Monday, April 4, 2011

Fantasy Yarn Shop

Several years ago my friends and I had a whole fantasy yarn shop developed.  We even found the building we would put it in.  So here's how it went.  There's a building in downtown Springfield with a candy store in the bottom floor and 3 completely empty floors above. 

So the first floor would be all things yarn for knitters and crocheters.  There are tons of windows so there would be displays all around with lovely daylight to see exactly what the color of the yarn is.  There would be samples hanging everywhere and the samples would be changed out fairly regularly to keep our customers entralled and inspired.

The next floor would be all things fiber and spinning with spinning wheel stations set up where you could try out a dime bag of fiber and, now that I'm thinking of it, a carder so you could blend your own fibers.  Again, there would be samples of the fibers everywhere and all the tools one needs to create beautiful, one-of-a-kind yarn.  We might even have our own line of handspun yarns that we would sell on the first floor.

The top floor would be classroom areas so we could have classes in all the fiber arts and room to hang out without being in the way of shoppers.

Of course, all of these things came from our favorite things about yarn stores we've been to and some of the things we've experienced that weren't so pleasant that we would change if we were in charge of this world of fiber.  We used to talk about this a lot but we haven't really visited it in a long time.

Along this line, I found another building not too far away where I would have a fiber-based art gallery with the beautiful things made by Illinois fiber artists and more in-depth classes.

All of this came flooding back the other day when I was reading the Yarn Harlot's blog post about the rookie mistake of not feeling like she'd taken enough yarn with her on her long trip.  Everyone knows you can't buy yarn at the airport.  What I want to know is, why not?  What better shop could there be for travellers?  Needles and other paraphenalia for knitters/crocheters who've broken or lost a needle; stitch markers to replace the ones that rolled down the isle of the plane and you were too afraid to go after them (it's hard enough to explain to people what we do without crawling around on the floor of a plane looking for a little black ring used to help you keep count of your stitches); yarn for those who run out or who need a new project to work on.

So, here's what I would do.

I would open a yarn store in DFW airport.  It's the 7th busiest airport in the world with the largest airport train system, it's own zip code, it's own post office and millions of travelers through from every part of the world.  Plus my parents live not too far away, I'd be back in Texas and it's my fantasy yarn shop so I can pick anywhere I want.

It would have display windows along the outside with handknits available for sale.  Only high class stuff.  Colorwork mittens, shawls, lace of various kinds, etc.  Much of the store would be stocked with kits I would make up myself and mostly of things that would be perfect for travelers to pick up and work on like socks and pretty scarves with handspun yarn.  The kits would include needles, pattern, yarn and any other things needed to complete the pattern (maybe a few beads, a cable needle, hey, maybe even a feather or two).  There would also be some kits for larger projects such as a cardigan or a shawl.  And then there would be yarn.  Loverly soft scrumptious pet yarn.  You know what I mean.  The yarn that's not meant to become anything, it's perfect just the way it is.  The kind of yarn you're just happy to pet and snuggle up to.  (I'm not getting too personal, am I?)  I'll move on.

There one might also find a spindle or two and some inviting fiber, a book or two and some patterns.  There would be room for my little Hitchhiker Spinning Wheel (which is a fabulous conversation piece) and I could spin and knit to my heart's content and meet and talk to people from all over the world.

And I would have classes.  Come in and learn on your way to your connection.  Make the trip all worth it.  Jump in the water's fine.  Need help with a pattern?  No probs.  Didn't buy the yarn from me, I'm not surprised because I'm in an airport.  No worries.

And finally, I would have a monitor inside my little airport yarn shop that would play non-stop old movies.  Pre-1950's movies, black and white, film noir, slapstick comedies, silent shorts. 

That, my good friends, would be heaven.