I'm back from Sock Summit with a metric crapload of yarn and a lot of new ideas. I took classes with Nancy Bush, Cookie A, and Franklin. They were all great teachers in entirely different ways: Nancy Bush has a wealth of knowledge about traditional knitting techniques and was incredibly patient and clear in her instructions; Cookie A is super friendly, a total math whiz, and generous in sharing her brilliant ideas and the process behind her creativity; Franklin is humble and funny, and great at explaining the finer points of photography in a way that is approachable and easy to understand. I feel really lucky to have learned from all of them, and it was really cool to see such diversity in their skills and passions.
I also really appreciated that each of them said something about creativity that really resonated with me. From Nancy Bush, I learned that you becomes an expert at something by pursuing it steadfastly and accepting the help of others. From Cookie A, that there's a time for planning, but that playing with what's in front of you is equally important. From Franklin, that even if you feel like a reclusive weirdo, that you are okay and good; that certain brains have a harder time filtering information in large and intense sensory situations, and there's nothing wrong with that.
A confession, though: I have a hard time being around so many people and so many amazing things at once. I loved seeing so many knits in the wild, and I really enjoyed interacting with other knitters. But I'm not going to lie and say that I had the most amazing time ever in the world, because I almost cried on the train back to the hotel on the first night of classes. It made me miss my knitting friends in Oberlin terribly, and it made me feel lost and faceless in a sea of strangers, and it made me realize that I need to be less nervous and critical of myself when interacting with other people. So although overall the experience was awesome, it also brought up some of my social quirks that were frustrating to deal with in the midst of so much good energy and so many happy people.
On a happier note, and did I mention the yarn? This is the covetable Plucky Knitter Primo Worsted MCN in the colorway Sticky Toffee. I'm not sure what it's going to be yet, but I was enticed by the depth and warmth of this burnt orange. I was going through my stash a bit ago and noticed that I have very few single skeins of worsted or DK weight yarns, so I really tried to pick up some heavier weights along with my normal fingering and laceweights. I also tended heavily towards warm colors - peachy pinks and red-purples, deep reds, and rich oranges. I was able to pick up some long sought-after brands that I've heard of but never seen in person: SweetGeorgia, Sanguine Gryphon, and the Plucky Knitter, among others. I've never seen so much incredible yarn and color in the same place before.