Thursday, 3 October 2013

2013 Round Up

A big THANK YOU to all of you who made the Great London Yarn Crawl 2013 so amazing!

Hello everyone!
We are finally recovered from the big event and we want to say THANK YOU! Thank you for your enthusiasm, your excitement, and your patience with inevitable hold ups and mini-crises that occured on the day. 
We are very pleased to share with you all that after our expenses were paid out (things like the volunteer t-shirts, goody bags, travelcards, Eventzilla fees, etc) we raised £305 for Refuge! Well done to all of you for being part of what we hope will become an annual event on the London knitterary calendar!
We are now in the process of sending out thank yous to our lovely volunteers, the shops, and of course our generous sponsors, and we hope if you run into them too that you tell them how much you appreciate them supporting the GLYC.
A few last updates and requests:
1) Please let us know if you blogged about the event or see any other coverage of it elsewhere as we’d like to keep a record on our Social Media Shout-outs page on the GLYC website. We’ve got a few up now so check out what your fellow yarn crawlers have written about the day!
2) If you’ve got photos from the day, we’d love to see them! Please share them with our Great London Yarn Crawl group that we have going on Flickr. And thank you to those of you who have already uploaded a bunch of great pics!
3) We’ve gotten a bunch of great feedback from those of you who have filled out the survey already. If you haven't done the survey yet, please do - it's the best way to tell us what you thought went well, and what you thought needs work for next year's event. If you haven’t received the survey, please check in your spam filter in case it didn’t make it to your inbox. We’ve used the address you gave us when you purchased your tickets. PLEASE take the five minutes it takes to respond to the survey. We’ve already learned a lot from this first year but we know that with your input next year’s event can be even better!
There are now threads on the Ravelry group for you to post pictures of your acquisitions on the day (yarn or otherwise!), and your WIPs/FOs. We hope you'll share your projects - we'd love to see what you're working on!
And finally, thank you, thank you, THANK YOU again! We'll see you next year...
Alli and Rachel

Thursday, 19 September 2013

Just one more!

With all the excitement of meeting our awesome volunteers and getting the goody bags ready for this weekend we almost forgot to tell you about one more wonderful door prize for our after-party!

Our good friend Kathleen Lawton-Trask loves knitting at the movies and has put together a fantastic collection of knits inspired by the moving image in her new book, Silver Screen Knits - due out imminently!

Kathleen has pulled together an incredible group of designers for this book including Ann Weaver, Veera Valimaki, Karida Collins and Danielle Romanetti. The patterns take their inspiration from various classic films but modernly-styled photographs and yarn suggestions show how these pieces are truly timeless. There's even a couple of classics for the guys!

L to R: Meryl Streep Chevron Lace Cardigan, Katherine Hepburn Fancy Trouser Socks, Faye Dunaway Traveling Top
Kathleen (who has a sweater in Deep Fall 2013 issue of Knitty), also makes a contribution with her Marilyn Monroe Cables Sweater. 

Cozy cables for comforting pre-winter knitting
The book, available in print or as a download will be available in late-September but TWO lucky winners on Saturday will win download copies for their digital knitting libraries! Kathleen will also be joining us on the day on the Purple route, so be sure to say hello, or knit with her over a pint at the after-party!

See you Saturday!

Tuesday, 17 September 2013

Ready, steady...go!

All route information is now available! You can find links to pdf downloads of route details on the Routes page, but we'll save you a click and give them here are as well:

Blue Route
Green Route
Orange Route
Purple Route
Red Route

Details regarding starting points and meeting times are included. The shops know when you're coming, and are look forward to your visit. You've got a fantastic group of volunteer Team Captains who will be leading you on your yarny adventure. And the clock is ticking down...

We hope you're all getting excited - it's going to be a great day! See you all on Saturday...

Friday, 13 September 2013

The newest yarnie on the block

Here we are, one week out from the Great London Yarn Crawl, and we've got one last sponsor to tell you about. 

