Wednesday, May 17, 2006


The Yarn Store That Time Forgot

So I was totally jonesing for some fibers this morning. I checked the hours of the yarn store I pass on the way home but they close at 5:00(well, I really just pass the exit, but it wouldn't be inconvenient to take a small side-trip. And my firm has a mostly empty satellite office across that shares a parking lot with the shop, so I guess I could call the side-trip work-related), same thing for the store near my house. GRRR. Must. Fondle. Fibers.

So I google "yarn store Waterbury" and come up with the Yarn Store that Time Forgot - Two Sisters Yarn Shop, not 1/4 mi from here.

Lunch time comes. Must. Fondle. Fibers. And the new Interweave Knits is supposed to be out today.

I open the door and I am nearly knocked over by the smell of stale cigarettes. Holy indoor air pollution, Batman! The store is maybe 12 ft by 20 ft, with shelves of yarn still in the bag (not a bad idea in light of the smoke), many of the bags are yellowed from smoke. The shop attendant (one of the sisters?) was a well-groomed 80+ yo woman, wearing a fetching hand-knit suit. I look around -- there is enough acrylic in this room to . . . uh. . . well, it was mostly acrylic yarn. I find a stash of 100% wool and mercerized cotton. I wonder if they've ordered stock since 1984. Indeed, one of the yarn companies seems to have dropped off the planet, and the other, well I'd only ever seen it in a stash Mom bought from a neighbor who moved away in the 80s.

I look at the notions and it resembles that area to the far right of the candy counter at Pops. (You know what I mean. Ancient packaging of strange implements that were probably would have been useful during the months one expected to spend underground in the fallout shelter.)

But there's something strangely charming about it. (Except for the smoke.) I've grown weary of the tragically hip yarn shop. I knew the honeymoon was over for me in 10/04 when I went to Knit New York with my kids. I felt a little too unpierced and untatooed (I was, at that time, utterly untatooed). A salesperson saw the handknit sweater on Katie and exclaimed, "Is THAT Zara? I love Zara. Zara is THE BEST. We have it up front for like $9.99"(per 50 gram ball) My answer, "uh, no. I think it is Plymouth Dreambabies." (3.25 per 50 gram ball) And she looked sad for me and my use of pathetic, pedestrian fibers for something that would just be yacked and pooped on. Clearly, my child wasn't loved. It was hard for me to get her attention after that and in that store, you need someone to fetch your entire order for you.

Anyway, back to TYSTTF. I wanted to sit around for a few hours and pick the brains of this woman who had undoubtedly knit everything on Earth with every fiber known to man (but mostly acrylic). She pulled out a few pattern collections for me. Yes, they were from 1975 at the VERY latest, but the cuts were so different from today's knit wear that it could have been inspirational. There was a jacket or two that would have looked just as snappy now as it did during the Eisenhower Administration.

And, I bought 3 skeins of 100% silk worsted for $6.00. That $6.00 total, not each. Of course, my suit will have to be dry cleaned to get the scent out, but I'm still ahead cash-wise.

I'll head back another time I'm jonesing, and spend some time with the patterns.

Great story!!! I want to find one of those shops!
That's a great story. I could almost smell the smoke. LOL :)
Two Sisters is amazing. It's been forever since I've been in there, Mother raves about them.
Hehe! I love those kinds of shops- one feels like such an explorer. And you've definitely got the storytelling mojo going :)
Aw! I love little stores like that. And the silk for $6.00?!?! You lucky thing you. ^_^
Cool story, thanks for sharing!
I guess yarn stores are kinda like book stores...the older and messier they are, the better chance of finding something totally cool. :-) (sighs for messy old book stores of my childhood)
Ack! I'm glad you enjoyed this story. I meant to publish it to my personal blog. I'm such a doofus!
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