Episode 42: Summer Road Trip

Apologies in advance for any sound issues in this episode of the podcast - we're on either side of the pond at the moment, and do not have access to the best recording setup while that is the case.

Places you can knit: the Dordogne, France

Places you can knit: the Dordogne, France

In this episode we chat about taking our yarn on the road - Allison to Scotland and Rachel to the United States - and we've got some great shops to tell you about, along with our tips on what makes the perfect road trip project.

Sponsor:

The Loveliest Yarn Company is a new online shop bringing you the loveliest yarn and knitting accessories. Buying yarn online can be a bit fraught so they have gathered the best into one place. The Loveliest Yarn Company stock artisan hand dyed yarn from Life in the Long Grass, organic merino from Rosy Green Wool, irresistible accessories from Merchant and Mills and lots more.

Podcast listeners can get 10% off in July, August and September by using the code YITCEnabled2016. If you aren't shopping for yarn at the moment, be sure to sign up for their newsletter on the site.

We are delighted to welcome Erika Knight as the title sponsor of the fourth annual Great London Yarn Crawl!

We are delighted to welcome Erika Knight as the title sponsor of the fourth annual Great London Yarn Crawl!

News and Events:

GLYC 2016 tickets are on sale! The event is now over 50% sold, with five routes sold out, out so don’t wait too long to get your tickets! We've also started posting our sponsors for GLYC2016, including title sponsor Erika Knight! Other sponsors include Cocoknits, Daughter of a Shepherrd, The Little Grey Girl, Owl About Yarn, Pom Pom Quarterly, SweetGeorgia Yarns, Third Vault Yarns and Tin Can Knits,

Now until 4th September – the Missoni Art Colour exhibition is on at the Fashion & Textile Museum in London.

30-31st July - Fibre-East, Ampthill, Bedfordshire.

5-6th August - the British Wool Show, York Auction Mart, Murton, York.

12-19th August - Knitting & Crochet in the Faroe Islands with Carol Meldrum

12-18th August - Hiking and Knitting between Fire and Ice, with Helene Magnusson, Iceland.

20-28th August - Yarn Along the Rockies, Colorado Front Range

What we're working on:

Allison is obsessed with her Wavedeck Shawl by Kate Atherley, and will be done shortly. She's also started the Garter Goodness Shawl by Stephen West.

And in fact, Allison finished her Wavedeck Shawl not long after we recorded the episode - which may have partially contributed to the editing being slightly delayed... sorry!

And in fact, Allison finished her Wavedeck Shawl not long after we recorded the episode - which may have partially contributed to the editing being slightly delayed... sorry!

Rachel is working on Lambton Panes from Cowtown Knits, and her Kippen Cardigan by Kat Goldin from the Crochet Project, as well as a men's sweater design for A Yarn Story in the luscious Arranmore from The Fibre Company. The Tour de Fleece is now done - you can see photos of her spinning (and the rest of Team Porpoise Fur) on her Ravelry board.

Summer Road Trip:

Some of the machinery in action at the mill at New Lanark

Some of the machinery in action at the mill at New Lanark

Allison hit five shops in three days in Scotland, and she tells us all about her visits, including a trip to the New Lanark Mill. Rachel has grand plans for Fiber Space in Alexandria, VA; Looped Yarn Works in Dupont Circle, DC, and WEBS in Northampton, MA in the immediate future. She might also hit Dyakcraft, Golding Fiber Tools and Spunky Eclectic!


Thanks so much for listening! Please leave us a comment or send us an email at hello@yarninthecity.com with your thoughts, or let us know what you think via TwitterFacebook and Instagram. You can also find us oniTunes or Stitcher Radio (and please consider leaving a review for us!), or download us directly from the Yarn in the City website.  Or come join our Ravelry group to keep up to date on all the latest news, and join in the London Craft Guide craft-along!

On Wednesday nights you can find us at knit night at The Goat on the Rise pub on Battersea Rise, close to Clapham Junction station in SW London. We meet from 7pm to around 10pm. The food is great and the knitters are friendly. Join us! 

Music (all available on NoiseTrade):
No Matter Where We Go - Whitney
Airport Bar - Martin Courtney

 

Brighton Mini Crawl Shop Profile: YAK

YAK - also known as Yarn and Knitting is a shop we've profiled on the blog before, back when it opened it's bricks and mortar location in January of this year. Owner Kate has been busy since then helping to build the Brighton knitting community and filling her shelves with a tempting assortment of beautiful yarns and thoughtfully chosen tools and patterns.

Kate shares more about her shop by answering our questions below. Enjoy!

Tell us about YAK. What is your shop's main speciality?
YAK is an independent yarn shop catering to the knitters and crochets of Brighton, the south coast and to the rest of the world online. We opened our bricks and mortar shop in January and we are now the hub of Brighton’s knitting community.

We specialise in yarns from independent companies, mostly British and European. We like to champion brands who use natural fibres and are ethically minded where quality comes first.

How would you describe your shop's atmosphere in three words?
Inviting, charming and inspiring.

