Friday, March 16, 2007

Yarn Crawling: The Village People

The Village People Tours
Villagers, Disco Dancers. Lots of walking and lots of alternatives on this tour.

Abbreviated Alternative Tour: The I ♥ the L Train Tour. Start at the Bedford Ave station in Brooklyn for The Yarn Tree. Proceed on the L Train one stop to 1st Ave for Knit NYC (or walk over the Williamsburg Bridge – it’s such a lovely view!). From 1st Ave, back in the L to 6th Ave for Gotta Knit. To get to Stephanie The Yarn Harlot’s book signing on March 22 from there, take the F/V from 6th Ave at 14th up to 23rd Street/6th Ave OR go over to 7th Ave at 14th and get out at 28th Street/7th Ave.

Now, the Bohemian-who-could-walk-all-day tour.
The East Village Start:
Knit NYC
on 14th Street between 1st & 2nd Avenues. This is one of those brilliant knitting cafés, so you can start here when you’re ready for a little snack. There is a danger that you’ll find some great yarn and a new pattern and oh, just look at casting on while you drink your cappuccino and suddenly finding yourself spending the entire day knitting there. If you consider that sort of thing dangerous.

If the caffeine gets you hyped up to move on, head south. Stop at Magry Knits on East 7th Street (80 E 7th, near 2nd Ave, between 1st/2nd). I can’t believe I haven’t been to Magry Knits, but it sounds like they’ve got finished fashion garments as well as yarn for sale, and will even do repairs and possibly custom work.

After you’ve gotten an eyeful (and possibly a bag-full) of the yarn action at Magry, continue heading south, and a little east, to Downtown Yarns on Avenue A (between 2nd/3rd). This is one of the well-loved, well-visited, well-discussed yarn stores of New York, and they’ve always got an amazing window display. They’re also amazing for the selection of yarn they’re able to fit into their small space, but if you’re touring with a large group, perhaps you’ll consider rotating shifts of people inside Downtown Yarns and the eateries across the street. There’s The Bagel Zone for bagels and funky atmosphere and Two Boots for great specialty pizza.

From Avenue A, you’re surprisingly close to the 2nd Avenue stop of the F/V train, where the 24-hour entrance is really at Houston and 1st Avenue. If you don’t get waylaid by possibly the best whiskey and beer bar in New York, d.b.a. on 1st Ave between 2nd and 3rd (16 rotating beers on tap! Scotches listed by region on long chalkboards!), pop into the F or V uptown to the West 4th Street stop.

This is the alternative West Village Start to the Tour: From the West 4th Street subway station, walk down Carmine St. (go a little South on 6th Avenue until you get to the intersection, ignoring the cream-puffs on the corner), past both the adult and children’s Unoppresive Non-Imperialist Bargain Book Stores (real name!) to Bedford Street. Peek to your left down Bedford and you’ll see Point, another knitting café. You know what to do.

No village tour would be complete without a dip into SoHo to Purl. If you think you’re “yarned-out” already, go anyway for Purl Patchwork, two doors down from Purl, and full of really great quilting fabrics and supplies. They have classes taught by Liesl, they have the Wee-Wonderfuls Put-Together books. From Point, it’s really easiest to walk to Purl. Just keep heading down Bedford Street, at Houston turn left and go a little block to Sullivan, right onto Sullivan and you’re there already.

If it’s Magical March 22nd, 2007, you’ll be wanting to get to Stephanie The Yarn Harlot’s book signing at FIT on 27th between 7th and 8th Avenues.
From Purl: Take the C/E from Spring Street to 23rd Street/8th Ave.
From Point: 1 at Houston to 28th Street/7th Ave OR C/E from West 4th to 23rd Street/8th Ave.
From Downtown Yarns: F/V to 23rd Street/6th Ave.

Stay tuned for the Updated! Improved! Map! And more tours (now I've got 27 stores on my list), including The Garment District and the Upper West Side. Please feel free to add corrections or ask questions or just say boo in the comments. I will update the tours and info as I can.


Anonymous Dawn said...

Amber, you rock.


'Nuff said.

3/17/2007 8:32 AM  

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