June 2012 TNNA Recap

Our SweetGeorgia Yarns booth at TNNA in Columbus, June 2012

…And we’re back. It’s been a couple weeks since Teresa, Carina and returned home from the TNNA trade show in Columbus, Ohio and we’ve been busy getting settled and back into the flow of dyeing and fibre club orders and more. This was our first time attending the show in Columbus (second time showing at TNNA), and so many things were smoother because Teresa and I sort of knew what to expect. We didn’t, however, have any expectations about the traffic but we were pleasantly surprised.

On the Friday night, TNNA hosts a “Sample It” event that’s kind of like a merch grab. We were lucky enough to get the booth facing the front door, so as the huge lineup of knitters streamed into the event, they hit our booth first and we sold out of all our new Cherry Lane Sock & Cowl kits in the first 30 minutes. It was insane. We were also very fortunate to have Jan Smiley from Entangled Magazine join Teresa and Carina at the Sample It table. We couldn’t have done it without her!

After the rush of the Sample It, we were so happy to rest and have dinner with Denise and Judy from Schacht Spindle. They are super sweet and we had lovely time talking about knitting, spinning and pin looms over Spanish tapas.

Saturday through Monday, we met so many lovely new shop owners and knitters at our booth, many of whom will be carrying our yarns and patterns later this summer. To make it easy for the decision makers, we had our “wall of colourways” where we displayed one of every single colourway in our Tough Love Sock yarn. We also had every yarn on hand to view, as well as a new yarn for fall (think fluffy!) and a horde of new colourways for fall too. Our booth felt busy all weekend… a couple days, I didn’t get to leave to grab lunch until 2 or 3 in the afternoon. Not complaining, since it’s a good “problem” to have.

We were also so excited to be included as one of the booths to show the Schacht Spindle Cricket Looms! Jane Patrick, Creative Director for Schacht, designed over twenty scarf projects using different yarns from various yarn companies and warped them up to serve as displays in each yarn company’s booth. We sent Jane some of our Merino Silk Lace and Merino Silk Aran and she came back with a gorgeous silky plaid scarf.

This was our first time participating in the fashion show as well. The fabulous Tabetha Hedrick designed three pieces with our yarns: a delicate lace stole in CashSilk Lace, a super wearable wrap skirt in Superwash DK, and a gorgeous cabled sweater in Merino Silk Aran (photo above). The patterns for these three pieces that were in the fashion show will be available later this summer or early fall.

We spent nearly a week on the road. A day to get there. A day to get back. I rented a circa 1880 house for us to stay in Old North, near the Ohio State University campus… which is just north of the Short North which is just north of the convention center. The house is owned by a local vintage shop owner, so the whole place had a sort of eclectic, shabby chic feel to it. Carina was not fond of the creepy closets in the house.

On Saturday night, a misguided GPS and a severe aversion to Comfest traffic sent us 40 minutes in the opposite direction of the Craftsy cocktail party, and so we arrived an hour and a half late, totally famished and exhausted. We totally missed the Vogue party that was happening the same night. I stayed long enough for one drink and to say hi to Stefanie Japel from Craftsy and to meet Josh Scott, one of the founders of Craftsy, and then we stumbled out to find dinner. Lan Viet at the North Market was a godsend for lunch every day and I think Carina had Jeni’s ice cream at least every day. We had dinner in the Short North a couple times, but mostly we found ourselves out shopping every night after the market closed. Not sure how that happened. The girls program the GPS. I just drive. (btw that is an awesome awesome movie)

TNNA week is a great but busy time. I really enjoyed meeting so many of our current retailers in person, including Lisa and Melissa from Espace Tricot (they are so obviously obsessed with knitting!), Danielle from fibre space, Pam from yarn-love (she brought us chocolate!), Suzanne from Hill Country Weavers and Mindy from Fiddlehead Yarns. And of course, it was wonderful to meet all the new yarn shop owners as well. I’m also really grateful that so many people came to visit us at the booth (since it was so hard to get away sometimes). Ysolda, Laura Chau, Julie Weisenberger, Hunter Hammersen, Anna Dalvi, Stephannie Tallent, Tabetha Hedrick, Grace Akhrem, Brandy Fortune, Olga Buraya-Kefelian, Kate Atherley, Anne Kuo Lukito and Amy Singer & Jillian Moreno all stopped by with hellos and hugs and (in some cases!) gifts. It’s one of the few times a year when I can see some of these amazing people, and I only wish I had more time to sit and chat with everyone. Maybe Long Beach in 2013. Until then.

5 Comments Permalink
  • Melissa @ Miso Crafty Knits

    Congrats on a successful show Felicia!  You booth looks amazing, and I seriously cannot wait to get my hands on the new fall colours…and a new yarn!  Eek!  So exciting!  I’m getting antsy already! ♥

  • Arachne646

    OOH, I so envy you guys. Felicia, your booth looks amazing, and of course I’m waiting for something fluffy in the Fall. I’ve always wanted to go to TNNA, and maybe sometime when I write a book, or I’m a real designer, or hitch a ride or whatever, well..

  • Jane Richmond

    Thanks for the recap! What colourway is that amazing pile of red yarn at the Sample It event!!?

  • http://twitter.com/JanSmiley Jan Smiley

    So fun working with you guys for the few minutes you had yarn to sell at Sample it :-)

    I’m kicking myself for not spending more time in your booth studying your color ways & making notes on my favorites for future on-line orders…. Next Time?

    Jan

  • http://www.facebook.com/tabismiles Tabetha Hedrick

    Too much fun! It was great seeing you again!