Many, many ladies have, over the years, urged me to go to the Stitch and Knit Show at Alexandra Palace. When my Dental Hygienist expressed her astonishment that I still hadn't been, despite her urging me to for several years, I decided to give it a go this year. It was a beautiful day on Thursday- stunning views over London from the hill at the Palace- I'd never been there before, so it was an interesting journey on bits of the tube network I'd not done before.Tube geek? Me? Just a bit. Wood Green station is on the Piccadilly, a rather stylish line with some beautiful deco stations.Wood Green did not disappoint, some very delightful ironwork of deers and leaves- totally akin with the station's name, but bearing no resemblance to the less than sylvan busy traffic junction outside. I never cease to be impressed by the willingness to experiment of ladies- usually young- who do their make-up on a moving tube train. Anyone who has experienced the unique rattle-bang of a tube line will know exactly why doing lipstick and eyeliner/mascara on a moving tube train is an expression of quite dizzying heights of optimism. The show did not disappoint. Smashing stuff on show from textile/knitting designers , both experienced ( how excited was I when I discovered that the nice lady I was chatting to on the Sasha Kagan stand was indeed Sasha Kagan?) and just graduated and lots of stalls to shop at. I did not take my camera as it is just another thing to carry and I was doing the day without a stick ( managed too- amazing) and knew I would have bags to carry by the end...so my lovely assistant Rita has helped me this morning to show some items of delight. I had a list. Astonishingly, I stuck to it. Admittedly it was a long list including a request from my niece to find some "manly, Goth knitting needles" for my nephew , an ambulance driver who has recently discovered the delights of knitting. After his triumph of a swiss roll for the picnic in the Knitted Garden, he has moved on to little hats, knitting the baby hats that are presented to babies born in the ambulances. I found a lovely pair of dark Rosewood needles-not too long- manly and suitably darkly Goth, from the Little Knitting Company, perfect! This shop also has some very delicious yarns.
Japanese fabrics from Euro-Japan Links,who also do lovely shashiko threads and kits.
The pins of my dreams- long, thin and also beautiful from Merchant and Mills.
Some lovely wool to make into fingerless gloves for wearing indoors ( the way forward if this Winter is like the last three....) and some for a lace scarf/shawl- a project I have been pondering for some time.
These rather beautiful yarns from Nimu are dyed in the Summer House at the bottom of her garden- lovely and unique. There were lots of yummy yarns on stands from wool shops, but I wanted to find some from an individual and I was really excited by these, particularly the thread with the little slubby bits...given the way the weather has turned abruptly into deepest Autumn this past couple of days, I can't wait to finish my current knitting project and get stuck into those fingerless gloves. She also has some gorgeous textured mohair mix- I don't get on with mohair, but almost weakened when I felt this yarn and saw the colours.
Felt sheets and stars and balls from Blooming Felt- very popular with my assistant, especially when I put them away in a kitten-sized paper bag.
Strips of woven wool blanket, cut-off edges left over from weaving...sure I can do something with these, other than make a kitten nest. These came from a rather good fabric shop, Ray-Stitch. Very delightful ladies running it and a selection of fabrics that were really original, good patterns, nice textures and a selection of brushed cottons that were, for a change, not simply pyjama fabrics- if you want some more unusual fabrics, take a look at their stock.
Gorgeous buttons from my favourite on-line button emporium, Textile Garden. Textile Garden has buttons like no other button shop, sourced from all over the world they put other button shops to shame- everyone seems to have the same buttons despite claiming they have 'exciting' or 'original' selections. Textile Garden are truly exciting and original, their ribbons and trimmings are fabulous too.
I shall finish with a picture of Team Tabby- to prove that Rita does sleep, occasionally.