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EYF15

March 19, 2015 No Comments by Heidi

I’ve come to cherish my knit nights as time where, despite being new, I fit in. It’s easy. I don’t have to explain myself. Who I am. Where I’ve come from or what my “story” is. I sit among my fellow crafters and feel refreshed, armed to face another week among people I may not quite fit in with just yet.

So imagine a craft / knit night that goes on for 2 days. 2 DAYS!! I know lots of people have said it but I’m gonna say it now. Edinburgh Yarn Festival was amazing! AH. MAY. ZING! Amazingly awesome!

Grab a cuppa & biscuit, it’s turned into a long post.

After arriving Saturday morning and waving off my two fellow fibre friends to their morning classes, I had a brief chat with another one of my fellow Dublin knitters before throwing most of my coffee all over myself. Really I shouldn’t be allowed to leave the house until I’m properly caffeinated and pass some sort of wakeful test.  Anyway I meant to beat feet to Dublin Dye but was lured in by Tin Can Knits’ beautiful samples and the vibrant colors of Rainbow Heirloom yarns. I picked up the bundle below and headed over to the Dublin Dye stall which did not disappoint. This was Yvonne’s first show so the first opportunity to squish all the lovely yarn and take in the luscious colors in real life. It was heavenly. I love her colorways and while I meant to step outside my usual blues and greens, with Dublin Dye yarn I always get hooked in. Her blues remind me of the sea I miss so much. I left with 2 skeins of DK in Petrol. My favorite colorways; Petrol, Irish Sea, Library, Terracotta, Vampire and Black Cherry.

Handmade in the UK & Rainbow Heirloom Yarn

Handmade in the UK & Rainbow Heirloom Yarn

Dublin Dye DK in Petrol

Dublin Dye DK in Petrol

Then it was time to volunteer for a short while with lovely folk at the P/HOP stall. P/HOP is Pennies per Hour of Pleasure, they raise money for MSF (Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders). The way it works is designers donate their patterns, knitters & crocheters donate samples and people donate what they feel the pattern is worth to them either at shows like EYF or online. You can read more about what they do over at their site, have a look at the patterns and hopefully donate to great organization. P/HOP also have a Rav group where you can sign up to make sample(s) or if you’re based in the UK help out on the stall.

P/HOP Patterns & Mini Reindeer

P/HOP Patterns & Mini Reindeer

I had a good wander on Saturday afternoon. I saw lots of lovely yarn, knitting machines in use at multiple stalls, a sea of beautiful hand knits and weaving looms (I didn’t get too close for fear it might follow me home.) In the end I didn’t make it to Old Maiden Aunt’s stall in time to squish the yarn properly. So much was gone and it was heaving. I went back on the Sunday when it was quieter to have a proper look at all the bases, a squish (of course) and to confirm the colors I’ve seen online are indeed the ones that belong in my stash. 🙂 My favorite colorways; Tardis, As You Wish & Lipstick.

Easy Knits was another stall that was jammers but I waded in to have a look at the vibrant colorways and fell in love with the sushi rolls with their super long color transitions. As a crocheter I find most variated yarns have very short color transitions that get gobbled up by the stitches so you don’t get the full effect. Unfortuately the rolls are only 400m+ long so would only make a small shawl. However, a brief chat with one of the lads at the stall revealed that they can pop two rolls together and then dye. Happy days!

Shawls made with Easy Knits Sushi Rolls

Shawls made with Easy Knits Sushi Rolls

Edinburgh Yarn Festival 2015

Look at those colors!

I had a chat with one of the women from The Crochet Project and picked up their new Shawl Project book. It’s amazing on two fronts; one, if you just want to follow a pattern there are 6 lovely patterns to choose from. Secondly the back half of the book is dedicated to shawl design; shapes, how much yarn needed, calculating size, etc. Perfect for the little bundle of yarn I picked up from Rainbow Heirloom.

Edinburgh Yarn Festival 2015

The Shawl Project Book & Pattern from Kat Goldin

Edinburgh Yarn Festival 2015

Funny labels for your hand mades.

 

By the end of Saturday afternoon / evening I was mostly overcome by yarn fumes and felt slightly drunk with the sight of all the beautiful handmades, the multiple generations wandering the stalls together and being able to spend time with among like minded people. So we headed off for some dinner and fresh air before evening entertainment/celebrations. The Cabaaaret was brilliant! Even though I was so weary all I wanted to do was sit; I laughed, lots. Knitsonik aka Felicity aka Felix was very funny. The quiz was hilarious and the other ladies at the table were great craic.

