Monday, June 09, 2008

What's coming for fall

We're back. What a whirlwind trip. We left Burlington on Friday morning and landed in a sea of fog, clouds, low ceiling, etc. in La Guardia. All sorts of delays getting into and out of La Guardia. The joys of summer travel, when it's 90 degrees (plus!) outside, and the threat of major thunderstorms can really screw up your trip! We were lucky to only be delayed by about an hour or so, and when we landed in Columbus and stepped outside to grab a cab, it was like being smacked in the face with a really WET, really HEAVY, wool blanket. Heat and humidity like I don't care to experience again. (But hey, now it's in Burlington!)

Going into the show at 8am on Saturday, I was really hoping I'd be WOWed by something. And I wasn't disappointed! We had a private early (pre-show) meeting with Nadine from Be Sweet. I had seen Be Sweet yarns before, but I was thrilled to get the opportunity to sit down with Nadine for an hour, one on one. In addition to having some really wonderful and unique products, her company has a BIG warm fuzzy behind it - and we love the warm fuzzies. Be Sweet brings stylish, environmentally friendly yarns and accessories to socially aware consumers. They support job-creation programs in South Africa that help empower female artisans and villagers by giving them the means to support themselves. Some of the yarns we already stock, like Manos del Uruguay and Frog Tree, have these social missions as well. And when you combine a great product with a great story, you have a great addition to your product offering.

In the past few years, our customers have been asking more questions about yarns. Not only regarding content and gauge, but where is it made? Who makes it? Does the company do anything to give back? Or are they just in it to make money? We have found that people are interested in the story behind the yarn, and that's a good thing. I ordered several of Be Sweet's yarns - and I'm so excited to get them! We will have the Magic Ball (my favorite!), the Ribbon Ball, the Boucle Mohair and the Knobby Ball. Plus some really great patterns and some super fun Ostrich Feather tips - to attach to fringes. I'm sure you can't even BEGIN to imagine it just from reading this, but Nadine's yarns were the most fun and gorgeous (for me!) at the show, and I'm so psyched for when they arrive.

I also bought some other really great things, that will be a wonderful addition to what we already carry. So here's a preview of just a FEW of the things I ordered. They'll be arriving this summer, for fall:
  • Lorna's Wool Needle Felting kits (this will be a class) - so fun for kids and adults. GREAT gift ideas.
  • Awesome new Stitch Diva patterns (these are always top sellers!)
  • Eastport Alpaca - this one is really fun, and comes from nearby Maine, and some beautiful Maine alpacas. And it's US made all the way, and we like that, too!
  • Jil Eaton MinnowMerino - 100% merino, super wash in great colors for kids! Really nice book and patterns too.
  • NAMASTE - Yep, I'm SO excited for this. Two bags - the Newport bag and the Laguna bag, and the SO hip Cali Clutch. I think my personal bag collection (already huge) is about to get bigger.
  • Loop-d-Loop Moss - a really fun blend of extrafine merino and nylon. Technically a sport weight (on the label anyway!) but Teva Durham uses it on larger needles and the result is fantastic.
  • Tahki Donegal Tweed - an old classic, and one that you folks have been asking for, so we're bringing it in!
  • Tahki Montana - a 100% pure new wool in all natural colors. Some great patterns for this yarn!
  • Filatura di Crosa Superior - a heavenly blend of cashmere and silk - amazing sweaters and scarves and more are made with this yarn.

There are more, but I'm going on and on and really have to get some work done!

We came away with some neat pattern ideas too, and we'll start working on those in the next few weeks. I think I'll be doing a lot of knitting in the near future!

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