TNNA… duh, knitting!

(Ok, I totally stole the “duh, knitting!” from the Alisha Goes Around boxes that everyone was carting around full of her delicious yarn. And I did my part to make sure EVERYONE knew about her, because I love her AND her yarn. Not just because she gave me a skein that matched my current hair color, either…I have been in awe of Alisha since I first met her back in March while teaching in Austin).

Alisha had a handknit polar bear in her booth this year, which led to many hijinks, such as Ysolda-bear and me getting eaten by a bear, and who knows what else? (The tongue got stolen at one point, if I remember correctly).

Annie and I were roommates, which is good because Andi ended up with Lily — and Lily taped her snoring. I snore like there’s no tomorrow and would’ve given Lily hours of entertainment on that front.

My hair was a sort of periwinkle/lavender color — this week, as Carol notes. I cut off my hair a few weeks ago so I wouldn’t be miserable all summer. (Immediately, of course, the weather got nice and cool. So you’ve got my hairdresser to thank for that…let’s hope it stays this way)

I was not the only member of the short hair club. Mary-Heather, Pamela, Ysolda, and many others have gotten their chop on in recent months and everyone looked ADORABLE.

Marly put on a FABULOUS designers dinner this year, sponsored by Namaste and XRX and some other lovely sponsors. Check back later in the week — I will be doing a giveaway with a spectacular Namaste bag stuffed full of goodies as the prize! This bag is so delicious, I almost want to keep it for myself, but no, dear readers, one of you will get it.

“Driver? Driver? What’s this on my hand?”

My studiomate and best friend Arabella went to TNNA with me. As someone who used to live in Los Angeles, she finds Rachel Zoe hilarious. We’ve got a long-running joke about the RZ parody below, and referenced it frequently while we were in town.

I thought it was that bird again.

So imagine our surprise when we happened upon RZ’s apartment building on our way from a friend’s house to something else! Then the “what’s this on my hand?” jokes just kept on going…

What a week. I can’t sum it up any other way!

Jedimom took this photo of my birthday cake. You see, the lovely lovelies of Unwind in Burbank got me a cake for my birthday since it happened to be the same day as their Ravelry party. The cake was from Porto’s, an out-of-this-world bakery with deep-fried potato balls in addition to dangerously delicious cakes. Imagine something tasty. Now wrap that something in mashed potatoes. Now deep-fry it. You’ve got potato balls from Porto’s.

Right around 4:40 in this video you get to see Stephanie, the owner of Unwind, announce my birthday — and yes, everyone sang. It was awesome. Thank you all. The classes I taught there were so incredibly fun, and everyone did an amazing job. I am waiting to see how all the yarn from the dyeing classes turned out, because there were a few skeins that just blew me away while they were still damp.

I had over thirty students in my social media class at TNNA, and a sizeable number in my publishing class, too (but not too big to really dig deep and discuss things in detail, which I always love to do). I managed to cover the entire showfloor in one day, a small miracle in itself, and catch up with a lot of friends and colleagues, the best part of any show.

What else did we do while we were in town? A short list of food and drink: Saints & Sinners, The Bigfoot Lodge, Good Luck Bar, La Provence, a restaurant located in infamous actor Fatty Arbuckle‘s former house, the crow bar in Corona del Mar (glorious food there!), Pepe’s with former Yarn Forward colleague Alex, Chronic Tacos in Dana Point, Canaletto at Fashion Island, and In-and-Out Burger, the most glorious burger of all.

We also went looking for David Lynch on Mulholland Drive, found Crispin Glover’s house in Silverlake (with ridiculous photos to prove it, and countless references to this and this, and singing “Clowny Clown Clown” to each other).

One of the last times I was in Los Angeles for TNNA, I specifically stayed in Torrance so I could find the exteriors they used to shoot Buffy’s house and school in Buffy the Vampire Slayer (yes, I am a nerd), and this time we got to see the exterior of the building used for Angel’s hotel (double nerd).

On my birthday we ended up in Thai Town late at night — so late we nearly talked ourselves into getting tattoos (don’t worry, we didn’t). We also went to a great gallery show at La Luz de Jesus. I came home to a new garbage disposal and faucet (yay!) and a lot of snow (boo!), and that was that.