Our sweet prize winning sheep.

Our sweet prize winning sheep.

Beautiful Ingrid Neilsson mugs as prizes for our wee sheep.

Beautiful Ingrid Neilsson mugs as prizes for our wee sheep.

Roll back to mid February for a bit, I was in despair. My knitting had gone pear shaped (so I thought), my purling was horrendous and remembering how to do magic loop seemed illusive. There were no knitting classes I could find in my area. Luckily a combo of you tube and my knitters sorted me out so I went confidently into the Sock Basics class with Claire Devine and MADE A SOCK!! Alright so I didn’t entirely finish in time, I am still a slow knitter, but I had the guts of a sock and it looked totally better than the other monstrosities turned out previously.

My 1st Sock!

My 1st Sock!

Sock Take 2

Sock Take 2

Sample Socks by Claire Devine

Sample Socks by Claire Devine

Sunday afternoon, I had a good chat with Dearbhla from, a new Irish crafting podcast, Blasta. The podcast is fantastic by the way. I feel transported to one of my Irish knit groups when I listen to them. Anyway, normally I see Dearbhla briefly once a year at HandmAid craft day so there isn’t much opportunity to have a good natter. We spent the latter part of the afternoon pottering among the now quieter stalls properly looking at things we had missed the day before, having lovely chats with the each other and stall holders along the way. It was a great way to wind up the festival.

As I sit here typing, from time to time I well up a bit or get a little kick to the heart. EYF was truly a wonderful event. My previous experience of a craft show was the Knit and Stitch shows (Dublin & Ally Pally). This event was miles away from that. It was laid back. Everyone attending (that I came in contact with) was lovely. There was no pushing or shoving. There were wonderful conversations with strangers that weren’t about yarn. There was camaraderie. There was a love for all things yarn related and an appreciation for things hand made.

What I’ve taken away from this event is inspiration in the form of color, texture, shapes, seeing the world a little bit differently. I’ve picked up a proper camera again. I’ve ideas for new patterns and revisions of old ones in my head. I feel refreshed, that my wells of inspiration are refilled. While this is partially due to the event, it’s mostly to do with spending time among like minded creative people and most of all time spent with fibre and non fibre friends over the weekend.

Edinburgh Yarn Festival 2015

My bag of goodies.

EYF15

This is what came out of my bag. From top left to right: 60 North magazines from the Shetland Wool Week stall, 1 skein and 5 mini skeins of of Rainbow Heirloom, train tickets, project bag with inner zip compartment and side handle from a stall in the pop up market, Scottish Machine Knitters Guild Newsletter, Belinda Harris Reid Silky yarn in Raspberry, Dublin Dye DK in Petrol, Handmade in the UK (Emily Wessel & Tin Can Knits), The Shawl Project by Kat Goldin & Johnna Scrace. More details will be added when I can.

Next time I’m taking a bigger suitcase because I wish I had more room for:

  • A Wendy Fowler yarn bowl
  • Artwork by Ingrid Neilsson, especially the sheep and portraits of people in knitwear
  • A small loom
  • And of course more yarn but that can arrive by post 😉

Right I’m off for more tea & some cake.

x H

P.S. I’ll just leave some more of photos, in no particular order, of the weekend here. Also no one has paid me or given me free stuff to write about them. This post is reflects what caught my eye over the weekend and doesn’t include everything cause well, I ran out of puff.

Edinburgh Yarn Festival 2015

Debonnaire Stall

Edinburgh Yarn Festival 2015

Ripples Crafts

Edinburgh Yarn Festival 2015

Knitsonik Cabaaret

Edinburgh Yarn Festival 2015

Hills of Edinburgh

Edinburgh Yarn Festival 2015

Waverly Station

Edinburgh Yarn Festival 2015

Free range fibre crafting

Edinburgh Yarn Festival 2015

City lines

Edinburgh Yarn Festival 2015

On the way!

Edinburgh Yarn Festival 2015

Can’t leave home without cake. It would be uncivilized.

Edinburgh Yarn Festival 2015

I oh so want to go to Shetland Wool Week

Edinburgh Yarn Festival 2015

Fab fibre craft related greeting cards and tatoos

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