August 15th, 2009

Sock Summit Wrap Up

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It has been so fun getting to read about different experiences at Sock Summit on Ravelry and a bevy of different blogs.  The one common thread I’ve found is how deeply personal the journey to Portland was for so many along with the pure joy of just being able to participate and be part of the community.

Prepping for, traveling to and setting up for a tradeshow is a ton of work.  We love doing it – as I’ve said before we actually kind of thrive on it which I know sounds really weird.  Although we always make time to shop the marketplace – heck we’re all in it for the yarn just like everyone else – we rarely get to take classes or participate in events.  In all honesty, we’re usually  just too tired and have usually used up every ounce of social skills while working the booth during the day. 

At Sock Summit it was a wee bit different.  Our amazing team in different combinations were able to attend some of the evening events, Barbara Walker’s talk and more.  On Friday, I went to the Guiness World Record attempt.  Initially, I had planned to just sneak in the back, take a couple of pictures, maybe a short video to document it and scoot back out.  Before I headed up to the ballroom I grabbed a pair of straight needles and a ball of Valley Yarns Superwash and took it with me, just in case.  So glad I did.  Here’s a couple of shots from inside the ballroom ahead of the attempt:

What follows is a video of Stephanie’s entire opening comments.  It’s long – 8 minutes+ but worth your time.  I usually try to keep videos short and sweet but this was just classic Stephanie and much too important to edit.  I did my best to really try to capture the essence of what it was like to be there:


Funny story, as Steph was wrapping up her comments and getting ready to hand things over to Tina for the kick-off, the young lady sitting next to me whispered to me “It’s time to stop video taping”.  I said, “I will as soon as we are told to start knitting”.  She responded “I REALLY think you need to stop now and pick up your knitting”.  I think she was afraid I was going to blow it for the entire room.  No worries.  I accomplished my 15 minutes of consecutive knitting AND caught it all on tape 🙂


I am so glad I stayed and participated.  I was there by myself and it was just a magical moment for me.  We’ll know in a week or two if the attempt is accepted!  Stay tuned!

Friday night, we all attended the Sock Hop at the Portland Museum of Art.  It was a great time.  I love to dance and probably would have stayed all night but the team was hungry.  Sorry the picture is dark – the lights were very dim and my camera was not cooperating:

Ron of Buffalo Gold spent most of the show with us in our booth – we had his LOVELY yarn.  On Saturday morning he brought us Voodoo Doughnuts:

Like nothing I’ve ever seen before.  I’m only sorry that J1 and J2 missed the Fruit Loop and Cocoa Puff topped doughnuts.  Then again, not so much.

We saw lots of amazing knitting but this my friends, was the winner:

Yup – knit crutch covers.  She did these in a very short period of time and although I’m not 100% sure of the construction, the yarn is Noro Kureyon.  They were just awesome.

Lastly, I have this very special trinket given to me by Stephanie:

Why you ask?  Well, let me tell you.  One of the SS09 volunteers came down to our booth on Friday morning looking for straight needles for the Guiness attempt.  Fine, no problem.  Turns out they were for Barbara Walker.  I’m ringing up another customer and Steve was dealing with the needles.  Next thing I know, out of the corner of my eye I see a credit card being slid through the machine.  I then had what can only be called – An Outer Body Experience.  I looked at Steve and said “You are NOT charging Barbara Walker for needles!”  He looked at me and the lovely volunteer said “Oh, I’m paying for them – no problem.”  I said “NOBODY is paying for needles for Barbara Walker, it’s Barbara Walker“.  At that point I may have stopped raising my voice and switched to my scary, quiet voice – the voice the boys know means they are in serious trouble.  Steve tried to cover his tracks but it was no use.  He knew he was wrong.  The needles were delivered to Barbara Walker and the planets stayed properly aligned.  Can you imagine if that transaction would have happened?  WEBS would have been doomed with bad yarn karma forever!

Steph was wearing the above button when I told her the story and she gave it to me. 

And with that folks, we bid Sock Summit 2009 a fond adieu.  It was magical and we are proud to have not only been a participant but a sponsor.  I can never say enough about what a great job Tina, Stephanie and ST-1 and ST-2 did.

Would love to hear your experience at Sock Summit!



9 Responses to “Sock Summit Wrap Up”

  1. abbyfranquemont Says:

    From here on out, I’m going to refer to you as Kathy “You are NOT charging Barbara Walker for needles!” Elkins.

    I laughed, I cried, I got the t-shirt, it was definitely way, way better than Cats.

  2. ccrinma Says:

    Thank you for sharing the video, that was great. And good job avoiding the bad knitter karma. Yes, just give Barbara Walker whatever she wants!

  3. hoodlumknit Says:

    That is so funny! I can actually hear you saying that (knowing your voice from the podcast)

  4. Guest Says:

    Thanks for the great Stephanie video – I appreciate it.

    My mother had that quiet voice too – we two girls learned that when we really “had to listen to hear” we were in deep do-do. I used the same technique when I was teaching 🙂

  5. KathyElkins Says:

    So great to get to hang out with you for a bit in Portland. Will definitely be in touch about the podcast!

  6. KathyElkins Says:

    Quiet voice has so much more impact than yelling voice. Not only do J1 and J2 know it’s pretty serious, they know not to try to make excuses, blame each other, whatever. They KNOW there’s no getting out of it 🙂

  7. Ann286 Says:

    Thanks for posting the video and not editing it. It was really nice to get a look at what I missed.
    I feel like I just missed Woodstock and I’ll just have to hear all the cool stories and wish I had gone. Maybe next if there is a next time.
    Thanks again.

  8. Kay Hiigel Says:

    Her mom sent me these pics of my granddaughter and her crutch covers. Now here is someone who knows how to turn a mishap into an opportunity to be creative. I have just got to get more serious about my knitting!

  9. Liz Says:

    Thanks so much for posting the video. It helped me get a feeling for the Summit. Looks like you all had a great time.

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