Sunday, 29 September 2013

Yarndale Part 1

It's usually at this time of year, as the weather turns colder, that I find myself with a proper urge to buy yarn. Clearly, the organisers of Yarndale know this, as they've picked the perfect weekend for a yarn festival - at least for me. Conferences are finished and so I feel like I can celebrate surviving that, but the new students are around and that makes work quite stressful. Add to that the leaves turning, winds picking up and temperatures dropping, and all I want to do is knit.

Plus, it's less than a half hour drive from where I live, in the beautiful town of Skipton; a town not only full of history, but also of tea rooms, pubs, and interesting little shops. And, as it's The Gateway to the Dales, the scenery is not half bad:

The yarnbombing on the way to the venue was pretty impressive - miles of crocheted bunting! 

Even more of it in the lobby!

Where there was also a knitted picnic...

...and an awesome tea cosy competition:

I went on the Saturday, which was crazy busy. It was near impossible to get photos on the stands but I tried to capture the atmosphere: lots of people, lots of yarn! There was a good spread of yarn and fibre, half a dozen options for needles and hooks, and a few people doing larger things like wheels. If I recall correctly, there was maybe one or two stall selling fabric and cross-stitch stuff, another one or maybe two with books, but it was very much about the yarn and fibre. Just how I would want it!

The venue was the auction mart, which is clearly more usually used for livestock buying and selling. It was a great place to hold it, especially when the sun shone in through the roof. Not all of the space was used but I guess that allows for future growth in the coming years! There was enough room in the 'corridors' between stalls; the only times we had to squeeze were due to groups of people standing about, rather than busy stalls spilling out. The disadvantages of the venue were that the cafe was really busy for most of the day, the toilets broke down, and I hear parking was difficult for those who arrived later (we were fine at about 10:20). But with the town centre a very short drive away, if we'd been desperate for a pit stop then we probably could've headed there.

There weren't as many cute animals as there were at Woolfest - but there were some:

... and there were quite a lot of bunnies! Sooo fluffy!! Even got a little stroke of one of them :)

The range of stallholders was excellent: many of the usual suspects were there, selling yarn and fibre - plus a few new, clearly very Yorkshire-based businesses, which I was glad to discover. [NB. Oxfam Skipton were there taking donations of unwanted yarn, which they're going to knit into things to sell in the shop. I have a few ideas for what they could have from my stash - just thought I'd mention it in case anyone else has the same problem!]. Overall, an excellent day out. I will tell you all about my purchases another day.

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