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Friday, 17 January 2014


I realised when reflecting on 2013 in my previous blog post that I only really recapped all the wonderful stuff that had happened in the UK in that year. Despite our worlds feeling more international and global all the time, it is fascinating how easy it is to sink back into the familiar local world isn’t it? And given how vital our international customers and teams are to the ongoing success of MillaMia I thought it would be interesting to dedicate this post to the big wide world outside of the UK where we are based!
One of the things we are most proud of here at MillaMia is just how popular and successful we have been in Australia almost from the day we launched. Helena needs to take some credit of course for designing a great product and yarn and colours, but the real key to our success in the southern hemisphere is down to one person – Kirsten. She has single-handedly identified and targeted the best yarn shops across Australia and New Zealand to introduce us to, building long-standing relationships with these yarn shop owners and achieving amazing press exposure for us (with no PR budget - instead using charm and great ideas).

2013 has been another bumper year for MillaMia in this region. The Limited Edition colours proved very successful as we suspected they would be. It is interesting how different regions have subtly different tastes meaning some of our books and colours are more popular in some regions and others in other countries. The most modern and bright of our books and colours have always done well in Australia and I think this was why the brights of Lime and Cobalt were such a hit. Many of our retailers in Australia are also leading the charge with forward thinking social media marketing and knit-a-longs and Ravelry use. I was thrilled to be interviewed by Suzy Hausfrau in Australia for her first ever podcast – have a listen here if you missed it. Equally the knit along organised by Alix of Threads & More using the Stephen West's Safety Scarf pattern and Lime was a great idea to introduce this new shade to their customers.

Our ongoing relationship with Classic Elite Yarns in the USA goes from strength to strength as MillaMia continues to become more and more widely available across the USA. The great sales reps at CEY have done an awesome job once more of introducing us to more and more yarn shops and we get lovely feedback direct from our US customers via Facebook, email and Ravelry. 2013 also saw the first full page MillaMia ad in one of the nicest US knitting magazines - knit.wear – we were so proud when we received our copy! The Classic Elite team have just come back from the winter TNNA show in San Diego, California – which we hope has gone well for them.


MillaMia collaboration with Wolle Roedel
We have been thrilled that MillaMia has started to make inroads into Germany as well. It is a nation of avid knitters and we are building up a loyal following through our relationship with a few key shops including Wolle RoedelGarnwelt and Mein WollShop. Helena even designed a special collaboration project in 2013 with Wolle Roedel to help introduce the brand to their customers – which was a fun process working with new yarns and pattern writers. We cannot thank Ellen Jacoby and her team from Wolle Roedel enough for their support and look forward to more collaborations in the future. 2013 also saw us finalise the arrangement we have with Christophorus Verlag and we are thrilled to announce that they will be publishing our book Wonderland in German in 2014 as a result. 2013 also saw us continuing to supply the Slovenia, the Netherlands and Belgium and introducing sales channels in France too.

Finally we have started working with a fantastic distributor – Nordic Yarns - in Canada in the course of 2013. This arrangement is also thanks to Kirsten as she is the one who spent time researching the market, identifying the most suitable people for us to work with, travelling to Canada and getting to know Tina from Nordic Yarns and coming to an agreement with them. After a positive start in 2013 we look forward to reaching far more customers in Canada and making it easier for the shops stocking us to replenish and keep up to date with MillaMia products thanks to Tina and her team.

So many thanks again to Kirsten, the team from Classic Elite and Nordic Yarns and Maja and Max in the UK for their help with all our European customers.  Looking forward to 2014 together!
(posted by Katarina)

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