Let’s put it this way, I was glad to have a day to recuperate at Arabella’s mom’s house after the show without having to teach. I was totally zonked! Given that I taught classes 8-10, 1-4 and 5-8 on Sunday, you can hardly blame me…

January TNNA classes (with me!) in Long Beach

If you are a member of TNNA (or planning to be one soon!), I’ll be teaching these two classes in person during the January show:

SB108: Social Media for Creative Business Owners
8 January 2011
8:00 — 10:00 a.m. in room 103C

NB108: Independent Publishing — Get Published!
9 January 2011
8:00 — 10:00 a.m. in room 103C

As per usual, the show is within days of my birthday, which means I’ll probably end up on a plane all day instead of eating cake…boo!

Rhinebeck was spectacular this weekend. I have to go through my photos to see what’s post-able and what isn’t — but the funniest thing all weekend was probably (or so I’m told) me falling asleep mid-giggle Friday night. Hey, when you’re tired, you’re tired!

TNNA: the national need some more Jeni’s show

TNNA roundup! I got to meet Jeni from Fyberspates in person at long last! And Juliet from The Knitter (magazine), and Amanda from The Natural Dye Studio,and and and… it was a British invasion! Ysolda’s booth was across from ours, which meant we had first crack at the giant cupcakes during her delightful 3:00 tea parties. Did I mention she had a photobooth set up during the show?

We launched my new book, and it was so gratifying to see people getting their hot little hands on it. Some distributors picked it up, too, which will help get it into the yarn shops. Every time I walked past Unicorn they’d tell me: “I just sold a few more!” (Of course, you can also still buy it direct from me. They won’t have the print+PDF package or PDF version).

People kept asking who they should get it from, and to be honest, I make more per copy if you buy it from me, but I can’t reach EVERY yarn store owner in the same way the distributors can, so I am super-pleased to have them helping me sell it. If your local yarn store orders books from Unicorn (chances are, they probably do!), you might want to tell them to add some copies on to their next order.

Unicorn also picked up Miriam’s new book Twist & Knit. It was the best show yet for Stitch Cooperative. Store owners finally really “got” how our digital affiliate pattern program can help them sell more yarn, and we signed them up in droves (hurrah)!

Also: I MET THE JENI.

The Ravelry party on Friday was an ice cream social with Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams. She had no idea, I think, how passionate knitters can be, judging from the look on her face. We are a little overwhelming for the muggles en masse. Every time I walked by, someone was telling her how much they loved her (I admit, I did it, too).

What a week. I’m still in brain-process-overdrive, but it’s time to get back down to work, there’s much to do!

Why?

Why did I leave my camera at the hotel accidentally? I could have showed you the Wall of Malabrigo (no one can resist), and Amanda from Lorna’s Laces trying on Rivulet (it looked completely amazing on her) and, well…lots of stuff. But having only one full day on the show floor = tough to see everyone and do everything and still stay sane — sorry!

Then again, I HOPE I just forgot the camera at the hotel. I am going to be very sad otherwise… was rushing to get out the door this morning and there you go. That Canon is 100x better than my Nikon D70, especially in low light.

Yarn I have not knit yet, but kind of love from fondling: O-Wool’s wool/cotton blend.
Yarn I might as well have married: Malabrigo, always.
Editors I had lunch with: Eunny from Interweave, Marcy the new Interweave Crochet editor…

(We have a new secret editor fight club or something)

Beers consumed: One, right now, hotel lobby.
People kissed: Too many to count
People’s books admired: ditto, but especially Gina’s
Flights not looking forward to: tomorrow’s

This is what happens…

…when you unleash the knitters on San Diego:

Tara, Miriam and I grabbed one to the dinner Marly had organized, and Amy and Mary-Heather couldn’t resist. First, they ran along the sidewalk snapping photos. Then, they hired a pedicab of their own. Then, our drivers (pedalers?) had a crazy little race. This is the best photo of the bunch.

Oh, also, Miriam and I declared our undying love for Norah Gaughan to her face. Vodka + the rest of the ‘fashion’ show might have had something to do with how that came about. By the time her garments came out we were SO thankful to see something that awesome, I think we would have stuffed $20 bills into her pants pockets given half a chance. Norah rocks.

(We did cheer loudly when Stefanie‘s garments came on stage, though).

There were knitted boxer shorts…get that around your brain (then flush it with rubbing alcohol, eh?). At least it wasn’t LYS Cougar Central in the audience this time, like the one show where the male models got catcalled from the audience. Yes, really.

Off to TNNA…

Fingers crossed the weather holds — it’s freezing but no snow — because I am flying via Chicago. Fortunately, I found out yesterday that my spinning heroine Abby will be on the same plane as me Chicago-San Diego (United flight 301). Anyone else? Those flight attendants aren’t going to know what hit them if, as I suspect, we’re not the only TNNA-bound knitters on board.

Photos and full report on my return! Have a lovely weekend.