Gathering and Frolicking: Helpful Hints for Attending Fibre Fests

Fibre fest season is in full swing, and I know that many of you are attending a festival for the first time. Thinking back to my first time at the Knitters Frolic in Toronto, I know what you're about to experience...and how expensive it can be if you go without a plan. I thought I would share a few helpful tips to make this a successful event (with no regrets):

  • Look online to see what vendors will be there and check their websites to get an idea of what they have.
  • Bring pattern ideas with you, including weights and quantities of yarn needed.
  • Think about any hard-to-locate notions and accessories that you want to look for that will improve your knitting or crocheting experience.
  • Set a limit (not necessarily $ but # of skeins) of variegated sock yarn that you'll buy (because it's way too easy to buy a lifetime supply in one day--I'm talking from experience here).
  • Wear comfortable shoes, and leave your coat in the car for comfort. It can get hot if it's busy!
  • Upon arrival, look at the festival map. Note the location of any booths that you are most excited about visiting. At a large festival with a lot of people in attendance, it is easy to miss something and end up disappointed later that you didn't see it.
  • Walk through the festival once before buying anything, and make notes about which booths you want to revisit and what you want. By going around once first, you will be better at prioritizing. (You may want to allow yourself one "must-have" purchase on the first trip around in case quantities dwindle quickly.)
  • If you see something you like but are unsure about it, grab the store's business card and write on the card what it was you were interested in.
  • If you’re concerned about overspending (very easy to do!), take cash and leave your credit cards at home.
  • Bring a large bag to hold all your purchases in.
  • Take a break, go to the cafe, and look at your purchases so you can identify what you still need (or want--really, need has nothing to do with it!).

We hope to see you all at the Gathering at Port Hope High School on May 5 (10 a.m. to 3 p.m.)! In the meantime, happy knitting!


  • Great helpful hints…especially writing down what you see and where. Sometimes I like to take photos too.

    Karen Z
  • Very helpful, Cathy!


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