Someone was nudging me, so I surfaced from the depths of sleep to see an-Emmos-shaped entity standing over me, radiating anxiety.
“It’s 10:15,” she informed me, as I peered at her without my glasses, wondering what was going on. The information settled. I swore loudly and with some proficiency, threw my blankets off and rolled off the air mattress.
We were due at Knit/Purl at 10:30, to meet Opus.
Somehow, less than 10 minutes later, we were in Emmos’ car, driving like lunatics. It must be mentioned that my mother aided us in this timely departure – by tracking items down for us, throwing sweaters (hers) at us, and even venturing out to the car in her PJ’s to find the Portland Metro map for me. Mum definitely earned her Jewish Mother status yesterday.
Three slightly belated knitters arrived at our destination to find Opus knitting on the corner. We called to her, circled the block several times, and finally found parking 2 blocks away.
“I should have realised this,” she called to us as we rushed over, “but since it’s Sunday, they don’t open until 12.”
Oops. Okay. Time to reassess. St M and Opus both needed to visit an ATM. We three needed breakfast. So we set off, first hitting The Pearl Bakery (dangerous, wonderful place to visit), then Anthropologie (it was on the way to WaMu, I swear!), and finally WaMu.
It was 11:20. We still had 40 minutes to kill. “Are there any knit shops nearby you wanted to hit, before we go back to Knit/Purl?” Opus asked. Indeed, there was. Knit Knot Studio. We headed over and were sidetracked by Cargo. 13th St in the Alphabet District is a dangerous place to go for your wallet, lemme tell you.
We arrived at Glisan, wandered around perplexed and discovered that Knit Knot wasn’t open on Sundays. Blast. “Let’s call the rest of those stores on your list, before we go to them,” Emmos suggested. My cell was produced and St M got the job of calling and getting hours for all the stores we’d chosen. Our choices were narrowed to Knit/ Purl, Lint, The Yarn Garden, and Abundant Yarn & Dyeworks. We also decided to try and hit L’Occitaine at some point during the day (before we crossed the river).
We arrived back at Knit/Purl soon after calling the stores on the list, and the girls were suitably impressed. Knit/Purl is quite easily my favourite knit shop ever. They carry high-end yarns that are hard to find, have their own yarn & pattern line, and always have great customer service.
When I was asked if I needed anything, I immediately inquired into the possibility of a special order from Habu Textiles. I explained that, after several failed attempts, I still hadn’t managed to get cobweb yarn for the Wedding Ring Shawl. I had seen on Habu’s website that they carried a gorgeous silk yarn that fit the shawl’s requirements perfectly. But, several months ago, I had been quite disappointed to find that Habu has a minimum order amount of $1000. Eep.
In the end, it took two ladies, the Habu sample book, and a blood oath from me to place an order for degummed Tassar Silk Organizine. I paid a deposit for half of the estimated price, sighed over now-empty bank account (no more yarn for me!), and went to help the girls with their purchases.
As Emmos was paying for her yarns (Shibui sock!), I caught this shot of the group:
From there we drove to Lint. I must admit that I have a mixed review for this store. In the past I’ve had much better customer service than we received yesterday. There’s no arguing that Lint is a great store to visit for knitting accessories and basic yarns like Rowan, Debbie Bliss, and Brown Sheep. But the girls were clearly turned off by the fact that the woman staffing was not impressed with us, nor willing to help us with our inquiries. We left a bit disappointed.
“They’re usually much better,” Opus said as we left, “it’s probably because it’s a Sunday…”
Next was L’Occitaine because the girls (Opus excluded) had been coveting my tinted Shea Butter – for lips and cheeks. After spending too much money there (I was good, I swear), we grabbed lunch. Mmmm… tempura.
We then crossed the river to hit The Yarn Garden, my now 2nd favourite knit store in Portland. Their selection of yarns is impressive, they join onto a cafe, have some fabulous sock yarns and pretty decent customer service. I ended up buying a set of Brittany US 1.5 DPNs, signing up for a rewards card (the girls helped me fill it) and contenting myself to coming back when I had money. St M did much better, as they were having a sale on Noro and found a cashmere blend to die for. Emmos bought several balls of sock yarn (are we seeing a trend here?).
By this point we were completely exhausted and still had a yarn store left. We also had less than an hour to find it. I was not the best navigator and we managed to be superbly lost. By some manner of grace, we ended up at Abundant Yarn & Dyeworks 10 minutes before closing.
I have a fairly good review for them. They had a huge selection of Lorna’s Laces – yarns and roving (!) – and also carried other spinning fiber. Again, since I was po’r, I only bought a set of DPN’s (KA US 0’s). But, St M got several hanks of handdyed superwash roving. They, like The Yarn Garden, had a cafe attached. I’ve definitely bookmarked them to visit again when I have money. The fact that they had some naturally dyed roving was also impressive. I wouldn’t visit them for my daily yarn needs (too far away, hard to find, and the selection wasn’t as varied as I’d like), but their roving is more than enough to tempt me.
From there we headed back north, dropped Opus off at a Met station – me promising to meet up with her at Knit/Purl’s weekly knit night. We three headed back home, completely and utterly exhausted.
As Mum made dinner for us (before the girls had to drive back to Eugene), I snapped this shot of the weekend’s haul:
From BSG, in order of purchase:
- A Spindlewood Co. square mini spindle, weighing in at 5/8 oz (been wanting one of these for a looooong while)
- Women’s M sock blockers by Fiber Trends
- Cherry Tree Hill supersock (on sale!) in Peacock and 1 oz of Crosspatch Creations fiber
- 4 oz of the softest wool top, grown in Oregon – a Cormo x Targhee x Merino mix.
- Simply gorgeous sock yarn that was handdyed in Oregon (nope, can’t remember the booth, but I’ll post the info on the band when I use it)
- And, la creme de la creme – Heirloom Knitting and Prehistoric Textiles. Both of which I have been trying to obtain for… too long.
- L’Occitaine verbena/ citrus shampoo
- Brittany birch 5″ US 1.5 DPNs
- KA 5″ US 0 DPNs
And that is everything. Last night, after the girls left, I fell into bed before 7 pm and slept thru ’til this morning. I have a doctor’s appt in Eugene at 10 am, so now I have to get ready for that. Oooh, fun, more driving. I have a feeling that I’m never going to want to see inside a car ever again, very very soon.