Linda is a brand new voice on the UK yarn dyeing scene, and already she's making a big splash. Colour has always been a huge part of her life. As a child, she was the always the one elbow-deep in the finger paints, glorying at the amazing way colours would mix. As an adult, she made the move from Canada to London for a masters degree in Fine Art Painting at Chelsea College of Art and Design in 2006.
In 2013, she found the perfect combination - mixing subtle, glowing paint glazes with her steadily growing passion for knitting and all things yarn-y. She initially began dyeing for her own projects but with repeated requests for custom colours this quickly grew into dyeing yarn for others. And at the beginning of this month, she opened her own shop - Kettle Yarn Co. - and hasn't looked back since.
Linda's colours are amazing - rich, luscious, luxurious and captivating are adjectives that spring to mind. And she stocks an amazing collection of luxury bases sourced from British mills, with fibers that range from Bluefaced Leicester to alpaca to silk to camel. Yarn crawlers are going to find an extra special sample of one of Linda's buttery soft luxury yarns in their goody bags. She's also one of our fabulous Team Captains, so those of you on the Orange Route will have a chance to pick her brains to your hearts content.
Linda is offering GLYC-ers a special 15% discount off their first order until the end of October if they sign up to the mailing list - just send her a message from the Kettle Yarn Co. Etsy shop and include your email and your route to get your discount code.
You can find Linda online at her blog, From the Purlside, and on Ravelry, Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest. And a special huge thanks to Linda for her support - she was the first person we approached about volunteering, and her enthusiasm has been unbelievable. 
We've got one week to go to the event, and we hope you are all getting excited - we are! See you soon.

Thursday, 12 September 2013

Gorgeous accessory knits from Scotland

The first pattern of Ysolda's that I ever saw was also, coincidentally, the cover pattern from the first issue of Knitty I ever discovered - Arisaig from Knitty Fall 2005. I fell in love with this sweater - the delicate lace, the deep ribbing at the waist, the contrasting edging and the long ties...even more then the sweater, I loved the story of her knitting grandfather, and of her knitting this sweater with yarn that she inherited from his stash.

The elements that characterise Ysolda's designs - quirky, unexpected, detailed, with a sense of history - have carried through her vast portfolio of self-published designs, as well as the patterns she's contributed to, Twist Collective, and numerous books.

When we contacted Ysolda about being a sponsor of GLYC 2013, she enthusiastically agreed, and has sent us a signed copy of her self-published "Whimsical Little Knits 3".

This collection of nine accessory patterns runs the gamut from socks to hats to shawls to mittens. There's even a toy robot to knit.

My current favorite is Oxidize, a hat with raised knit columns winding across a reverse stockinette background that can be done in one or two colors. I desperately want to knit this in silver grey and charcoal for someone for Christmas...

Many thanks to Ysolda and her team for their contribution to the GLYC after party prize pile! We can't wait to send all these lovelies home with the lucky winners!

A little bit of Max's World is coming to the GLYC

Artist Max Alexander of Max's World takes her knitting to a whole other level - turning it into jewellery, and sculptures and even award-winning knitted stop-motion animations that she calls knitimations.

A graduate of the Camberwell College of Arts in London where she studied sculpture, Max enjoys the creativity that comes from taking yarn and a set of needles and making something that wasn't there before - just like the rest of us!

Max's famous knitting octopus!
While some of Max's projects have a darker twist (like a severed demon's head!), most of her projects embrace a sweetness of spirit and unexpected whimsy that are sure to bring a smile. Her most popular? A knitted octopus that made the rounds of several blogs a few years back and is now available as a pattern on Ravelry.

We're very grateful that Max got in touch when she heard about the Great London Yarn Crawl and offered some of her wonderful creations as door prizes for our after party. 

Two lucky winners will win one of Max's jewellery creations, along with a notecard of the knitting octopus!

The Brooch: For the Fashionable Knitter

Who says knitters can't wear bling?
We also have some coupons for 10% off your next order in Max's online shop. There are only 20 though, so they'll be randomly tucked into the goody bags. Make sure to see if you're one of the lucky ones to find one!

