Fidalgo Artisan Yarn

Back in April, my husband and I went to Orcas Island to visit my Step-Mom for the weekend!  As the name suggests, it’s an island, so you have to take a ferry boat to get there.  The ferry departs from a town called Anacortes!  As it happens, Anacortes has a yarn shop.  The name of the store is Fidalgo Artisan Yarn.

This store is so unique!!!!!  When I arrived Emily was working.  She was busy winding yarn for a customer, but was so welcoming and happy.  Who could not be happy working in a store full of yarn, fiber and clothes.  Yes, clothes….we’ll talk about that in a bit.

The store is easy to find, it’s right downtown.  We parked on the street, and there are all sorts of fun shops all around, and restaurants too.  This store is “FULL” of hand dyed yarn by owner Lori.  The only brand names you will see in this store is needles and notions and patterns.  Everything in this store is crafted by hand, right down to the Spectator Hats – we’ll get there in a moment.

There is so much to take in, you just can’t be in a hurry!  There is alpaca, silk, wool, bamboo, mohair, even camel.  All weights will be found at Fidalgo Artisan Yarn.  The colors are so beautiful, from clean brights, to neutrals, to soft colors.  Owner Lori came in while I was there, so I was able to meet her.  She is pictured below in the turquoise shirt.  She truly has a gift for color and dying yarn.

There are hand crafted wood bowls for yarn that are crafted locally, hand made jewelry, artisan clothing hand made and those fun spectator hats.  I also found fiber for all the spinners out there and some patterns by Churchmouse Yarns & Teas.  Fidalgo Artisan Yarn is on Instagram, so follow along, and remember they ship!

I had made up my mind prior to walking in that I needed a pair of sock blockers.  I did get my sock blockers, and also some yarn for a shawl.  if you are headed up to the San Juan Islands, get up there early, so you can get into Fidalgo Artisan Yarn and tell them Mary from America’s Knitting sent you in!

*you can click on any photo to see it’s larger form

Fiber Arts Fine Yarns

When I started America’s Knitting, I wanted all the nations yarn shops all in one place online for everyone’s convenience.  How boring, it wasn’t enough.  I wanted to know all the yarn shops and talk about all the yarn shops.  So I started doing spotlights on yarn shops every chance I got.

Of course I started local…ones I could get out to for a visit – take some pictures!  Well, I live in Washington – NOW WHAT?  Well, I went down to Oregon and visited some shops in Portland and did spotlights, and my girlfriend Dawn took a trip back home to Connecticut, and shared a visit to a yarn shop for me.  Then I started getting contacted by yarn shops themselves and did a few yarn shops…Maine, California, Montana.  Then some of my readers started traveling and sending me photos and a few lines and I posted those spotlights…Arizona, Alaska!

Well my girlfriend Libbie just relocated to Florida for her husbands work.  She visited a yarn shop called Fiber Arts Fine Yarns in Odessa!  I asked her if she could take some pictures for me…and she did.  Here is what she had to say about the store:

The owner was there and was super friendly. They were  showcasing customers finished projects. Good parking. A little coffee shop cafe in the same strip mall as well as a brew pub next door. (Darin appreciates that!). He was able to taste a few local brews and grab a growler while I bought some locally dyed yarn.  That all being said, I haven’t been back. But, I haven’t really been knitting. In a rut.

Libbie needs to meet some knitters and join a knitting group!  I always say, you’ll meet your best friend at the yarn shop.  All that being said, Libbie & Darin are still getting settled in and are building a house.  Libbie needs her knitting mojo back!!  Thank you Libbie for taking the pictures and getting them to me.  I hope you get back to knitting SOON~

Oregon Knitting Co.

At America’s Knitting, we love to spotlight yarn shops across the nation.  We are based out of the pacific northwest, so of course we are better able to show more west coast yarn shops.  I get photos and stories from knitters, and I also do spotlights myself when I’m out and about.  This story and these photos come from our moderator over in our Ravelry group, Diana Cripe.

Diana, lives in Washington, but was traveling to a retreat in Oregon for the weekend.  Doesn’t that sound like heaven….a retreat?  I would love a weekend where I could just hang out and knit; no phones, no cooking or gardening, no work, just knitting.  Sounds relaxing!  Anyway…here is what Diana had to say:

On my way to a retreat on the Oregon coast, my friend Amy and I stopped at the Oregon Knitting Company in McMinnville, Oregon on the way.  This was the day before LYS Day.  This cute shop was located inside a little indoor mall type building.  The shop is not very big, but has a lot of yarns to offer.  The woman working there, sorry I did not get her name, was very nice, and funny and helpful.  When I found the wall of Findley, I was mesmerized.  I found so many colors I could not decide and was not sure what I would do with it.  I got a photo of one woman working at the table, don’t worry I always ask for permission and tell people what it is for before taking a photo.  After the retreat, and deciding what I would make with that yarn, we stopped again on our way home.  Before leaving the retreat my friend Amy was told by another friend to NOT let me buy purple!  I got this gorgeous teal, and plan to make Jared Flood’s Rock Island Shawl one day. 

