It's less than two weeks to the Knitting and Stitching Show, the country's biggest textile show, and we're looking forward to it hugely. It's a chance to meet a lot of you, particularly those of you from outside Dublin whom we usually only talk to on the phone or online. It's also an opportunity to see things we don't see every day - the astounding work of the guilds, the quilting exhibitions, demonstrations and classes in a huge variety of textile media.
So we thought it would be a good idea to give you a few practical hints here, drawing on our experience over the years.
This year, the show's taking place from November 10th to 13th in the Simmonscourt Pavilion of the RDS rather than the Main Hall of recent years. This means accessability improvements, because the entire show is on one level. It also means that the public transport options are a little different.
If you're planning on coming to the RDS by public transport, bus is your best option. Because of the torrential rain last week, the DART isn't running between Grand Canal Dock and Sydney Parade. Dublin Bus is honouring DART tickets to the areas in between, but really, you'd be as well to get the bus all the way. The 4, 7, 45 and 47 all go through Ballsbridge, and the best stop for the Simmonscourt Pavilion is the one by Bewley's Hotel at the junction of Simmonscourt Road and Merrion Road. Alternatively, get the 46A or 145 to Donnybrook Church and walk down Anglesea Road to Simmonscourt Road.
There's parking available if you're driving to the show. There's information and links for booking parking in advance here
If you don't have a ticket for the show yet, you can book online at this link
. The group tickets offer very good reductions if there's a number of you that want to visit (you don't even have to come as a group, or even on the same day).
Once inside, we will be on stand K13. We'll be accepting credit cards as usual, but it's likely that many of the exhibitors won't be. There will be an ATM inside the hall, but in previous years there have been long queues for it. To avoid frustration, you might want to bring cash with you (but please carry it safely), or use one of the ATMs at bank branches in Ballsbridge.
There will be food and drink on sale inside the Pavilion, but Ballsbridge has plenty of other places to eat. There's hotels with cafÃ©s, there's pub grub, there's restaurants, there's a number of well-known chain coffee bars, there's an old-fashioned chipper.
We probably don't need to remind you to wear comfortable shoes, do we?
You know, it's entirely fitting that the show happens in Ballsbridge. The area has been associated with textile industry for centuries, depending on the fast-flowing Dodder for power. The Forty Acres, now occupied by Herbert Park
, were used for bleaching linen in the nineteenth century, and it was in this area that linen was first printed in Ireland. Beaver Row, just up the road in Donnybrook, was named for the felted beaver hats made in Mr Wright's factory
from 1811, and the row of single-storey cottages there was built for the factory workers.
Fancy winning a ticket to the show? If you leave a comment below, we'll get the Random Number Generator to pick out a lucky winner. We'd love to hear about previous K&SS experiences and about your own inside track advice for getting the best from it.