Yarn show recap: Wonderwool [was Wonderful!]

Every time I got to Wales the closer I get, the greyer the landscape becomes.

Whizzing through Wales

Allison makes her way to lot of the UK yarn shows so when I heard she was making the trek to Wales again this year for Wonderwool Wales, I asked her to guest post about her trip. Read on for a recap of the show, and her weekend with Cast On knitting podcaster, Brenda Dayne! I think she even took her selfie stick again… Every time I travel to Wales the landscape becomes greyer and cloudier the closer I get. It’s a fanciful notion in my head that Wales is a mysterious place with the mists rolling over the hills, a rich green dotted with little white sheep. As much as I’m a city girl and love the urban shows, I find that the yarn and fibre festivals that happen farther afield have more meaningful connections between the original fibre (be it sheep, alpaca, whatever) and the end product from the maker’s hands – fibre that is spun, or yarn that is knit or woven. That’s kind of how Wonderwool has snuck up and become a bit of a favourite of mine. It’s a laid back show that really celebrates wool, and the making that comes from it.

On our way to Wonderwool: sunshine (and the selfie stick!) made a brief appearance

On our way to Wonderwool: sunshine (and the selfie stick!) made a brief appearance

This year, I had the pleasure of attending with a friend, the lovely Brenda Dayne of the Cast On podcast. Brenda is a long-time knitter, but also a long time spinner, and her love of fibre, wool and the UK and our community is palpable when you talk with her. We spent a happy time wandering the many stalls, seeing friends old and new, and generally just breathing in the wool fumes.

Clockwise from top left: bold colours from Five Moons, a couple of the TOFT alpacas, super soft angora, and momma sheep protecting her at the side of the road

Clockwise from top left: bold colours from Fivemoons, a couple of the TOFT alpacas, super soft angora, and a momma sheep protecting her baby at the side of the road on the way to Wonderwool

I had told Louise that I would keep my eyes peeled for some yummy yarns, but then I forgot to take pictures of any! Top of the list though for me were Fivemoons (pictured above), the absolutely gorgeous gradient silk yarns from Natalie Stewart (click the link for some serious yarn porn), and a brand new lace base from Triskelion Yarns in a smoky grey that was just flying off the shelves (he’ll be at the I Knit Fandango in London next in just a couple of weeks).

A stunning statement pendant from Ananuca

A stunning statement pendant from Ananuca that I can just see Louise wearing – she loves bold jewellery!

Looking back through my photos, it was definitely a weekend focused on making. Wonderwool is a celebration of craft and the sharing of that craft and those skills with other likeminded folk.

Ingenious way of demo-ing weaving - on a little portable wheelie cart!

Ingenious way of demo-ing weaving – on a portable wheelie cart!

LOVE this hi-vis vest knit in broomstick lace

LOVE this cheeky hi-vis vest knit in broomstick lace

One of the things I enjoyed most was actually being able to sit and craft, and see what other people were working on:

Brenda trying out a drum carder and then spinning from the batt

Brenda trying out a drum carder and then spinning from the batt she made

The Ravelry FLOCK gathering on Saturday evening - just look at all that making happening!

The Ravelry FLOCK gathering on Saturday evening – just look at all that making happening!

A needle felter's jaw-dropping work at the FLOCK gathering

A needle felter’s jaw-dropping work at the FLOCK gathering

There were so many beautiful things to see that my knitting languished on this trip – but not my spinning! I had taken along my travel spinning wheel and I’m so glad I did. It was wonderful to be inspired by all the wool and fibre and to reconnect with my spinning – something that I always find soothing.

One of my spun up bobbins alongside a mini sweater by Brenda for her upcoming Gwlana retreat with Felicity Ford

One of my spun up bobbins alongside a mini sweater by Brenda for her upcoming Gwlana retreat with Felicity Ford

It was a wonderful quick getaway and I can’t wait to go back to Wales! Louise, you should really come along next year! 😉


Allison wears a lot of different hats in the knitting and yarn community, and even manages to keep track of them most of the time. You can find Allison neglecting her own blog at www.champagneandqiviut.com.

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