Ok, two months later, I’m finally done with the book/yarn tourstravaganza! I apologize for the lack of posting, especially over the past 4 weeks but frankly, there’s times when a gal must choose sleep. 😉 Sooo, without further ado, here’s a brief, madcap re-cap of at least most of the stops on the southwest/midwest/northeast/east coast legs of the trip!
I spent 18 whole hours in Chicago. I’d never been there before but from what I saw, it looked like a cool place. I told the driver who picked me up from the airport that I’d expected to fly through a glorious golden “O” as I entered Illinois since it is afterall, home to both Oprah & Barack Obama. Alas however, the skyline appeared ordinary.
The best part of the trip was getting to hang out with fellow Craft Mafiosa, Cinnamon, and Brenda Janick from Stitch ‘n’ Bitch–Chicago. Although Brenda and I hadn’t met in person before, technically we’ve known each other for 5 years. Brenda is also the founder of Stitch n’ Bitch.org, and the reason I started Stitch n’ Bitch–Los Angeles in 2002. Due to what would turn out to be a history making storm in the northeast, I made it out of there via a stop in Philly, on the last flight available, before airport shut-down debauchery ensued.
It was touch and go for a while, but I made it into Burlington! My luggage however, did not. Thus began my Vermont adventure of unruley weather, wardrobe borrowing and hoping for the best. Special thanks to B. Original’s Michele Breschen for packing extra underwear and saving my butt! Literally.
This stop was actually a break from the tour to shoot next year’s holiday special. We wanted snow for this one and boy, did we get it! I spent a romantic Valentine’s Day with 5 other craft show hosts and 20+ crew members snowed in at a house for the night during a blizzard that, rated #2 in the all-time history of Vermont storms. In a brief moment of panic, Steve from Creative Juices furiously shoveled snow, thinking that he could dig his way to our hotel miles away. After reality set in though, we all realized that we couldn’t really complain about having to spend a night in a 3-story winter home that housed 2 fire places and a wine cellar. Jennifer and I bundled up and pretended we were in the middle of the movie, Fargo. Well, except for the whole wood-chipper scene which we both conveniently forgot about. All in all, it was good times. Sandy Genovese and I were the last 2 to make it out of Burlington so we used our extra time to sit in our pjs in my hotel room, where I taught her how to knit. Another convert, yay!
Oh, and my bag finally showed up on the day that I was leaving. Good times.
Unfortunately, the great snow-out of ’07 kept me away from a couple of morning news appearances (Thank you Crochet Today’s, Brett Bara for subbing for me!) as well as some other events. The one I’m most sad about missing was at Crafty Planet. I stopped by to say “hi” once I did make it into to town though and, Holy Awesomeness, Batman! Never before has owning a store seemed appealing to me, but Crafty Planet has changed my opinion on the whole retail gig. The shop is packed with all the indie craft goodness one could hope for! There was a wall of Sublime Stitching, Subversive Cross Stitch and Wool & Hoop kits, shelves filled with books from the likes of Debbie Stoller, Stefanie Japel, Amy Butler and Teva Durham, a yarn room with my stuff along with a myriad of selected others and the CUTEST FABRIC SELECTION EVER! Seriously people, if you’re ever in Minneapolis you must visit Trish & Matt at their self-made craftopia!
Lovely publicist Krista Margies escorted me to the next 3 cities and we were in and out of Phoenix lickety-split. Wait, who still says “lickety-split”? Sorry about that. Anyway, SWTC put on a great warehouse event where I got to meet tons of knitters including, an entire middle-school knitting club. Even their principal came! I loved that. I also loved getting to work out some of the details of the winter line of the Vickie Howell Collection. I’m so excited! These new ones will be completely different from the first three (oh, but we will be adding some awesome additional colors to ROCK), but will also work great with them, and, dare I say, will bring a little added sparkle into the chilly months. Stay tuned!
