Monday, August 1, 2011

Sock Summit Fleece to Foot

Aren't these the cutest things?  Their names are Instep, Heel Flap, and Gusset.  

They came from Spinning Ewe Farm in Beavercreek, Oregon.  On Sunday morning, they were sheared, a sample of the fleece was spun and divided into six small samples while the remaining fleece was divided into six two-pound bags.

Here's a picture of our team, the PDX Puddle Jumpers, before the fleece was handed out.  We were given the pattern while the sheep were sheared.  We had time while the sheep were sheared and a sample yarn spun to strategize.  The sock pattern was knit in 5 separate pieces and either grafted or whip-stitched together.  And this was no plain sock; there were charts, pattern stitches, and (as we later found out) more than one mistake!

Left to right are Bethany Hendrickson (ilovesmekitty), Simi Petersen (paxilpixie), Sari Petersen (darkstarr), yours truly, and Duffy Stephens (fiberqat).  We were one of the few teams with costumes and the only team with "set decorations".  We had the giant umbrella in back (which came in handy when Simi had a wardrobe malfunction), and colorful Wellies scattered in front.  

Then a piece of the sample yarn and bags of fleece were delivered to each of these six teams. Their goal was to process the fleece, spin the yarn, and get as close as possible to finishing a pair of socks in the next six hours.

I spent the morning spinning singles, while Sari plied.  Before long, it was lunch time, when we switched out spinners for knitters.  Judy Becker (of Judy's Magic Cast On fame) on the left in the teal shirt, and Dawn Seymour (of Fiber Rhythm fame) in the black shirt swapped in for Simi and me. 

Periodically, we would sing rainy day songs or work the crown of spectators to drop money in the boots. We raised $62.17 for our charity: Mercy Corps.

Here's our pieces and parts ready for judging, along with the remaining flicked locks, spun singles, and plied yarn.

Unfortunately, we didn't win the competition, but that was fine with us.  We had a blast doing it, we got interviewed by The Oregonian, and Sock Summit donated $50 to our charity.  Here's a link to the article and the video shot by the Oregonian.

At 4:30, right after the winner had been announced, the lights went dim and the announcement that Sock Summit was over came over the loudspeaker.  Reluctantly, we packed up our wheels and tools, took down our PDX Knit Bloggers and Portland Spinnerati banners and headed home.  I was asleep on the couch by 6:00.  After eating supper and trying unsuccessfully to stay awake long enough to finish this post, I finally dragged myself to bed at 9:00.  It's a good thing I have the next two days off to recuperate.


  1. I didn't see one picture of me bobbie!! Gasp!

  2. What splendid reportage! Thank you ever so much.

  3. It was GREAT FUN Bobby-- thanks for the photos. I have lots of ideas for what I'd do differently next time (knitting). It was well-organized and a great effort.
    - Dawn

  4. I had a class all morning so I missed the shearing and initial spin. You ladies were quite busy when I saw you in the early afternoon, and then I took Glenna over to Twisted to shop, and didn't get back. Glad you had a good time.

    And Rachel: plenty of pictures of you on my blog!


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