Well!! I had a most exciting day at the Creative Fibre Festival yesterday. What a treat of a day out! I had not registered to go to any classes, but I had a wonderful time in the trade hall and attending the exhibition where some beautiful examples of weaving, crochet, knitting and other fibre crafts were on display (as well as being worn by attendees).
I know you might be wanting to know what I got, so let’s start with the purchases!
Starting from the bottom step, I discovered a new-to-me New Zealand indie dyer, Catherine of Travelling Threads. Apparently, I am not new to her though: she startled me when I walked into her stall by saying she read my blog! I must have a recognisable face…
Of course, I had to sample these lovely 100% merino sock beauties (the brick orange and deep blue). I’m a total sucker for 100% New Zealand merino sock yarn. The young man claimed the orange for a hat and mittens as soon as he saw it!
In addition to stocking a range of New Zealand yarns, Catherine has three of her own bases (100% high twist merino sock, a sport weight merino/silk/nylon and a DK 100% wool superwash (I think, but cannot recall for certain) which she hand-dyes. She also has a limited stock of some white pearl yarn if you are interested! She showed me a woven shawl made from it – so soft, so cool, and very beautiful.
Catherine also told me she will have a more complete online presence later in the year, and will also be launching a very-exciting sounding new yarn that I’m very curious to know more about. I shall keep you posted.
Got another Knitsch fix, as you can see from the beautiful blue/purple Coyote Shivers, Hydro and green Eno Nemo shades next to the Travelling Threads yarn. I think I have developed an addiction to Tash’s colourways.
If you have been drooling over Tash’s website and not seen the Knitsch that you want in stock, I am pleased to report that there was a full complement of colourways in her stall. If you’re not going to the Creative Fibre Festival this weekend, there is always next week’s Wonders of Wool market (and of course the website and the yarn store during the week) in which to acquire some Knitsch loveliness. Be quick before it all goes again!
Moving up to the next step, I found some very hard to resist Spinning a Yarn that said “buy meeeeeee!!” The dusky rose of Velvet Curtain and soft purple Cornflower had to come home with me. Jessicah has dyed a literal rainbow of breaktakingly lovely colours for the festival. There were so many beauties to sigh over and pet. Her stall was very hard to get at because of the crush surrounding it.
Jessicah was sporting a beautiful baby bump, and she told me she will be taking a break from dyeing when the baby is born to concentrate on motherhood. So if you rather fancy some of her pretty merino/silk yarn and won’t be at the festival, I’d jump on to her etsy store rather quickly once she lists everything she didn’t sell this weekend. She mentioned she might see if Tash (Holland Road Yarn Company) might sell the rest of her yarn at Wonders of Wool next week, but I’m not sure if that is a certainty yet.
The rest of what you see is more Anna Gratton Little Wool Co. lusciousness. I got a plain cream hank to match a natural grey that I already have of that weight. The two will be combined to knit a Lillia Hyrna. Have a look through the projects to get an idea of what it looks like as the picture representing the pattern isn’t the most descriptive.
The two purple shaded hanks together are the Inca colourway Mohair/Wool 4 ply, and the top step holds one hank of Anna’s Wool/Alpaca/Mohair/Nylon boucle in Cocoa for a shawl, one humongous 400g hank (garment lot) weight of 50/50 mohair/wool in Jungle and more mohair/wool in Forest. Forest will become a Bo for me to keep.
So that’s it for purchases! However, I also had some very exciting people meet-ups:
I was wonderfully surprised to bump into, and catch up with Alice, whom many of you will fondly remember from her Crochet with Raymond blog days. I am happy to report that she is very well, and enjoying life with KB in the far north. It was such fun to make a turn around the trade hall with her and catch up on all the news, and collectively sigh over all the pretty yarn and fibre on display. Some of the batts were so beautiful it made me (briefly) wish I was a spinner.
I also met up with Bev of Morecraft Gifts, a very gutsy knitter and spinner from Christchurch, who showed me this:
Handspun merino scarf (OMG such bounce!) from the wool of Horrietta, the hermit cross-bred Merino who had evaded muster for seven years, growing a stunning 13kg (28lb) fleece in the process. I talked about her capture here at which time they thought she was a ‘he’ until they sheared her and found out otherwise. The staple was of great unbroken quality, and at least 6″ in length! I will tell you more about this lady’s work and Horrietta separately, as the story deserves its own post (but if you’re itching for a hint, have a look at Bev’s Ravelry group here).
Bev also kindly introduced me to one of my knitting heroes: Margaret Stove. She is every bit as erudite and charming a lady as I had imagined she would be. What a buzz to meet her! If she ever teaches a lace class and I can attend it, I’d be first in line to register! Margaret was wearing a deep purple lace shawl that I admired greatly, even before I knew who she was. I hope I can knit lace like that one day.
In all, the festival was a great day out. I was slightly disappointed that most of the New Zealand products for sale in the hall were batts and fibre. However, there is always next week’s Wonders of Wool market, where yarn is more of the emphasis and Happy-go-knitty, as well as, I am hoping, Verandah Yarns and many others will be there.
I came home and fell asleep in my knitting chair, exhausted by all the excitement!