Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Knitting in Portland

Recently, I went on a trip up to Portland, OR with my DH, the Viking, and a very good friend to relax, see friends, and have fun.

If you ever have a chance to go to Portland, you should. Knitters are everywhere in Portland. It's so fiber friendly. I don't know how many knitters I ran into whilst there but I have a bunch of new Ravelry contacts now. Plus, it's almost always sweater weather in Portland. Nearly everyone had some form of knitwear, from hats, scarves, to sweaters about. (And I was no exception. I actually got to wear some sweaters there!)

Like a good knitter, I planned what knitting projects to take, because I didn't want to be without (before I even packed my clothes).
  1. A project that I could sit, knit, and talk without problems whilst hanging out at the pub with friends -- socks, naturally. 
  2. A project that I could knit that required a modicum of attention, but not too much -- a stockinette sweater with short row shaping. 
  3. A project that required some concentration for the flight there & back...or when I had some spare cycles to devote to it --- a psuedo-lace shawl.
I finished my socks about half way through the trip. They were perfect for knitting at the pub, at the movie theatre, or when riding in the car for short trips. As an added bonus, I got to wear them during trip.

We did the required stop at Voodoo Doughnuts.

I also brought some extra sock yarn with me, just in case. So once these socks were finished, I cast on another pair, and promptly got about 1/3 of the way through the sock.

While I primarily knitted my socks whilst out and about, I did accomplish other knitting.  I found that I had a few mornings to myself at the restaurant cafe, whilst DH and my friends slept in later than I did. The staff were extremely nice and helpful and let me knit unmolested for quite some time whilst refreshing my tea. This is the 3-in-1 sweater.

Knitting by Friday

In two days, I got a lot of knitting done on the sweater, even with the short rows, during my breakfasts.
Knitting by Saturday

There was also time to knit on my lace-y shawl, (Unleaving Pattern in Knitty), but mostly on the plane. However, I got a good 6 inches accomplished on it. 

A few folks asked me about the app I was using to keep track of my lace & sweater knitting. They were fascinated, and I was more than happy to tell them about the KnitCompanion app, which I reviewed last year. I highly recommend it. It allows me to carry all of my patterns and keep track of where I am in each pattern so I can switch projects as necessary.

I was very surprised at how much knitting I got done on my trip. I thought I overplanned (like usual), but it turns out that it was enough. I had a good combination of down time and activity that allowed for a lot of knitting -- which left me with a chunk of knitting done on two projects, one FO, and one new project! It was a very relaxing vacation.

However, potential tragedy might have struck my in Portland, save for the very friendly town. We watched a late night movie at the hotel we were staying at over our trip (yes, they had their own movie theatre).

While waiting at the theatre lobby for the previous movie to end (and knitting), I dropped my spare pair knitting needles and the hotel staff remembered who was knitting, and found me in the dark to return them to me!!

We saw Army of Darkness that night.

Talk about customer service and memory!

The only thing I did NOT get to do in Portland was visit the yarn shops, only because when we managed to get to downtown Portland, I kinda lost all track of time at the mecca of bookstores, Powell's Books, and by the time we left, all of the yarn shops had closed. 

I'm not sure if that makes me a bad knitter or a really good geek!

I did see a few from the outside, and they did look lovely.  After all, I didn't really need anymore yarn, right? At least, that is what I'm telling myself.

I highly recommend visiting Portland if you ever get a chance. We do have family there, and I will be returning...and next time, I'll definitely be going to the yarn shops!