(T-shirt logo with embroidered yarn from Mimi Makes Memories.)Over the weekend, I attended the South Carolina Knit Inn. I hadn't been before, but a significant fraction of North Georgia Knitting Guild has been attending over the last couple of years. So, I decided I ought to check it out. The SCKG gets a ballroom for the weekend along with several meeting rooms for classes. Members donate their time to teach classes. Half the ballroom is a large knit-in area, with a nice arrangement of beverages and snack food on tables along one wall. On Saturday afternoon, the other half of the ballroom is used as a market. Participants could order boxed lunches for Saturday and participate in a pizza party that evening. There was a "bring one, take one" area for people to swap books and magazines. There was knitting bingo on Friday night. The guild even got lots of donations for door prizes and a raffle. Kimberly -- aka somebunnyslove, director of social media for XRX, Inc. -- attended with her bunnies and a pile of prizes including t-shirts, market passes, and yarn. All you had to do was bring her chocolate! And, of course, knitters spread out beyond the ballroom and through the hotel, taking over the lobby and the breakfast dining area.
Above is a view of some of the goodies I bought back. There were also a couple coupons for businesses in the Greenville area. Attendees received a plastic project basket, a sample of Miss Babs yarn, a sample of Simply Sock Yarn, a whole skein of Red Heart Heart & Sole sock yarn, and a South Carolina Knitting Guild metal key chain whistle. The book on fabric knitting came from the book exchange. And the STITCHES t-shirt came from somebunnyslove. Many thanks to all the organizations who were so generous, with a special shout out to Coats and Clark for donating an entire ball of yarn for each of us! Also, special thanks to XRX and somebunnyslove for deep supplies of STITCHES South-related prizes!
While I love the larger conventions, I can see the appeal of the Knit Inn. It is a smaller and more intimate venue, attracting about 200 people. You get to know the other attendees. And classes only cost $5, because all the teachers donate their time. While you don't have the overwhelming market, amazing fashion show, autograph opportunities, or chance to learn from top published designers, the weekend is more budget-friendly. And there is something very warm, friendly, and downright hospitable about an event run by a guild. From what I could tell, a large portion of the SCKG contributes their personal time and talents to make the party happen.
Tomorrow: More about the classes.