Firstly, there was the new yarn shop. And my, what a shop. Prominently placed on the high street too which, in this day and age, is a delight to see. And the yarn? A "proper" mix to suit all tastes and budgets and, from the brief time I spent on the shop floor, it’s clearly a recipe that works. Of course, no yarn shop is complete without its knitters and these were worth their weight in KSH / Baby Alpaca – or whatever your current tipple is. Very friendly, knowledgeable, helpful, enthusiastic – like their colleagues across the country, it's a wonder they ever get to go home.
And then there was the workshop. This is me, so clearly I'd been fretting about it. Fret had turned to more than mild panic when told that only a small number had registered for the day. Apparently there was a lot of interest but it was just a "bad time". The insecure, slightly hormonal tutor was going to take more convincing than that though.
A desperate phone call to Professional Knitting Friend managed – against all odds – to alleviate some of the panic, re-build some confidence and offer some practical advice. You need a special kind of understanding to do that and I am sincerely grateful for her support. The small number was to be embraced, this was a "good thing". And, as she correctly pointed out, I'd be panicking if the workshop was fully booked, just for other reasons. And she was right.
The participants were lovely and it was a real pleasure spending so much time with them. As foretold by PKF, the small number meant that I was able to provide far more individual support than had the group been any bigger. It was interesting how old techniques came alive again when working with others and sharing in their sense of accomplishment was a real honour. Maybe this is why others teach full-time?
Unlike some class-rooms, crowd control was not an issue and the conversation flowed (except, perhaps, when there was some serious counting to be done or capturing the second stitch to K2tog became a war of knitter versus yarn). And boy, did I learn a lot. Most importantly, it turns out that I’m not a knitter with a capital "K" as I don’t have a "Yarn Room": A whole room where yarn is neatly stored in appropriately sized shelves and boxes. Not a guiltily hidden stash, you understand, a "collection". Now Husband may try to tell you that this is no different to our spare bedroom but he is wrong, on several accounts. Firstly, there is a double bed in the room (my image of a "Yarn Room" has a sofa or a couple of comfy chairs). Secondly, the contents of our room aren't all craft-related, given that there’s a least half a shelf of his books. Thirdly, most of my yarn is discreetly stored in other places. And whilst he knows of these, now is not the time to remind Husband of their number. Or size. (But perhaps now is the time to worry about where all the contents of the spare bedroom are going to go with our increasing family. Although clearly the solution to any potential space issue is for Husband to get rid of his books.)
As you know, I love hearing others' crafty stories, how they started knitting, where they knit now, projects on needles, projects in preconception and those fast reaching adulthood yet are still awaiting finishing. You just know that these are your kind of people – even to the extent of being in the same mid-Wales yarn factory on the same random day in mid-November. You know that you can talk to these knitters openly and freely with no fear of judgement or consequence.
And then, all too soon, it was time to say "goodbye". I was genuinely impressed with the collective results of our day's labours and it was a privilege to have had the opportunity to contribute, if only a little, to others' knitting experience and enjoyment as they have mine. Thank you all, I had a wonderful time.