At the end of April Katie Victoria had a flying visit up North to Scotland. It was an early flight from Cardiff at 7am but I landed in Edinburgh by 8am on Monday morning, excited for my factory visit on the Scottish borders just north of Galashiels. I headed straight down to the factory and what a beautiful drive it was through the mountains and along the lakesides of some incredible Scottish scenery. Arriving at the factory I was amazed by the idyllic setting along the river side in a small village, the sun was shining and I was ready to talk Knitting!
So you may be thinking why were Katie Victoria visiting a knitting factory in Scotland? Well there are some limitations to what we can create at KV HQ for example, blankets and double sided knits…GLOVES! All knits are currently at my studio in Swansea on a domestic knitting machine, the maximum width of knitting we are able to get is around 75cm. At the factory they are able to knit large blankets and gloves (which I was VERY excited to hear!)
I was welcomed to the factory by the small team and showed around the machinery and linking machines. It was fantastic to see some of the automatic Shima machines in work, as they knitted back and forth the rhythm of the knitting was truly buzzing. They have various gauges of knitting and so many options of patterning that can be done, we talked knitting, colour, technique, finishing for around 2 hours, it was great. The colours and sounds, even smells of the factory really gave me the inspiration buzz and reminded me why I love knitting. Leaving the factory I was excited by the prospect of creating some new products to add to our Katie Victoria collections.
After a lovely walk along the river and a lunch break at a local cafe I headed back up towards Edinburgh. Once again it was a beautiful drive between the valleys and the sun was blazing, I couldn’t stop thinking about the possibilities of knitting gloves to add to my hat and scarf collection! Arriving in Edinburgh I was instantly hit but the incredible scale of the city and its amazing architecture. I started exploring the gift and boutique shops in around the back streets of the Old town, taking some notes of these lovely shops and the kind of products they stocked and displayed. Where could Katie Victoria fit in I asked? Having visited Edinburgh for the first time around 4 years ago I was so lucky to come back and explore this beautiful city. There was lots to think about and I had thoroughly enjoyed my visit to Scotland, a catch up with friends that evening was a great way to finish the day!