The shop was beautiful and if  money was no object, I would have bought a lot more!

Just a little inside baseball, Diana loves purple and has lots of purple yarn in her stash.  I say “you can never have enough purple yarn….or teal”!!  Thank you Diana for checking out this yarn shop and taking these photos.  I can’t wait to visit some day myself.

If you want to see your LYS here in a spotlight…take some photos and send them to me.  I would love to see a spotlight from Arizona, Hawaii, North Dakota, Maine – work with me people!!

Yarn Bar

Kathie Malcher, a regular contributor for America’s Knitting, roving report if you will…..covered this store on her travels through Montana!  I can never thank Kathie enough for all she does for us.  I’m still working full time, and don’t travel as much as I would like to, and frankly, not everyone is comfortable asking and taking pictures, and the time it takes to email them all over to me, so I am able to spotlight local yarn shops, so THANK YOU KATHIE!!  I think that was the longest run-on sentence in history.

Anyway, here is what Kathie had to say about this store — Yarn Bar, Billings, Montana:

Owned by Linda and Sue – in the picture is Linda on the left and Sue on the right – store opened August 1, 2017 – it is a regular drop off point for Knitted Knockers.  They carry Mountain Meadow Wool (which I purchased), it is a Montana yarn and the gal searched hard and long for a mill to mill her yarn.  They also carry Blue Sky Fibers, Cestari, Erika Knight, Kelbourne Woolens, Madtosh, Polka Dot Sheep (MT yarn).  Their shop is small but jam packed with great yarn, but plenty of room to get around and see everything.  They have lots of samples and the lighting is good – they were very nice – warm and welcoming.  Definitely a place to stop in to see if ever in Billings, MT

Ok, there you have it!  I think the store looks very creative and cute!  Like always, if you want to cover a store for America’s Knitting, please email over your digital photos and a brief write up and I will post it right here.  You can click on any photo to see it’s larger form~

Tolt

My friend Jana & I kicked off the new year right, with a visit to Tolt!  Yep, I’m just now getting around to covering this store, and getting my spotlight up.  I’m a busy gal…knitting, designing kitchens, keeping up my house, hiking and watching my grandson!!  ANYWAY — Jana and I really wanted to go and see Shannon Cook aka Very Shannon!  She had just released her Valley of the Moon series, and was to be at Tolt for a launching.  So, of course we had to go; it’s just a ferry boat and car ride away…and, it’s just how we roll!

The weather was dreadful out — January in the pacific northwest can be that way.  Dark, wet, cold and windy BUT THAT DIDN’T STOP US! We arrived and was greeted by Shannon herself.  It wasn’t that busy yet, so we got to have a lovely chat with her.  She showed us her new designs and the yarn that she used (WOOLFOLK) for the projects.  It started getting a bit busy, so we decided to shop.  Then, we were invited to sit and knit a bit.  They had a lovely large wood table in the back with some chairs, and there were other ladies (locals) knitting.  There was room and we did have our knitting with us, so we decided we would.  Smiles all around.  The store is so friendly, we felt like locals ourselves.  It was a Saturday morning, and it was so fun to see what the other ladies were knitting.

Behind us, was another knitting spot…some comfy chairs by a wood stove.  There were other gals gathered ’round, chatting and knitting.  It was very cool and relaxed feeling.  Nobody was in a hurry at all (Tolt is in the country), there were young moms with their babies, women with their husbands, locals, and then us that came through from a distance, and then Shannon from Canada.

While we were sitting there, knitting and visiting, we took some pictures, and thought of other things we wanted to buy, that we had forgotten about, with VeryShannon on the brain.  After some time, we used the restroom, and got in line to make our purchases.  We then took off to brave the weather and head back home.

You know, I know people who never venture very far from home, but heading out to Carnation for the day, sort of felt like a mini vaca, even if it was just for a day in January~

*If you ever think to take some snaps of yarn shops on your travels, please share by emailing me and remember you can see these pictures in their larger form, by clicking on them*

 

 

 

Apple Yarns

Last October, Diana, the gal that heads up our Ravelry group, visited Apple Yarns in Bellingham, Washington!  Bellingham has three yarn shops.  Sounds like a town/city that gets a lot of knitting done.

Bellingham is also a college town, and the home to Western Washington University!  Apple Yarns, however is located in what Diana would call auto row amongst several auto dealerships and similar industry businesses.

