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photo: Michelle DesGroseilliers
Harry Potter on your feet?

I've just come back from the brutal blast-furnace heat of The National Needlework Association's [TNNA] trade show in Columbus, Ohio. I guess summer is here, eh?

I love attending TNNA shows. I get to catch up with fiber friends from all over. I've met the biggest names in the industry on the carpeted floor of this trade show. I try really hard not to be a gushing fangirl, but it doesn't always work. How can you keep your composure around someone as cool and talented as Norah Gaughan or Cat Bordhi or Lucy Neatby or Sally Melville? I crumble at their feet, but manage to hide it with hugs and smiles.

I also love TNNA because I get to see what the yarn companies have created for us to play with for the season to come. This year, the most prevalent trend I noticed was that the Noro influence seems to be everywhere -- companies of all kinds are adding Noro-style colored yarn to their lineups. The most exciting of these was from Rowan, designed by Kaffe Fassett himself. At the mill, he ripped bits of differently colored roving, putting them in the order he wanted to get signature Fassett colorways. Oh, and the colors don't repeat in the skein, either. Way cool.

I spotted Harry Potter-themed Opal sock yarn. Koigu's new silk + wool. More new knitting bags from our favorites at Lexie Barnes, Knowknits, Offhand Designs and Namaste. Super-cool new gadgets. In almost every booth, at least one product with a green or organic focus, which is a great direction for the industry [as long as green really does mean green, that is...which is something I plan to investigate more in the coming year]. And many more yarn companies signed on for our upcoming Yarn Roundtables.

All over the trade show floor, I felt the excitement of retailers as they stocked their shops for fall and winter to come. It was a good show, and that means great things for us as knitters.

So it's hot where I am, but the knitting continues. I've always got a project standing by for whatever temperature it might be. Hot = lace for me. Lately, though, hot = spindling. I've somehow made the leap from timid newbie spinner to brave spindler-in-public. The whole story is in my Knittyspin column this issue.

Did you think I'd forgotten? Never! Yup, it's time once again for the Knitty Calendar Contest! You'll find all the details here. Remember: this contest isn't about how beautiful or intricate your knitting is. It's about taking great photographs, whether it's you doing the photographing or a friend of yours who's handy with a camera. Don't be shy...enter!

To always know the latest Knittynews, sign up for the free Knitty reader list! The list is never shared with anyone and we only send out a few messages a year. We know our internet manners.

Amy R Singer
[editor, Knitty]

photo: Amy R Singer

Each season is different for my spinning and me. Summer is social season.

With Maryland at one end of summer and Rhinebeck at the other, spinners get to be openly and outwardly social, going to fiber events, visiting with each other and stuffing our stashes to bursting. (What if all of the fiber in the world pulls a Lost* season ender, and I can’t buy more fiber? What if this winter is as cold, or colder than last and my house, my family needs extra insulation! It’s altruistic, maternal, my fiber buying.)

We set up our wheels on porches, take them on vacation. Spinning goes outside for the summer. Summer for me is also spindle season, spindling goes and spindling flows. I only need a small bag, even a pocket, for a spindle and some fiber. For me spindling takes less concentration than knitting. My hands just do it while the rest of me is chatting at a barbeque, cheering from the sidelines, hanging around the campfire, waiting my turn on the bocce pitch, and soaking up summer.

What is summer spinning to you?

* No way, I’m spoiling for those of you yet to catch up.

Fiber and spinning reviews...
If you have fiber, spindles, books, or other spinny products or tools that you'd like us to review, write me for submission information.

Jillian Moreno
[editor, Knittyspin]