Show. Farm Show.
Butler County is lucky enough to have two “fair” events — the Big Butler Fair and then the Butler Farm Show. I have never been to the Big Butler Fair and honestly, until today, didn’t know that they accepted knitted entries for judging. I have, however, been to the Butler Farm Show, and in fact entered items for judging both last year and this year.
It’s always a struggle for me to determine what to enter, as you can only enter one item in each category. Last year, I entered my Cardigan for Arwen and my Norwegian Woods Shawl, and won blue ribbons for both. This year, I entered a scarf from Victorian Lace Today (Scarf with the Striped Border from Weldon’s, Volume 5, 1890) and my Stora Dimun shawl. I stood in line on a hot Sunday afternoon, waiting for my turn to submit my knitting. Items are only accepted for about 4 hours. Fortunately, the lines move quickly, thanks to the efficient volunteers that man the booths. I chatted with other entrants about what they were bringing in — tatted doilies, cross stitched wall hangings, crocheted baby items were all popular. Finally, it was my turn. I filled out the requisite paperwork, signed over my two entries, and walked away.
With my work schedule, I knew that I wasn’t going to be able to get to the Farm Show to see if I had indeed won anything. My oldest son wanted to go with his friends, and I gave him permission, but only if he promised to go to the arts & crafts building and call me to let me know if there were ribbons hanging from my entries. Good son that he is, he kept his promise and called to let me know that “the brown thing has a red ribbon and the blue thing has a blue ribbon” (the “brown thing” being the Stora Dimun).
It makes me happy to know that my work is good enough to win a ribbon. I often struggle with self confidence issues in knitting; take my “monster under the bed” bin of laceweight. I have the skills to knit lace, I have patterns that I want to knit with the laceweight yarn, but I often feel that I’m not worthy of the yarn. (Yes, I do need to get over it already, thank you).
If you have never entered an item in a county fair, I would encourage you to do so. The monetary rewards aren’t great, but the self-esteem boost is most rewarding.