I have returned from TNNA and my head is swimming. The show in Columbus is always a source of inspiration for the upcoming "year" (I can't be the only one that feels like the year starts in September?), and this year was no exception. This was my third TNNA, and I felt comfortable there. I knew the lay of the land, the way my boss likes to operate, and I could just go with the flow.
I took five (FIVE!) classes this year - four of them business classes, and one on pattern writing.
My designer sightings: Martin Storey, Melissa Leapman, Norah Gaughan, Cat Bordhi, Gwen Bortner, Ysolda Teague, Gudrun Johnson, Stephanie Japel, Julie Weisenberger, Olga Buraya-Kefelian, Melynda Bernardi, Stephanie Dosen. and others. SO many others!
Trends that I noticed:
Naturals. Naturals naturals naturals! Undyed, natural colored yarn from sheep, llama, alpaca, camel, yak, etc. I also loved noting that even among dyed yarns, companies are offering MULTIPLE shades of grey. (stupid book is making my favorite color into a titillating cliche!) Also, labels are reflecting breed-specific yarns. More and more ranches are entering the market directly, and we are seeing much more information appear on labels because of it.
Novelties. God help me. I am not a fan of the ruffle scarf phenomenon that is going on right now, and companies are now bringing back furry, fuzzy, shiny yarn. Some companies are doing it right by blending the glitz with natural fibers, but others..... I definitely saw at least one line of novelty yarn that I recognize from 10 years ago, AND THEY DIDN'T EVEN CHANGE THE LABEL. It makes me wonder if the stuff has been in a warehouse for 10 years. So disappointing.
Tonals. Truly variegated yarns are really on the way out - I saw very few spirally garments. The booths that featured variegated yarns looked really dated. The tonals were dominating - beautifully subtle changes within a color - and the color ranges some dyers were getting were very inspiring.
Chained yarn. I first remember seeing chained yarn almost ten years ago when SWTC introduced their Bamboo. My next run in with it was Rowan's Lima, and then their Alpaca Chunky (chunky lima). It appears to have spread far and wide from lovely fingering weight linen (Shibui's Linen), to mohair i-cord about as big around as your thumb. I love chained yarns because they allow you to knit air into your projects, but they don't have the greatest stitch definition because they can compress.
That is about all I can download from my brain right now. Further reflection would be required to get anything else out of me!