As spring has finally descended upon us, YarnCon, Chicago's favorite independent yarn and needlecraft show has arrived for the weekend at the Journeyman Plumber's Union Hall for April 5 and 6. Crafters and vendors from all over the area, and some who have traveled from the neighboring states, will gather over the weekend for two days of classes, exhibitions, lectures, and a marketplace that showcases independent artistry and individual passions.
This year's show brings the now-traditional favorite vendors of Biggie, Fleur de Fiber, and Sophie's Toes to the festival, appearing in Chicago since 2007, but there are also several new vendors in the mix. 2014 Marks the debut of Chicago Knits Magazine, headed by Kim Richardson and Lisa Whiting, and some new vendors including the Muddy Squid pottery and yarn bowls will be debuting at this year's show.
With the expo opening at 10:00a.m. on Saturday, the first fifty patrons on each day will receive goody bags and some exclusive show information, along with the first chance at getting raffle tickets to win other yarn- and craft-related prizes. The class schedule also kicks off promptly at the beginning of the show, with the 10:00a.m. Saturday class docket featuring classes on pairing patterns and yarns by Karen Boykin, Big Foot Knits by Andi Smith, and introductions to lace, entrelac, and tunision crochet. With well over a dozen classes on the first day ranging from color theory to dyeing yarn with Kool Aid, knitters will be able to build their skills with some of the local masters of the craft.
After closing at 5:00p.m. on the first day, the doors will re-open at 11:00a.m. on Sunday with more vendors, classes, and features in the Main Hall. The class price ranges from $20.00 to $72.00, and registration can be completed on the event's website. There is also an increased number of classes relating to spinning, as the interest in spinning one's own yarn also increases. Fixing Mistakes, a popular class taught by Sifu Design Studio owner Lisa Whiting, is offering a sale on the website as well.
In addition to all yarn- and craft-related items, refreshments will be on-site so patrons can re-fuel while they shop and learn. YarnCon, located in the West Loop neighborhood of Chicago at 1340 W Washington Street, is also in the heart of the corridor of restaurants and pubs to enjoy the local cuisine on Madison or Randolph Street after the show. The hours are 10:00a.m. to 5:00p.m. on Saturday, and 11:00a.m. to 3:00p.m. on Sunday.
YarnCon, originally started so Chicago crafters would have their own local fiber fest to attend without the need of a car, is accessible by both bus and train. Click here for directions to YarnCon, and keep in mind there is ample parking if you prefer to drive. YarnCon is the originial Chicago independent fiber fair, and is worth the weekend visit to the heart of the city.
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