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Rhinebeck Tips and Tricks from Gina, A Repost
October 6, 2016
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So, here it is, the first Rhinebeck since I’ve been a Knitter that I am not attending.  It’s okay you guys, it’s OK.  I happen to have just gotten back from a delightful trip to Iceland that I plan on telling you ALL ABOUT.  But as for now, it is getting ready to be the most wonderful time of the year.  Rhinebeck time.  Please peruse my tips and tricks below.  Truncated for your reading pleasure.  Tell us all about Rhinebeck and take lots of pictures, I’ll be traveling vicariously through you, fellow fiber fiends!

It’s too far, too crowded, and overrated! I have heard many a stitcher lament that Rhinebeck just has too many folks that love all things fiber. Yes, Rhinebeck can be crowded, but it is crowded with the best kind of people (fiber-arts folks) wearing the best kind of garments (hand made) in a beautiful autumnal setting. Hi, my name is Gina and I will be your Rhinebeck Doula. Here are some tips and tricks to maximize your joy while minimizing your checking account at Rhinebeck or other related fiber festivals.

  • Wear comfortable shoes and layers of clothing. (I have been to Rhinebeck when it was 65 degrees and last year it snowed; your temperature experience may vary).
    • Note from Amanda: DON’T wear brand-new hiking shoes (my little toes still aren’t speaking to me). Wear something that have long been broken in.
  • Bring cash; some vendors give you a discount when you do, or have “cash only” lines that are shorter. There were some looonnnng lines at very popular vendors who were struggling to get internet service sufficient enough to process credit cards. I noticed that slowing down stash expansion can make the fiber-lover anxious and cranky.

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  • Bring a friend that has been there before. I know I am not a *real* Rhinebeck doula (because it isn’t a thing…yet) but having been there, I could explain the pitfalls and couch expectations to my friends.
  • Don’t try to plan out your whole day; have a list of 3 or 4 things you’d really like to do and see what happens as you try to do them.

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  • Eat at non-traditional times. Everyone wants to get lunch at 12 or 1, and, as we discussed, there are a lot of folks at Rhinebeck.  Therefore, the lines can get super-long in an instant. If you eat when you notice there is no line, or a short one, you maximize your fiber frolicking. This might involve eating falafel at 10:30 in the morning. I am okay with that.
    • Note from Amanda: I found the artichokes to be overrated. Don’t get me wrong – they were good. Just not enough to make me want to bother again.
  • If you have the means, take your own car or carpool with a friend. A bus trip can be great, but it limits the amount of time you have, and lots of other people will be arriving via similar busses at similar times.
    • Note from Amanda: Don’t forget an awesome playlist! You can choose a theme (such as my infamous SHEEP!! Playlist of last year), or just make sure it has something for everyone in your car.

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  • Take breaks. Sometimes Rhinebeck is overwhelming; sit down every so often and bask in the knitted, crocheted and handspun goodness. Make friends with a Paco Vicuna, eat some falafel, drink water, hit the restroom. Remember that going to a fair is supposed to be fun!
    • Note from Amanda: Apple crisp. That is all.
  • Talk to strangers. Compliment someone’s handmade garment; who knows, you might accidentally end up talking to the designer and her mom.
  • Buy it when you want it! It’s tricky to shop around and scoop up what you want at the end, buy the stuff that you want when you want it, and you won’t have any sock yarn that got away.
  • Check out the Festival Schedule. There are lots of other activities besides stash enhancement. Karen, Amanda and I were lucky enough to attend an intimate author talk with Cecelia Campochiaro, author of Sequence Knitting, with less than 20 other folks last year. It was free with admission, there was ample seating, and we got to talk to Cecilia afterwards!

So who is making the trip to Rhinebeck?  Maybe we should have a Codder meetup there!

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