April 4, 2009
The opposite of alert
Finally, Sock Camp is over... and all the campers and staff have gone home, and Tina and I are staying on for a while to work on Sock Summit, and we are entirely and totally done in, which makes both of us really rather nervous, because here we are, finishing sock camp destroyed, only to work on Sock Summit, which is like sock camp on a steroid injection plan that would make a hardcore wrestler flinch.
This would make us think we were crazy people, except for we already knew that we were crazy people. Camp is crazy. We had scavenger hunts, games, learning, classes... Cat taught a new archtechture for socks, which is crazy by itself, because I can't believe she thought of another architecture for socks. (She's going to teach it at the Summit too. It's not a finished thing yet. Her students have been sworn to silence) and that there is part of the crux of the thing. Sock Camp is a crazy idea. It's a great big slice of crazy pie, but it's not just that. Underneath the games and the fun and the antics the campers get up to, there's something else going on, it's just in disguise.
The students were asked to go on a scavenger hunt, and they did... but really they were making friends and building community. They were asked to knit a sea creature or a crab and tell it's story.. and they did,
(Click to Embiggen - and you really should.)
they were unleashing their creativity, and I think they surprised themselves. (I know they surprised me.)
In a culture that has trouble valuing art, and valuing our sort of art as knitters in particular, camp offers something bigger. A chance to show off. A chance to have your peers, people who understand what you are making and why...
a chance to look at the bigger picture. A record. A chance to know names and value work and tell the stories of what we are doing and how hard it was.
A chance for us to know each others names even, which is valuable in a culture that doesn't really have a fibre arts tradition that takes down this sort of thing and write the names of the artists within it down next to the names of painters, or songwriters... or poets. It gives me a chance to tell you that this is Sarah.
She's a knitter. She's a pilot. This is her spindle-spun cashemere, plied with a strand of silk and knitted by her own self... and it's really beautiful, and it's art, and at sock camp?
There's a whole lot of people who care about her efforts... and want to know her name. Sock Camp looks like fun, and it is, (A lot of fun) but it's also a place where knitters get what they deserve. Validation. Encouragement. A place to pass information on and help each other know things, expand ideas...
move the craft forward and make sure that nothing is lost as we go.
I love Sock Camp.
Now. I have a Summit to plan. It's going to be like this. But bigger.
Posted by Stephanie at April 4, 2009 4:01 PM
a big ole bottle of wine for you two!
looks like another fabulous event.
You made me cry. I love knitters.
What fun! Can't wait for Portland!
Sock Camp looks amazing. I'm sorry I missed it. If the Summit is going to be bigger -- look out everyone!
BTW, your Rogue Rose design is great!!! Beautiful, interesting and fun to knit.
Thank you. This is like a national (international) treasure. Thank you for doing your (rather big) part to include, teach and inspire in the knitterly way. I loved the sea creatures and the fabulous spindle-spun cashmere. Rest your feets and on to Sock Summit.
The knitted crab is awesome. So is Sarah's Shawl.
I am corrupted by your lever knitting!
Sarah's work gave me goosebumps.... I am in awe.
Wish I had been there. Sarah's shawl was fabulous.
That cashmere throw-- wow!
The sea creatures-- wow!
I knit an elephant seal head a few weeks ago, but I won't be bringing it to the Sock Summit. I'm giving it to the Friends of the Elephant Seal to wear at parades.
I'm SO looking forward to Sock Summit! It's taking place just an hour north of where I live so I can actually get there without spending a fortune.
Oh, that sounds fantastic.
Oh it all sounds so great! I wish this was a year without so many financial commitments and stresses so that I could go.
Camp looked like a ton of fun! I can not wait for Sock Summit! i wish there was going to be a class on dyeing there...that looked really interesting. Maybe you can still fit it in? Or maybe I haven't read all of the class descriptions. THANK YOU for all of your hard work on all of these knitting events!
I really wish I could have gone to Sock Camp! What fun you all must have had! I'm really looking forward to the Sock Summit!!
Beautiful. I wish I could have come!
You're right Sock Camp does encourage and validate creativity - not enough of it in today's world. Advance with confidence! (apologies to EZ)
It looks like a wonderful event. Congrats that it all went so well.
Love (1)! What a beautiful post. You brought a tear to my eye and a lump to my throat. It will take a moment before I can compose to get back to my lace shawl :).
Looking forward to Sock Summit.
I really, really appreciate you ladies.
But, but, but....
What were the hammers for?
