Yarn shopping paradise12:13 PM
Finnish handicrafts fair is a huge event. With more than 44 000 visitors and 650 exhibitors it's the number one event for handicrafters in Finland - and the largest of its kind in Europe. It was almost shocking to arrive at Tampere exhibition hall and see the filled parking lots and all the buses lined up. People gather from all over Finland to Tampere for this one weekend of handicrafts extravaganza.
To visit every exhibitor or even to walk by every booth would take more than one afternoon. That's why our sisters-team had a list of exhibitors that we wanted to visit and only took a look at the interesting stuff on the way. Even with this strategy we ended up spending the whole afternoon at the fair. Afternoon well spent, I would say. There were such pretty decorations and talented designers, crafters, jewelry makers - and yarn shops. One of the prettiest booths was Vihreä vyyhti with lovely color coded yarn selections on the wall.
I was a bit afraid that we would see empty tables on Sunday afternoon after the masses had flooded over the exhibition Friday and Saturday, but happily that was not the case. The only place that looked like shoppers had raided it was Novita's charity shawl wall and I was happy not to find all my four shawls hanging there. I hope the last one was sold during the afternoon!
We came by another 100% Finnish wool supplier, Riikka-Piikka, with lovely hand dyed colorways, and my sister knew what she wanted to knit with that. Akvarelli-Elli is going to become a vest and I'll stay tuned to hear more - and see more - of her experiences with the yarn. By the message I got late Sunday night, the yarn is already on the needles, so I won't have to wait for long.
It doesn't make any sense to travel 360 km to Tampere and back to buy yarn from a LYS that's located in downtown Helsinki, but it seems that I never get around to visit Snurre in Helsinki, so that was our next stop. From all the lovely yarns they had I chose a trio of Knitlob's lair's Tuulen tytär that will become a dress for Troll princess. I also found a beautiful colorway of Madelinetosh tosh merino light for a shawl design that's been taking form lately. And I got a lovely bag to carry my shoppings in! (You'll have to check my Instagram account to see the bag).
There's no visit to Tampere without visiting Kerä. Luckily they were also at the fair so I didn't have to run to their shop (which would have been closed on a Sunday anyway). This spring I bought some perfect silk yarn from Kerä, but unfortunately knit a pullover that turned out too big for me after blocking. Luckily, the other member of our sisters-team has the boobs for the pullover and the part of the fit that I was a bit disappointed with disappeared with a right-size model - it fits her perfectly! No need to worry about Christmas presents there, as she proposed that I would give the pullover to her for Christmas. Now the problem was that I want one for myself, but Kerä is out of stock with the silk yarn that I originally chose. Naturally, there were several other options at their exhibition stand, so all I had to do was to pick the yarn with the best colorways. After seeing the lovely Rose and El Greco colorways of Madelinetosh DK I knew that they were exactly what I wanted. Especially, as it was an unusual choice of colors for me. Or so I thought - until I saw the names of the colorways and realized that they were the exact same colors I chose for my Exploration station...
With bags full of yarn we headed to the last must-visit booth: Titityy. This one was a bit more difficult. Not that they don't have all the lovely yarn in the world, but my shopping list was done and even if it might sometimes seem different, I do like to shop for yarn only if I know what I'm going to knit of it. It took some lingering and strolling around before we noticed a special fair price for BC Garn Colori and also spotted some lovely colors. And the next day I had a design on paper as well, so I know what these babies are going to become.
What a nice experience. Thank you for the invitation, Kädentaitomessut!