Today, Fiona Ellis gives us a peek into the yarn-iest parts of her vacation in Argentina! Ruddington is Fiona's contribution to our Winter issue, and she has thrown several wonderful designs into the Twist cauldron. Fiona also contributed an article about Framework Knitting to our most recent issue- check that out here.
Well hello Twisters! I'm joining you from Buenos Aires in sunny Argentina or as I now like to call it, Yarngentina. I am thrilled to see how many yarn bombed trees there are here. I tweeted about it and had a reply from a lovely knitter named Sheeri. She sent me the link to the blog post she had written about discovering the yarn district in BA. Yes there is such a thing.
So based on her information, yesterday I hopped on one of the wild buses they have here to go check it out for myself. "Take me to the yarn stores" I said to the driver. No, not really but I might as well have. As I hopped off the bus I found myself right outside a beautiful, highly colourful yarn store. But there was more...I think I counted 15 such stores all within one city block.
The stores are very different from the ones we are used to in North America. Not the cozy home-y look with the comfy chairs at all. They are brightly lit and welcoming in their own way, they do entice you to go, but maybe it's all the yarn that was calling to me. The yarn was mostly cottons and plenty of shiny mercerized yarns, not a lot of wool but some alpaca. It is summer in South America so I'm not sure if that's a seasonal thing or not. Yarn is sold by weight in hanks of varying size that don't have ball bands. There were many shop assistants, about half of who were men, serving and it seemed like it was more of a consultative process than a browse around and fondle the product like I am used to.
The brands appear to be specific to each shop and bear the same name as the store. I saw packing boxes labelled such that the product was made in Argentina; I'll have to research that a little more. What really struck me was the color ranges in every store. Each was a riot of bright and saturated colours, again I'm not sure if that's a South American or seasonal thing or not. Oh and one more thing I have never seen before - one store was selling yarn and bikinis - pretty sure that's not going to catch on in Canada in February any time soon.
If you would like to read Sheeri's account of her trip (with more pics) you can find it here.
Anyway I better get off as there is a nice bottle of Malbec & a nice juicy steak calling my name...but I wish you were here- really I do!