Huzzah! You're absolutely right, every jot and wittle of it (I made those up, I think). May I say, I got that entire feeling from your visit here, even though I didn't take any classes - I'm not confident enough of my ability to try something fancy in public (yet). Do you realize, you're the Pebble in the Pond? The warmth, the appreciation, the learning, the camaraderie of knitters starts with you, then expands outward from each and every knitter who hears you, then each and every knitter with whom THEY relate...that's why it's spreading and expanding and why places like our Sow's Ear and everyone's favorite LYS are now the Village Well. Thank you, Stephanie.
Your post is very inspirational. Thank you for understanding the spirit of our love for knitting. Beauty is a beautiful thing.
I have tears in my eyes reading this. Thank you for all you do to further our knitting place in the world. :) That gorgeous shawl encourages me to get out the spindle and try again! What a piece of art that is!!! And she took it to sock camp!? And let people touch it!???? :)) Beautiful, skillful piece to cherish.
Those crabs rock so hard. I especially like the guy with the beady eyes & the hairdo. I just might have some leftover yarn that needs to get in touch with its inner crustacean....
Sock camp looks like so much fun. The Boy (my "the Boy", not just some generic boy) saw an ad for Sock Summit in IWK (that he was flipping through a knitting magazine and noting patterns didn't go unnoticed) and jokingly asked me if I was planning to go. I think I scared him a bit when I said I wished I could... If it's like this but bigger? Maybe I will try hard to go...
Wow. I totally wish I could get to a sock camp. MY kind of camp. Wow. I loved seeing all the pictures and fun.
I don't know. They look pretty crabby to me...
(Why no, I don't have any shame. Why do you ask?)
I couldn't make it to camp but I'll be there at Sock Summit! No way am I going to miss out! Someday I'll make it to camp. =)
Usually you make me smile or think or wander off. Today you made me cry. And although I am too far away and too poor to get to sock camp (and sock summit) you finally made me believe that what I do is Important. That is the greatest gift anyone could have given me.
It looks like three kinds of wonderful!
Sock camp looks like a ton of fun - I'm trying every which way to make it to sock summit - looking forward to it!!!
The crabs are fantastic and so is the shawl.
The event sounds like a great big adventure to me.
OH I wanno go, I wanno go, I wanna go!
Can't ya come to Houston for a Sock Camp or Sock Summit?? I promise, there are TONS of sock knitters here....
Darling sea creatures! I'd love a whole shoal of them on the the sideboard in the dining room - with maybe a wee tray of sand and some shells! Perhaps this summer, when I can't get to the beach...
It'll be the picture of Sock Camp, embiggened.
And did you know, Virginia came out with the slogan "Virginia is for lovers" years ago, and my home state retorted with their own of "Maryland is for crabs." I so love those knitted crabs!
California here would be for what? Abalone? As in abalone you some yarn if you knit up some socks for the Summit.
I need to add--Sarah, that's gorgeous. Well done!
Woohoo - Sock Summit, here I come. Thanks so much for organizing this. Today I took a class at my LYS with Lucy Neatby - and I was so thrilled to learn that she'll be at Sock Summit, too. This is going to be so much fun.
All hail Sarah! It IS important to each of us that someone recognize the soul, skill and art we put into our work. Sarah, you are an artist.
First the creativity of all those wonderfull little crabs.
and the work, and dedication of Sarah to make her art.
And I've spent the last week on baby washclothes. Yet they have value too when little one is washed with one.
I've had this feeling of recognition at Quilt Retreat. I'd love to feel it at a knitting gathering. Your right, needle arts are not valued. They weren't when my mother did them, and won grand Champion ribbons at state fairs!! That was all the positive reinforment she ever got!
We are luckier today. We have a way to connect with each other. And we can give you some credit for helping that get going!!Thank you.
Could you come to Australia and do a sock camp? It looks like way too much fun and i could provide beer!!!
Oh, this must have been terrific! (I'm only just learning sock knitting, and it's SO FUN.) What are the sea creatures, though? I recognize some of them, but three -- the red one, the green one with a thousand tentacles, and the one with the eyes -- perplex me. Can anyone identify them?
Bigger? Than Sock Camp?
I wanna go...but I have no money...
I'm sending you two jolts of energy!!!
And thanks for sharing pictures of Sarah's work--she is one amazing woman.
Bigger? Than Sock Camp?
I wanna go...
Bigger? Than Sock Camp?
I wanna go...
Oh my goodness...I'm not a stalker. I promise.
But I still wanna go.
Your writing is amazing. I love the way you point to this tradition of 'woman's work' and validate the way we have spent our time and efforts, and the way our efforts have elevated this homely craft. For so long, because our work was done in the home, unpaid, it has been seen as valueless. It is simply untrue. Knitting is an act of creation, a work of our minds, hearts, and hands and is so much more.
