Tuesday, 26 May 2015

A Protracted Yarn Hunt & A Trip To London

With both myself & my partner working in jobs where our annual leave is allocated, it can often be difficult to arrange breaks away together.  This time we didn't manage so, following a weekend in London volunteering at the London marathon, I continued my week off work with trips to several wonderful yarn shops.

my (very restrained) haul

By recommendation (and due to limited time), I visited two yarn shops in London.  The first was Loop.  This was a beautifully appointed, two storey shop on a very sweet street.  It's filled from top to bottom with shelves upon shelves of beautifully curated yarn.

Downstairs was filled with yarn, accessories & a beautiful window.  The button collection was adorable, and sat alongside threads & knitting accoutrements.  Squeezing up the tiny back staircase, you emerge into what looks like a yarn-collectors living room.  There's a large dining table covered in all kinds of yarn books, wool-filled shelving around the walls.  Over by the window, a cute little couch beside which stands a very well dressed mannequin sporting the sous-sous sweater.  I became very excited when I spotted a little pile of 'dyed for loop' angora/wool, which is the little yellow cake of yarn I ended up leaving with (along with a handful of wooden duck buttons!).

Loop upstairs

Loop window

Loop London

Second, was Wild & Woolly.  This little shop was incredibly welcoming, & I spent a very happy morning having a good nosey at all of the yarn!  There's a great range, including a beautiful 100% linen yarn (I think there's something similar at Ginger Twist now, too).   The shop displays some beautiful samples, & has a great range of classes which you can browse on the website

There were some brilliant shelves of travelknitter yarn, & I simply had to leave with some.  Orange, of course.  I'm beginning to wonder if I should've bought two for a nice squishy shawl, but there we go, I'm sure I'll find a use for it :D

Wild & Wooly samples

Wonderful display at Wild & Wooly

Also!  You can now buy my stitch markers at Wild and Wooly!  She now has beautiful denim project bags, which I am *very* tempted to make a return trip for one day.  If you can't make it there, the markers are still available in my etsy shop

the buttons & yellow yarn from loop, travelknitter from wild & woolly, & bag from fluph

Around marathon-ing & yarn-ing, we managed some general wandering around London, & decided to visit the site of the Olympics. This red fiasco is some sort of giant olympic tower construction with upside-down mirrors at the top.  It was a dreary day so no spectacular photos from the top, but the boyfolk couldn't resist interfering with the metalwork.

On the morning I visited Wild & Woolly, I travelled with the boy (man? boyman? partner? 26 yo companion?) to his station on the marathon trail, then left in an endeavour to find myself somewhere to sit with a coffee & a bit of knitting before I headed on a yarn trip.

Being very early, everywhere was closed, my phone was dead, I walked for miles, they started shutting the roads, I still couldn't find coffee, I needed to pee, the one place I did find was full *deep breath* - long ramble short, I wedged myself into a little seat in the window of a tiny coffee place & bought a coffee (mainly to use the facilities) only to discover that the coffee was great and that I had positioned myself right on the edge of the race road, as I realised once wheelchairs started whizzing past. 

Croissants were also 40p.  Really couldn't complain.  I'm a bit of a worrier.

Having not learned any sort of lesson, I then proceeded to tweet about how lost I may or may not be on my way to the yarn shop.  I did get there in the end (as evidenced by yarn purchases). 



The marathon really is such an undertaking, the sheer amount of people flocking to the race route in the morning is enormous.  Each mile there's a first aid station with lots of staff, police along the whole route, volunteers pointing onlookers to mile markers as they desperately search for spots to wave from somewhere vaguely matching where they had discussed being in pre-race waving-to-runners planning.   Volunteers in all of the subway, train & bus stations.  Marathon t-shirts everywhere. 

Outwith the ridiculous hustle & bustle of London, I visited Leona at Fluph in Dundee! Leona is an absolute gem, & I ended up spending several happy hours chatting & eating pastry from the local bakers.  Her shop is lovely, her puppy dogs very sweet & her friends who popped in were amazing too!  Apparently she has a trunk-show event happening on Wednesday the 27th with Yarns from the Plain, which should be interesting, if any of you live closer.


As an aside, I spent a wee bit of time watching Craftsy classes during my time off, and there's currently a sale on the classes during this bank holiday weekend.  I've found them pretty useful, and they might be worth a nosey :)


Did you visit london for the marathon?  Or have you been to any great yarny places recently?  DO share :p


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