UndyedYarnpire’s Fiber Opera

June 27, 2010

Oakland Fiber Festival

Filed under: fiber — Tags: — UndyedYarnpire @ 1:46 pm

On the whole I found the Oakland Fiber Festival to be interesting. I saw everything at least twice. I was able to speak to the vendors and ask questions.

The “make and take” area did not seem to exist. They did have begin-to-knit lessons for $1 including supplies. The weaving demonstrations were not well situated because where weavers would need to stand was full of CD spindlers. There were some people who were doing interesting things as part of their booth. One really lovely woman showed me her sock knitting machine and allowed me to try it. Another woman showed me her cord weaving method using a foam disk. But there were no official demonstrations I was able to see.

I spoke to Yarn-A-Gogo who wrote How To Knit A Love Song, but it’s a trilogy out in trade paperback. $14 bucks per book. As much as I want to support people who write things which include my interests, and as much as I really wanted a signed copy, I find myself really put off by books which cost twice what a “normal” book costs and do not include the whole story.

There was a women’s guild there and they are looking for women who need scholarships to attend university or graduate school. They do a lot of community outreach and they have a bookclub and a knitting group. It sounds like they would be an interesting group to try.

Several times I ran into people I know from various places. Kira from KiraKDesigns flagged me down. She was wearing her new sleeveless sweater pattern with the adorable back diamond texture…. I love that sweater but I know it would look horrible on me. I kept wanting to hug her so I could get my hands on her sweater, but it was very hot (and that would be creepy).

I bought 2 merino/alpaca multicolored things ($2/oz) and 1 bag of undyed roving. So I spent under $40 total and had a good time seeing several new vendors.  (There will be pictures later.)

However, there were no chairs set up for people to sit and knit or sit and spindle. There was no shade provided unless you were in a vendor’s booth and they had an awning. No one was selling even bottled water. There was a whiteboard with a “map” suggesting which restaurants were open and that was nice. I gave my “I live near here” recommendations to several people.

There was a really awkwardly set up raffle in the Welcome Booth, and I had been through most of the show before I found it. There were several cul-de-sacs in the layout of booths and the vendor list did not have a map. Most vendors seem to be sharing booths. It was extremely awkward to tell when two people helping me with my questions were in competition with each other or collusion.

If I had had to drive an hour to get to the show I would have been wildly disappointed. Considering it is between me and some of my favorite local restaurants, I had a lovely time and I hope they do it again.



  1. If the woman with the foam disk didn’t say: one can pick up a disk and starter cord at Lacis. I have one but haven’t played with it.

    (Japanese: kumihimo, which has a Wikipedia page; Korean: maedeup, which doesn’t. I don’t know the Mandarin Chinese term(s) because the books I have don’t say.)

    Comment by skg — June 28, 2010 @ 7:59 am

    • I think I could do it with a disposable foam plate and a lightweight yarn. She said that cardboard works but the foam is easier.

      Comment by UndyedYarnpire — June 28, 2010 @ 11:21 am

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