Tuesday, 10 September 2013

GLYC Update

Well, it was a whirlwind weekend at GLYC headquarters here in SW London. After much discussion and debate, we decided to cancel the Yellow Route, as it was severely undersubscribed. Those Yarn Crawlers very graciously agreed to switch to other routes, so we ended up with four routes more-or-less sold out, and one route two thirds filled. We are thrilled that there's been such a great response, and we are really looking forward to a fabulous day out!

Upcoming this week and next: more details will be posted here about the rest of our fantastic sponsors. We will also be posting the details of the timings of the routes and start-up meeting places next week,so stay tuned. Finally, this weekend we will be meeting up with all the volunteers to go over how things will run on the day, and get everyone psyched up for some fabulous enabling!

There's lots of chatter going on the Ravelry boards for each team, so go over and join in the conversation. There's some serious stash enhancement in store for some of our crawlers - they have grand plans!

Monday, 9 September 2013

A custom colorway for the GLYC

One of our most recent yarn prize sponsors is the lovely Tanja, the dyer behind The Knitting Swede.

Tanja grew up in Sweden, but has been living in the UK since 1996. She dyes beautiful tonal semi-solids, bright variegated blends and fantastic gradients that slide gently from one color to the next. At the moment, most of the yarns in her shop are BFL, one of my all time favorite fibers. 

When Tanja responded to our initial email, she let slip that she had been inspired to dye up a special colorway just for the GLYC - she's offering up this skein as a door prize.
 In addition to this gorgeous skein of yarn, she is also donating a copy of her gorgeous shawl pattern, Rubies and Steel.

The GLYC colorway would be perfect for the accent color in this shawl, right?

Many thanks to Tanja for her generosity - she's said she might be able to join us at the after party on Saturday at The Mulberry Bush, and you'll be able to talk to her about her gorgeous yarns in person.

Friday, 6 September 2013

Handmade in the UK - a newcomer's romantic view

Emily Wessel is one half of Tin Can Knits – the modern knit design company that brought you the Pop Blanket, Antler Cardigan, and loves to size their adorable seamless sweaters from baby all the way up to adult 4XL!

Two years ago, Emily arrived in the UK, on a quest for adventure with a plan to grow her knit design company from a part time pursuit to a full time career.  Adventure (and plenty of late nights!) ensued - she is now married to an adorable Scot, has a kitten and a lovely home office, and has published four books: 9 Months of Knitting, Pacific Knits, Great White North, and most recently Handmade in the UK.

Handmade in the UK is a very special collection – it features yarns from amazing UK indie dyers including Juno Fibre Arts, The Uncommon Thread, Old Maiden Aunt, and Skein Queen, and sketches of the inspiring cityscapes and landscapes that Emily loves in her new home.  The lace designs are complex, organic, and delicious to knit, but also wearable and elegant.

As a newbie to the UK, Emily is still exploring the knitting and design scene, and will be joining in on the Great London Yarn Crawl – You'll see her on the Orange Route, or at the pub afterwards!  Be sure to introduce yourself and say hello (she's happy to sign books!). You can find Tin Can Knits books and patterns at Loop and at other knit shops.

Each Yarn Crawl goody bag includes a code for a free copy of either the Antler Cardigan or Lush Cardigan pattern.  And if you join us in the pub for the draw, you have the chance to win one of 3 copies of Handmade in the UK!

Thursday, 5 September 2013

Uncommon mini skeins from The Uncommon Thread

Our second Brighton-based mini skein donating yarnie is The Uncommon Thread. Ce's yarns are spectacular, complex color treats. Those of you who go to loop on a regular basis may have seen their collection of The Uncommon Thread's yarns - every time I go in I find myself getting stuck petting the skeins for untold minutes.
A hat knit by Rachel and modeled by Allison in The Uncommon Thread BFL light DK

Ce has generously donated mini skeins in three of her bases: Uncommon Everyday (100% superwash merino), Merino Fingering (also 100% superwash merino) and Silky Merino Fingering (75% superwash merino/25% mulberry silk). The colors showcase the range of her color palette - from the cool Plata, to the rich shades of Seascape to the vibrant and o-so-aptly-named Pow!

