TNNA Recap

I’m back from a jam-packed weekend at TNNA, and as usual, I feel tired and happy and bursting with new things to think about and work on. (TNNA is The National Needlearts Association, a trade group consisting of the yarn industries: both knitting/crochet and other needlecrafts like cross-stitch and needlepoint. Their big annual show is in late spring/early summer, showcasing products for the coming fall season.)

Columbus was hot and sunny,


and we immediately noticed a fascinating new development:  Jeni’s ice cream vending machines at the airport. I heartily approve.

vending 1

This trip turned out to be extra-special for a couple of reasons. The most important:  it was a chance for a glorious reunion with my Vévé — I haven’t actually been in the same place as Véronik in a lo-o-o-ng time. We even got adjoining rooms at the hotel. Spending time with Laura and Véronik was fabulous, and I also got to meet the very talented and supernice Michelle Wang. Her beautiful blog is here and you’ve probably seen some of her designs at great places like Vogue Knitting and Brooklyn Tweed’s house patterns.

We flew in Friday (by a stroke of luck, Craig and Laura from Loop were on our flight and had seats directly in front of us) and we had a chance to wander around a bit before dinner time. (By “wandering” I mean “Carol kept catching sight of people she loves, causing her to squeal and hug them and render them unable to move from a spot in the middle of the hallway.) We caught the last twenty minutes or so of the fashion show, just in time to see Brooke Nico’s lovely sweater being modeled on the runway. (We cheered. Loudly.)


Then it was off to Marly Bird’s Designer dinner. Marly does a fantastic job of pulling together a dinner for a big group of spirited folks. And there were tons of goodies to give away! I left with several skeins of yarn called “Inappropriate” (how perfect for me), a Nantucket Bag, a skein of Baby Boom in my favorite blues, and all sorts of little goodies and gizmos.

baby boom inappr

Saturday was show floor day: we spent most of the day walking around the show floor, seeing what new yarns were coming to LYSs near you; getting previews of new patterns, magazines, and books; seeing innovations in tools and accessories (one item I thought was cool was a crochet hook with a pointed tip to use for crocheting edging on fabric; another were clips that would be perfect for holding together pieces that are being sewing or grafted together). In the coming weeks, I’ll do some blog posts about what I’ve seen, including a preview of the fall Rowan Magazine and the Early Fall Vogue Knitting, to name just a few. (It was super-fun to see my pals at Sixth & Spring, and I got to see some of the cutest doll patterns from Nicky Epstein’s new book.)


However, we were interrupted in our fibery perusals by a happy coincidence. It just so happened that it was Gay Pride Weekend in Columbus, and what should go down the main street right out front of the hotel but…. THE GAY PRIDE PARADE.





I have always wanted to go a Gay Pride parade and carry a sign that says “Suburban Hetero Moms For Equal Rights”…..I didn’t have a sign and we only saw a few minutes of it, but I was cheering and woo-hooing right along.

I also got to sign books on Saturday afternoon. The ladies from R&M West Coast Enterprises were so sweet and fun and helpful.  (waves to Gail and Peggy) I signed lots of books and met some terrific LYS owners.


If you ever need a good book distributor, you definitely need to call R&M. They have amazing customer service and the company is also woman-owned, which I think is cool. Gail has been working there for over a decade and she will take very good care of you.

Saturday night was fun. We were exhausted and overstimulated from all that we saw on the floor, so Brooke and Robin  (the ladies of Kirkwood Knittery) and I held court in the hotel bar. We got to see my friends from Gosh Yarn It, I got to meet some folks that live right around the corner from me, and I got to know some of my favorite people even better (including Patty Lyons and Michelle Urcoyo, and my Westminster Rowan faves, and Jeannie from Fiesta and Benjamin from XRX….and I could go on but I don’t want to offend anyone by forgetting them).



So. How to sum up a weekend full of so much excitement in a few sentences on my blog?


The best way I can describe it –and this is true of so many fiber-related events– is that glorious feeling of finally finding your tribe. People who are passionate about the same things you are passionate about, who understand when you stop in the middle of a sentence because you’re transfixed by some new and gorgeous yarn, who enjoy having in-depth conversations about grading patterns or doing steeks or needle tips, who you can joke with and empathize with because you, too, have friends who laugh out loud when you tell them you are going to a “yarn convention.”

So a big thanks to everyone I saw at the show. I miss you already.



6 Thoughts

  1. Marianne says:

    Yes, I agree, that was a good shot but really? Mr.RedBoots.

  2. Anniki says:

    I’m so jealous! You have all those great events there which I’m not able to visit always…
    But see you in VK Live in New York? :)

  3. JoAnn Erfer says:

    Next year I want to come as your valet!

  4. Keisha says:

    I run a games convention in Columbus that has swapped weeks with TNNA, we used to be after and are now before…sadly I never broke out of the convention centre except during a brief emergency (One of the transformers caught fire and caused an evacuation) to get to Jenis and was very sad. I missed the vending machines in the airport when we left too, and now I am DOUBLY sad for it! Next year…

  5. Ann says:

    (Are you inside my head? I took the same shot from our hotel window of the still-stuck elevator on the side of the Nationwide Insurance building.) Oh, it was so good to see you, and now to read about “our TNNA” through your eyes!

  6. Sandi says:

    I’m glad I got to see you, but sorry we didn’t get to spend any time. Perhaps next time!

Reply to Ann