Friday, April 17, 2009

Top 10 Reasons to Attend Stitches South

(The Guild asked David Letterman to write this for us, but his fee would have emptied the guild’s bank account. Never mind … we can do this.)

Are you still on the fence about attending Stitches South? Well, that’s understandable—we’re all watching our pennies and it’s a busy time of year. Over the past 20 years, I’ve been lucky enough to attend many Stitches events—both Stitches East and Stitches West—and for most of those years I was a single parent with a full-time job. Still, as a passionate knitter, I’ve never regretted the time or money spent on Stitches for the following reasons:

10. Hang out with your friends—after all, we’re all going to be there.

9. Meet a favorite author or designer. How about Elise Duvekot? Fiona Ellis? Melissa Leapman? Margaret Fisher? Jean Frost? Ginger Luters? Sandi Rosner? They and many others will be here.

8. Attend the fashion shows and learn about all the upcoming trends in the knitting world. Rub elbows with the people who make the trends and the ones who interpret them for us.

7. Show off your own knitting, either in the student fashion show or just walking around the hotel or the Market. There’s nothing better than hearing another knitter compliment your creation. (And when Rick Mondragon tells you it's beautiful, you can be really proud. Not that I'd know--he never looks at my feet.)

6. No travel expense—it’s here in your city! No hotel, no airfare, no cab rides. It’s here!

5. Learn a new skill or brush up on a technique. Interested in cabling? Japanese short rows? Fair isle? Intarsia? Want to learn how to finish your project professionally? There’s a class for every skill level and interest, and I don't care how good YouTube is, it's so much easier to see it done in person.

4. Meet someone new. Every new person who shares our passion brings their perspective to us and we will impact everyone we meet. Knit in the hotel lobby or in a restaurant--you'll be amazed at the conversations you'll get into.

3. Participate in the knitting community—are you on the Knitlist? KnitU? Sockknitters list? Ravelry? You can be sure you’ll run into someone you know, even if you just know their screen name.

2. Support our guilds—after all, the Atlanta Knitting Guild is sponsoring this event. Both the AKG and the North Georgia Knitting Guild will be there with booths, waiting to greet you.

And the Number One reason to attend Stitches South:

1. STASH ENHANCEMENT. Have you seen the Market vendor list? What an incredible mixture of commercial yarn companies, national yarn vendors, and independent dyers and producers. Did you know several of our own members are setting up booths? How about Sassafras, Cast On Cottage, Knitting Emporium, Gale’s Art, Only Ewe and Cotton Too, and The Whole Nine Yarns?

Every one of us can participate at some level. Some people will take classes and attend all the events and still have time to wander the Market and fondle yarn. Others will dash in and take a class and rush back to their lives. Many people will come for the Market—after all, it’s like going to the buffet table on a cruise, but with no calories.

This is an extraordinary opportunity for us. Make the effort to come and experience Stitches. Wear your AKG or NGKG badge proudly. And don’t buy anything I wouldn’t! (That leaves you lots of leeway!)

See you there!

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