jayel's Profile

Crazy_lychee_stitch_detl_small
Member Since:
Fri Mar 11 19:01:42 -0800 2011
Locations Added:
1
Locations Rated:
66

jayel's Crawls

Title Date
Jayel's I-91 Shop Hop 03/11/2011
Potential Toronto Crawl 02/14/2012

jayel's Favorite Locations

Location Average Rating
Webs America's Yarn Store
Northampton, MA
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Aylins Woolgatherer
Falls Church, VA
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Uniquities
Vienna, VA
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Nature's Yarns, Inc.
Fairfax, VA
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Fibre Space
Alexandria, VA
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Looped Yarn Works
Washington, DC
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jayel's Comments

about Looped Yarn Works on Fri Mar 11 21:14:34 -0800 2011

Worth the climb to the second floor, this bright and airy shop on Dupont Circle is welcoming in every way, from helpful staff; to customers who love to hang out and knit and share a laugh; to yarn arranged in two rooms according to weight, and luxury yarns, needles, hooks and notions conveniently arranged by the registers. A computer is available for customers' use to browse online patterns (or if you're like me, to check stash online on Ravelry to see if a new yarn will work with what's already in your closet!), and a ballwinder and swift are set up between a large window and comfy seating, in case you want to cast on your lovely new yarn right then & there.

Go ahead, you deserve it! Check out Looped Yarn Works and stay awhile! Personally, I think they should call the place a "Yarn Spa" because I felt pampered and refreshed when I left with my purchases.

about Fibre Space on Sat Mar 26 00:51:47 -0700 2011

Staff are young & hip and welcoming to fiberholics of all ages. Very helpful, great selection of yarn, needles, notions & accessories. It can be very easy to drop a wad of cash here and walk away with a smile on your face.

I just loved the window display when the shop was sponsoring crochet sessions for the Smithsonian Hyperbolic Crochet Coral Reef--a mannequin was "swimming" over a colorful wooly reef! I still smile when I come across pictures of this display. In truth, I saw the picture first and said, "I've GOT to go visit this store!"

They may need to rethink layout a bit. When I was there, they were constantly redirecting people lined up at the register away from the wall of needles, which obviously was put there for convenience's sake, but then shoppers have to wade thru the line to get to them. Guess they weren't thinking about having "rush hours".

about Uniquities on Sat Mar 26 01:02:07 -0700 2011

This is one of my fiber homes, the comforting place I go to again and again to soak up the colors & textures, chat with friends, browse to my heart's content. It's situated close to my doctor's office, so buying a little something for myself is my "lollipop" after a check-up. (No, I don't stop in if I'm contagious, don't you worry!)

LOTS of everything--yarns from affordable to indulgeances, a needle and pattern room, with lots of buttons to browse as well. Tons of sock yarn. Upstairs is Spinning Central, with an amazing assortment of wheels, roving & I've even seen some fleeces.

I've never taken classes here, but friends have, and the teachers are super.

It takes a little finding the shop at the end of an office park, but you won't be sorry looking for it. Call for directions & you'll know these are helpful folks!

about Webs America's Yarn Store on Thu Jun 30 14:47:00 -0700 2011

Webs & I go way back, both online and on site. Truly Fiber Mecca for knitters, crocheters & weavers! I highly recommend it! Even when Webs doesn't have a sale going on, many of their yarns are eligible for a 20% discount for purchases of $60 or more and 25% for purchases of $120 or more. I don't need to tell you how easy it is to qualify for a discount!

Though I live in Virginia and am primarily an online customer, I've been fortunate to visit the store (and its warehouse!) twice now. My most recent visit was last week as the first (and sixth!!!) stop on the 2011 I-91 Shop Hop. The usually friendly & helpful staff pulled out all the stops and bestowed lovely goodie bags on us, made themselves available for questions, but weren't intrusive. (Direct quote: "Do you need help or are you just overwhelmed?" Staff are used to customers overcome by yarn euphoria.) There even was a table near the doorladen with water and snacks for the road to the next yarn shop.

Unlike many online stores, Webs staff are happy to assist online customers with questions and special requests. Once I was running out of yarn for a project, and a Webs staffer cheerfully offered to run back to the warehouse to check dye lots and call me back. Wow!

This store has earned my undying loyalty.

about Northampton Wools on Thu Jun 30 15:19:25 -0700 2011

I visited Northampton Wools on the I-91 Shop Hop last week. I learned at the outset that this is a shop in transition, that it has outgrown its current location & is about to relocate, so I was tolerant of a tiny shop in a bit of disarray, trying its best to accommodate an influx of shop hoppers. Staff were friendly but not intrusive, the inventory of yarns, notions and kits offered this frequent yarn shopper some interesting new (to me) products to consider, though the kits could be better marked as to price. There were some intriguing shop samples, and the door prize baskets were put together with care & visual appeal.

