Unravel - A Festival of Knitting

In huge contrast to SpinExpo, last weekend I went to Unravel, a knitting festival in Farnham. Predominately aimed at the amateur hand knitter, there was a lot of yarn, with an emphasis on the hand dyed, luxury fibres and small British producers. The trends I noted from last year, such as hand dyed, speckled fluorescent yarns, seemed to still be popular (and still rather expensive!). 

It was excellent to see so many British wool producers and farms at the show, and I had the opportunity to talk with (and buy yarn from) many of them, including Cambrian Wool, Middle Campscott Farm, New Forest MohairJohn Arbon Textiles and The Little Grey Sheep. It made me feel positive that contemporary knitters are more aware of the sustainability aspects of knitting, and are interested in knowing how they yarn is produced. I also had an enlightening conversation with Judy Hardman, a knitter and natural dyer, about growing and harvesting dye plants, and bought some dried Dyer's Greenwood from her as it was a plant I had not yet worked with.

One of my go-to machine knitting yarn suppliers, Uppingham Yarns, was also there, and I bought some of their British Wool which is undyed and available in five shades, representing the range of natural fleece colours. I have been using this yarn in my dye experiments, and I asked them if they had any more information about the yarn such as the breed of sheep, but they were unsure . I note from their website that the yarn is spun by Paint Box textiles, so perhaps I can find more information about the provenance of the yarn by asking them.

 Burns, R. 2018.  Unravel Haul.  Photograph.

Burns, R. 2018. Unravel Haul. Photograph.

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