When Diana was there for her visit, there were two different ladies working, Claudia Barbo, and Francine Heaton.  Francine is the lady on the left and Claudia is the lady on the right in the photo.  Claudia designed both scarves that the ladies are wearing.   While Diana was there, and visiting with Claudia & Francine, they mentioned that knitters drop of their cars to be serviced, and then pop in and knit a while, and wait there versus waiting and knitting at the dealership.  I just wonder how many people have learned to knit at Apple Yarns whilst waiting for their car.  I wonder if Apple Yarns does any targeted advertisement over there HAHA!

Diana loved the classes room area very much!  Thank you so much Claudia and Francine for spending time with Diana and allowing her to take some pictures.  So, whether you are a college student, waiting to get your car fixed, or are mainly a resident of Bellingham, or a visitor, stop into Apple Yarns, and take a class or just hang out and work on your knitting, so you can get on to the business of shopping for that next project!

**You may click on any of these photos to see their larger forms**

Diana Cripe~

Wear On Earth

Well, hello again!  We here at America’s Knitting like to celebrate the brick and mortar business of the local yarn shop!  As most of you may already know, America’s Knitting is celebrating 10 years this year.  Ten years of helping knitters find local yarn shops wherever they may be in the United States.  Are they traveling for business, pleasure, family obligation or possibly relocating?  We pride ourselves on having not only a complete listing of shops, but an accurate listing of shops.  We routinely check in on shops just to make sure they are still owned by the same people and in the same place.  We also have peeps out there informing us of updates all the time.

America’s Knitting also has a Facebook page, we are on Instagram, and yes, we even have a Ravelry group.  Our Ravelry group is moderated by Diana Cripe.  Diana recently took a trip to Lynden, Washington.  YES, there is a yarn shop in Lynden, Washington; it’s called Wear On Earth!  Here is what Diana had to say about the business, and here are her photos…

Wear On Earth has the cutest little classroom setting for classes, and does a lot of great things, like a group that knits scarves for veterans.  The business has a website that has a lot of information about this.  It is a great place because it is also a clothing consignment shop and the motto of the shop is: Save on Clothes, Splurge on Yarn!

The owners name is Elva Fisel and she was very nice and informative.  She even yarn bombed the pillar in the front of the store, outside.

Thank you Diana for thinking of America’s Knitting while you were in Lynden, Washington!

If you have a yarn shop in your town, we’d love to know more about it, and see some pictures of the store.  Please feel free to take a few snaps, write a few lines and email them over to me.  I will post a short story right here.  Stay tuned for our new website coming in 2018!

** remember, you can always click on any of these photos taken by Diana Cripe to see their larger forms **

Paradise Fibers

One of my very favorite things to do, is go to a yarn shop.  That’s why I started America’s Knitting.  I wanted all the yarn shops to be in one place, where the database of shops could be updated in real time, be correct and complete.  I wanted knitters to know who the yarn shops are, and where they are located.  I can always remember traveling (before cell phones) and being in a hotel room, and turning to the back of the local phone book yellow pages, so I could look under ‘yarn’ for a local yarn shop.  I always remember being so excited if I found one, and of course, we had to make time to track it down.  It was challenging, in an unfamiliar town with possibly, just a map.  I love GPS.

So, I finally got to visit Paradise Fibers in Spokane, Washington.  I had heard of Paradise Fibers (who am I kidding, I hear of all the yarn shops), but hadn’t made it by yet.  Actually, I have property in Spokane and this was the reason for our trip east.  It was my husbands birthday that actually fell on the weekend, so we took a drive across the mountains, looked in on the property, visited Paradise Fibers and went out for a really nice dinner and stayed over in a hotel.  All of it was delightful, and all was good with the property!

I’m not all that familiar with Spokane…my husband more so than me, but even he didn’t know where it was.  So, I pulled out my phone and went onto America’s Knitting and looked it up.  All shops are connected to Google Maps, so away we went and we were there in 15 minutes.  When we “arrived at our destination”, we see this sizable brick building, that looked OLD!  I didn’t really know what to expect; but my husband took the dog on a stroll around the neighborhood, and I went inside.

Old hardwood floors, and brick walls everywhere.  It was an old building for sure, but it didn’t smell old, and a lovely young lady greeted me.  I introduced myself and asked it I could snoop around and take some pictures.  She said that would be fine.  She was working, and helping some customers, and then she joined me, and gave me a tour.  I told her how surprised I was by the size of the building and the range of inventory that they had.  It was then, that she told me of their online presence.  Then it all made more sense.  They do occasionally have a knit night or a class, and they are thinking of expanding on those ideas.  They also had a few specialty dyes from Ancient Arts, out of Canada, created just for them.  That excited me because I had heard of Ancient Arts, but had never knit with it, so I did purchase a skein of sock yarn as a treat.  I wanted both, but it was expensive yarn, and I’ll have an opportunity next time to pick up the other one.