What is the most popular product that you carry? 
That is a tricky one to judge but I think it would be The Uncommon Thread BFL Fingering. We get quite a lot of knitting tourists in Brighton from all over the world who are looking for something unique and local which they won’t be able to get at home. I’m sure it doesn’t hurt that all of The Uncommon Thread’s yarns are drop dead gorgeous and hand dyed to perfection but the BFL is particularly popular I think because of its versatility.
 

What is the one thing that a crafter MUST know about your shop if they haven't visited before?
One of our main focuses as a shop is to be innovative in the products we stock. We want to make sure that we have a balance of what knitters know they want before walking through the door, tried and tested workhorse tools and yarns alongside plenty of fresh and exciting things they have may never have seen before or thought to try. I am 99% sure there will be something in the shop you will never have seen in the flesh before.

Also, there is always a killer playlist on and lots of chairs for the not so woolly minded you have with you to take a break while you make important yarn decisions!

What sets YAK apart from other craft shops? 
YAK is not just about yarn and knitting, it’s about knitters, crocheters and the fibre crafts that bring us together. We want to see our customers succeed in their knitting goals whether they’re a complete newbie or an experienced pro. We’re not here to flog you things you don’t need but to support you and your project. I think that is what sets us apart, our eagerness to see our customers flourish and pursue their craft more deeply. 

Thanks for taking the time to answer our questions Kate! Kate will also have 10% off in the shop on the day (classes excluded) for our Brighton Knit and Make Social guests and we'll do the draw for the door prizes at YAK as well.  

Episode 13: Lucky Number Thirteen!

Shout outs:

Thanks to Deb, who applauded our musical choices, and asked how we pick the songs, so we go on at length about that.

Many congratulations to Catherine, our guest on Episode 8, who welcomed her new granddaughter last week!

And a shout out from us to the people in our lives (in the knitting world and outside) who are having a bit of a hard time right now - we're thinking of you all.

The yummy Porpoise Fur fibre booth all set up and ready to go!

The yummy Porpoise Fur fibre booth all set up and ready to go!

What's going on:

15-16th May: I Knit Fandango, Royal Horticultural Halls, London. We will be there at the Porpoise Fur booth - come say hi!

15-17th May: Gwlana, a knitting retreat in Pembrokeshire, Wales with Brenda Dayne of Cast On and Felicity Ford of Knitsonik.

16-17th May: John Arbon Open Weekend, South Molton, Devon.

23rd May: Highland Wool Festival, Dingwall Mart.

25th May: The Shipston on Stour Wool Fair, Shipston on Stour, South Warwickshire

30-31st May: Proper Woolley, Holsworthy, Devon.

20 June: the Brighton Knit and Make Social - come down to the beach with us for a day of hanging out and relaxing!

What we're working on:

Allison is working on a Big Brother Sweater for a newly-minted big brother, and she's going to be test knitting a cowl for Rachel in Kettle Yarn Co's new Islington DK as soon as Rachel gets a move on and writes up the pattern. She's started a new scarf with some YFP Shetland handspun (leftovers from Rachel's Nymphalidea) and a gorgeous grey DK out of stash. Cleaning up the office netted her some un-catalogued stash hiding away, so she's updated that. She's also been spinning and getting excited about Susan Anderson's book The Spinner's Book of Yarn Designs.

Rachel has been dyeing. And dyeing. And dyeing some more. She's also knit up the KYC Cowl prototype (will be released at the end of June), and has done a bit of spindling on her Massive Spindle Sweaterlot. Because spindle spinning a sweater's worth of yarn is a good idea. Really. But mostly she's been dyeing.

Upcoming excitement:

Our special feature this week is all about upcoming events, specifically I Knit Fandango and our next Yarn in the City event - a mini-crawl in Brighton on 20 June. We highlight vendors we're looking forward to seeing at the Fandango, and talk a bit about what will be on the Porpoise Fur stand.

We also chat about the Brighton trip, and the shops involved. This is going to be a very mellow and low-key event, and we really hope you can join us! Tickets are available now.


As always you can find us on RavelryFacebookTwitterInstagram and Pinterest. Please don't hesitate to share your thoughts and feedback with us, and please come say hi at any of the events we're attending if you get a chance! Everyone is welcom to come join our Wednesday night knit group from 7-9 pm (or longer) at The Goat on the Rise, Clapham SW11 1EQ.

Music credits (all available on NoiseTrade)
Loneliness & Alcohol - Jars of Clay
Fierce Flawless - Ani Difranco
Everything You've Done Wrong - Sloan
Writing on the Wall - Bear's Den

Road trip recap: the Bath Christmas Market and other crafty goodness

This post is a bit overdue but better late than never and we'd be remiss if we didn't tell you about all the fun we had with the success of our first non-Great London Yarn Crawl event with Yarn in the City.

