And a VERY good time was had by all
Sunday February 24th 2008, 1:16 pm
Filed under: "Wrapped in Comfort",Friends,Knit,Life

 (Edited to add later: actually, he said “Wrapped in Comfort by Alison Hyde” over and over, but it sounded too full-of-myself to write my own name over and over when I posted this.)

line-up of friends at Stitches West 08So many stories. SO much to say. My goodness.

Someone came up behind me yesterday at the show, brushing a hand lightly on my shoulder to get my attention as she stepped in front of me and beamed, “I love that book! I see you got the yarn to make the same shawl as the one in the book!”

Oh my goodness. Um, yes. I burst out laughing, and then thoroughly enjoyed myself as she exclaimed “Ohmygosh you’re the AUTHOR?!”

But the best part of all was at the end. They had been going to surprise me. But then they realized they’d better make sure I was going–and actually, I had had no intention till that point, I knew that three days of Stitches was absolutely going to do me in (it always does, but my goodness, what a way to go), and then the evening banquet on top of that? No way.

But I had to attend when they ratted themselves out and let me know what they were planning.

The dinner was followed by Rick Mondragon of XRX, the sponsor of Stitches, and someone whose name I just couldn’t hear MC’ing an event that included having knitters parade down a catwalk with their creations.

My scooter is not compatible with holding a cane, so I hadn’t brought one. I know, my husband’s been telling me I need a collapsible one that fits in my purse, he’s right. Anyway, the scooter was dying the death again by evening, and I managed to get it into the banquet hall and plug it in, found myself a spot and sat down and was joined shortly by my friends.

When it came time for the runway, they were calling people up alphabetically. Jocelyn sent a note up to the stage. A moment of off-mike hemming ensued. Okay.

So then, at pretty much the end–I don’t think anyone paraded after them, I think we became the grand finale, but then, I was pretty distracted by then so if I’m being egocentric by saying that, I apologize–ten friends from my knitting group went up together. They did the police lineup thing together on the stage.

Another friend gave me an arm and helped me over to a temporarily-empty seat near the end of the runway so that I could see better. My left side kept trying to collapse, and I was unsteady, to say the least. My friends weren’t going to let that stop them. They had already agreed I was to be moved over there, and move me they did.

And then Rick had the ones on stage parade down, one by one, as he called out, “This is Fae. She’s wearing the Julia shawl in Lisa Souza’s merino in the What-A-Melon colorway from ‘Wrapped in Comfort.’ …This is Cris. She’s wearing the Julia shawl in Jade Sapphire Cashmere in black from ‘Wrapped in Comfort.’ …This is Jocelyn. She’s wearing the “Peace of Mind” shawl in Sea Silk from ‘Wrapped in Comfort.’ …This is Vera. She’s wearing the Bigfoot shawl in (mumble, sorry) from ‘Wrapped in Comfort.’

And on and on. Lyn raised her arms high as she twirled at the end of the catwalk, showing the full scale of the circle and the effect of the pattern. The crowd cheered.

When they were done, Rick had me stand and be acknowledged. I was fighting tears. Wow. Someone I did not even know was kind enough to tell me afterwards she had been, too.

And then the one friend close by stood, took me by the arm, and helped me stagger back to my own chair.

And then those women in their shawls came off the stage, went straight to the back of the room, grabbed me, and took photos with multiple cameras of all of us together. (Although the one in the zinnia scarf escaped.) I was throwing my arms around them, and there were more tears. How can you thank your friends enough when they… What I wouldn’t have done to have had Richard see all this… Rick was so wonderful in letting us put on a display from a book his company hadn’t been the ones to publish…


At the end, I got my scooter back and got someone to flag Rick down for me as people were leaving. I thanked him profusely for what he’d let happen. There was a genuineness and a warmth in him as he responded.

And I said gratefully to Nancy as she drove me home, and Lisa, who’d manned my camera for me, that that was a once-in-a-lifetime event.

And to think I’d almost missed it.

24 Comments so far
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I am so glad for you!!!!
Coincidentally, yesterday a smaller scale similar thing happened to me. Years ago I contributed a quitl block and some quilting stitches for a comofrt quilt given to the mother of a teen who committed suicide. Her mother, Danessa, started the Tempest Foundation. I was able to meet her for the first time yesterday, and tell her I had made the butterfly block, and give her a hug.
Unbeknownst to me, images of the quilt blocks travel with the foundation’s events, and Danessa asked me to sign my ‘page’ then she told me with tears in her eyes what the quilt has meant to her and her partner. I cried too.

Comment by Diana Troldahl 02.24.08 @ 3:22 pm

Wow! What a great story. It doesn’t get much better than that, does it? Congratulations, nice to know you have a large group of friends to hold you up when you need it =;) Plus, you are ROCKING that pink shawl, so many of those are just gorgeous!!

Comment by Elizabeth 02.24.08 @ 3:31 pm

What a wonderful story! Made me tear up and I wasn’t even there. 🙂

Comment by no-blog-rachel 02.24.08 @ 3:44 pm

What a wonderful story, Alison. It’s only fitting. You touch so many people with your knitting.

Comment by amy 02.24.08 @ 5:07 pm

such a great evening for a wonderful person!! I am so happy for you!

