Last week I visited a Trade Show in Birmingham. I woke early to catch the train, and I even scrubbed up and wore a dress (a welcome change from my holey leggings and baggy jumper!!)
First stop of the day was a presentation by Warren Knight of Think#digitalfirst. Warren is a social media marketing expert and business builder and always presents an interesting, factual and useful seminar. After listening to Warren for just 45 minutes, I have a list of useful sites and tips that I need to check out and put to good use.
Next, I called by the Search Press stand where I caught up with the lovely people I deal with and had a good chat with Amanda Perkins who was signing copies of her latest crochet book called “Rainbow Crocheted Blankets”, which is packed full of colourful and cosy throws and blankets of all shapes and sizes. I was delighted so see my next book being advertised on a rather large board.
Time for a break and a natter with another knit and crochet designer, Sarah Hazel. Sarah is a knit and crochet designer, author, blogger and tutor, and we chatted like we’d know each other for ages, which is always a good sign. Sarah recently ran a workshop in India for charity ‘Knit for Peace’, and I really enjoyed watching her Instagram feed and seeing all the brightly coloured textiles and trims that she found locally. I was delighted when she gave me a couple of strips of some beautiful embroidered brocade. I will use these wisely and carefully to trim something lovely.
I popped by the Toft stand to see the lovely ladies there and see their latest issue of Toft Quarterley in person, which I was delighted to tech edit for them. It’s the spring issue and features a very cute dog on the front cover. For just £8 it’s packed full of great designs for both knitting and crochet, from accessories and homewares to clothing and toys.
After a quick chat with Kerry and Jo I headed off for a meeting with F&W Media. I do a lot of freelance tech editing work for them, and it was the perfect opportunity to meet in person and chat about future work. I also managed a quick chat with Rooster Yarns and I had a good squish and a smooch of the gorgeous yarns from Baa Ram Ewe – I was completely inspired by their stand and even went away and bought myself a skein of Titus in Shade Bramley Baths, (the most beautiful soft blue), which I can’t wait to dive into.
I managed to escape the giant tinsel hedgehog (my arch enemy!!!) and enjoyed a chat with the very lovely Erika Knight, Emma Wright (EmmaKnitted) and Georgia Farrell. It was interesting to see the industry through the eyes of two very popular and talented knitwear designers.
I had a lovely train journey home looking through my samples and shade cards and was even recognised by a fellow traveller from my Crochet Now column photo (Crochet Now were giving out copies of the latest issue). I heard my name shouted across the carriage and she held up the magazine and smiled. It turned out that she is an indie dyer and we had a lovely chat across the aisle about yarn .
What a day – I came home with my head full of ideas and inspiration for new projects. It’s such a shame that there’s only one of me and only two hands, when I could do with twenty!
I’m felt so glad that I work in such a creative and inspiring industry and I’m honoured to be part of it and to share my passion with you too.