Every year around Easter, knitters in Sydney (and elsewhere) tend to be a-twitter about the knitting competition at the Royal Easter Show. What has been entered, what are the classes, what has changed since last year, who are the judges, what are the judging criteria, how are the entries displayed, and of course, who has won! Every year, for the last few years at least, I have thought about entering, but haven’t, for various reasons. But I really must! I think I will double dog dare myself to do so next year. Not that I think I will win, but because I think it is a good way to show people the beauty of a handknit garment, that handknit garments can be modern (and even *gasp* fashionable!) and with any luck, help to encourage others to either take up knitting or enter as well, just as some of the wonderful knitting this year has encouraged me to actually enter!
But putting all that aside, some of us have had another reason to be excited. This year, the RAS (organisers of the show) asked the Knitters Guild of NSW to be a part of the “Feature Display”, along with the Handspinners and Weavers, Machine Knitters and Felters. And my lovely friend DrK took on the task of co-ordinating the display, assisted mainly by MissFee, as well as a few others from our Inner City guild group (ok, including me!).
I volunteered to (wo)man the stand on Sunday, and as one of the main perks of volunteering was free entry to the show (for me), husby and Connor came too, just for the morning. We had an early start, and headed straight for the baby animals – a massive shed with baby farm animals, many roaming free for maximum patting opportunities by the visiting children (not to mention adults!). Mostly lambs and kids, and a few calves and chickens. The shed also has piglets, deer, puppies, chicks (including some hatching) and ducklings, amongst others. Lots of fun for Connor, who persisted in standing behind the lambs and kids and patting them (gently, thank goodness) on the butt. Even when I moved him to stand beside them! Oh well, there were no kicks, thankfully!
The rest of the day was spent at the Guild stand, knitting, chatting to passers-by, chatting to my knitter buddies on the stand and escaping away every so often to check out other bits of the Show. Not to mention eating various “foods” on sticks – cheese on a stick, hotdog on a stick, and banana dipped in chocolate on a stick! Lucky the Show is only once a year!!
|mmmm dagwood dog and plenty of sauce!|
I didn’t take many pictures of the knitting competition (others have done so already) but I will say that the items were displayed beautifully this year – nothing hooked up on fishing line this year, hurrah. And there was a lot of beautiful knitting. Some not to my taste, but you can’t deny the quality of the entries.
|amazing irish crochet lace coat (not on guild stall!)|
I have liberally added photos of the Guild stand however! Not least because it might happen to feature quite a few of my own knitting and crochet items, heh! But I think it is a good demonstration of the skills of our members and of the versatility of knitting and crochet – we all know this already, but we also know that knitting tends to suffer from the perceptions of non-knitters. It wast most gratifying as a knitter and guild member to hear people express an interest in joining the guild or learning to knit, or to take up the sticks again.
|Al’s brush turkey! And a cauliflower!|
Many many thanks to DrK for taking on the job of organising everything (I know just how much work that is) and to MissFee for all the design work that went into the stand and the associated paraphernalia. I am really proud of the way the stand represents knitting, both historically and now, and how it represents the Guild.