What is YarnCon?

YarnCon is Chicago’s premier independent fiber and yarn exhibition.

Is there a hotel associated with YarnCon?

NEW FOR 2020: YES!!!! YarnCon is not held at a hotel, but the YarnCon Symposium is! We have a block of rooms at the Crowne Plaza Chicago West Loop for YarnCon 2020 and the YarnCon Symposium.
CLICK HERE to reserve a room. Deadline for the YarnCon rate is March 5.

Other nearby hotels include:

What can I expect to see at YarnCon?

A community of people brought together by their love of yarn and fiber. More specifically, a room full of fantastic independent vendors selling their handmade and hand-dyed yarn, hand-dyed roving and batts, accessories and tools for spinning, knitting, crochet, weaving, and felting, patterns, and lovely and unique finished objects. There are also workshops, and an area where you can hang out with fellow yarn enthusiasts and play with your new yarns. And winding stations!

I don’t knit/crochet/spin/weave. Anything at YarnCon for me?

Yes! Many vendors sell handmade gifts, such as bags, pillows, hats, sachets, buttons, and the like. If you dig some of the other handmade markets around the city, consider checking us out. If you have any interest in a learning a new fiber-related skill, or are just curious, check out our class schedule!

What does it cost to attend YarnCon?

Nothing! Admission is free, so bring your friends, your significant other, your parents, or come check us out even if you have just a passing interest in handmade fiber goods. We will have raffle tickets available for purchase to win prizes from many of our vendors & sponsors, but it costs nothing to stop on by and see all the awesomeness.

Will there be food?

Yes! Some of Chicago’s finest food trucks will be selling food out front, and tables and chairs are inside. We sell Dark Matter Coffee (and lovely teas) at the downstairs bar.

How can I sponsor YarnCon?

YarnCon is organized by two individuals, with no corporate ownership. Sponsorship and support is key (and much appreciated!) to keeping YarnCon an independent event for the Chicago-area fiber community, both attendees and vendors! Sponsorship information can be downloaded here: 2020 Sponsorship Information

Can I advertise in the YarnCon program? (HINT: Yes!)

Reach our entire audience of diehard fiber fans and support YarnCon at the same time: advertise in the program! All the relevant information can be downloaded here: 2020 Program Ads (PDF)

How can I volunteer?

YarnCon uses Signup.com to organize our volunteer program. To volunteer, visit our Signup page  and choose a time slot and station that works for you. It’s easy, and  you will NOT need to register an account or keep a password on SignUp.com.

Neither YarnCon nor SignUp.com will ever share your email address with anyone. (You can read their entire privacy policy here: signup.com/privacy)

How do I apply to be a vendor?

Vendor applications are closed for 2020. The Vendor application for YarnCon 2021 will open on October 1, 2020.

Here are some past guidelines and general information for reference, or if you’re interested in applying for a future show: Vendor App Guidelines 2020

How can I teach a class or workshop?

Class proposals for 2020 are closed. (See the 2020 Class Schedule here.)

To propose a class for a future YarnCon, please consider the following information and keep your eyes peeled for the announcement in the fall.

  • workshop name and a short description
  • prerequisite skills
  • your teaching fee
  • price of any kits if they are not included in the workshop fee (and whether or not they are required for the workshop)
  • any tools or supplies students should bring
  • how long the workshop will run
  • maximum number of students (we typically max out at 15)

Workshops are generally scheduled in 2 or 3 hour blocks (occasionally 1 hour, if it’s more of a demo). You may sell kits or supplies to your students yourself, or include a list of required items in your class description.

Who designed your awesome logo?

You like it? So do we. It was designed by Rusty Cook, who is amazing, so if you have any design work you need, hire them!

COVID 19 Updates

Dear Friends of YarnCon,

 Your health and safety are our top priority, and we want to update you on the most current recommendations of local, state, and federal health authorities regarding health risks associated with Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19).

Based on what we’ve seen in affected countries, COVID-19 can cause mild to severe respiratory illness. The virus appears to be transmitted through person-to-person contact and health authorities expect more cases may occur in Chicago and the United States. Practicing basic hygiene such as washing your hands regularly with soap is the best way to stop the transmission of the virus. 

 In order to keep everyone involved with YarnCon safe, we are sharing the guidelines from the Chicago Department of Public Health (CDPH).

 If you’re sick, stay home.

Practice good hygiene.

  • Washing your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds is best, especially if they are visibly dirty. An alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol is a suitable alternative.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick. 
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash and wash your hands.

As testing of COVID-19 becomes more widely available, we may begin to see new cases in the coming days and weeks. CPDH along with state and federal authorities may issue new guidance, and we will keep you updated on changes and its impact on YarnCon.

Finally, COVID-19 does not distinguish between race, nationality, or geographic borders.  Stigma and discrimination against the afflicted discourages early reporting of symptoms and further perpetuates community spread. 

For the most reliable information, please visit www.chicago.gov/coronavirus or www.cdc.gov/coronavirus. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the CDPH Coronavirus hotline at 312-746-4835 or email coronavirus@chicago.gov  

Code of Conduct

At YarnCon we value the diversity of our fiber arts community, and respect for everyone in our community is a core part of who we are. We chose our location because we felt it was the most accessible to people from all parts of the city, as well as to those coming in from out of town. Chicago is a diverse city, and we want people from every part of the city, country, and world to feel welcome and included in our events.

We are responsible for nurturing that diversity and we will not tolerate any kind of discrimination, bullying, or hate speech. This includes verbal and physical harassment, inappropriate physical contact, and any kind of abuse for any reason. We will remove anyone, and take any additional steps necessary to keep everyone at YarnCon safe and welcome.