This time last year, I was winging my way across the Atlantic with my good friend Ellen, who is always a great fiber travel buddy (especially when Sonya joins in and we may or may not have a beer with lunch). We had an incredible time eating, drinking, exploring and getting lost in the city and an even better time at the Edinburgh Yarn Festival with friends from both sides of the pond.
This year the festival isn't in the cards for me, as it's my last chance to see my older daughter strut her stuff with her acapella group, and I may or may not have a different special trip planned to the UK later on in the year. But I just can't ignore the whole thing, because it's a really, really special event full of gorgeous yarn, inspiring knits, talented people - and super cool accents.
One of the most wonderful things about being a designer is that I go to these things FOR WORK. Heading to Edinburgh or Squam or NYC means that I spend time with others in the industry that I could, yes, ordinarily talk to online. And okay, many of them I already know from emails and Ravelry. But the in-person conversations are different and we all live in various far-flung cities and towns and there's a different energy when you put us in a Corn Exchange full of yarn.
Although my family mocks me a little bit about "business meetings" that occur in pubs and bars, or on the dock at Squam, or while exploring the streets of a city, or even when sitting on the floor in groups scattered around a hotel lobby late at night, with bourbons in hand -- we really DO get things going when we hang out and meet in person. Creative people, maybe need some creative environs in which to collaborate.
And as a person without an office space, I also want to point out that a table in a bar or a restaurant or a day on the beach, or even a hike on a craggy bluff in Scotland makes for a pretty inspirational discussion venue. It's also way less weird than inviting co-workers to talk about upcoming projects in your living room, although that's happened too.
Anyways, my trip to EYF has led to a number of discussions about future projects and yarns and I do have a bunch of design-intended skeins and things in my office here. But two of those conversations I had last March have already led to a couple of projects you'll see next week.
I'm not entirely sure I am allowed to share an image of the second one, so I'll just show you a bit of the first one - a sweater I've just finished up in Blacker Yarns Classic British Wool. I spent a bit of time in that booth on both days of the Festival, falling in love with all their wooly, heathery,UK fibers and the gorgeous colors of the skeins and knits displayed all around.
Fast forward one year, and - voila! Keep your eyes out for Angostura, coming next week.
The plan is for Tuesday.
So if you are on your way to the Festival, you can do a little planning before the marketplace opens...