Thoughts on the Big E Experience

130930 Big E Ribbons


I just went to the fairgrounds to pick up my entries to the Big E.  It closed yesterday.

The fairgrounds the day after the fair closes are complete chaos.  It’s filthy and crowded – not in a good fair kind of way either.  The street sweeper actually swept right up against my car just before I got into it to leave.  There was trash everywhere.  It is interesting to see the dirty underbelly of this huge fair in the broad light of day – makes you want to stay home.  It could be because the smell of fair food was not there, that’s what draws you in.  All you smell is sausage and peppers, french fries and fried dough.  This morning it smelled of manure.

I knew I won first and second place for my weaving because daughter Cait had gone the first few days and sent me photos while she was there.  You gotta love modern technology.  I didn’t know that every single entry comes back with a critique from the judge – excellent.   The evaluation is based on eight criteria – Design, Materials, Creativity/Originality, Color, Technique & Workmanship, Condition, Finishing and Appropriateness of design to submitted work.  On the red and white Maltese Cross all aspects were checked excellent except for Design and Creativity/Originality.  My assumption is it has to do with it being a traditional design in a traditional color scheme, they’ve seen it before.  The scarf on the other hand the judge apparently didn’t like my color scheme at all.  Design and Creativity got a fair, Color got a needs improvement and appropriateness was good.  Everything else was excellent.  I can weave well but the comment really told the story – “The color stripes interfere with the pattern.  Very well executed.”

This actually made me laugh a little.  I got a ribbon (because they don’t have to give you one) and a good one at that.  The judge just hated the color.  Maybe I should pass on using a variegated yarn on my next overshot project.  Then I thought “that is soo subjective, just because the judge doesn’t like my striped overshot doesn’t mean I don’t like it”.  I already have plans for another overshot project (or two) using variegated yarn so the comments won’t stop me. I just may not enter something like that next year.  It’ll be a crazier and a more radical departure from tradition but will be executed so well that they will have to acknowledge it.  Never try to discourage a person like me when it comes to something I think is working.