So ... Hoopla. I've been playing around with this for a while now and I absolutely love it. Spent the end of last week on the Hoopla Yarn stand with Charlotte and Erkan. They are a really lovely couple who want to build a family business importing the yarn and they're working really hard to get the message out there - obviously, they want to make money, but they are truely passionate about the product. I was just a crochet consultant. I took along a few of the things I'd made to show and had a really good time talking crochet with enthusiasts, experts and beginners. It was great fun and it looks like we might do the same at Olympia - watch this space.
So, what do I like? Top 3 ... Number 1: THE COLOURS! I LOVE THE COLOURS. Being on the stall felt like being in a sweet shop. I've made a lot of bits and bobs for my boys and they fit perfectly into their room. Which brings me to the second thing I like. It is perfect for children. Bright and soft, yet tough and easy to clean (starting to sound like an advert?). And finally, it is exciting for a crocheter because it can be crocheted tightly and it will hold it's shape so it is almost like sculpting or potting. It is really strong and sturdy.
Right, balance. It does have some downfalls. It is quite heavy, so postage is expensive and it doesn't make good clothing (unless made into a very wide mesh). Another thing, because it is upcycled from clothing manufacture, the colours are whatever come out of the factory so there is no guarantee of ever getting the same colour again or choosing a colour in advance of looking at the yarn (if that makes sense... you couldn't for eg say " I want to make a set of brown and cream placemats" because there might not be any brown or cream available. You would have to search out the available colours and choose from the current selection).
Having said all that, if I could afford it, I would give every crocheter at least one bobbin of the yarn. Everyone should get the chance to play with it. I would love to see what other people make of it. If you have a go send me some pix. Don't know where to start? I've put a couple of free patterns on my site (for crocheting beginners really but .. hey) and I'll have some Hoopla Yarn for sale too, soon, hopefully. Otherwise, I urge you to check out the selection at www.hooplayarn.com or visit the amazing Roz Gunwhy at http://chakahoopla.com/ who has also been having a play.
I want to encourage you to have a go so ... what about a competition?
I'll offer 4 bobbins of your choice from my site as a prize (that's 2kg/400m of yarn) for the best Hoopla design. I don't mind if you send me a picture of something you've made, a sketch or pattern of a design, or even a FO in the post. It doesn't matter if it is made from Hoopla or from home-made upcycled fabric yarn. Your entry can be knit, crochet, woven, knotted ..... anything goes.
I'll decide on a shortlist based on innovation and design and then ask for a vote for the winner.
Deadline: 1st April 2011
LET'S SEE WHAT YOU'VE GOT!