I have been running straight out the last few weeks, but I still managed to take a day out for YARN! I went to Yarnporium in London on Saturday. Some time ago, I had bought a VIP ticket for the day, which let me attend three panel discussions and the marketplace. I took the train into London very early so I could avoid the crowds and shop in the marketplace early.
I think that I shopped with remarkable restraint. This is my haul:
The two skeins of pretty red yarn I purchased in the Indie Market – it is a Masham/Bluefaced Leicester blend, naturally dyed in Berlin/Brandenburg by Tulliver in the shade Scarlet. It is destined to become a hat: I am planning on knitting Hyggelig. They had a sample of this hat knit up in the yarn and it was so cuddly and warm I couldn’t resist. Plus, it really is the perfect shade of red.
Issue 6 of Laine and Kate Davies’ Handywoman were on my list, but Kate Atherley’s book magically found its way into my “buy” pile after I heard her speak in one of the panel talks. I must report, however, that one of the things she said has stuck with me: you should never, ever release a pattern that hasn’t been tech-edited. This made me cringe a bit at my three very definitely not tech-edited patterns available here on the blog. At some point, I will try to get that remedied. In the meantime, I suppose they will remain “wonky freebies” (bonus points for anyone avidly following the knitting world’s current hot topic).
I love the black-on-black Yarnivore T-shirt; and who couldn’t use a nice black tee? The project bag is shaped just right for stashing in your suitcase. (There may, or may not, have been a number of small knitterly accessories which fell into my bag and which will magically appear in my Christmas stocking.)
I felt very proud of myself for resisting the lure of all of that lovely yarn in one place, but I am starting to regret not buying some Walcot Yarns Opus – a new yarn developed and marketed by A Yarn Story, an LYS in Bath. This yarn was absolutely luscious; it is one that needs to be felt to appreciate. Since it was a new product, I was unsure about whether or not it would pill: I have been steadily moving away from soft yarns towards more “sheepy” hard-wearing yarns. Nonetheless, I can’t get this yarn out of my head.
They had it knit up into a lovely shawl, the Vila Wrap, and I went back to their stand three or four times to consider it:
© Helen Stewart
I am thinking that I will likely give in and order it by post.
Two things that were reinforced for me at this event: (1) I hate “speckles”, and (2) “speckles” are everywhere. I’ve never seen so much speckled yarn in one place. Even when the base is lovely and the colours are gorgeous, this yarn holds no appeal for me. In one of the panel discussions (about small yarn producers) the panellists were asked: “We’ve had speckles, we’ve had breed-specific yarn, what do you think will be the next trend?” The first response (from Kelbourne Woolens) was: back-to-basics. I definitely feel myself headed in that direction.
I ended the day by meeting up with three knitters who I know from Ravelry but had never met before: Anne, Jane, and Maylin. We went out for coffee and it was lovely to meet them, and also to have some knitters to talk yarn with. I’ve been reading Maylin’s blog, Julia Hedge’s Laces, for some time now, and it is funny how well you feel you know someone from reading their blog.
It felt very indulgent to spend the day surrounded by knitting folk! I hope you’ve had a bit of indulgence too this week.