I’ve Been to Shangri-la and I’m Telling You all About it

11 Jul

I went to New York for a quick vacay and experienced one of the best legs of any vacation I’ve ever taken. I was as high as someone eating apple pie in the clouds and visibly giddy. No, it wasn’t shoe shopping, or even free Christian Louboutins (oooo – slap – focus). I was at the great and only Lion Brand Yarn Studio! This might sound like I’ve never been to a yarn store before or my Michael’s is closed for renovations, but that is not the case. I’ve been to my fair share of local and chain stores that carry my supplies but none of them were quite so magical.

First, if you haven’t been, you should go and plan a vacation around it. Second, if you get to go all the time, consider yourself on of the luckiest people in the world! Third, this is a long post, but well worth the magical read.

Before I went I did some research and checked out the website (of course) and took an online tour with the Studio Squirrels. These rodentia really know their yarn. The tour shows all the different parts of the store and sections of things you can look at and check out. I even saw one of them hanging out in the tea/coffee prep area but was sane enough not to ask to take a picture with it.

I walked in the door and saw all the yarn beautifully displayed in a wall organizer. All of the Lion Brand yarns are on display and not all are carried by stores. This is the best presentation of yarn I’ve seen because like was with like, but you also saw all the colors in that particular type of yarn.

Part of the Lion Brand Wall of Yarn

The store has a very homey feel with the hardwood floors, chairs at a big old wood table for people to knit on and also comfy ottoman’s strewn throughout. You feel instantly comfortable and inspired.

@LionBrandYarn tweep and me (@Stacyc55)

I met with the social media/Web guru and had a great time picking her brain about the store, the city, knitting and the Lion Brand, well, brand. I was pleased and surprised to find out how family owned and operated Lion Brand as a company is run. It’s such a prominent old brand, I sort of had the idea that is was big and commercialized as ones of its same age. It was nice to know how much the yarn lover is thought of in regards to the focus of the company.

The staff is the best I have ever met. They are so knowledgable and friendly. Everyone was readily available if I even looked like I had a question and they understood me groping the yarn skeins!

While there, I fell in love with the LB Collection yarns (not carried in any store other than this one). I had never seen this line in person and wanted to buy it all up, but I had to restrain myself – a little – and decided to get some Wild Berry Superwash Merino Wool. I could envision a beautiful sweater but wasn’t sure of what pattern to use, but I didn’t want to walk away without enough skeins. A little desperate, and not very hopeful, I asked a woman approximately how many skeins would it take in this yarn to make a sweater? If you’re holding your breath, so did I. Ye of little faith. She whipped this chart out of her Lion Brand Toolbelt and was able to figure out approximately how many I would need. Then I remembered this pattern on my iPhone I had (turned out to be the LB Sketchbook Cardigan) and her calculations were RIGHT!

My momentous visit

It was a great couple of hours spent in the store shopping, knitting, chatting and dreaming. I definitely think this should be on “One of the Best Stops in New York” lists out there, at the very least for crafters. If you can’t get to the store, don’t despair, you can still buy products online and have a moment when the postman arrives, but it won’t be as great as the real-life experience.

An LB yarn user for life,

Stacy C

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