1) Hand-felted teddy bear skulls and other amazing sculptures

2) Upcoming woolly events in Southern Indiana I wanted to make a note of:

– Open farm day at Schacht Fleece Farm, Sunday, May 18, noon to 4. More info at http://www.schachtfleecefarm.com. (Non wool-related, but there is also an open farm day at Harvest Moon Flower Farm every Sunday and Monday in May from noon to 5 PM. Email chapdale at blue marble dot net or call 812-829-3517 for more information or directions.)

– 5th Annual Wool Fiber Arts Fair 2008, May 17, 2008, Daviess County 4-H building, Eastside Park, 9 AM-4 PM, Washington, Indiana, free admission. Sponsored by the Hoosier Hills Rug Hooking Guild and the Daviess County Extension Office. I stumbled onto this last year when my parents were visiting. It was so much fun–we went out there to find the house my stepmom’s dad grew up in, and just happened to drive by signs that said “Fiber Arts Fair” on the way out of town. My dad and Rahul were very forbearing and patient and so we got to go look at yarn and roving and fluffy bunnies. It’s sort of far, and very small compared to The Fiber Event, so I don’t know if I want to go this year, but maybe.

3) I did it! Thanks to a wonderful surprise birthday present subsidy from my dad and stepmom, I signed up for Sundara’s Seasons Club, Autumn. It was tough to choose between Summer and Autumn, but ultimately I felt like the Summer colors were closer to what’s available in her permanent collection, and of the colors from last year, I would have been more disappointed to have missed out on the Autumn colors than the Summer ones. I can’t wait for my first shipment!

4) I went to the Habu trunk show at Yarns Unlimited yesterday! I tried on a bunch of garments, and took pictures of some of them. Some of them were completely the wrong size and style for me. I put on one giant, floaty, white tunic–I think it was pineapple yarn?–looked in the mirror and felt like I was in a mental asylum, circa 1895. I should have taken a picture, but the humor value didn’t occur to me until after I was out of there. With these Habu garments, I feel like there’s a fine line that’s easy to cross. You start out trying to look modern, spare, elegant, artistic, like you throw expensive, avant-garde parties in pure white studios in Tokyo; and with the wrong fit, setting, or accessories, you wind up looking homeless, or possibly like an actor in a performance art exhibit, one with Noh-masked people being birthed from a giant womb made of driftwood and unbleached linen. Perhaps that’s not that bad, aesthetically, in the grand scheme of things, but it looks a bit odd when you’re in the stands at your kid’s Little League game or ordering an Orange Julius at the mall.

Some photos of the garments on racks:

This was hands-down my favorite piece. Most of the garments were airy and weightless, but this had a dense, plush, soft texture. It’s Habu Kit 115, and is knit with 2 strands of ramie and 1 strand of wool.

It had a really cool construction. The back shirtyoke piece was knit sideways, in one piece with the fronts, and the front selvages were folded under asymmetrically and sewn down, so you could turn out the top like a shawl collar. They wouldn’t sell the pattern separately, unfortunately, and I didn’t want to spend $95 on the kit at this point. If you know of any patterns out there that use this construction, please let me know what they are… I’m totally fascinated.

I also loved the Kusha Kusha stainless steel scarf, of course,

and I thought the pineapple top was kind of nice

I tried on a paper jacket and didn’t like it. It was bright red, and had long, trailing jesterish things on the sleeves–shippo tails?–and rustled loudly the way you’d think paper would. But I did love the way the paper knit up when combined with mohair.

This thingy was sort of cute.

I liked the button detail on this sweater–buttons all around the hems, along the shoulder and up the side:

Speaking of buttons, look at this great little wickerwork button, and the texture of the yarns:

(I was surprised at how much I liked some of the novelty yarns, like this eyelash fishnet stuff mixed with boucle.)

This sweater convinced me that at some point I need to make myself an airy laceweight mohair sweater. It was so soft and light:

The shape of this was totally bizarre in combination with my shape (see that droopy draping in the front?), and I got stuck in the cardigan for a while because I couldn’t get it unbuttoned, but I liked the button detail at the neck, and the light texture of the raw silk:

This is another one of those garments with a sort of worryingly crazy look, but I liked the texture a lot. It’s cotton on top on size 3 needles, stainless steel and silk on the bottom on size 4 needles:

This yoked garter stitch cardigan was odd; somehow, the back piece fit, but the front pieces could have fit two of me. The tweedy color changes in the double-stranded yarn were fabulous, though:

5) I love Spring, even when there’s gloomy weather.