27 April 2014

yarn travels: wonderwool 2014

It's that time of year again. Time for me to empty my wallet and hit up the 'Wonderwool' festival at the Royal Welsh Showground in Builth Wells!

The wife decided to give it a miss this year, so off I went with some crochet friends and a wallet full of cash (and yep, I spent it all!). It seemed that the 'old ladies' from the last time I went had been given a warning about getting me with their sharp elbows, so it was a bit more of a pleasant experience this year (although they did effectively block me in corners a few times, but I kept my cool and stayed patient).

There seemed to be a more noticeable amount of artwork as well as the massive amount of stalls this year....which was cool. There was a bit of an exhibition by a lady called Alison Murray, which involved some huge textile books, but also.....this massive knitted/crocheted dragon!

I also got lured into a stall by the impressive felt work on display. It was the stall of fibre artist 'Stephanie Carswell', who creates amazing felted items from tiny little owls, to these huge taxidermy-style pieces.

As well as the artwork there's always plenty to see at Wonderwool. At lots of the stalls you have people doing all sorts of demonstrations, from knitting or felting, to carding or looming.....and men with spinning wheels! There's something I find hypnotic about spinning wheels, they just kinda draw me in.

There are some other features to be seen at Wonderwool............some slightly 'fragrant' features.....

There are Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaalpaca's!

and Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaangora rabbits!

and aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa sheep!

But obviously the main feature of Wonderwool is, of course, the wool. Now it's quite hard for someone like me to control themselves in such an environment, but I just about managed it. The trick is to go round all the stalls once, making mental notes of the prices and what you like the look of - then have a break before going around again and actually buying stuff. There are plenty of bargains to be had if you just look hard enough. Here's one that I couldn't help myself with - I ended up getting 34 balls of this stuff!

So needless to say, I came home with a lot of new wool to add to my ever increasing stash. Let's just say, the wife wasn't surprised in the slightest when I returned home with two full carrier bags and a rucksack bursting at the seams. Here's some of my haul.

But where was I gonna put all of these newly acquired purchases? Well, I had to adjust my wool stash shelves, and make some new cardboard dividers (oh, did you not know that that's what the pro's use?).

So that's my Wonderwool 2014 experience. Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed it, and in theory I shouldn't need to buy any more wool for a while (yeahhh right, as if!!!). If you are a yarn addict, then it's the place to be!


  1. wow that's a haul and a half! there's no such thing as 'enough' when it comes to wool ;-)

  2. Thanks for sharing, glad you enjoyed the day (I'm still working through my haul from last year! But you never don't need more wool! lol)

  3. Hi Matthew, really enjoyed reading this blog, Wonderwool is just a bit too far for me in Essex but great to read all about it! Will be going to Fibre East in July so will beable to fill my boots then

    Susan x

  4. Hi Matthew, I'm new to your blog just joined today.. It was a better experience at Wonderwool this year, more room with the extra hall and I had a disability scooter. So I felt great at the end of the day. I'm a spinner dyer weaver and crocheter and have more undyed and dyed yarn than I dare talk about. I'm looking forward to reading your blogs. I live across the water from you in Bristol, waving hooks.