I am an out-of-towner, but if I lived locally, I'd make a point of visiting Northampton Wools regularly. It definitely has that boutique feel & its small size gives it the opportunity to carry local yarns from smaller-output producers & dyers that its higher volume neighbor can't. I'd be very curious to see what the shop will be like once settled into its new location. They clearly have put a lot of thought into carving their own niche, and trying not to be "just another yarn store."

about Metaphor Yarns on Thu Jun 30 15:35:30 -0700 2011

Metaphor is a gem, a happy surprise for the yarn tourist. For me, it was a destination on the I-91 Shop Hop, so I wasn't vacationing in the area, but I'd like to! We shop hoppers were directed to park in the back and come in through the adjacent quilting shop. I thought my travel companion was going to faint dead away, because she makes quilted knitting bags as well as knits & crochets, and the quilt shop was a feast for the eyes, with friendly proprietors.

At first, I thought Metaphor was a tiny, hole-in the wall shop, but one yarn-filled room gave way to another--and another! A spacious shop, with friendly staff (it was clearly a family affair during the shop hop, which added to the charm) and even a table in the middle of one yarn room on which to assemble and examine yarns. I loved the wall of boutique hand-dyed yarns along the hallway into the classroom/showroom, and I was pleased with the selection of books I found arrayed along a wall of the classroom.

about Green Mountain Spinnery on Thu Jun 30 15:52:22 -0700 2011

I visited as part of the I-91 Shop Hop last week. We arrived near the end of the day and got a tour of the spinnery (only one machine at work, but still fascinating) and we had a very nice chat with the shopkeeper/collective member and an unhurried browse of the yarns in the little shop. They also have a nice selection of their own and other patterns and books. I believe these folks process the yarn of a local producer in my area, which made the tour all the more meaningful to me, seeing how they keep track of different orders. Since this was part of an 11-shop yarn crawl, I made only a modest purchase, but I was really tempted by several of their wools and wool/Tencel blends. A mall shopper may suffer a little sticker shock, but a short tour of the mill will show how labor intensive turning wool into yarn can be. (I would love to be there some time when they are blending different color wools into one of their heathers!)

Note to yarn tourists: Green Mountain Spinnery is right across the street from Putney Inn. Makes for an easy impromtu browse, even with family in tow.

about Marji's Yarncrafts on Thu Jun 30 15:59:03 -0700 2011

Great shop packed with yarny goodness, a nice blend of yarn types and prices, notions, patterns and books. I've been here a couple of times, though an out-of-towner, and I find the place welcoming with friendly, helpful people, and always some nice surprises in their yarn selection and eye-candy shop samples. These folks know the joy of knitting!

The shop occupies the ground floor of the shopkeeper's home, and there's a certain charm to see not only yarn shop accoutrements, but bathing suits drying on the railing and the kids' trampoline in the yard.

about Creative Fibers on Thu Jun 30 16:03:52 -0700 2011

Very nice shop, nice people, great selection, logical arrangement of yarn by weight as well as an "ooh, shiny" wall of novelty yarn. Great classroom/pattern-browsing area. My friend tells me the shop has some great drop-in knitting nights as well. And there are always some wonderful & whimsical impulse buys at the register, so don't put your wallet away too quickly! I live out of the area & love it when I get a chance to visit this shop.

about Village Wool on Thu Jun 30 16:40:29 -0700 2011

I arrived at Village Wool just when it was mobbed with both north-bound and south-bound shoppers participating in the I-91 Shop Hop last week. Still, we were greeted immediately by a cheerful young staffer. My impression of the shop was positive. Nice yarn, book & notions selection in various price points, helpful, friendly staff, comfy seating area. I wonder if the shop has expanded since the previous review, because the shop didn't strike me as either tiny or cramped (except for the very large shopping crowd). My visit was a pleasant experience.

about Sit 'n Knit on Thu Jun 30 16:58:58 -0700 2011

Sit 'N Knit is decidedly an upscale knitting store. I visited during the I-91 Shop Hop last week. The owner welcomed us, offered us help, but seemed a bit brusque and weary (probably from 2 days of shop hoppers coming through). There were some interesting kits at the front of the store and some very nice yarns, but a bit too pricey for me to buy on an 11-shop yarn crawl (I needed to pace myself.), definitely what I would call "special treat" yarn. If I lived locally and wanted to treat myself, I might head over to Sit 'N Knit for something luxurious.

My friend & I were taken aback that, shortly after we arrived, the shopkeeper did the drawing and announced the winner of their daily door prize, an hour and a half before store closing. We wondered if later shop hoppers were just out of luck.

A cool feature that relays a bit of playfulness: the piller just outside the shop had been "yarn bombed"--it was covered with all sorts of knitting and crocheting.

about The Yarn Basket on Thu Jun 30 17:17:17 -0700 2011

The Yarn Basket struck me as a fun and friendly store. The energy was palpable, as staff bustled to help the influx of shoppers from the I-91 Shop Hop last weekend. They were excited to be part of the shop hop and happy to see us. Service was excellent, and there were plenty of yarns to consider in various weights and price points. I can't fault the small selection of books and magazines, because the independent LYS can't compete with the prices of Amazon, Knit Picks, and big box stores, but the selection of individual patterns was ample. I enjoyed looking through notebooks full of them.

