I went to my first Creative Christmas Party on Thursday. I have been to plenty of Christmas Parties, but none that can be compared to this one. Organised by my publisher Cappelen Damm, the invitation said that four knitting book authors would be present and on hands with their expertise: Mette Handberg; Christmas Stockings, Nina Granlund Sæther; Cushions, Bente Presterud Rørvik; Hearts and Hege Barnholt; Christmas’ Treasure Trove, as well as Christmas servings, Christmas gifts for everyone – yes, goodie bags – plus Christmas inspiration. Do bring your knitting! Yes, it was free, so no wonder that nearly 100 women accepted the invitation, including me.
The Christmas servings was the nordic Christmas drink of gløgg/a sweet spicy drink, not unlike mulled wine but, served with almonds and raisins (read: an awful lot better than mulled wine and often served without any added red wine, see gloggrecipe) or red wine and to eat rice porridge with cinnamon – also traditional at Christmas time in Norway. But a number of us where more preoccupied with the goodie bag we had been given on entry; it was packed and contained very generous gifts: 2 pocket books (one crime and one Norwegian Saga, since you ask) and a chapter of J.K. Rowlings latest novel in Norwegian, 2 balls of Finull yarn, see raumaull from Rauma, a large bag of 59 assorted wooden buttons, tiny mittens in the shape of Christmas tree decorations, two different card making kits, a knitting needle measurer in the cute shape of a sheep, a separate bag from the yarn producer Du Store Alpakka containing a ball of Sterk/Strong, see dustorealpakka a thick sock yarn including a sock pattern. Wow!
Presenting and interviewing the authors present was Kaja Marie Lereng Kvernbakken formerly a designer at Du Store Alpakka, now a writer & broadcaster. All the authors are well known in Norway and at least two of them are published abroad, and agreed on the huge amount of time it takes to make a book, even one on smaller items like all of these. One of the highlights was Nina’s recollection of her earliest memorable knitting project: turquoise hot pants made in the 1970’s to the crafts teacher’s utter horror!
Each of the authors had decorated a table with items from their recently published book, and offered to show different knitting/crochet techniques, answering questions and Bente offered a new heart pattern and free balls of yarn from Rauma to make it. Now, how can that not be a hit?
Did I have any time to do any knitting? I did, but not much since I was busy eating porridge, drinking Gløgg, examining my goodie bag as well as listening to the authors being brilliantly interviewed by Kaja and then bumping into familiar faces like Marthe Sveen Edvardsen from Vestre Aker Husflidslag afterwards, then browsing in the open book shop. A very blissful evening! I hope there will be another Creative Christmas Party next year, because I will definitely come!