That was the highlight of last night's Downtown Knit Collective meeting. (It may well be the highlight of the DKC program year!) Two men, 160 or so knitters, I don't know exactly how much yarn was tossed - there were lots of single skeins but also clusters of 3, 4 and what looked like bunches of 5 skeins flying high and far as well.
The principles of Diamond Yarn were the "tossers" and they were throwing the good stuff - Cashmere and Silk blends, Merino and Silk blends, Mirasol Wools among others (my note taking during this period of the presentation kind of "tapered off"!)
Other suppliers had passed samples around for fondling - at first it seemed this was Diamond's fun way of doing the same thing. The other suppliers, however, wanted the samples returned to the front. I'm sure I was not alone in thinking the Diamond Yarn Samples were also just for looking. But after a few Diamond samples were circulating they asked if anyone would like to take home some samples. Of course wild applause followed and they started tossing. Slow at first soon the bundles started flying fast and furious! At one point I was struck by the visual of so many hands reaching up and so many beautiful skeins in the air. If you could have snapped a photo it would have looked like eager children reaching to catch a sky full of lovely butterflies. These are my new "butterflies"...
Diamond Luxury Collection Mulberry Silk and Merino Blend. Its extremely soft with both a slight halo and a near metallurgic sheen. It actually reminds me of plumber's flux or pewter. I have 270 meters. I'm thinking scarf. I'll be touring my stitch dictionary for inspiration before the day is out!
The guys from Diamond, it should be noted, are also behind the Mirasol Project which is doing great and responsible work to support traditional but impoverished Peruvian communities. I've used Mirasol T'ika cotton as well as their Cotton and Silk Blend Tupa. Their colours are amazing and the hand of these yarns once knit up is nothing short of lovely.
There were of course other distributors presenting to the guild meeting - albeit in a slightly less spectacular fashion.
Southwest Trading Company presented samples of work done in their remarkable yarns, many of which incorporate byproducts of other manufacturing processes saving landfill space and the environment. He talked about Safira, Jezebel, Vespera, Yin and Yang (Matching yarns with Yang featuring crystals so when both are worked in one garment only the Yang areas sparkle), Tofutsies, Amaizing (100 Corn Fiber) and a yarn called Therapy that contains real Jade! He explained that Jade has a honeycomb structure that actually makes wool/jade garments cooler to wear than those made with pure wool.
Old Mill Knitting Company who represent, among others, Classic Elite, Naturally, Tahki and Trendsetter Yarns presented beautiful swatches for upcoming yarns planned to be launched in the spring featuring the designs of Fiona Ellis (DKC member and in attendance last night). The rep noted that with a week to go before last night's meeting she wanted more than just a single swatch so she asked the famous Wanietta - fastest knitter in Canada to whip up some more. You can't believe; I can't describe the beauty of her work. It had everyone gasping as the samples were passed around. These swatches weren't little squares - they were 18-24 inches long and 4 or 5 inches across! Old Mill also had significant giveaways - none were airborne but the multiple baskets of single skeins and balls set out at the front near their display did cause a full on stampede at the end of the meeting.
I'm a bit ashamed to say I didn't note anything about the fellow who immediately followed the yarn tossing guys from Diamond Yarns. Unfortunately for him, I doubt I was alone in spending the time he was talking recovering from the "Men Throwing Yarn" event.
Last to present were the husband and wife team behind Americo Originals. It started as a store in downtown Toronto but has quickly expanded to distributing their unique original patterns and Peruvian yarns to other retailers. Their yarns are typically natural colours and fibers, huge skeins and bulky weights. They also sell large wooden needles and amazing hand made buttons and toggles of wood, ceramic and I believe bone and horn.
All in all it was a fun night topped off with a walk to the subway afterwards with another DKC member. A lovely way to end the evening.