I live several states away, but if I lived closer, I could see becoming a regular at this wonderful shop!

about Knit New Haven on Thu Jun 30 17:24:30 -0700 2011

Oooooh la-la! If I won the lottery, I'd jet to New Haven and indulge in a huge bagful of the luxurious & distinctive yarns I found at Knit New Haven! Don't get me wrong, I found plenty in my price comfort range during my visit, but some of those gorgeous luxury yarns were definitely singing a siren song!

Staff were wonderfully welcoming & helpful, ready with project ideas and shop samples for us to stroke & admire. Notions and giftable items were plentiful, and this frequent yarn shopper (and I-91 Shop Hopper) discovered (and bought!) some yarns from independent dyers I'd never seen before. Overall, a great experience.

about The Yarn Garden on Thu Jun 30 17:44:05 -0700 2011

Yes, The Yarn Garden actually has a garden, a lovely one right at its entrance! This is a welcoming little place. The owner has a great sense of fun, and during our visit, she had a tableful of knitters engaged in animated conversation, which we were encouraged to join.

The shop had a good selection of yarns, buttons, notions, books and bags (I'm still dreaming about the new version of a Namaste bag I passed up there!), but we had to hunt for prices on the bins (the owner was more than happy to price things for us). There was a nook devoted to all things sequinned and sparkly. The yarns were in a bit of disarray, but the shop had had three days' worth of yarn crawlers coming through for the I-91 Shop Hop. I did spot some ancient yarns on the regular shelves that I would normally find in discount bins, and the shop really needed a good vacuuming & straightening up, which, for all I know, happened after we shop hoppers cleared out. I can't judge if this little gem needs polishing or if I simply arrived in the eye of the storm of ravenous yarn shoppers. If I lived in CT (I live a plane ride away), I'd return to find out.

about Aylins Woolgatherer on Thu Jun 30 18:05:00 -0700 2011

This is a knitting home away from home for me. Yes, it's small and on an upper floor, but yarn stores do what they need to do to stay in business; they are a service-oriented business and don't have huge profit margins. AND....Aylin now has shelf tags with yarn prices, so no need to study price lists or ask staffers to price yarn for you (which they are happy to do!) Aylin used to have a storefront long ago, and I was devastated when I returned to the area and thought she'd gone out of business, then I was delighted to find the store on an upper floor.

As a regular, I'll have to pay attention to not hogging the attention of staff when I'm there. Aylin's is a place where people like to hang out, but we certainly don't want to scare away or intimidate customers! Aylin is the sweetest person, a wonderful knitter & teacher, her staff are a welcoming & friendly bunch, and all are welcome in their "club".

UPDATE: Aylin has listened to those who found the shop claustrophobic, opened up the sales floor, added seating in several areas, and dedicated the back room to needles and notions. The first thing that strikes a shopper upon entering the shop now is all the natural light--who knew the shop had floor-to-ceiling windows! The same friendly place with a nice selection of yarns and places to hang out away from the checkout counter. One thing I've learned is to ask a salesperson if there's more of a favorite color--the showroom is backed by storage rooms with packed shelves, and staff are more than happy to search for more skeins if you need them.

about Nature's Yarns, Inc. on Thu Jun 30 18:34:21 -0700 2011

An open and airy store with lots of comfy seating for sitting & knitting. Welcoming staff, and a nice, but not comprehensive selection of yarn, arranged for the most part by weight. I feel very much at ease shopping here and I keep coming back, even when I know I'll get snarled in traffic on the way home (I simply can't rush yarn shopping!).

about Yarns On First on Fri Aug 10 01:26:14 -0700 2012

If you're an avid knitter or crocheter, even a trip to wine country isn't complete without a stop in a local yarn shop for your fiber fix. Send the husband and kids across the street to Ben & Jerry's while you sink your teeth into the sweetness of Yarns on First. Feast your eyes on wall to wall (floor to ceiling) color in this friendly well-lit shop, where the midweight yarns are indeed arranged by color. Sock weight, seasonal yarns and kids' yarns have sections of their own, as do specialty yarns. Plenty of books and shop samples for ideas, and the owners are ready to provide assistance when it's needed.

Marcia Schwartz & Jess Mosher just bought the shop in July 2012. I believe they are a mother-daughter team. The yarn selection includes many temptations including Madelinetosh, ShiBui, Mountain Colors, Berocco, Manos, Lorna's Laces and more. I appreciated the variety of price points, since I stopped in for a single crochet hook Addi, of course!), but left with more. For your convenience, the shop has a yarn-winding station in the back for those vacation impulse purchases that you simply MUST start in on immediately.

I expect to have sweet yarn dreams tonight, and may well stop in again before I leave town after I've had a chance to sleep on all the yarny possibilities.