Once again, time wasn’t on our side. The flight from Phoenix to Denver was delayed and caused us to keep probably the largest crowd of the the tour, waiting. 🙁 I felt soooo, bad about that. Even changing in the airport and doing my make-up in the cab though, we were still an hour late. We kept calling the store, Showers of Flowers, asking them to convey to the crowd that I really wasn’t pulling some diva move by being so late and that we really were trying our hardest to get there. The event turned out well, though. The audience had a ton of questions which is my favorite part of the whole book-signing gig. I really enjoy chatting with everyone. SoF had loads of my yarn in stock too, which I really, really appreciated!
The store owner was also kind enough to wind a ball of 4 different yarns together and gave it to me. I promptly knit up this scarf.
Next stop was the Lamb Shoppe. If you’re looking for a cozy, welcoming store with beautiful fibers, a cafe and a nice book selection then, this one fits the bill! It was a really nice evening capped off by meeting up with my friend Amy, who I’ve known since I was 3. I was born in Denver and we spent several years as neighbors in Broomfield. We still keep in touch infrequently but when we do, it’s like not a day’s gone by.:-)
It was a quick trip to New York. I visited The Point Cafe in the west village which is probably my fave store in the city. In case you’re keeping track, this is also where we shot the thing I did for Lisa Loeb’s show, #1 Single as well as the Knit Bits with Debbie Stoller. 🙂
Speaking of Debbie, both she and designer Kris Percival (Speedy Knitting) came to my signing in Brooklyn. After that I had drinks with her and finally got to meet her boyfriend Michael. I like them both so much! It’s always great getting to hang out with her. After that, Krista (see above), myself and some other peeps headed off to some bar in with a Bocce ball lane in the middle of it to meet up with my friend Leo Allen (Who btw is the funniest person I know. He’s going to be in Austin during SXSW opening up for David Cross. By all means, check him out if you can!). It’s probably not necessary for me to mention once again how much I friggin’ love New York. So I won’t. 😉
Boston was was #14 on a 14 city tour so as you can imagine, mama was tired. It will however, forever remain my favorite city in the mix and not only because the word “wicked” is part of the regular vernacular there. Although clearly, that’s part of it. The main reason though, is that my sweet, amazing, handsome man, Mr. Dave Campbell, suprised me by showing up at my hotel and proposing and we are now officially engaged!
After I said yes one of the first things out of my mouth was, “ummm, uh, I need to call Annette O’Toole.” He found this a bit odd but after being with me for a year has grown used to my randomness and shrugged it off. I had a scheduled phone interview with her for Knit.1 for later that evening. I left her a message asking if we could reschedule, telling her that I would totally understand if she needed to do it then, but explaining the circumstances. She called me back shortly after, graciously saying that that was by far the best excuse to cancel an interview. After I hung up I turned to Dave and said, “Oh my God, Superman’s mom knows before mine does.” Oh, and the media escort they hired for me there (who btw, I want to adopt as an aunt because she was such a joy to be around) had the last name, BRIDE! Weird. Sometimes my life is a cartoon.
We went to a vegetarian Chinese place for dinner and then to a club called TT Bear to see The Thermals play. They, btw, sound fantastic live. Seriously. The show was actually sold out but Dave had e-mailed ahead of time telling them that he was flying out to ask me to marry him and that we were fans and was there any way he could buy tickets to cap off the night’s plans? The lead singer himself, e-mailed back that there was no need, that we were now on the guest list. That made me like them even more. 🙂 Thanks, Hutch! You and the band helped make the night perfect for us!
Ok, I’ve totally run out of time. I have to go pick up my kids from school. Oh, but I don’t want to forget to mention Spark Crafts in Boston. They threw a GREAT brunch event for me. Mimosa’s are never a bad thing, if you know what I’m sayin’. It was a packed room with a great crowd in an adorable shop. What better way to end a run?
If you’re still reading, bless ya. Hopefulling your eyes are bleeding from the length of this post.
P.S. Crap, I forgot to mention the Mall of Americas Knit Out. I’ll do it later, k?