Last weekend I almost ended up not participating in the YarnCamp 2013. Work had been lunatic. I was tired, stressed, and in no travelling mood (to say the least). But isn’t it true that the less you feel about doing something the better it usually turns out to be? Already the 5-hour-train ride to Frankfurt was fabulous. I sat next to the window and spent my time day dreaming or knitting or both. So when getting into Frankfurt I was perfectly relaxed and ready for the adventure awaiting me.
And – against all odds – the YarnCamp was wonderful!
Do you ever knit or crochet in public?To be honest: I don’t. Somehow it seems to embarrass me. Now try to imagine how I felt to be in a room with about 80 people – female (90%) and male (10%) – with almost everyone click-clacking away with their knitting needles (I love that sound :)) or crocheting along, while listening, discussing, or chatting with one another. Some would change rooms while knitting, others would display their beautiful work carried along in suitcases. Trust me, it took me a while to become an active part of the greater whole – but I finally managed to work on a pair of wrist warmers while there.
Do you have a smartphone? Well, I don’t (I am a dinosaur – I know …) and I guess that made me the only one among all YarnCamp participants. The use of smartphones was almost as excessive as everyone’s handling with yarn. They would twitter and take pictures, check ravelry or network with one another, comment on facebook or read each other’s blog posts. Those who weren’t knitting were online and vice versa.
Right from the start, we were encouraged to present a session or otherwise contribute to the event. And when in no time 18 sessions were defined and written down to structure the day, I was deeply impressed by the responsibility and passion of participants turned into lecturers. After all, most of us had never taken part in a BarCamp before and were (more or less) used to passive ex-cathedra teaching rather than active discussions.
In the course of the day, I would learn about Kaffe Fassett’s knitting (blog post to come), and about how to become an author (eventually). I would finally understand how to use twitter and got the chance to participate in a lively debate on how to write the perfect pattern.
In between sessions we would not only admire each other’s work but exchange patterns and pieces of advice. I very much enjoyed getting to know Mienchen, Claudia, and Pia (watch out for her homepage Akizu that is soon to be out :)), just to mention a few. Seeing Frau Elise in person after reading her blog for quite a while was a pleasant surprise and participating in David‘s session made me want to write a blog post about him and his work (see above). The ladies at dye for yarn do an incredible job not only in dying yarn but turning it into the most beautiful lace shawls and the ocean colored patchwork blanket I saw will hopefully inspire me to actually work with my stash.
Generous sponsors, showering us with yarn, knitting needles, magazines, and even books spoiled us endlessly. A splendid buffet, excellent coffee, and delicious smoothies added to our comfort. Like I mentioned before: the YarnCamp was AMAZING and beyond all (my) expectations.
Last but not least, the yarn camp organizers, Rebekka, Sara, Romy and Lutz, did a tremendous job in taking care of everything, from concept to event, before, during, and after the YarnCamp. Thanks a MILLION! I sure hope to see you again in 2014!