Monday, June 11, 2007
Home Again, Home Again, Jiggity Jig
I'm baaaack...but not yet totally unpacked. This was absolutely, hands down, one of the VERY VERY BEST TRIPS I've taken in years! Why, you may ask.....well...I give the credit to the knitbuds. They were awesome, amazing, absolutely incredibly warm, funny, generous etc...etc..you get the picture......
Everything I'd hoped to accomplish on this trip was accomplished! I spent time in just about every single "district" of SF! Took every single form of public transportation available. Shopped at great thrifty girl stores (and found a treasure! Whoo!)....Ate Dim Sum for the first time (which was on the MUST DO list!)........shopped for and acquired gorgeously pettable yarny goodness.....met up with the worlds greatest knitbloggers (Barbara, Marie, and Rachel! whoot!)....and attended not one but TWO, count them TWO....cultural events (cultural by my limited Alaska perspective...haha) AND the conference sponsored by UCSF for continuing medical education was overall excellent. Good speakers, timely topics.....18 more hours of CME..Will definately do that conference again....hmmm...maybe next year :) But I digress....
I arrived in SF at 6am Tuesday June 5th after an unremarkable 5hr direct flight from Anchorage. I was pleasantly surprised to be able to check into my room at the Grand Hyatt Union Square so early, so quickly stowed my gear and enjoyed a refreshing nap until about 11. Then it was up and about for some lunch and touristy action. Had a lovely penne pasta salad and an adult beverage at the "something and Elephant" pub...(adult beverages and all ...forgot the whole name) I mapped out my course for the day...Destination: MISSION DISTRICT for reportedly wonderful thrifty goodness.
The Mission District was as expected...totally city gritty....multicultural....noise...music...many different languages but predominantly spanish and different asian dialects. I spent time in three or four thrift stores and a fabric warehouse that also had RedHeart yarns for $1 or less/skein. I was frankly not as impressed by the thrifty goodness as I'd hoped to be....at least..until I spotted THE JACKET! Now...I am a total sucka' for vintage (early 60s) classic stylish threads. And it fit wonderfully, no holes,no loose threads, no stains, perfect lining...just classic pizzaz! The brand is "Maggie-Chase Originals" which I googled...but no luck. My sense is that while it's not "designer"..it's a very well made piece for an upscale department store brand of the times. Feels like a heavy rayon blend...under the roses...oh..yes..the roses. Ribbon roses...covering every square inch of the 3/4" sleeve, waist length jacket! This jacket is a deep rich solid black, the lighting in the pics is to show the textural details!
Oh yes...this will be a dressy wardrobe staple :) Oh yeah...and it was only $4.99!
By the time the purchase was made, I was getting hungry again, and it was getting dark, so I purchased fresh cherries ( 79 cents/pound) and mangoes from curbside fruit stands (far far less expensive than here at home) and headed back to the hotel for a workout and good night's sleep.
The next day Barbara arrived! I waited in the lobby until I spotted her (recognizing her from her elann.com chatsite and her blog photos)! I must say she is just as cute as her picture. Sparkly blue eyes and the kind of bright smile that just lights up a room. She has so much energy that "bustling around" is a good descriptor for her. Warm, kind, generous spirit that she is, we hit it off immediately. After she unpacked, we headed on over to Artfibers! I'd been there on a trip about 3 years ago, but this was Barbara's first Artfibers experience. I don't think she was disappointed! I was on a mission for silk. Period! I dunno how the cashmere jumped into my basket...but it came home with me too! Along with a fabulous sweater pattern by the lovely and charming Kira of Kira K Designs (who waited on us her very own self in Artfibers)!
Do ya think we might have scored a bit of yarn? oooohhhhh yeeeaaaahhh!
I came home with 3 LS tops worth of their Thai Siam and Chai Siam Tussah Silk! A gorgeous garnet/rose color, a sagey-olivey color and then a brown/grey/taupe variagated that I'd not have purchased without CBMs infuence! Whoot! Along with a half pound of light as a feather 90% cashmere/10% silk........and a small tasting of their variagated mercerized cotton tape...(THIS STUFF KNITS UP LIKE A WET DREAM...IT'S AMAZING! Definately will be getting MORE of that via mailorder soon!)
Here are a few little teaser photos of some of the Artfibers yarn haul!
The Silk...(Butt says..."i'ts not catnip...but I'll still give my seal of approval")
After about 2 1/2 hours at Artfibers....we hopped on a trolley and over to a seaside pub that "Invented the Irish Coffee"...again, the name escapes me at this time......where we chatted and knitted (or rather.....attempted to knit....and frog.....Irish Coffees and all....you understand!) It was interesting to watch how they manually turn the trolleys on "lazy susan's" set into the pavement, once they've come to the end of the line!
But now, I must get ready for work! So, I'll share more about the rest of the trip later this week!