Knitting and London life. Not necessarily in that order.
Monday, October 15
A model of restraint
Here it is! Yup, the ONLY purchase at Ally Pally! I was the absolute model of restraint, despite the fact that I was there for two whole days. I allowed myself to purchase this beautiful Hummingbird yarn from Artesano Alpaca as my sole treat - it will probably become a hat and gloves, or some such - but at the moment it's just nice to pet.
I attribute my success to two things; firstly, the Knit at the Movies champagne bar was outside the main exhibition area, so the temptation to spend was sufficiently distant for it to be a bit of a bind to get to the stalls.
Secondly, I did it in two steps; on the first day, I went into the exhibition without my purse. I browsed around, saw what was on offer, and was very annoyed with myself for not having money to hand. But by the time the following day came around, I had taken stock of what I had seen, and had decided that all I could really allow myself to buy was something modest, a little reminder of the show. I was looking for some 'manly' sock yarn for The Curse, but couldn't find anything suitable, so it had to be something for me! Ah, purple and green, my favourite colours!
I also managed to generate a finished object - this light scarf is made from a combination of two yarns: the strange cotton/felt combination that Natalie brought me back from Japan, and a ball of lovely turquoise alpaca/silk that I swapped with someone on Ravelry.
I've been looking for something to go with the Japanese yarn for ages, and it was great to be able to match it up at last. I did a simple garter stitch scarf with a few rows of drop stitches here and there for variety. I think it looks quite cute, and it's not at all itchy, although it looks rather hairy!
So what of the actual show? Our Knit at the Movies in the champagne bar was great fun - we taught about 60 under-18s during Thursday and Friday (the best were the school kids who kept calling me 'miss' and were wowed by my handknit socks!). Saturday and Sunday were less about teaching, more about sitting round knitting and chatting - I wasn't there but it sounds like it got pretty quiet at times, so perhaps a bit more in the way of shopping temptation!
I saw quite a few exhibitors whom I hadn't heard of before, so it was good to see who was doing what, to check out their wares and make a note to track down their websites when I NEED yarn! One that particularly impressed was Scandinavian Knitting Design - I met the lovely Birgitte who, along with husband Bruce, import yarn to the UK from Scandinavia and sell it by mail order from Reading at scandalously low prices! They have a superb range of colours, particularly in the mercerised cotton, which is something like £1.75 for 50g. They also sell a lot of mixes of yarns, so good for washable/baby garments.
Many other stalls, too numerous to mention, but I will be following up with one or two of them over the coming months, and will post when I do.
Now that the trauma of Ally Pally is behind us, it's onwards and upwards to our next event, a stitch n bitch at the National Maritime Museum in Greenwich, on Sunday 28 October, from 2 till 5pm. Dressed as pirates/sailors. See you there, me hearties!