Comment by grace 02.24.08 @ 6:05 pm

Oh how nice! What a wonderful way to end such a great weekend. Such an honor!

Comment by Lisa 02.24.08 @ 6:15 pm

Woo-hoo!!!!!! I wish I had been there to see it, Alison. As Amy said above, you really do touch so many people with your knitting, and with other things too, like your exquisite kindness and mindfulness. You see beyond the surface in so many situations, and when you write about such things here, you teach all of us something very valuable. Blessings to you as your lovely book continues to take the knitting world by storm. I wish I could find a way to say how special I think you are without sounding goopy, but…oh, well, I sound goopy. You’re wonderful, and a gift to us all. ((((hugs))))

Comment by Paula 02.24.08 @ 6:18 pm

Congratulations! Wish I could have been there. The picture is lovely. What a collection of shawls. So glad to hear you had a wonderful time. Consider Stitches East, I would love to meet you in person. I have your book and am swooning about the Piece of My Mind shawl and I see it in the pic, the pink one third from the left. What is that lovely shade of pink yarn? If it’s pink or orange it really catches my eye.

Comment by Ahrisha 02.24.08 @ 6:42 pm

I just figured out how to link to your book’s page at Amazon, from my blog. I don’t have the most high-traffic blog in the world, but maybe some of my friends who knit and don’t yet have your book will follow the link and maybe buy a copy. And yes, one of your shawls really IS next in my queue, and I think it might be that astoundingly gorgeous red one towards the back…

Comment by Paula 02.24.08 @ 7:06 pm

Well, as one who was there helping Alison, it was definitly well worth the effort. Had to try and get Alison to have a ‘quiet’ time (should have been a nap) in the afternoon to no avail. But, the banquet event was awesome! It was totally fun to be one of the shawls on the stage. Love ya, Alison!!!!!

Comment by Nancy Weber 02.24.08 @ 9:29 pm

Hey, that was sooo neat! You have such wonderful friends. Glad that the were able to give the “fashion show” of your designer shawls! It’s great to see how you can use your unique talents and gifts. Love, Bev

Comment by Bev 02.24.08 @ 9:52 pm

You deserved every moment of fuss! Just the photo makes me wish I’d seen it. How wonderful…! Hugs–and here’s to hoping you have a nice quiet day or two to rest now?

Comment by Joanne 02.25.08 @ 7:25 am

That is thrilling! I am so happy this happened for you – I cannot think of anyone more deserving!

Comment by Amanda 02.25.08 @ 9:10 am

I’ve been thinking of suggesting that you get a goat–you know, a nice little goat to pull you around in a cart when you battery dies–as well as provide lovely fibres for you to spin. I figure that since it’s a service animal, it should be allowed in anywhere. On the other hand, it looks like you have plenty of friends who are better behaved and housebroken as well, so I’ll stop worrying about you.

Comment by Laura 02.25.08 @ 9:54 am

Way To Go and a big Thank You to all your friends who made that happen for Allison! A more deserving person cant be found for the Homor they bestowed upon you! Have a Nice day…And Please Get Some Rest!!

Comment by Danielle from SW MO 02.25.08 @ 10:03 am

The lady in the Zinnia scraf was my Mother-in-Law from KY. This was her first Stitches and she has been knitting 2 years. I made the scarf for her so if she wanted to, she could model with us and it was her gift from me for coming. She did not want to model, but loves the scarf. It’s made from 100% cashmere, so it’s soft and warm. She left today and I am a bit sad. We had the most wonderful time.

Comment by Cris 02.25.08 @ 1:22 pm

That is beyond awesome, and you deserve every minute of it. *hugs*

Comment by Ren 02.25.08 @ 2:54 pm

Oh Yea for you – what a super duper night – and what great friends to surprise you like that – I sat here with tears running down my face reading this – happy tears are the best 😀

Comment by rho1640 02.25.08 @ 3:31 pm

I was there and the shawls were drop dead gorgeous! I’m so glad you got the recognition you deserve because the designs in your book are the most beautiful shawls I have seen anywhere.

Comment by Evelyn Bareno 02.25.08 @ 5:55 pm

So, when was the last time you went to Stitches West and didn’t have a scooter issue? 🙂

Comment by Deb in CT 02.26.08 @ 3:20 pm

When I didn’t use one… And thank you, everyone!

Comment by AlisonH 02.26.08 @ 4:52 pm

This story made *me* cry and I don’t even know you. Thanks for writing it. One of my favorite things about the internet is the stories like this where people write the story of their first books or their successes. I loved reading the Harlot back in the day for the same reason.

Congratulations. I’m really glad for you.

Comment by em 02.28.08 @ 9:15 pm

Oh Alison, if I’d know about this cunning plan I would have come to the banquet! I can’t imagine a more beautiful finale to the knitters’ parade than your friends wearing your fabulous shawls! What an evening to remember! Hugs!

Comment by Yvette 02.28.08 @ 9:51 pm

I still can’t believe that you were walking around on Thursday night on that hard concrete floor. I kept doing a double take cuz there were no wheels under your feet! I am so glad that your posse honored you so beautifully at the banquet. You are very blessed and giving of yourself and your talents and it is only right that you had such a sweet evening. I am hoisting a mug of herbal tea. Huzzah!

Comment by Lisa S 03.03.08 @ 9:18 am

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