Right up front, I had a wonderful time at the Knitting and Stitching Show. You might have worked out that I was really quite nervous about my stint on the GMC stand. But I shouldn’t have worried, I had such a fab time and met some lovely, lovely people. When I arrived at Ally Pally on Friday, I knew exactly how I wanted to organise the day. I made a bee-line for the GMC stand in the larger hall, and left my project bag and coat with the lovely GMC staff. Then I took on the rows and rows of stalls, walking with purpose up each aisle.
One of the first stops was the Stylecraft stand. I met the lovely Sue Pinner for the very first time in ‘real life’. She was demonstrating her very popular Carosel CAL and giving advice to knitters and crocheters alike. It was also great to congratulate her on winning Best Crochet Book at the British Knitting Awards for her book Granny Squares. I said hello to the lovely Stylecraft staff, but I didn’t linger long because it was already super busy and I didn’t want to get in the way.
I spotted the amazing Vickie Howell on the Deramores stand. She has just brought out a new yarn with them. Vickie is like yarn royalty in America and spotting her was quite like bumping into a Knitting version of Taylor Swift. I do hope she was not too freaked out with my gushing enthusiasm….Yep, awkward.
I popped by the Black Sheep Wools stand to say hello to Sara and had a lovely hug and a friendly chat. On the Rowan stand I saw the gorgeous Sarah Hatton. She was mad busy, there were so many people buying yarn from them. I met the fabulous Jane Crowfoot who had an incredible stall. So many people were buying yarn and packs. I also caught up with the beautiful Emma Wright, who is a very talented knitwear designer but also a gorgeous person. She had her lovely Mum and Grandma with her and we had such a giggle.
I then spotted another yarn hero of mine, Louisa Harding. She has just launched her own yarn brand; Yarntelier. British spun Cashmere, utterly gorgeous. I will be doing a proper blog post about this yarn, but I just had to mention this beautiful stand, it had all the ethereal beauty of her designs.
Other stalls worth mentioning were Sincerely Louise. Louise’s animal heads and knitted taxidermy patterns are so cool. I know at Yarndale she sold out of her pattern packs. I also spent some pennies on the gorgeous Tall Yarns stand and enjoyed looking at the material and felt at CoolCrafting, where I met the inspirational Sarah Heel.
At around 1.45pm I headed back to the GMC stand and was reunited with my little chaps. It was so lovely to see them after all this time. Lots of lovely people came to say hello and I was able to demonstrate crocheting in a spiral, which is how the ‘amigurumi’ technique is worked. It was great that a few readers of the blog came to visit. Lizzie and his sister Kat popped by.
We had been introduce via twitter and she promised me that she would pop by the stall as my sole blog reader! Thank goodness. Well if I met you on Friday and you were kind enough to say ‘hello’ and buy a book – then I hope you enjoy making and please do send me photo of your gorgeous creations. I did have a revelation when signing books, you really need to concentrate – there were several times when I nearly wrote, ‘Happy Christmas’ in someone’s book – if I did do that in any of the books I signed on Friday, I can only apologise. I obviously can’t talk and write at the same time.
Amazingly we ran out of books on the stand, I couldn’t quite believe it. What a great visit to Ally Pally. As usual meeting yarn people is always such a pleasure and there is always so much you can chat about. As I sat on the train on my home, I had a huge smile on my face.