We are so excited to have The Uncommon Thread on board as a sponsor, and for those of you unfamiliar with this indie dyer, we hope we've introduced you to a new addiction! You can find The Uncommon Thread on their website, on Ravelry, on Facebook and on Twitter. Thanks so much Ce for your generosity!

Wednesday, 4 September 2013

Mini skein madness from Lioness Arts

The goody bag goodies are starting to mount up, and we think you're going to be excited to see what's included. We're going to keep some of the details a surprise, but we've been lucky enough to get a couple of local-ish (as in, Brighton-based) independent yarn dyers on board with samples of their gorgeous yarns. Our first mini skein contributor is Lioness Arts.

When we reached out to Dani about potential sharing some of her lovely colorways with GLYC participants, she responded enthusiastically, with mini skeins and with a pattern that uses small amounts of yarn - both will be in the goody bags on the 21st of September!

There's a Lioness Arts group on Ravelry where you can see lots of projects using her gorgeous yarns, and you can see more of her dyepot magic in her Etsy shop sales listings. We are thrilled to have Lioness Arts on board as a sponsor, and those of you on the Blue Route will be able to pick Dani's brain in person as she's joining us for the day. Thanks so much Dani, and we'll see you in a couple of weeks!

PS - Don't forget, there are only a few days left to get your tickets. Registration closes at midnight this coming Saturday, and we don't want you miss out! Get your tickets now.

Another GLYC Update!!

Is everyone getting ready to pet some yummy yarn? We know we sure are...

Quick reminder that this is the final week to get your tickets to the inaugural Great London Yarn Crawl! Registration closes on Saturday, 7 September at midnight!

Two-thirds of the event's tickets are already gone - with half of our routes pretty much sold out. Each of the Green, Orange, and Purple routes only have one ticket left on each!

Luckily, the Blue and Red routes are still only half full and there's lots of room on the Yellow route.

Next week we'll be posting info here on the blog (as well as on our Ravelry group and Facebook page) your meeting point info and times! For right now (and your planning purposes) you should give yourself enough time to get to the vicinity of first shop on your route about 20 minutes before the official start time for your route:

Red and Blue routes: Meeting time 10:00am (start time at 10:15am)
Green and Orange routes: Meeting time 10:15am (start time at 10:30am)
Purple and Yellow routes: Meeting time at 10:45am (start time at 11:00am)

If you're thinking about joining us "at the last minute", you'll miss out! We've got a lot to organise once ticket sales are done (hello, goody bags!), so once registration closes, that's it!

Looking forward to seeing you soon!

Monday, 2 September 2013

PomPom Quarterly - Handmade Chic

Do you love pompoms as much as I do? There's something inherently fun about these little yarn-y blobs of colour that just add a little bit of extra cheerfulness to whatever they're adorning.
So when I got my first issue of PomPom Quarterly before moving to London (their inaugural issue as it turns out!), I was immediately smitten. Their patterns are modern but styled with a vintage twist and the stunning photography shows them off beautifully. 
Those green mittens from the latest issue? Yep, totally knitting myself a pair.
In additional to the drool-worthy knits and photography, PomPom also features a lovely article or two. My recent favourite? A behind-the-scenes at John Arbon Textiles by Canadian transplant Emily Foden in the summer issue. Then of course there's always something extra - like the recipe for tea cakes or instructions for making a hand-bound journal that appeared in the spring issue. And each print copy also features a unique Ravelry download code. Perfect!

PomPom Quarterly are very generously donating a year's subscription to one lucky winner at the after-party for the Great London Yarn Craw. All subscribers of the magazine receive their issue beautifully wrapped with a handwritten note. Something wonderful to look forward to in your mailbox!

Admission to the after-party and your chance to win this fabulous prize is only possible with your ticket to the GLYC, so why not join us for a day out of yarn-y fun? This is your last week to get tickets, so don't delay - registration closes on Saturday, 7 September at midnight!

