Saturday’s activities in Manhattan led me to two local yarn stores that had been recommended to me by friends. The first is School Products, purportedly New York’s oldest yarn shop, located on Broadway between 28th and 29th Streets. It’s up on the 3rd floor, so you have to take an elevator and then ring the bell to be buzzed in to the store. Definitely something you would just happen to wander by!
According to their website, they carry a “rainbow display of yarns for every need and purpose from hand knitting and weaving to machine knitting”. Much of their yarn is imported internationally, from luxurious Italian cashmere to baby camel. They had plenty of interesting yarn, but visually the place lacked warmth, and there were a lot of dusty, empty shelves. I was the only person there on a Saturday, which left me feeling a little akward, but also afforded me with the ability to browse at my leisure.
I also saw a large selection of Koigu sock yarn which may be of interest to me on another trip; this time I told myself I was not going to be adding any new yarn to my sock stash! Mainly I was drawn to the unusual yarns with no labels. Looking through a box labeled Italian Cashmere, I found this:
It’s a subtly variegated lace yarn, and it didn’t come with a label. I bought two skeins thinking I might try to make the Hanami stole from Pink Lemon Twist.
I also kept going back to the box of yak and camel yarn, trying to decide what I could do with it. At various moments I had about 7 different colors in my hand, but I finally settled on two neutral shades that I thought I could strand together to make mittens.
A short train ride took us to our next yarn shop stop in Greenwich Village. The Point is a knitting cafe located on the charming Bedford Street that beckons you inside with its large window into the shop. As soon as we walked in, we were greeted by a young woman behind the cafe counter. She could tell it was my first time there as I was openly gaping at both the delicious baked goods and all the yarn. She told me about the setup of the store and offered help if I needed any. There were several groupings of knitters within the small space, all knitting and chatting away. The atmosphere is very warm, friendly, and cheerful. And the yarn selection wasn’t half bad, either!
Here I am literally drooling over the sock yarn…Lorna’s Laces, Cherry Tree Hill, Claudia’s Handpainted, Alchemy, and a few others were calling my name. Instead of buying more sock yarn, I got a piece of luscious blueberry pie and sat down with my own sock in progress to contemplate.
Maybe it was the setting, or maybe I was just really hungry, but that was the best slice of fruit pie I have ever tasted. It didn’t hurt that I ate it while knitting in the sock yarn corner, either! I was also within easy view of this:
That’s Classic Elite Yarns Jil Eaton Minnow Merino. It’s a single ply worsted weight and that’s machine washable! I bought 2 skeins each of the fuscia and orange. By the way, isn’t that a fantastic way to display yarn? Not only is it visually stunning, it’s quite practical as well. The skeins don’t get tangled, mangled, or worn out from being on display. When you want to buy something, you just grab the hook and you’re good to go. They also had some metal baskets affixed to the wall by their bottoms, yarn stacked neatly inside. This is where they have all their Noro…
The whole time we were at The Point, I felt like I wanted to stay there forever. The staff were so friendly, the seating and knitters were comfortable, and it had such a creative, fun atmosphere. Next time you’re in the neighborhood, I would highly recommend taking your knitting and your sweet tooth and sitting for awhile. Maybe I’ll be there too.
That concludes my brief NYC yarn crawl. There are plenty more yarn shops to sample, and if you’ve been to any of them I would love to hear about it!