I have had the most colourful, inspiring, cold, wet, happy morning, spending lots of money :)
I have been into Wales to the Royal Welsh Showground in Builth Wells. It was rainy ... very rainy ... and cold ... very cold .... and I of course wore the wrong shoes ... I wasn't really thinking and just put some ballet pumps on ... well they are now totally trashed ... soaked through and I was FREEZING .................. but, it was a really lovely morning and I feel totally inspired!
(the photos above were from The Natural Dye Studio's Stall)
Wool has always been my one weakness and the stalls were full of the most beautiful wools, hand spun and hand dyed, all hanging waiting to be bought ... there were also some beautiful samples of work too. Stall holders had come from all over the UK to be there.
Some of the stall holders even looked like their work ... Mum said to one of them 'its fun looking at what everyone is wearing' and she replied 'yes, as much as possible!' .... They must have been colder than us.
A few stalls had their wool supplier with them ... sheep, alpacas and angora rabbits! ...... they, at least were warm ;)
I did buy a few things ... it is a good job I get paid next week ;)
Ruth and Belinda's stand was lovely ... all their wool is natural cream colour and against the black they wore looked lovely. They also had their patterns on large postcard in baskets with samples and the wool needed for each pattern. I bought 3 of their pretty patterns. Ruth also gave me one of the sample scarves to wear while I was there and take back later as I looked so cold ... how nice was that!!
I bought a few squares of tye-dyed felt, they are so soft and its always useful to have different coloured felt around for quick projects.
There were a few bead and button stalls and I resisted as much as I could ... I have beads coming out of my ears, but I did sneakily buy 5 TINY buttons ... they are hand made in ceramic and although I don't have a specific project in mind at the moment, I know they will be used ... they are sold by Injabulo if you fancy any :)
.... mostly though I bought gadget ... tools ... more things to make things! ... I have had on my watch list for ages on eBay some needle felting tools ... so as I was in a spending mood, I thought why not save on some p&p and buy them now ... so I did (they were from Knitting4fun)
Lakeside Crafts (based not far from where I live!) inspired me to buy some weaving sticks, which I really can't wait to try ... you can also make flowers with them ... watch this space :) Weaving sticks are one of the oldest forms of weaving ... and I also got from them a Hairpin Lace Crochet frame. This type of crochet was done by the Victorians using a hairpin (hence the name) so was originally very fine.
And lastly I bought a Trollen Wheel from Mulberry Dyer ... what on earth is a Trollen Wheel I hear you ask ... well at first I thought it was some fancy French knitting, but its actually more like weaving not knitting ... you have lots of threads with a Trollen Wheel, unlike French knitting, where you just have one. This wooden disk with cuts around the edge can create all sorts of different braids ... I think I will have to try it out this afternoon!
I also want to mention a stand there that sold weaving looms .... beautiful, hand made weaving looms, that folded up so you could take your weaving with you ... if I had the money spare I would have loved to have got one ... they started at about £140 which for a new loom is not bad ... and the fact they cleverly fold flat is just brilliant. They are made by Greg Meyer, so if you are thinking about getting a loom, please check him out.
If you love wool and all things wooly and are around on the 27th or 28th April 2013, and live in or near Wales, then I recommend you pop along and enjoy ....... but please do take a warm, waterproof coat and sensible shoes ;)