January is tied with August for my least favorite month, but at least I have the month to look forward to The Studio’s Winter Knitting Retreat. It was just this past weekend and my fourth year manning the yarn market.
It’s a gorgeous art deco style hotel, with plenty of places to sit and knit. I’m told it was the place to stay in KC for Greta Garbo and Mickey Mantle.
And we had the whole top floor for our retreat! Look at these views!!!
Manning the yarn market is such a fun gig. I get to see all the new yarns first hand and find out what people are making. This year we had a table set up in the shop for people to sit and knit, so I had good company all weekend!
The retreat had an exclusive colorway from Theodora’s Pearls called “In the Heart of the City” that was inspired by Monet’s waterlilies, currently on display at the Nelson (and my all-time favorite paintings, so you best believe I picked up two skeins).
This year, the guest teacher was Sarah Peasley, and she taught classes about set-in sleeves, sweater design, and double knitting. We also had our local Studio teachers with classes on how to use the new Flexiflip needles to your advantage and project classes like the Norlland Hat, Salt Water Taffy, the Beeswax cowl, and Little Bird colorwork mittens. Some were held in a conference room elsewhere in the hotel, but the ones that were held in the ballroom had amazing natural light.
The student fashion show is a lot of fun, we show each other what we’ve made over the last year. It’s inspiring to say the least.
As anyone will tell you, though, the best part of the retreat is the late night knitting parties that happen when the festivities have wrapped up for the day. At this new venue, we had a whole spread of goodies for our pajama party: coffee, tea, hot chocolate bar, chips and salsa, and brownies.
We also got drinks and cookies for an afternoon snack on Saturday, and complementary champagne Friday and Saturday afternoon. The staff at the Aladdin was amazing all weekend.
If this all sounds amazing to you, you should join us next year! If you can’t wait that long and/or you’d like to work on making your own fun yarns, you should come to the Fiber Treasures retreat the first weekend in March in Independence, MO. They have early bird pricing through Thursday, so sign up quick!