A View from Sierra County

Small town life and politics, lots of knitting, and travels with and without my five burros

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Location: In the Sierra Nevadas, United States

I blog about rural living and social issues, and the creativity that comes from knitting, as well as post random pictures of the Sierras and my burros. "In order to be an artist, one must be deeply rooted in the society" - Simone de Beauvoir


Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Travel Knitting

It sure feels like summer this late afternoon, hot and sultry, with the light that spells "close to the solstice" to my mind. Actually, we are just over two weeks away from the official start of summer. This brings to mind travel and vacations.

Some of you probably already know that I am planning to attend the Estes Park Wool Market on June 17th. Carole knows that she and I fly into the Salt Lake City airport within an hour of each other, from opposite coasts, next Thursday (can I get a whoo hoo?!). Margene knows to come and pick us both up.

What nobody knows is that I have been contemplating what knitting to bring for the trip rather than appropriate vacationing clothes! Now, it's true that I did check the weather for both SLC and Estes this morning, noting that it was quite similar over the next ten days to mine here in the Sierras. That's good enough, I'll just make sure to do laundry a few days ahead of my departure....

Now, back to the problem of what to knit while traveling. I gave this quite a bit of thought on my morning walk (I am not doing the I'm Fit and I Knit KAL nor the one either, but I am walking almost every morning for 25-30 minutes!) and realized that the ideal travel knitting is probably a ribbed sock! First, the item has to be small enough to quickly drop into a bag, without dumping off the needles, as there is all that standing in airport lines, showing tickets and IDs to people, going through security, etc.

It also has to be very simple to "read", either stockinette or ribbing or something equally mindless, since traveling sometimes stimulates much conversation. While more the shy type around strangers, I imagine that no lace patterns or other difficult knitting will be accomplished during the blogger meet-up at 11:00 A.M. on Saturday at the Wool Market, or any other time when knitters get together and converse!

And, lastly, the pattern can't be complicated, involve lots of directions to keep track of, or special tools, since the extra luggage space is supposed to be reserved for my finds along the way.

Last year while traveling on the train and attending Black Sheep, my knit project of choice was a stockinette tank top, which proved to be very versatile, and even provided enough knitting to get me through a five day jaunt (although I purchased some alpaca boucle yarn and made a skinny scarf while there as well - of course, I was carrying extra knitting needles, wouldn't you?!). I am on a "use what you have in your stash" kick this year, though, and will need to dig through there and see what I can come up with...

Of course, there are all the reasons why none of the projects currently on my needles are suitable: Mountain Peaks may come with me, but needs total concentration; its plus is that lace doesn't take up much room in the suitcase. DH's vest-to-be-felted can't say that; it has grown too big and hot and heavy to be appropriate to take traveling. CeCe will be coming along, since I decided that she would be a more entertaining companion as a project than as an object to wear (does that mean I am really a process knitter instead of a product knitter?), plus I don't want any pressing deadlines to have her done and wearable!

The stash has provided me with several items all in the queue, all destined to be shawls or other lace projects (I might be approaching a fetish here). I know there are other wonders in there that I have forgotten about so tomorrow morning I will be throwing around parts of my stash, digging through boxes and drawers, in search of something appropriate. What kind of knitting would you choose to take traveling?


Blogger Tactless Wonder said...

Socks. Yes. Or self-striping hats. The goal is absolute minimum yarn changes and as little chance as possible of losing a needle. That's trickier with socks, as I use DPNs, but circs work super-well with hats.

9:41 PM  
Blogger Ruinwen said...

Just like I always am wearing the wrong kind of shoes...I always bring the wrong kind of knitting on a trip.

I'm the one making an afghan in 100 degree weather and a sock when it is below freezing.

But I think a sock would be ideal for you...or if you have any squares to make they are so portable and the pattern is usually one you know by heart.

Have a great trip!


2:38 AM  
Blogger Robin said...

I AM SO JEALOUS! I've wanted to go to the Estes Park event for a couple of years now (ever since I learned about it) I've told my husband that on our next trip West it must be planned around this event! Have a great time and fondle the fiber for me!

5:40 AM  
Anonymous SpiderWomanKnits said...

Socks are great! That pattern I just used for the 3/1 ribbed (read-only 1 purl stitch) socks was simple and fun plus it is a free Spun pattern.

Hats travel well. Or why not a Mason-Dixon Buttonhole Bag or two? You can make them as big or as small as you want and make great gifts plus they use up the stash bits.

I can go on and on but what I want to say is...Have a GREAT time at Estes and don't forget to bring your camera ;-)

6:54 AM  
Blogger Jennifer said...

Socks and hats are always perfect traveling companions. I took a scarf once and that worked out pretty well.

7:00 AM  
Blogger margene said...

Socks are my constant companions. They are such good travelers. The bath robe may make the cut, too as it is such easy knitting. We probably won't have much time, other than car travel, for knitting as we will be having a roaring good time!!

8:58 AM  
Blogger Carole said...

I'm planning on a lace shawl for the plane and socks for the rest of the time. I think. I keep changing my mind!

9:14 AM  
Blogger Marguerite said...

Have a wonderful time!

Socks are my favorite project for traveling.

10:05 AM  
Blogger Kathy said...

Well, since you have asked:

I too favor socks for a trip.
I like a NEW project and NEW yarn for a vacation.
I also must find new knitting stores on vacation or revisit known stores.
I like to bring patterns along or a book of patterns to ponder when I am relaxing as well.
Have a great time in Estes Park.

6:05 AM  
Blogger green-eyed grrl said...

you sound like a very sensible traveller. I, too, have been contemplating what knitting to bring, but haven't decided yet. I don't think I could limit myself to one pair of socks, though!

Looking forward to meeting you.


9:34 PM  

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