My dear Harlotta, you ladies ROCK!! I am deeply jealous of all those who can go to sock camp or sock summit...sigh. I will go to the Annapolis Borders on Tuesday, however, with first socks and 3/4's of second socks with me!
Proud to be a knitter.
Ooh, sock camp looks like fun! You guys look like I felt after our spring break "vacation"--my daughter was calling it our "7 states in 5 days" trip. Speaking of creativity in the fiber arts, did anybody else see the "Teen knits duct-tape prom dress" video on cnn.com today? http://www.cnn.com/video/#/video/us/2009/04/03/kinney.duct.tape.prom.ktxa
sorry, my computer was telling me that it couldn't post because the connection failed...
I heard about your blog when Greg Kinnear was on Conan and then found it and started reading it a few weeks ago. And how funny that I read it today because I recognized my aunt! My aunt is Sarah Hauschka. My dad is her brother. I'm nowhere near (and probably never will be because she is that good) the knitter she is but I guess I have time to learn. Anyway...love your blog!
Come to think of it...I came home from that trip and spent the next week "resting" between loads of laundry, etc. and knitting a pair of Socks!! It was great!
OMG... Is that little critter with the wire hanger JOAN CRAWFISH???? Best. Crustacean. Evar.
I think I just died. But it was worth it to have seen that. Brilliant. The eyebrows! BRILLIANT!!!
I just knew it! Every time you drop off the blog, you are off having fun with socks. And this is clearly sock fun times thousands! Thanks for sharing your report (though it does make everyone want to be there!).
(Right you are, that Cat is surely out of the sock box! Lucky for us!)
I can't believe that one of the knitted crabs has socks!
Wait, yes I can. :)
I feel like such a complete amateur. I am in awe of Sarah and the crabs and sea creatures. In my next life, I hope I can aspire to knitting like all of you!
I thought I was losing it when that post brought me to tears. Then I read that others were too! Sarah is an inspiration to me! What a work of art!
Sock Camp looks like fun. I was wondering who made the hermit crab. It is very lifelike I have 17 Live ones in a 90 gal tank. I would love to know how to make one of my own is there a pattern?
You have perfectly expressed that feeling, that purpose, that why we go to sock camp in this post. Its the collective whole...camp, campers, games, learning, yarn, colors, teachers, setting, everything!!
Thank you and Tina and Debbi and Cat and JC and Nathania and Debra and Guido :) for an awesome week. It truly was a blessing.
Bring on sock summit!!!
And I'm glad to know Tina is getting just a wee bit of rest!!!
I'm glad that I'm not the only one moved to tears by not only your post, but also the comments above mine. Only a few days ago I received the most awesome news that I was to be blessed with the birthday gift of Sock Summit, from my divorced parents. Parents of a soon-to-be 41-year old, no less. Who says you can't go home again? My mother actually thanked *me* for giving her a way to give me a meaningful gift.
Sorry about the triple-posting. It loaded, and spun, and spun...
This is why I love reading you - you manage to express in beautiful, simple terms, what I love about knitting and the community of artists created around it. This post finished off my day perfectly: it embodied grace. Thank you.
Oh, wow. Do you mean a place where I could spend the whole time knitting a sock and *not* get strange looks and weird comments? Like I just did at the conference I was just at? I can't WAIT for Sock Summit.
Dear Ms. Pearl-McPhee. I beseech you on behalf of my befuddled mind to cease and desist enabling, enticing, confounding and tempting this poor, humbled, prick-fingered knitter. My cousin and her daughters and husband are my favorite sock-victims. And now they are hunting down more patterns for me to use to make their socks. The latest is Leyburn because they saw your posts. I fear what next comes off your needles. And out of your imagination.
You will find me trembling at the thought of the Sock Summit.
There is no escape.
Oooooooo, look at the little Leyburn crabby!
(Far right on the top row!)
Oooooooo, lool at the little Leyburn crabby! (far right on the top row!)
If Sock Camp is everything you said it was and more, I can't even begin to imagine what Sock Summit is going to be like.
Why do I live in the wrong continent????
I sit at the airport (still) reliving the week of camp. Missing campers and friends and practicing new architectures and faster ways to knit them. (with some success i might add, 27 more days to go).
Thanks to you for your own personal brand on the week and to Tina for her willingness (and eagerness?) to be tired (absolutely pooped in every way) for us! and all the teachers, Cat, JC and Deb, Debra and Becky for stretching our minds and funny bones!
I am too tired to knit now but not to dream about it!
