My new Local Yarn Shop, that is. My yarn shop. Oh my, my yarn shop.
Not exactly mine. The town I live in has (at least) two yarn shops, and they aren’t this one. This one is a bit of a drive–more of a special-occasion visit than an everyday, drop-in-to-buy-a-button sort of yarn shop. But it’s … well. Let me explain.
Twenty years ago, give or take, my mother got into serious knitting–what some people call Technical Knitting–and began to visit what was then our local yarn shop.
Friends, that was the yarn shop to end all yarn shops.
It was in a historic train station. Two enormous high-ceilinged rooms, with old fashioned wooden-framed, weighted-sash windows and antique light fixtures. Two fireplaces. A cat. Free tea, always ready. Rocking chairs.
And the yarn. Eeeeeeeeeee, the yarn.
They had Jamieson’s whole line of Shetland Spindrift. They had the whole line of Cascade 220. Rowan. Debbie Bliss. Mountain Colors. Wooden knitting needles. It’s hard to explain to people who don’t remember it how exciting the 1990s were. You’d lived your whole life drinking Folgers coffee and knitting Red Heart yarn on Boye needles and then suddenly there were cappucinos and Lantern Moon.
But I digress. I left home. My parents moved away. The yarn shop closed. All that’s left are the memories, and the desire to find a yarn shop to replace the one that was lost.
And this one is the closest I’ve found. Its aura is clean and expensive, which isn’t like the old one, but the yarn they sell has the same mindset. It says “we’re going to do some serious knitting.”
Yeah, here’s some snobbery on my part. A lot of yarn shops focus on novelty yarn. Sparkles. Sequins. Multicolored hand dyes. And these yarns are lovely, and my stash overfloweth with them, but if you want to buy a sweater’s worth of a single-color yarn? You’d better be heading to Webs, baby.
Not here. This one has Rowan, Shibui, Brooklyn Tweed, Jamieson, Frangipani, and lots of others I can’t name off the top of my head, and they have lots of it. Last week I went in there and said “I’m going to knit a gansey. I need 14 skeins of Frangipani in Falmouth Navy.”
And you know what? They had them. In the same dye lot.
So. No fireplaces or shop cats, but I’ll take it. I’ll take it.