Friday, 30 August 2013

Meet rock+purl

Have y'all* met Ruth? Because if you haven't, you really should... Ruth Garcia-Alcantud is the super-talented designer behind rock+purl, and tech editor extraordinaire for such luminaries as Mercedes Tarasovich-Clark, Pom Pom Quarterly and Knit Now magazine. She also teaches classes, blogs and Tweets, and is a generally fabulous person.

When Allison and I discussed local designers to approach for donations for the GLYC after-party, Ruth was the first person I thought of. So I was thrilled when we got her return email full of enthusiasm and support! Although she sadly won't be able to join us on the day, Ruth is generously donating pattern codes for the goody bags - you can check out her long list of designs on her website or on her Ravelry designer page.

In addition, she has donated two prizes for the after-party: two lucky Crawlers will receive her newly-revamped Spiralized Slouch Hat pattern (the version shown on the Ravelry page was knitted by one of our other sponsors, Countess Ablaze!), and a skein of gorgeous yarn (Artesano British Wool Chunky in Mushroom or Grey) to use for the project.

From her email: "The hat is a slouchy beret with plenty of room for heads full of hair and big ideas! The lacy pattern is a girly touch and you can close up the hat with buttons of your choice. The patterns will include the Ravelry download code for the winners to place it in their library."

Many thanks to Ruth for her enthusiastic support, and we hope to see her at future yarn crawls!

* Little American-isms like this (particularly from the South) are a sure sign that the blog post you're reading was written by Rachel, and not by The Toronto Connection, aka Allison.

Wednesday, 28 August 2013

Sock yarn glory from Inked Yarns!

When we were looking for indy dyers to approach for door prizes, we discovered that Ravelry has a really cool search feature - you can limit the geographical range of the yarnies you're looking at. We were delighted to find that there are quite a few independent yarn painters within 60 miles of London, and we're thrilled to have Sarah of Inked Yarn on Etsy as one of our door prize sponsors.

Sarah is very keen on supporting British wool wherever possible. She has some British alpaca in her shop at present, with  more British wools to be added later in the year. Although she's still fairly new in the indie dyer world, she really enjoys playing with colour and hopes that others like what she does! We think you will...

Sarah has sent us two skeins of her gorgeous handdyed sock yarn, and three sets of stitch markers for door prizes. First up is her Doris Sock, a high twist 80% merino/10% cashmere/10% nylon blend, 365 m/100 gr, in the "Sketch" colorway.

 Next up is Bettie Sock (50% superwash merino/50% silk), 400 m/100gr in "Peppercorn".

Finally, there are the stitch markers (which I had a tough time photographing, so sorry if these aren't terribly clear - I didn't want to tear the bags open!)

 A couple of pairs of pink stitch markers,

and my favorites - a set with Alice in Wonderland-inspired charms!

Thanks very much to Sarah for her generous contributions, and be sure to make it to the after party for a chance to win some of these goodies!

Tuesday, 27 August 2013

Early-bird ticket contest: We have a winner!

A very big thank you to all of you who purchased tickets and let your fibre friends know about our event!

Our original Soakbox contest for early-bird ticket holders closed last night at midnight and we're very happy to announce that we have a winner!

This very yummy, yarn-y prize
will be going to Sue L. of Hampton Hill in southwest London. She got her ticket early and says she chose the Orange route because "I've used Loop as an online shop and its always lovely to put a face to the name. Knit with Attitude seemed to be completely different too but in all honesty, I'd be happy with all of the routes - it was almost criminal having to choose one against the other!".

Congratulations Sue! We've sent you an email to find out how you'd like us to get your prize to you.

You can meet Sue and lots of other fun knitters and fibre-loving folk on the first ever GLYC on 21st September. Tickets are still available - but not for long! Our deadline for ticket purchases is 7th September so grab your best stitch buddies and make a plan to join us!

Ticket update - the Green and Purple routes are almost all sold out but we still have room on the Orange, Red, Blue and Yellow routes. If there's a route you've had your eye on, better snap it up soon!

Monday, 26 August 2013

Village Haberdashery

The Village Haberdashery began life as an online source for fabric, notions and yarn, but opened a bricks and mortar store earlier this year. On the day we visited, they had just gotten in a shipment of Blue Sky Alpacas yarn (including Spud and Chloe sweater!), and let us go pawing through the boxes to check out the colors.

