This past weekend was Maryland Sheep and Wool, one of the biggest fiber festivals in the knitting world, and one that I particularly love because it's just 20 minutes away.
But while I was planning my weekend--The Knot House's pop-up shop Friday night, the Festival Saturday on my own and Sunday with my family--I felt like a little spark was missing. I was excited, yes, but not as excited as I should've been.
Walking around the fairgrounds on Saturday, I felt a little . . . bored. Everything just felt the same. The same vendors in the same locations selling more or less the same things. The same food, the same music, the same pushy crowds, the same PA announcer, the same long lines for the bathrooms, the same lack of places to sit . . . same same same!
And I wondered where this feeling of ennui came from.
Part of it is me, I think. While things have improved dramatically, I'm still struggling with the ebbs and flows of anxiety, which tends to suck the joy out of things. I've also mostly failed to make any real life knitting friends, so I was on my own, with no one to squeal over yarn with or brainstorm the perfect project for my new purchases. I wish I were the outgoing type, to chat up random knitters or say "hey, aren't you so-and-so on Instagram?" but that's just not me.
But some of it, I think, is a kind of knitting overload.
Maybe I'm not the only one?
I honestly have so much yarn in my stash, there's no need to purchase more. Probably ever, but certainly not in the short term. I could knit several years' worth of projects from stash, easily. And buying more yarn that's just going to sit in a drawer--after that initial excitement and giddiness, it actually becomes a little sad.
And I've got multiple sets of knitting needles, notions galore, plenty of project bags. There's nothing that I really need; at best I'm upgrading things I already have--things that don't really need to be upgraded--which just doesn't bring the same elation that exciting new purchases does.
Thanks to social media, new patterns from the hottest designers spread like wildfire (good for them!), and before you know it, photos of finished projects are all over the internet. Checking out all the handknits at MDSW felt a bit like re-scrolling through my Instagram feed. I could name, or at least recognized, every sweater and shawl.
And everything else--the yarn, the fiber, the knitting totes, the tshirts--is almost the same story. Nearly everything can be purchased online, and while there's a rush of joy when you get to see and touch it in person, so much time is spent admiring fiber-related products on Instagram or chasing shop updates on Etsy, the real life experience has begun to feel like more of the same.
I hate to say this, but I think it's just . . . too much.
Nothing felt new at MDSW because nothing was new. Yarn and fiber and patterns and notions have become so much a part of my daily life--even when I'm not actively knitting--that they've lost a bit of their shine.
Is there a cure for this fiber arts overload?
I hope so!
What about you? Have you ever felt fiber festival-ed out? Yarn-ed out? Did you find a cure? I'd love to hear your story!