Ohhhh. Stephanie. What they all said. Dying to be at Sock Summit, fearing I'll sign up too late, hoping it all works out and I can breathe the same air with all y'alls. And admire. And bask in the glory of Sockitude!
From the Sock-Shaped State (the heel, in fact),
Wow! Those knitted sea creatures are amazing. I absolutely love the Hermit crab, and Sara's cashmere wrap! Amazing! I just love spindles and I'm always telling the people that I teach to spin on them that you CAN spin as much on a spindle as you can on a wheel, and Sarah wrap certainly proves it! Glad to hear you had so much fun. I wish I could have been there. Take lots of naps and happy planning.
Wow!!!! PLEASE can we have a sock camp here in the UK? socks rock!
Looks like it was a fabulous time. Sometimes I think that being surrounded by knitters--and not just knitters, knitters who *get it*--would be just about the best thing ever. I'll just have to invent a transporter between now and August, and the airlines, with their prohibitively expensive flights from Atlantic Canada to the other side of the continent, can bite me. =)
Absolutely greeeeen with envy!! When will there be a sock camp within driving distance of New Jersey?We knit socks, we love socks. We knit other things too. We are knitters. We are in New Jersey!
I could just curl up in that cashmere/silk blankie and sleep until Spring really gets here.We are having March winds in April. No fair. I even missed the first day of Trout which is a biggie.Sock Summit here we come.
Sock camp was the BEST. WEEK. EVER! Thanks for being you and sharing yourself and love of this art with all of us. I took something away from every class that I can, and will, use. And I think I might have some ideas now of what I'm doing :-)
Very well said.
I bow down to The Artist, Sarah.
Absolutely,gorgeously, beautifully, amazing.
What fun! Those crabs are the cutest crustaceans ever!
I've been lucky to know Sarah Hauschka for years as a family friend of my in-laws. She is amazing (cite magic loop book and what I think is maybe the original mobius-scarf-from-the-middle-pattern for Fiber Trends--though she would probably say it has all been done somewhere before). Once she told me how to knit a sweater sideways Over the Phone and it made complete sense.
If other knitters at sock camp are even half as talented and creative (and I'm sure they are!) you were all in good company indeed!
Thank you - I really need some uplifting today, and reading this made a huge difference!
Your wrap up at the end of this post gave me goosebumps - thank you!
I love the wire-hanger wielding sea creature! Like some grumpy closet Neptune.
My Mum is having her left hip replaced in May, in Scotland, and I'm in California, in Grad School, and may not get to visit. So I'm knitting her bed socks out of aran weight tweedy wool in lieu of hand (or foot) holding.
I love what you do. Celebrating all these people who are really creative. Recognising the small things add up to the big picture. If there is any way I can make it to the summit from this side of the pond. I'll be there!
I'm trying to convince DH that the romantic getaway, that he is planning, to celebrate our 20th should bring us to the Summit. So far he is not liking the idea.
Wow. Just wow. I really, really hope to be able to go to Sock Camp and the Sock Summit some day. (But this year I have a wedding to pay for....and I only have one daughter.)
Why not a sock camp in Canada
why not a sock camp in canada
Oh what fun! Congrats on a job well done and hopefully, though I am sure it is, well-appreciated. My only question...when are you coming to the East Coast of the US or even Canada?
Hope Tina (and you!) got a well-deserved nap. What an insane but totally fun week it's been.
I was so blown away by Sarah's shawl. Especially since it only took her 10 weeks to spin & knit the piece of awesome beauty. So glad we could applaud her work.
And loved seeing all the fun stuff we saw & did at Camp. The Blue Moon team and you rock! See you next year!
Holy Heel Flap,Harlot!!May the dpns be with you!And the wine,and the chocolate.Oh,and of course,the coffee.At least you have another few months to rest up/prepare for the Summit.Sounds like you'll need it...
oh that little yarny hermit crab has stolen my heart!
Sock camp looks like it was amazing, but I can't get over the knitted sea creatures!!! Love Love LOVE those crabs!!!
Looks like Sock Camp was wonderful. Can't wait for Sock Summit. I've already got my plane tickets (American Airlines has a great deal for Dallas to Portland right now), my hotel reservations, my rental car reservations. All I need is to sign up for the classes!
My husband and I are making this our vacation for the year (no pressure, Steph). We're going to stay for the whole week and take the opportunity to explore Portland and the area.
I'm so excited I can hardly stand it.
Make sure you delegate - otherwise that picture of your feet and partner at the top won't be of sleepy people but comatose people.