Rachel and I check our list twice before setting off with the group. Photo credit: Catherine Hopkins

Rachel and I check our list twice before setting off with the group. Photo credit: Catherine Hopkins

We got an early-ish start thanks to everyone being wonderfully punctual in meeting up at our departure location in Hammersmith. There were a few familiar faces from GLYC 2014 to hug and say hello to, and new friends to welcome aboard our latest Yarn in the City adventure.

Shortly after 9am we were on the road, comfortable and cozy in our executive coach and settling into our travel projects. We also handed out Yarn in the City treats which included mini skeins and a Christmas bauble pattern from our sponsors Kettle Yarn Co. and East London Knit. There was also a map of the Bath Christmas Market and all the stalls to help our guests plan their must-see sights.

The smooshy, delicious yarns at A Yarn Story.

The smooshy, delicious yarns at A Yarn Story.

Our first stop was just outside Bath at The Shed and home to A Yarn Story. Carmen was there to welcome us with open arms - and a new delivery of The Uncommon Thread's Heavenly DK! While the throng was in the shop, I wandered around some of the other shops in the shed, happily finding some wonderful handmade buttons from the textile artist Carole Waller downstairs at One Two Five Gallery and a few other stocking stuffer type gifts. 

Helen and Kelly get some spinning and knitting done while enjoying a break in the sunshine at The Shed.

Helen and Kelly get some spinning and knitting done while enjoying a break in the sunshine at The Shed.

With a little help from my friends: winding up my new SweetGeorgia Superwash Six on the way into Bath.

With a little help from my friends: winding up my new SweetGeorgia Superwash Six on the way into Bath.

I may have also fallen down at A Yarn Story for some deliciously soft and amazing Superwash Six from SweetGeorgia Yarns. I hadn't been able to try it out yet and was excited to get the chance! Not that I got much of chance mind you, as soon we were on the bus headed into Bath for the Christmas Market around the abbey, along with planned stops at Country Threads and Wool.

A rare shot of the Christmas market at twilight in the shadow of the abbey. It was so pretty seeing all the stalls lit up.

A rare shot of the Christmas market at twilight in the shadow of the abbey. It was so pretty seeing all the stalls lit up.

Bath was lovely but positively heaving with people. I hope I can be forgiven for having forgotten to take many photos in favour of just enjoying the day. Many of our guests were familiar with Bath and paired up to take in the market, visit with friends or do other shopping when the market got to be a little too much. In our own off-market wanderings Rachel and I discovered the lovely Bijoux Beads and The Makery - both wonderful enough for their own post another time!

All too soon we were rendez-vous-ing at Wool for our own private event to ogle the wonderful yarns with festive treats and mulled wine from Laura and her staff, before heading back to the bus heavily laden with the day's purchases!

Thank you so much to everyone who joined us on the day - we had such a wonderful time with you all and we can't wait for our next events coming up in the spring. Watch this space!

And if you'd like to read another recap of our lovely day out, one of our guests and good friend Catherine Hopkins has an excellent post (and more photos) over on her blog. Cheers!

 

Christmas goodies for our road trippers

Did you happen to see this photo posted to our Instagram?

Things are decidedly Christmas-y around Yarn in the City HQ!

Things are decidedly Christmas-y around Yarn in the City HQ!

It's just a tease for wee Christmas pressie we have planned for all of you joining us on the Road Trip to the Bath Christmas Market thanks to the generosity of sponsors Kettle Yarn Co. and East London Knit.

The two brands often collaborate together so it seemed like the perfect pairing to have Kettle Yarn Co.'s superwash BFL TWIST Fingering paired with one of East London Knit's charming designs.

Some of East London Knit's designs:  Rhombulation  scarf,  Hyssop  sweater and  Veil of Leithen  shawl.

Some of East London Knit's designs: Rhombulation scarf, Hyssop sweater and Veil of Leithen shawl.

Renée Callahan is the face behind East London Knit. Her background in fashion design with knitwear comes through in her designs. Renée's designs are playful yet practical with details that keep the knitting fun. You've probably seen some of Renée's designs hanging in the Kettle Yarn Co. booth at a show, or more recently in Amirisu, Knit Now, and Twist Collective.

Some of the gorgeousness that is Kettle Yarn Co.'s Islington - shown in Pom and Old Smoke.

Some of the gorgeousness that is Kettle Yarn Co.'s Islington - shown in Pom and Old Smoke.

If you're already not familiar with Kettle Yarn Co. then you really need to get acquainted with this lovely British brand. Dyer Linda Lencovic has very exacting standards when it comes to choosing the base yarns for her soft palette of colours. Softness, wearability and durability are all taken into consideration, and Linda has a handy Wear Chart for her yarns. 

Linda will be showing off her yarns next at the upcoming Pom Pom Quarterly Christmas Party happening on 6 December in London but you can also find her delicious Islington yarn at A Yarn Story on the Bath road trip.

Many thanks to both Renée and Linda for being part of our first ever Christmas outing with Yarn in the City!

Have you got your tickets for the road trip yet or planned your knitting? We're chatting about our project choices over in our Ravelry group - why not join us?