Monday, July 12, 2010

To Market, To Market-- Lindsay's Turn! The Full Report!

Hey Y’all,

Well we’ve been crazy busy here at the blog, helping Jane get votes to win that $20k to help her charity, Colombian Orphanages. We’ll know tomorrow if she won. Meanwhile, I’ve been collecting HCW stories to share with you. One big one is that last month Suzanne took Lindsay to TNNA Market in Columbus, Ohio, to shop for Fall/Winter inventory.

You might recall that back in January Suzanne took me to Market, which was held in Long Beach, CA. Suzanne likes to do that—take one of us for the first time and watch our eyes pop out of our heads at all of that yarn, all of those yarn people, and—oh yes—all of that swag.

I chatted with both Lindsay and Suzanne after the fact. Suzanne reports back that this time around, the fashion show was much more exciting than in January. There was even some chick from Project Runway there. Overall, she says, “They pulled out all the stops.” To translate, that means things like more booths, more inventory, and an ice cream social hosted by Ravelry. (The Ravelry folks usually travel the showroom floor in a sort of celeb-pack, with all sorts of people glomming onto them.)

Suzanne’s big score was talking to the Swan Island guy—consider that a teaser. I’m going to do a full Swan Island post really soon. She also was excited to talk to the Kauni yarn folks who, at long last, have a US presence. That means you can now order the stuff way easier than before—we’ll be getting some in the shop. Suzanne says, “It’s a slow shaded, striping yarn and the distances between the colors are greater (than with other striping yarn.)” It’s kinda Shetlandy, very sophisticated, and offered in a classic palette but, at the same time, is thoroughly modern. Make a note to self to get some once it comes in, before it disappears.

As for Lindsay, Suzanne said she did great, and was “a terrific help. She has a real sense of color and knows what items sell.” That said, Suzanne says they both went a little crazy in the bag department. Lindsay’s really big on bags. Suzanne, less so. Until this trip. “She gave me that sickness,” says Suzanne. “All of a sudden I wanted to outbag her. I was like, ‘You’re going to buy three? I’ll buy four!’ We kept saying no more, but then we’d find another and another.” So, yeah, plan on buying some new bags soon.

One area Lindsay did need a little help: swag acquisition. Me? When I went to market I just marched up to people and asked for free samples. Lindsay needed a little coaching from Suzanne, who showed her how to approach people and ask in just the right way. In the end, L scored some books and yarn samples. (And if she wants more, I still have a massive bag o’ swag from my trip.)

So does Lindsay’s take on Market match Suzanne’s? She says, “It was crazy. It’s funny—it’s like a little club.”

She also got to have dinner with—Debbie Bliss and Louisa Harding. And, Lindsay reports (and I can confirm), “Suzanne is a party animal. We got there Friday afternoon, unpacked and Suzanne went to dinner. I slept through the fashion show.”

Lindsay says she was nervous at first with the responsibility of buying, but she got over it. “Once you get in there it’s easy to point and say I want that that that and that. I took lessons from Suzanne. I picked out so many bags because I’m bag lady. I got to pick out buttons. Once I got going I had no problem knowing what I wanted.”

And then, to reward themselves from all that hard shopping for store inventory, the ladies hopped on over to NYC for a day where they took in the sights and scored the ultimate swag. Yep, they took a trip to Tiffany’s—not just for breakfast, either. Not those little blue boxes? Trust me, they aren’t filled with sample stitch markers.

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