All of these knitting adventures must be wearing you thin. I imagine t's kind of like Woodstock for knitters where you're Jimi Hendrix. Only instead of one three-day show this is an entire tour. Hopefully you won't be setting any needles on fire during sock summit.
p.s. I keep giggling at the thought of you all getting crabs at Sock Camp.
I was on the plane today coming home and I thought how lucky I was to spend the time with the people I was surrounded by during the last week. My cup is so full.
Thank you for being a part of an amazing week!
I hope you both get some rest.
Any place that makes me knit is my kind of uhm, boot-sock camp!
Like! I didn't go to Sock Camp, but I feel the same sort of way about Rhinebeck, and knit night, and all those other times when I feel totally free to be the knitter I am, and get the recognition for it that I deserve. And hooray for a community in a world that doesn't always have enough human connection.
I really want to be able to go to one of those some day. Wish there was more on East coast for that.
You are amazing. I love knitters.
We take over the world when?
Why is it so darned important to distinguish handspun yarn by what it is spun on?
A drop spindle is not so special and unique that it deserves special mention and the abuse of the english language to do it. Really. I do both types of spinning. Both have their benefits and their drawbacks.
If spinning on a drop spindle is called spindling *shudder* then can I call spinning on a wheel.... wheeling?
The english language is taking a huge beating from the hand spinning community.
Hooray for building community and valuing art!!!
I love that this sort of thing is occurring, even if I can't go, it is very happy-making to me to see people come together to appreciate and validate each other as creators.
Spindle-spun cashmere BLANKET? I am not worthy.
Cannot. Freaking. Wait. For Sock Summit. I have this image of sock summit as a place where a person could simply become a smarter and happier knitter just by standing around the place.
Take care of yourselves! Sleep never did anybody any harm, I'm sure of it.
What Glenna said. I am so not worthy.
But not what Glenna said about can't wait for Sock Summit, as I can't go. I'm glad for Glenna, though.
All right, so that's not entirely true. Actually I am a seething mass of envy and spite, the kind that would make me track down Sarah and cut a big hole in the center of her blanket/shawl, except that luckily I have a pair of socks in progress with me. Breathe. Knit. Breathe. Purl. Breathe... what did you say you were working on again? Oh, never mind.
Also, Barbara is a way better person than I am.
It looks like everyone had an awesome time! Absolutely beautiful knitting Sarah.
Sock Camp looks like so much fun! I think next year I'll save up and try to go. Can't wait for the Sock Summit!
And this one time at sock camp...
Here it is Monday in Houston, TX, and it is cold! My friends are accusing me of bringing the weather back from Washington and they all want me to knit them socks. I am still on a sock camp high, and I told them all no, because I am a selfish knitter!
All that and more! Leaving camp is not so bad, thanks to all of the friends I have made. Your class was great. I'm not so great on the DPN's, but I am flying on flat knitting! Thanks to all of you and especially the ultimate camp counselor, Cockeyed.
Each year Sock camp gets better. This year was absolutely the best. Thanks so much to all of you for all your patience and help. I know I'll hear all about Sock Summit from Stephen. Love your blog, Stephanie.
Sarah--you and your shawl are awesome. My heart sings that there are so many fine knitters in the world. Stephanie--please put me on whatever list for your summit....would like to try to attend.
A young actor once said to an older actor ( I think it was Orsen Wells) "I can't believe they pay us all this money and all we are doing is sitting around waiting for everyone to get ready." Orsen Wells (or maybe it was Marlon brando) replied "Young man, the money they pay us is precisly for sitting and waiting. The acting we do for free."
Dear Yarnie, the airplanes, hotels, airports, TSA inspections, early morning alarm clocks and radio inteviews, computer crashes and surley teenagers are some of the aggravations for which you are being paid. The knitting, and teaching (and even the teenagers) are the things you do for free and for love of your art. Enjoy the time you have for the process. Sue B
I so agree with the post. My knitting buddy has moved and most of the people around me think that knitting is "cute" and for people with a lot of patience (hah!). The rest do not disdain to knit from a pattern. I knit from patterns (most deviations are accidental and cook by recipe). I miss the sharing component and the friendly competition. Your blog recognizes that many of us are looking to connect and be creative.
OMG! Sarah's cashmere/silk shawl/blanket is . . . totally amazing. I wanted to reach right through the monitor so I could fondle it. More info! More - MORE!!! (Is she on Ravelry? Was the pattern an original? Would she accept my firstborn child in exchange for my just BORROWING it for a month?)
Ten weeks? It took her ten WEEKS to create this magnificence? ! ? ! I am in awe.
I'm humbled by Sarah's artistry and skill. Wow.