I went to the Marketplace at Stirling Knit Camp on Friday. There had been a lot of talk on Ravelry and elsewhere about the shambolic disorganisation that was the hall mark of this event but I decided that I was going to go to support the vendors of the Marketplace anyway.
I have to say at this point I did encounter several small examples of the general disorganisation myself. I had pre ordered my Marketplace two day ticket back in April but had never been sent a confirmation...got that one sorted out online in the end though. There was practically no signage to the event on Stirling Campus..if it hadn't been for the fact my OH works in the Pathfoot Building I'd have had no idea where to go on campus. There were no Goody Bags when I arrived...I did go back and get one later but really, it was barely worth the effort given that it contained mostly advertising literature and Stirling University pens, plus two small and not very interesting balls of yarn. The two areas of the Marketplace were several corridors and a steep flight of steps apart with no direction signs between them.....though I belive some of the vendors made their own signs and pinned then up. No Hall of Fame either.
Worst bit though was just after I arrived I was talking to one of the vendors I know and Jo herself came up with some piece of paperwork. I'm a friendly soul and she looked a bit grey round the edges so I smiled and said hello. She looked me up and down then turned on her heel and walked away without so much as a nod or a word. Was I annoyed? Yes. Was it my Ravelry badge that pissed her off? Who knows. I will say however it was bloody rude of her and totaly unprofessional behaviour by an event organiser. You just don't blow off the paying punters like that. At the very least you fix a plastic smile on your face and say "Nice to see you...hope you enjoy yourself!" two or three hundred times over the course of a day until your teeth ache. No?
Anyway, that's my moan. Nuff said. Lets get on with the rest of the day. The Marketplace was GREAT. There were lots of stalls with some totally fabulous things to buy, belive me. Yes, I did buy one or two things!
70% Baby Alpaca 30% Silk laceweight, from Abstract Cat. This was her first big show and I think she's a seller to watch in the future. Lovely stuff.
Superwash Blue Faced Leicester, from Artist's Palette Yarns.
Hand dyed Kid Mohair tops, from Freyalyn's Fibres. I've not spun mohair from tops before so am looking forwards to this.
I don't normally go to wool shows with "honey stirrer, pastry brush & wooden spoon" at the top of my shopping list but you know...when you see such things complete with pictures of cute sheep, you've just got to have them. From Fire & Fibre.
A giant ball of orange fibre, from Woolfish. She very kindly donated this to me to use when I'm teaching and demonstrating. I go through a lot of fibre doing this so it's a very welcome gift. The next Woolfish/St Abbs Festival is on Monday 30th August at St Abbs btw. Small but perfectly formed. I must try to get down there for a couple of hours.
Dido shawl pattern by Asa Tricosa, from the p/hop stand.
Miscellaneous items. Clockwise from top left...
Long cords for my Denise Interchangables from Jamie Possum. They're the new UK dealers for Denise needles and you can get all sorts of spares from them.
Stitch markers from Wibbo's Works, given to me by my friend Liz.
Sheep stitch marker from Atomic Knitting.
Washable ceramic buttons by Incomparable Buttons.
Silver ball earrings from Northern Lace Too.
Shawl pin and wooden buttons from Textile Garden. This last was an absolutely fabulous stand, with a vast selection of treasures on sale. Some people were getting really carried away with the credit cards here!
A copy of Issue One of the new UK spinning magazine Yarn Maker. This was literally hot off the press...it had only been printed in the last couple of days and the first copies were either sent out to advance subscribers or to the Northern Lace Too stand at the Marketplace. If you're a spinner in the UK I do urge you to buy and support this magazine. It's well written and beautifully laid out, full of interesting articles.
Finally, I didn't buy this but would like to mention it. This is a flyer from a very old Haldane Orkney that belongs to my spinning group, the Haddington Spinners. The flyer was completely knackered and the bobbin in bits and we really thought that the old wheel was only good for spares...then we decided as a last resort to show the flyer to the woodworking geniuses at Woodland Turnery. I handed it in at Woolfest and picked it up from them on Friday. Result....the mended flyer is as good as new and can you tell which is the new bobbin which was made by them? No, thought not. So the old Haldane is back in business and all for the very modest sum of £15.95. I was so pleased by this I promptly gave them the drive wheel of another damaged wheel to mend lol. I can set up and adjust wheels and even do some basic repairs but for expert help, go to Joan & Clive.
Finally I'll say again, I really enjoyed my day at the Marketplace. The shopping was excellent (far too excellent!) and I had the chance too meet up and chat with a lot of old friends including The Yarn Yard, Woolly Wormhead and Knitting on the Green. The chat and gossip is the best part of these events, really!
Da Boyz spent their day at home, in a sunbeam. Priorities...