Izzy Knits’ Take-aways from the 2018 National NeedleArts Trade Show

by Susan Watkins June 19, 2018

Izzy Knits’ Take-aways from the 2018 National NeedleArts Trade Show

We’ve experienced our first national trade show for the needlearts, and what a show it was! For five days, Dave and I hung out with yarn distributors and store owners from across the country, Canada, and Europe. We discovered yarns dyed solely with roots, fruits, and nuts…yarn wound into two identical balls to make two identical self-striping socks…softer-than-soft yarns knit and crocheted into the cutest baby designs you’ve ever seen…and much, much more. But what we learned at the show far exceeded the new products we saw.

We were heartened to find that the knitting, weaving, and crochet community nationally is just as welcoming, kind, supportive, and creative as the community we discovered locally at Stitches West and during the 2018 LA Yarn Crawl. Everyone at the show—including teachers, vendors, designers, shop owners—exhibited great honesty in sharing their successes and failures. There was a real sense of unity and a desire to work together as a team to grow the industry. I’ve always loved this quote from legendary basketball Phil Jackson and think it summarizes the vibe perfectly…“The strength of the team is each member. The strength of each member is the team.”

We also learned volumes about the business-side of yarn from some of the industry’s thought-leaders, including Patty Lyons, Leanne Pressly, and Kara Gott Warner, as well as social media guru Zontee Hou (also a fiber lover!). When our feet were too sore to continue walking the show floor, Dave and I would go back to our hotel room to share with each other all we’d learned in our respective classes, which turned into some epic brainstorming. I’m excited to say that we came home from TNNA with some exciting new ideas for Izzy Knits, and we can’t wait to share them with you in the months to come.

Yarn pom poms coming soon to Izzy KnitsIn the meantime, we’ll be launching some new products that we purchased at the show. Some will be available online in the shop next week. Others you’ll have to wait for. You see, at the summer show, vendors display their new fall/winter products, many of which won’t be ready to ship until August. Personally, I’m psyched to have gotten a sneak peek (are those giant pom poms?). I just wish I didn’t have to wait to share them with you!

The TNNA NeedleArts Summer Trade Show takes place annually. This year, it took place in Cleveland, Ohio from June 13-17. The show brought together individuals from the counted thread, crochet, embroidery, knitting, needlepoint, spinning, and weaving groups for three days of technical and business education, continuous networking, insights into the latest styles and trends, and access to must-have products.

Susan Watkins
Susan Watkins

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