Building. Shay plays a part in the Squishy Studios production (in a rare non-zombie role), and so does fellow Bewilderknitter Cora (as a zombie). Though I won't post photos of the undead on our blog. I trust you know what they look like. They're everywhere, after all ...

 We did a redesign of our booth layout since last season, since we had so many items this year and felt the need to use more of the space. The credit goes to Cora, actually, who drew  -  to scale and printed out in xerox copies  -  a new T-shaped layout and brought it to a Bewilderknits meeting! 

We also decided to do a big upgrade of our tablecloths. Cora and I bought some snazzy upholstery fabric and sewed them all up on hot summer weekends, along with velvety covers for our boxes that we set our heads on.

Also, I got all inspired one big-garbage day in the neighborhood and snagged a big fallen tree branch from a neighbor's tree-trimmings. I had a vision for it, and executed it with the help of Karen's felted bags.

 At first, we all thought we were going to die from the heat ... and also experience no foot traffic. Who wants to look at wool in 100 degrees? But then Karen looked at her phone and said it was actually only 99 degrees, and that must've made all the difference in the world because wow was it crowded! And we weren't the only ones with cameras.

I was super happy (like I always am) when someone with big hair came up to try on one of my ginormous knitted hats. He stuffed all of his dreads up inside it and everything fit.

We sat behind the booth celebrating every rare breeze and weaving in ends and adding on buttons to new projects.

Then we packed up the van at 10:30pm and tried to get some sleep to prepare for the next morning's farmers market. See you next time!