FTF – Event: Triangle Yarn Crawl Pt.1

I’m one of those people who has a lot of plans in their brain, of things I’d like to do.  Things that rarely actually happen because everyday life gets in the way.  There are potentially more than 8 yarn shops local to me, but I don’t know about all of them (yet).  I’ve actually been to 3, but always wanted to go to more.  In fact, the Triangle Yarn Crawl has been happening for a little while and I’ve wanted to participate, but it seems like every time it’s held there’s been something to get in the way.  This spring, I decided enough was enough with my procrastinating, and I was going to do it!

The spring crawl this year was on Saturday, April 16 and Sunday, April 17, and included incentives for participating.  Each individual shop would have a raffle prize you could enter to win if you came in to the shop.  There was also a grand prize raffle that you could enter to win if you visited all 8 shops and got your yarn crawl “passport” stamped.  Hillsborough Yarn Shop was also the host of the kickoff event on Saturday morning from 9-10AM, which had a raffle of its own that you could enter if you attended, and you gained an additional entry if you brought in a knit/crocheted 8×8″ square to donate.  If that wasn’t enough, there was a photo scavenger hunt you could participate in via Instagram.  I had planned to take photos anyway, so that worked out well. 🙂

It just so happened that my mom, sister, and I were house-sitting for my aunt and uncle this weekend, which worked out in our favor a bit as we planned our route.  We knew it was ambitious, but we wanted to do the entire crawl in one day (Saturday).  The first shop on our route opened at 9AM, and the last one closed at 4PM, so we planned out exactly how long it would take us to get to each location and how much time we could spend at each one.  The only thing I didn’t feel sufficiently prepared for was having enough money saved up to shop freely.  But I made sure to take some photos of each shop as we “crawled,” so I could share the experience a bit.

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Here I am with my sister, Jess, as we set out as close to 8AM as possible to make sure we got to our first stop around 9AM.  Eight shops in seven hours was a daunting task, but we were prepared to eat on the run and stick to our schedule!

Stop #1:  The Twisted Knitter – Mebane, NC

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The Twisted Knitter was easier to find than I expected, for some reason.  This fabulous sign up on the side of the building is easy to spot from the direction you’re most likely coming, off either highway 70 or 85/40.  They have their parking lot right next to the building, which was super convenient.  It might sound silly to you, but that’s something Jess and I sometimes freak out about when going to places we’ve never been before, especially when we’re on a tight schedule.  Being able to find parking with no issue was a fantastic way to start our day!

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We arrived a little after 9AM, and this adorable shop was already hopping!  I didn’t get any really great photos of them, so you’ll have to take me at my word when I tell you that they had some great window displays here. 🙂  Before even walking through the door I’d spotted some pretties that I wanted to bring home with me!

I really have to ask you to forgive the quality of some of my photos.  You can see a couple of these aren’t in focus.  I’d decided that rather than haul around my Nikon to a bunch of different places around a bunch of people and frustrate myself having to deal with its bulkiness, I’d stick to using my phone.  It didn’t especially want to cooperate indoors. :-/

But hopefully you can get an idea of how cute this shop is, and what a great selection it has!  I was drawn to one section where there were a lot of sparklies. 😀  And then I was drawn to the section where they had yarn that had been hand-dyed by the shop owner herself!  And let me just say, she makes some gorgeous-looking yarn art!

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The ladies we encountered working there were all very helpful and shared ideas and showed us examples of their work or samples from around the shop that demonstrated the yarns we were interested in.  If I could be disappointed in anything at all at this shop it would be the fact that I didn’t notice any crocheted samples, but that is far from a deal-breaker, y’all.  Especially considering how gorgeous the knit samples all were.  And for all I know, there were some, but we were pretty pressed for time as we wanted to get over to the kickoff event before it ended.

Jess and I were both really disappointed that we couldn’t stay longer, and since Mebane is probably not even an hour away, we decided that we absolutely have to come back!  We both found some goodies to take home and got ourselves a loyalty card that, once filled up, is good for $20 in the shop!  I sure hope we get the chance to fill them up!

Stop #2:  Hillsborough Yarn Shop

This shop is the closest to us, at about 30 minutes away from home, so we’ve been here several times.  I was pretty glad of that because we didn’t have much time to spend there and if we’d never been before, that would have been really sad.  We were rushing to arrive before 10AM because I wanted to make sure I could donate my square.

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I have to admit, I didn’t know exactly what was going to become of my square.  8×8 didn’t seem like a very large square to be able to turn it into something.  But according to the TYC website, “they will be donated to a local church that stuffs and stitches them into bunnies that will be sent to missionaries to distribute to children in third world countries.”  The lady who was collecting the donations was there and allowed me to snap a quick pic of what the finished bunnies look like.  I kind of wish I’d done a solid color now, but maybe there’s a kid somewhere who will adore an autumn-colored bunny? :-p

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I walked through the door with 5 minutes to spare, and the lovely ladies who were handling the raffle graciously allowed me to fill out my kickoff raffle ticket, and as I explained that Jess was right behind me parking the car, they let me fill out one for her too.  They joked that since I just got in under the wire, I’d probably end up winning the raffle.  When I filled out our two tickets, I went searching for who was collecting the donations for the bunnies, and the raffle ladies told me I got another raffle entry for my donation!  So I filled out another, and then went to find Jess who had arrived and was filling out the shop raffle tickets.  A couple of minutes later, they drew the kickoff raffle, and they drew my donation ticket!

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Here we are posing with the raffle prize I won – a knit hat kit (with pattern and yarn), and an additional free hat pattern.  Things were a little crazy with all of the people who were there, (Hillsborough is a fabulous little shop, but they have a somewhat small shop space compared to the ohers), so I forgot to take many photos there.  But I will share this little snippet of info with you:

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These two beauties are absolutely on my radar.  That red hank on the right is one that I’ve had my eye on from the first time I ever set foot in Hillsborough Yarn Shop.  Now it has an equally gorgeous sibling sharing its cubby and one of these days…

Hillsborough is also the only shop I’ve been to yet that I’ve seen carrying Prism Elise yarn.  That, I believe, was one of – if not the – very first yarns I purchased from them. It resulted in one of my most favorite finished projects to date:

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What can I say?  I like sparkly yarns. 🙂  I also really like this shop!  The ladies here are always so nice and they actually remember me, and notice when I’ve been interacting with them on Facebook.  They’ve always been super helpful whenever I was looking for something specific, and if they didn’t have it, they’d always offer to order it for me.  This is also the shop where Jess and I took knitting classes.  I’ve never once had a less-than-stellar experience with them.

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So you’ve experienced the first hour or so of our yarn crawl adventure.  I’ll try and sneak in another post or two soon to cover the rest of it.  And I haven’t forgotten to share about the ones in Ocracoke!  So much to share, and so little time!  But I suppose that’s not a terrible problem to have. 🙂  If you’re out and about in the Triangle, or slightly westward of it, be sure to drop by one (or all) of these shops and experience them for yourself!

Continue reading about my yarn crawl experience with Pt. 2 and Pt. 3.

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