For GLYC folks, Annie is offering a 10% discount on purchases made on the day. So if you like to combine your yarny crafting with anything fabric related, be sure to pick the Blue, Green or Purple routes so you can pay them a visit!

Don't forget - our early bird contest ends tonight at 23:59 pm, so if you'd like a chance to win an original Soakbox, go and get your tickets now!

Friday, 23 August 2013

Sweet yarn from SweetGeorgia

Like a lot of other knitters, I'm also a mom. And when my kid is at school and I'm not totally caught up in family stuff, one of the other hats I wear is as sales rep for Canadian indie-dyed SweetGeorgia Yarns

Felicia Lo and her team dye the exquisite SweetGeorgia yarns by hand in small batches in their Vancouver studio. In addition to only dying protein-based yarns, they also dye luxurious spinning fibres, and always in the bold, super-saturated colours that the company has become known for.

With SweetGeorgia yarns now available in a few more shops in the UK, we're excited to have them support the GLYC as a sponsor! Lucky for us, but even luckier for YOU as participants, Felicia has sent TWO door prizes for our after party:

Flowers not included: Twig Shawl pattern and skein of SGY Silk Mist
First up - a gorgeous skein of SweetGeorgia Silk Mist in English Ivy, and accompanying Twig Shawl, which is a perfect pattern for this yarn!


SGY CashSilk Lace the sweet Shattered Sun Shawl pattern
Two - Another gorgeous skein, this time SweetGeorgia CashSilk Lace in Glacier, partnered with the Shattered Sun Shawl

Both patterns are designed by the very talented Felicia herself!

If you can't wait until the Yarn Crawl to see if your luck runs to winning one of these fab door prizes, I can tell you that Stitch Solihull is carrying both of these yarns, and a couple of others as well! You can also find the CashSilk Lace at Purlescence online.

Thanks again to Felicia and everyone at SweetGeorgia Yarns, and good luck to everyone at the after party!

Thursday, 22 August 2013

Knitty project bag tags to the rescue!

Knitty project bag tags: what every project bag needs
Rachel and I are both long-time fans of They've been a meaningful presence in the knitting interwebs for 10 years now and helped to launch tons of designers - gaining them a wider audience of followers and the appreciation of knitters everywhere.

They're also fab supporters of the knitting community offline. When we decided to move forward with Yarn in the City: The Great London Yarn Crawl, Knitty was the first publication we sent our press release too. Perhaps you saw them help us promote the launch of ticket sales for this year's event?

A while back, Knitty editor Amy Singer had her knitting bag stolen out of her car - with her WIP! Horrors! When the thieves realised their mistake, they ditched the bag project along with the project inside - ack!

Luckily for Amy, some nice person found the bag and saw the yarn. Bringing it home to a family member who was a knitter, that nice knitter thought, "Someone must be missing this project," but there was nothing to identify who the bag belonged to! Amy's luck was definitely turning around because the nice knitter found a business card in the bag from an appointment that Amy had been at, they called the number on the card to ask if anyone had lost a knitting bag and lo, Amy was tracked down and reunited with her project!

But since Amy always has good ideas, she thought that this was an excellent opportunity to remind people that sometimes we get separated, however unintentionally from our projects and that just because our project bags might be in another bag, we should still have them labeled so that they can find their way back to us. And so Knitty project bag tags were born.

Luckily for all participants in the GLYC, Amy is a very generous person and sent us some so that we can share them with all of you! Everyone will be getting one of these awesome babies in their goody bags:

The front and back of the Knitty project bag tags
A big thanks to Amy and the whole Knitty team!

Have you got your tickets yet? Don't forget if you get yours before 11:59pm on August 26th you'll be entered to win an original Soakbox!

Tuesday, 20 August 2013

An update, and some housekeeping

Hello everyone! We hope you're having a fabulous summer, and enjoying the lovely weather we've been having. This is the first "real" British summer for me, and it's been spectacular.