I saw lots of yarn that I would have loved to purchase.  It’s really too bad that my stash is so extensive.  You really do feel like a kid in a candy store.  Makes me wish I were one of those fast knitters!  Thank you Hannah for showing me around and being so nice to me, and letting me take pictures.  It was fun!!

** remember you can always click on any of these photos to see their larger form **

*Happy Anniversary to CHURCHMOUSE YARNS & TEAS*

Churchmouse Yarns & Teas, located on beautiful Bainbridge Island, in the state of Washington, is celebrating 17 years in business!  The store started out as an up-scale yarn shop, and they have grown to a destination yarn shop visited by knitters and designers from around the world.  In addition to their lovely store, and fabulous selection of yarns, they have a fine line of patterns that are sold in yarn shops far and near.  The store teaches knitting along with lots of other classes.  They have trunk shows, events and retreats, and hold a sizable on-line presence.

Their style is classic, and tasteful simplicity!  Their patterns are timeless and ageless (except for their wee ones line).  Their staff is sweet and knowledgeable, and their brand…..inspiring!

Living in western Washington myself, I have access to lots of fine yarn shops…all different.  Fortunately, for me, getting to Churchmouse Yarns & Teas is an easy 25 minute drive for me.  Those of us frequent patrons have simple names for the business.  Lots of us, simply say Churchmouse, others fondly refer to the store as ‘the Mouse’.  And we further refer to the employees as ‘mice’.

This success, didn’t just happen — the store started with a business plan, works very hard, and hasn’t stagnated – they’ve grown.  Last weekend was their latest pattern launch, and this weekend, they celebrated their anniversary.  Churchmouse has a facebook page, and they also a Ravelry group, and are on all forms of social media.  I encourage you to follow them on their journey, and I hope that you are lucky enough to be able to visit their lovely store some day soon.  Congratulations to Kit & John, and all the mice, on your anniversary.

Here’s to 17 more years!!

Town Square Fabric & Yarn

I’ve been on a ‘StayCation’ of sorts all this week.  My husband and I are both self employed and work together.  Wes was off on a kayaking trip up in the Broken Islands, so I took the week off, to just enjoy being at home with our dog.  Well, this is why people go away, because while you are at home, you really aren’t on vacation.  With that, Monday, I had to go pick up material for one of our jobs (bathroom remodel).  So, I thought….darn it, I’m going to check out a yarn shop I have never been to before.

Town Square Fabric & Yarn, is located in Burien, Washington!  I know people, who have visited this shop before, and now I have visited this shop.  It’s a quaint shop, located in a sweet part of town with lots of small businesses around, and parking on the street.  You’ll notice, in their name that ‘Fabric’ has top billing, when in fact, the store is probably 80% yarn.  The owner, Cindy, was in, and we had the opportunity to visit, and I had the opportunity to wander about and take some pitcures.

Like most yarn shops, lots of samples and displays, but what drew my attention was her stock of Lopi yarn, and patterns.  I’ve been looking for this, and you don’t always see that brand in my area.  Other notable brands I saw; Heritage Yarns, Kauni, Alegria, Cascade Yarns, Queensland, Imperial and Raven Frog Fibers.  The store has a nice table too,  where you can sit and go through patterns, and put a project together or attend a class.

The store was preparing for a class on shadow knitting with Bobbi Daniels out of Alaska.  See the ’12’ scarf to the right?  That is shadow knitting, and this scarf doesn’t just have the number 12 on it, it’s a Seattle Seahawk scarf. The number 12 signifies the 12th man on the field, the fan!  Did I just geek out that much??  Back to yarn…. I did purchase a Lopi pattern book and some Lopi yarn for a sweater.    It was fun to sit at Cindy’s table and browse through the Lopi patterns and look at Lopi colors.  It’s a highly recommended practice while on vacation or staycation.

In closing, Cindy told me that she is considering phasing out the fabric to make room for MORE yarn.  Yarn is where it’s at, so I guess knitting is alive and well in Burien!  Town Square Fabric & Yarn is on facebook, and as with all of our photos, please click on any of them to see their larger forms.

If you are traveling for work or pleasure, please use our website to locate a yarn shop near you.  All of the shops are connected to Google Maps, so you can have direction to any shop.  Our website is mobile friendly, so you can use our website in your car and on all of your devices.  You can visit a shops website from our listings, and you can also call the store from our website.

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Also, if you would like to see a spotlight of your LYS, please contact me!  We would love to shine a light on their business.  Happy travels and happy knitting~