November 1, 2012

hi y’all
sorry about that slip of the drawl but being in asheville, NC for 3 days has left an imprint on my mind. the southeastern animal fiber festival (SAFF) was phenomenally fun if that’s correct to say.  
SAFF was quite different from maryland sheep and wool.  it was inside, which is a plus in inclement weather, had hardly ANY food vendors (booooo), and much less funky handspun yarn like we saw in maryland.  BUT there is something to say for southern hospitality.  the vendors and instructors were from all over the US but a good bit of them were from the south.  i had a hard time understanding the very deep drawls but if i wasnt exactly sure what they said, i just paid for my item and decided i would figure it out later.  my main purpose for attending was the two nuno felting classes and a marketing class and i really only wanted to find yarns i had never seen before, especially handspun.  i did find some wonderful rovings, silks, and some gorgeous felted sheep that will be for sale in the shop.  
suzanne morgan is a nationally-known felting instructor from texas. southern belles speak very softly as well and most of the ladies in the class being southern made it hard for me to hear. so as it turned out, any time anything was needed and someone needed to speak up, they elected me to do it.  now they probably think us northerners are loud and brash and forward.  maybe we are?  (you need ear muffs to attend a purlin girls meeting!)  but what fun.  i met so many new ladies with such creative ideas and now my mind is ready to explode with all this information.
my marketing class was taught by pat reisenburger, a former attorney, who decided beading was more fun than arguing in court.  she taught several classes there that i did not take due to time constraints but her marketing class was helpful and i will be employing her methods to try to get my shop up and running better.  the computer is one of the best tools in this world wide web world, so my website will be up and running soon as well as a facebook page for the shop.
i also welcome any ideas any of you may have to help me make my shop move forward, such as additional hours, classes, etc.  at the purlin girls meeting today, some ideas include more classes and possibly limited hours on saturday.  this is why the shop is called RaggZ & FriendZ and i know i can count on you for some good ideas.  am thinking of doing my first knit along if anyone has any ideas for a good project.
one of the other great things about NC was spending some time with my son and having some great southern meals.  check out this photo of our breakfast at tupelo honey:
grits with goat cheese, poached eggs in lemon hollandaise sauce and in the upper left, a sweet potato pancake with pecans  OMG!!
i am in possession of a bunch of birthday gift certificates.  the next time you stop by, please stop and pick yours up and if you havent signed up, please do.  its worth $5 in yarn with no expiration date!
on october 11, the naughty knotty knitters met at raggz and hosted dottie westerveld, a beading instructor, who makes wonderfully unusual beaded jewelry.  she taught us how to capture a button with beads, then do some free form beading to make a beautiful necklace.  eight ladies attended and every cabochon was as individual as their creators.  check out the pictures below:  everyone hard at work.  it took us almost 5 hours to make them and we were all cross-eyed at the end of the day but everyone went home with a beautiful work of art.  the naughty knotty knitters is a more structured group than i am used to and their leader, betsy, always thinks up something for us to learn.  but the drawback is there is always homework :(

i now have a tuesday night knit club which is a spin off of a beginning knitting class at franklin regional high school.  these girls are really keeping me hopping.  they not only wanted to knit and purl, they are felting, doing elongated stitches, bobbles, dpns — you name it.  now they want to do picot edges.  really nice girls and a lot of fun seeing them so eager to learn more and more.

at last month’s purlin girls gathering, we decided to work on a prayer shawl for our friend donna, who is suffering with metastatic melanoma.  we all decided to knit a strip of whatever color, pattern, yarn etc and put them together.  cathy peters came up with the great idea of getting labels and each stripe will have a label with the knitter’s name on it.  check out the picture below of all the stripes gathered today.  
i am sporting jean rosensteel’s stripe since she was not able to attend and i have not made mine as of yet.  several other ladies from the dolly llamas are making stripes as well and eugenia has graciously agreed to crochet the stripes together (a job no one else wanted to do).  next month i will have a photo of us presenting the shawl (or lap robe) to donna.  i know she is going to be so surprised and happy.  the experimental drug she is taking is working wonders and shrinking her tumors but she said she is always cold so this will warm her up and be like a big group hug every time she wraps it around herself.  i’m really excited to see how it will all look put together.  stay tuned!

WHERE’S RAGGZ?

friday and saturday, november 9 and 10 is an open house hosted by ardis mock entitled “The Work of Our Hands” and features sixteen local artists and their wares.  it will be held at the mock residence 5807 torrance drive, export, pa 15632.  export is the mailing address but they live in murrysville, on the south side of route 22.  for more info contact alimock@hotmail.com or myself.  you will know many of the artists, including sally holbein, ali, ardis, eugenia, maia, me and many more.  try to pop in friday or saturday.  there will be old linn run coffee served as well as homemade appetizers and cookies.  the shop will close a little earlier than usual that day so that i may attend.
then on sunday november 11, i will be at st mary’s dome in bradenville.
saturday november 24 you will find me at the Y in ligonier for the much-anticipated ligonier country market christmas show.
come and do some first or last minute christmas shopping feature all local handmade gifts at any or all of the above events!
CALENDAR
3       end of daylight savings time so change your clocks
        saturday night
15 purlin girls latrobe coffee bean at noon
29 dolly llamas at raggz at noon
13 and 27  KA from 1 to 5 at raggz
EVERY FRIDAY OPEN FROM 10 TO 5 (remember that on the 9th the shop will close at 2)
December 1 open house at raspberry hill alpacas from 10 to 5 on harrison city road featuring local artists – more details to come
WHAT’S NEW??
wisdom poem silk and plymouth gina, both similar in colorways to noro kureyon, both feltable but a little more affordable.  lamb’s pride seconds in black, oregano, and catamaran seas;jumbo birch needles 19, 35, and 50 which arent very easy to find; ozark handspun;  hand made fluffy sheep; items made from recycled sweaters; and handmade fimo buttons.  paula turned me on to conni togel who paints marvelous, whimsical pictures of sheep and i have some of her 2013 calendars for sale; and last but not least, more goodies in the clearance bin on the porch.
soon it will be time to gorge yourself on delicious turkey and fixins but before you descend into the post turkey l-tryptophan coma, take advantage of my PRE-BLACK FRIDAY ONE DAY SALE on friday november 16th where EVERY yarn, pattern, and accessory will be on sale 10%, even seconds and clearance yarn.  now is the time to stock up on yarn for christmas projects as well as knitting projects to snuggle up with during the winter.  gift shop items not included in this sale but you can use your birthday certificate for an additional $5 off!
october’s prize winner was newcomer carole kurek.  carol is the lucky recipient of a coveted sheep mug!
sorry this newsletter was so long but last month’s was cut short.  beginning soon, my newsletter will come out twice a month or perhaps weekly to keep it short and sweet – promise!
love you guys
t
RaggZ & FriendZ
knitting forever, housework whenever!!!
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