Allison and I wanted to give you a quick update on how things are shaping up here at GLYC headquarters: the routes are starting to fill as we get closer to September. As of this morning, the Green, Red, Purple and Orange Routes are all about half-full, while there is still plenty of space left in Blue and Yellow. Don't forget, if you register before 23:59 on 26 August, you'll be entered in our early bird contest to win an original Soakbox.

If you are holding off on registering for any reason, please be aware that registration will be closing at 23:59 on 7th September. This is so we have plenty of time to order Travel Cards and finalise numbers for the goodie bags and our fabulous contributors. So please don't forget the deadline!


We have seven lovely volunteers so far, and could use 3-5 more. If you're interested in volunteering, please let us know via email at greatlondonyarncrawl AT gmail DOT com.


We've now got an updated Sponsors page if you want to check out who's involved in this extravaganza. These are all the wonderful people who have donated door prizes, goody bag goodies, and other sundry bits and pieces. We'll be blogging about everyone, but we also wanted to give them some props before we publish all those posts, so go check them out!

Stay tuned for further details on prizes and sponsors in the next few days, and don't forget to get your tickets!

Monday, 19 August 2013

Do you Knit with Attitude?

Because if you do, you should probably pick on of the routes that will take you to Knit with Attitude on Stoke Newington High Street.

This shop has a wide range of products, ranging from yarns to needles and hook, patterns, accessories and other goodies, all of which have been choosen to be as environmentally friendly as possible. Knit with Attitude is offering 10% off on all purchases made by participants during the yarn crawl, and they are also including 10% off vouchers in all of the goodie bags. So even if you don't get to visit them on the day, you'll still have a chance to save! And many thanks to Maya and everyone at Knit with Attitude for their support.

Don't forget, our early bird registration contest closes at midnight on 26 August - don't wait to get your tickets!

Friday, 16 August 2013

A very special guest

Allison and I are very pleased to be able to share some very exciting news with you today; we have a special guest joining us at the GLYC in September. I first met our special guest (if you can call it "meeting" someone if you obsessively listen to their podcast, and have knitting dreams in which you hear their lovely, soothing voice doing the play-by-play narration of your worst knitting disasters) when I fell back in love with knitting sometime in 2006, and got myself an MP3 player and discovered that there were people out there who recorded themselves talking about knitting and then put those recordings on the internet for people to download and listen to for free!

Approximately seven years later, and Brenda Dayne and Cast On are still going strong. We were very lucky to meet Brenda last autumn at the Plug-and-Play Pembrokeshire retreat, and the signature line in her emails is pretty much right on target: she is warm, polite, intelligent and funny. We are thrilled to announce that Brenda is joining us this year for the inaugural Yarn in the City: The Great London Yarn Crawl. She will be crawling along with you on one of the routes, and has graciously agreed to grace us all with her soothing voice as the emcee of our after party.

Brenda is also supporting the event with a whole pile of fabulous door prizes for the after party. First up, one lucky knitter will go home with an electronic copy of Brenda's upcoming book Welsh for Rainbow.
This book contains stories and gorgeous patterns inspired by "the small country to the left of England". You can see all the currently available patterns on the Ravelry page for the book.

In addition to a copy of her book, Brenda is also donating yarn for Now in a Minute, her fabulous shawl designed for gradient-dyed yarns, first published in the Spring+Summer 2013 issue of Knitty.

This is a set of Unique Sheep Pashmi Gradiance yarn (80% superwash merino/10% cashmere/10% nylon) in the colorway "Serengeti". It will be a fabulous shawl, and I'm sorely tempted to lose it (into my stash) on the way to the pub in September.

Finally, Brenda will be coming to London with a massive pile of books that she is donating for door prizes:

We are so pleased that Brenda is able to join us, and we are very grateful for her generosity and support. It's going to be a great day in September!

Tuesday, 13 August 2013

I'm a better knitter because of Kate Atherley


It's Allison here writing today's post about our next prize, and I'm really excited about this prize because (gush alert!) the title of this blog post says it all really: I'm a better knitter because of Kate Atherley.

