While we are in NY for 4 months, my 6 year old son is not starting school here because he just finished Montessori school in New Zealand and the new school year starts in Feb there. Jasper is not very good with new things, so we decided he would stay home with me for the 4 months and I would get a babysitter 2 days a week so I can get some work done (and shopping). So yesterday on one of my babysitter days I was determined to check out another yarn shop. So far I have been a little underwhelmed when I visited Purl Soho (great yarns but too cramped and no room to play) and my local Knit-A-Way (decent selection but too blah and uninspiring). I really wanted to find a yarn store that would make me weak in the knees and inspire me to create (and part with my Visa). Well my good friends, I have found all these things and more at Brooklyn General in Red Hook.
I apologize for my crappy photos but my camera broke and I am left taking photos with my iphone until it is replaced. It is well worth noting that the Hodge Podge Farm Blog has better pictures that are worth checking out as the Brooklyn General website doesn't give you the real impression of the amazing fiber on display and the exquisite selection of fabrics and books.
I only had a limited amount of time in the shop but the super friendly gal behind the counter was all too helpful giving me a little tour of the yarns she is most fond of. Since I live in New Zealand which would you believe has the worst yarn stores in the world (don't get me started!), coming to Brooklyn General I felt like a pilgrim that finally reached the shrine. The store itself is just bursting with color and texture not only from the products but the old wooden shelving that was part of the original General Store it had been before the knitters moved in. The store stocks only high quality natural fiber yarns which are chosen by color, feel and apparently smell. I love that. I was completely overwhelmed with all the varieties of small batch kettle dyed wools, crazy felted yarn from Germany and luscious sock yarns, super bulky merino dyed in candy colors. I ended up buying 4 skeins of Malabrigio Chunky Merino in Paris Night which is a kettle dyed deep dark midnight blue with hints of deep purple throughout. Oh dear, I am in love with this yarn and have big plans to knit Emory a chill choker (now on the needles) and my Mom one of my Wellington Southerly Cowls for her birthday.
This weekend there is the Sheep and Wool Festival in Rinebeck NY. Everyone who knits is going to Rinebeck except me, bummer. Lately I am not into conventions or large gatherings of any kind. Perhaps I burnt out at the Polymer Clay convention back in 97, I dunno. Maybe it was all those years selling my jewelry at craft fairs in California or the Bead conventions in Santa Fe. But I am sure if I went to Rinebeck I would be blown away with the selection of yarns, vendors and of course sheep. Something I do get plenty of in New Zealand :)