Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Knit Maine 2010

This is an exciting time for me! I have had the great pleasure of working with Phyllis Howe in co-producing an event called Knit Maine 2010 and it is now coming to fruition.

What began as an idea for the night before we leave on our trip... a cocktail party for those attending the retreat with a guest designers, a few shops, a yarn company or two has turned into an enormous 2-day event! I've never been accused of thinking small, but after talking to Phyllis for about 5 minutes I realized my vision had to expand.

This festival will take place August 28th and 29th in Freeport, Maine on the campus of The Merriconeag Waldorf School just off I295. The event will highlight all Maine has to offer in the fiber industry: yarn shops, designers, teachers, manufacturers, farms & their animals, as well as national businesses supporting them in their efforts. There will be workshops, demonstrations, food, presentations by celebrity designers.

Of course, now I'm back to square 1 in planning Saturday evening before we head up the coast to Port Clyde...


Wednesday, May 5, 2010

The Best of Maine

Recently I have had the pleasure of revisiting many of my favorite yarn shops and farms along the coast of Southern Maine. Many of you will remember some of the shops we have visited on our 'yarn crawl back to Portland.' Well I'm thinking ahead and planning out some new stops for us along the way.

One, which is a relatively new discovery for me is Romney Ridge Farm in Woolwich, Maine. Kelly Corbit is the owner and caretaker of a herd of Romney sheep, goats, and chickens. With her own lovely golden curls she bears a slight resemblance to the beautiful locks on her sheep.

Not only will we stop to meet Kelly and all her animals, but we'll have the chance to visit her great shop right on the property. Kelly's yarns are either hand-dyed by her or the natural colors of her sheep. Much of the yarn she sells is from her own herd, all the rest come from other Maine farms that take part in a wool cooperative that began way back in the 1940s as a way to help Maine farmers to pool their wool together for sale.

I'm really looking forward to introducing you all to Kelly, her farm animals, and her beautiful yarns when you come to Maine this September.


Saturday, May 1, 2010

The Ultimate Destination Store in Maine

Who hasn't heard of Halcyon Yarn in Bath, Maine? Every knitter I talk to about our upcoming trip to Monhegan Island either recalls their visit to this famous store or is dreaming about going there while in Maine.

It's a pretty amazing place with stacks of virtually every type of yarn imaginable. Some are well-known brands such as Debbie Bliss, Noro, Cascade, Dale of Norway to name a few. But there are some lesser known brands that are unique to Maine such as Peace Fleece, Bartlett, and Christopher yarns. Then, of course, are the Halcyon Signature yarns. 35 years ago when Halcyon Blake was unable to find the yarns she needed for rug weaving she had them created for her. That has developed into an extensive line of knitting yarns, wool for weavers, in an extensive palatte of colors.

Not only is it an impressive store, but even more so is it longevity. Halcyon Blake has been in business for almost 40 years now. She now shares her time with local civic groups and organizations helping others who want to be in business as well, such as the Coastal Enterprises, Inc.

I hope to share this fun store with you when you are here in September!