Some of you may recognize Kate's name as she's the Senior Technical Editor for But in addition to her duties for Knitty, she's also an amazing knitting instructor, teaching at many of the yarn shops in the knitting-mecca that is Toronto, Canada. 

Kate is also a prolific sock knitter and shares many teaching tips on her blog Wise Hilda Knits. It made sense that Kate would naturally progress to sharing her experience with a wider audience so came about her first book Beyond Knit and Purl.

Kate's first book - and not just for new knitters!

From the Cooperative Press website:

"Beyond Knit and Purl is the knitting book you always wished you'd had when you started but didn't.
This book is not just for beginning knitters. Even those who've been knitting for years will have an astonishing number of "ah-ha!" moments inside its pages. As a technical editor -- and more importantly -- as a teacher, Kate knows where knitters hit roadblocks and how to overcome them, and she shares her many years of experience in Beyond Knit and Purl."
Of course, taking so many courses with Kate over my years in Toronto, I feel very lucky that we became friends along the way too! I'm thrilled that she's agreed to share her book with a lucky winner at our Yarn Crawl after-party.

Oh, and did I mention she's also British? I think we should start lobbying her to make a comeback tour to the UK!

Friday, 9 August 2013

Planning on acquiring lots of yarn-y loot? We've got a bag for that...

We've been talking lots about the prizes at the after-party lately but not so much about the goodie bags that we've been preparing for all of our participants:

What wonderful projects will these bags hold?
This is just a teaser - since we can't tell you EVERYTHING that you'll be getting in them! But we've been thrilled to connect with a super awesome, UK indie-dyer about her yarn (more on that in the coming weeks!). 

What we CAN tell you about these bags is that they were made in the UK by a great company we discovered called BIDBI.

BIDBI stands for Bag It Don't Bin It and they are an eco-conscious, fair-trade company committed to paying a living wage and while keeping that in mind have given us a great deal on the bags, knowing that all net proceeds from the GLYC event will be benefitting Refuge. Click here to learn more about their ethical commitment.

While on her travels this summer Allison has been collecting treats for these bags from the good folks at Soak and Knitty for our participants, and more great prizes keep rolling in!

But of course, you can only get one of these awesome project bags if you're registered as a participant, so make sure you get yourself and your friends signed up soon!

Thursday, 8 August 2013

More yarny goodies thanks to loop!

We owe great thanks to all of the shops participating in the inaugural GLYC - without them, there simply would be no yarn crawling or stash enhancement. Angel's loop, one of the first shops to come on board, is offering a bit more for this year's Crawlers that we'd like to share with you.

First off, any and all purchases made at loop on the day of the GLYC will be discounted by 10%. So if you've been craving a sweater's worth of madelinetosh, or are desperate for some Wollmeise, this might be your moment.

In addition, loop has donated a hank of Skein Merino Silk Sport in "Opaque" to the after party prize pile.
 This yarn is a gorgeous blend of 50% Merino/50% silk, 363 yds (332 m)/100 gr. Look at the sheen!
 From their website:
"Skein is a small, independent hand-dyed yarn company based in Australia.  We love to play with   colour and aim to produce unique hand-dyed colourways on high-quality yarns.
About our dying process...
All of our yarns are kettle dyed using professional acid-based dyes.  These dyes are permanently set by the use of a vinegar mordant and heat.  Once the dyes have been fully absorbed into the yarn and the kettle water is clear, the yarns are removed, rinsed and washed with a light, phosphate-free wool wash, and then gently spun and hung out to dry under the Australian sun.  
Our dyes are applied in a way that produces short, random colour repeats which helps to minimise 'pooling' and produces a fabric which is dappled in colour.  We offer both variegated and semi-solid colourways."
You can see more of their incredible colorways on their website here. The temptation to order "One of everything!" is pretty overwhelming...
Many thanks to loop for their donation, and who knows - maybe you'll be the lucky winner of this gorgeous skein of silky stuff! Don't forget to go register for your route, and get in on the early bird contest for an original Soakbox! Registration closes at midnight London time on 7th September!