Two weeks ago today I was at the 10th annual Waltham Abbey Wool Show…
It was a wonderful event and here’s a blog post all about that yarn filled day!
The organisers, Kate and Diana, invited me to attend as the shows VIP guest. Each year someone is invited to be a VIP guest, not only to open the show but also to be there to judge the visitors handmade competition which has become a fun tradition of the show and a definite highlight. Previous VIP guests have included Jeanette Sloan, Jane Crowfoot, Claire Montgomerie and Dedri Uys so it was an absolute honour for me to be asked and I’m so happy that I said yes!
It meant that I got to visit a yarn show which I had not been to before and it was also a fantastic opportunity to meet lots of people, some familiar faces but also lots of new ones too. Thank you if you were there and came over to say hello… it really made my day! 🥰
Waltham Abbey is about 90 miles north from where I live and as I was bringing a big collection of my blankets with me, we drove up, setting off very early…
I was at the show together with my husband and daughter who often come along with me and it’s always lovely to have their support…💙
The show officially opened at 10am and there was an actual ribbon to cut – how special is that! After a few words acknowledging and thanking all the huge amounts of hard work that goes into bringing us yarn gatherings like this, and wishing everyone a wonderful day, I cut that ribbon! 😄
That was such a lovely moment I won’t forget… 💖
Photos followed with Jeane Lea, who is the local Mayor, next to the sheep mascot of the show!
Judging the show competition at lunchtime was a privilege. This years theme was a ‘Theme of 10’ and people had been invited to enter either a piece of crochet or knitting with their interpretation of the number 10 to celebrate the 10th annual show. It was just for fun with a goodie bag and voucher to spend on any stand at the show as a prize.
At first I found it a little stressful because I genuinely wanted to give everyone first prize! How to choose just one winner when it’s obvious everyone had put so much thought and attention into their creations. All the entries were simply wonderful.
However, for me Cheryl from ‘Bored Knitless London’ (Find her Instagram here: @bkntlssldn) was actually the obvious and well deserved winner with her stunning knitted dress which she was wearing on the day.
Knitted using 10 whole skeins of yarn with zero wastage, knitted in 10 days and including 10 rows of ribbed texture at the sides… it was simply fantastic and certainly embraced the theme of 10 wholeheartedly!
And Cheryl’s reaction to winning first prize was priceless… a really wonderful moment I will cherish!
Second prize went to Jurgita for crocheting a statement necklace with 10 flowers. It was so beautiful…
And third prize went to Patricia for crocheted socks made up of 10 different colourful stripes. She told us that she had made many pairs of crochet socks for her family and friends using the same design and she had used all the spare leftover yarn to create these little socks.
What a fun part of the show that was… 😄💙
I had been allocated a show exhibitor stand for the whole day so that I could display all my blankets. Meeting and chatting to so many lovely visitors throughout the day and showcasing my blankets was really fabulous. Lots of ‘ooohs and aaahs’ as people saw my blankets up close and got to feel and touch all the textures too! 😄
And people even brought along their own finished ‘Coastal Crochet’ makes to show me! I really loved that… 💖
Meeting the people at my neighbouring stands was lovely. Right next to me was Gurinda from ‘Yay for Crochet’!
It was lovely to chat and Gurinda has a crochet pattern book out too which looks really fun…
And of course it was a joy for me to look around at all the other exhibitors and stands. Creativity, colour and plenty of yarn was order of the day!
There were so many wonderful stands. I can’t possibly mention everyone here so do look at the full 2023 exhibitor list:
Louise from ‘Sincerely Louise’ was at the show. https://www.sincerelylouise.co.uk
Our paths have crossed at various shows and events over the years and it’s always a joy to see her and her fantastic animal heads!
Meeting Ishrat from Fruitful Fushion for the very first time was brilliant…
Ishrat and I have followed each other on social media for a while so to meet her and see the gorgeous yarns up close was a treat. My daughter purchased a skein of yarn and wants to crochet a shawl or scarf. The colourway is called ‘Noticing Nature’ and really is so very beautiful…
Kitey from the Yarn Whisperer was there: https://www.yarnwhisperer.co.uk
As well as RiverKnits: https://riverknits.uk
As you can see it was busy at times so I couldn’t get up close to all the stands although of course the show had quieter times later in the afternoon.
I discovered Jo from Lilli Put Wight who creates wonderful things from coastal finds near her home on the Isle of Wight:
I treated myself to some seaglass stitch markers… Aren’t they lovely?!
The show is held in a big hotel so there are different rooms and spaces, plus a large central place for seating… a nice opportunity to stop for a snack or sit and crochet!! 😃
So there you go… as you can see it was a wonderful yarn show and it was such a wonderful experience to be a part of it all!
Being in January it was a perfect pick me up for what can be a cold dark month here in the UK. It got dark soon after we left and headed south back to the coast… but it was certainly worth the trip!
Happy Crocheting Everyone… 😄🧶💙