What a difference a year makes! The sun came out, there was a change of venue (Redborne Community College in Bedford) and to my great joy, there wasn't a water-logged, worm infested field anywhere to be found. Instead - and grant me a little lenience here to indulge in a Great British pasttime - complaining about the weather - the sun beat down upon sheep, stalls and shoppers alike, making us all pant a little in the unbearable heat. The marquees were like open ovens, and the main halls inside the college building were stuffy and airless . . . at one point I would have given over my entire stash for air con and a drink of something iced. We all groaned about the heat and felt slightly worried that the overwhelming aroma this year was less damp and woolly, and more hot and sweaty! BUT, as we all sat steaming in the car on the way home, we all agreed that we'd had an immensely enjoyable time - which just goes to show that in England, we moan a lot about the weather but we NEVER let it spoil a good day out!
The queue snaked up the hill, but my knitting group had managed to get right to the front!
The lovely folk from The Knitting Gift Shop and Jo from the Shinybees podcast helping out Kate on the p/hop stand
After the initial round of shopping, we were all ready to retreat to a shady corner of the field and meet up with some knitting friends whom we had arranged to picnic with. We ate and shared our purchases and then, of course, the knitting and crochet projects emerged from each bag until we were all sat happily chatting and crafting in the sun. It was a lovely calm and relatively cool hiatus in a busy day and gave us all a chance to gather ourselves for one last foray amongst the stalls to buy up those precious items that we couldn't leave behind.
Honestly, our last meander through the stalls was rather half-hearted as we were more than a little distracted at the thought of finding some ice-cream, but we made a few final purchases (mine was some very pretty fibre from HilltopCloud which my splendid friend Helen is going to spin into scrumptious yarn for me!) and then made our way across the field back to the VERY hot cars.
(posted by Max and with special thanks to Kirsty Collins for the use of some of her photos)