IBYC? IndieBurgh Yarn Crawl… aaahh!
Saturday 21st June, Saturday just past, was the longest day, ie midsummer. It has also been pretty warm recently here in Edinburgh. Not the combination you would immediately think of for encouraging the buying of yarn in all its possible permutations.
But Jess of Ginger Twist Studios had the brilliant marketing idea of organising the inaugural Indie Burgh Yarn Crawl, a crawl for crafters around the three independent yarn shops in town; ie her own Ginger Twist Studio on London Rd, Kathy’s Knits in Broughton St, and Be Inspired Fibres on Marchmont Rd.
Not exactly a competitive challenge, it’s only right that it should be up to the individual what they buy and how much they choose to spend, but a challenge none the less, to visit all three shops in one day.
Our group has been discussing this vaguely for ages, since the date was first announced; who would be in morning teams and who in afternoon teams; whether to meet for lunch as we pass like ships in the night… In the end, we had one large morning team and one small afternoon team, and most of the large team met on the pavement at Mei’s lovely Be Inspired shop at 11am.
The shop was already pretty busy at that point, so rather than wait for the final person to arrive, we all just piled in. (This is the point where I am kicking myself for not taking photos) I had a hum and I had a haw, but three fat slugs of Cascade 220 spoke to me, two purple, one lipstick pink, and an idea of a colourwork cushion, or somesuch. Oh a couple of balls of Excelana 4ply popped into my basket as well (I have a wee stash of blue and white, just wanted to add some more).
Hit and run, well not quite… those of us who had shopped went and sat outside (thanks for the chairs, Mei) while we waited for the others to finish, and timed it really nicely for the noon bus down to our favourite cafe, Bon Papillon.
Unable to resist a wee poke around McAree while we were there, I got out without buying, and we headed in to our big reserved table at Bon Papillon, where another two people joined us, we were now 10 people in our team (the afternoon players only two!)
We quickly fell into our usual routine in the cafe, and before we realised it, almost 2 hours had passed, time to be moving on! It’s a nice walk from Howe Street to Broughton St, level for most of it along the edge of Queen St Gardens, and the sun was shining. (with a quick pop into Concrete Wardrobe to say hello to James, and bumped into his other half walking the dog just outside Kathy’s) we headed down the steps to yet another packed store.
Wandered round a bit, coveting the glorious skein of ginger Parkin Titus, ogled the Blacker Yarns, fondled some Rennies, but opted for two lovely balls of hairy Wensleydale, in deep teal and bright lime. I have to say everyone was very pleased I had brought my big bag of £2 coins, straight from the jar… they are saved especially for such events, but I have made a major dent in them this weekend.
Back up the hill we decided to hop on a bus to our final destination, Ginger Twist Studio. We had a laugh on the way about whether Jess would have a bouncer on the door, or a sign that read ‘Only 6 children allowed in the sweetie shop at any one time’. And well she might!
The shop was packed, with people spilling onto the pavement, peering in the window enviously, hoping another knitter wasn’t going to buy all the yarn, and failing all else, loitering with intent in the chocolate shop two doors along…
I had my eye on two quiet balls of West Yorkshire Spinners Signature yarn, one in dove grey and one in yellow ochre, as I’d not tried it before. So I judged my moment, squeezed in to the shelf, grabbed the two balls and quickly squeezed through the rest of the way towards the back of the shop to Jess ~ if you’ve been to Ginger Twist you’ll know how far that is… NOT!
That was it, lovely fun, great company, good lunch, lots of laughs and finally, here’s my haul for the day. Roll on more knitting time…