The inaugural Edinburgh Yarn Festival took place yesterday. In a word, it was mental. We arrived just before 10am ( thanks to me setting the alarm to 5.45pm rather than 5.45am) and the queue was already very long. I had time for a cup of coffee and a quick hello to familiar faces before heading off to teach my class on two-handed colourwork.
I had a lot of fun with my class trying to cover everything from colour theory, yarn dominance and Continental knitting before delving into two-handed colourwork. I am proud to say that my students didn't bat an eyelid and asked really great questions throughout. They all left with some fabulous swatches - and later I saw several of them buying materials for colourwork projects. I love my job!
After the class had ended, I went out into the Drill Hall and it was .. packed. Here's photographic evidence - the tables in the foreground was part of the in-house cafe who had to call in extra help!
According to the organisers, EYF played host to 1452 adult visitors, 220 children, 40 stallholders, 30 volunteers .. and 4 dogs (that I saw). The vendor space was divided into three sections. The front hall, the main hall (which you see in the background) and the "wing". The place was packed.
How packed? Well, I have been joking with Lilith of Old Maiden Aunt that we need to run t-shirts saying "I survived the Old Maiden Aunt scrum at EdinYarnFest 2013!". To wit:
Lilith's looking fairly relaxed there, but we were all running on adrenaline! The lovely lady in the turquoise cardigan is Cathy of StitchMastery fame. She was an ocean of calm throughout the day.
Louise Hunt of the Caithness Craft Collective podcast interviewed me which was a lot of fun. We actually managed to find somewhere away from the crowd so there won't be too much hustle and bustle in the background. I also met Aimee of the knit.spin.cake podcast so who know what might happen there in the future!
A huge thank you to everybody who stopped me just to say hello: a lot of familiar faces and a lot of unfamiliar ones. I was also amused by how many people stopped my partner Dave to say hello - and I have also spotted him in several photos posted by people on Ravelry and Twitter. Ladies do like a bearded man in a well-loved knitted jumper!
So many lovely things to see, touch, smell, and buy .. but I just wound up with two small purchases. It was very late in the afternoon before I had any time to look at the stalls and I was much too tired to make informed decisions. I did scout out some definite future purchases from Skein Queen, Lionness Arts, Ripples Crafts, and Yarn Pony. Nothing beats seeing colourways and feeling base yarns in person.
And nothing beats spending time with good people: Joeli, Kat (check out The Crochet Project! Way to go, Kat!), Amanda of OwlPrintPanda, Kristen, Cassandra of The Stitchery and waving busy hellos to Ysolda (who was there with Sarah, Bex and the magical photobooth). It was very good to meet up with Susan Crawford - Gavin & Dave exchanged tips on modelling knitwear which was hilarious (so I may have been close to hysterical laughter that point of the day but it was still funny).
Shout-outs to the wonderful people of Glasgow Stitch'n'Knit who insisted I sat down occasionally and the marvellous Cayt who brought me breakfast at 2.30pm! What was it I said about being fuelled by adrenaline?
Finally, thank you to Jo, Linda and Mica who organised the event. You did such an amazing job weaving all these strands together and creating something as beautiful (and mental) as Edinburgh Yarn Festival 2013. Thank you, thank you.
Let's do it all again next year!