Weekend Trip: Dyed In The Wool Yarn Store!

 Whenever I travel, I am reminded of a few things.

  1. People who splatter their urine all over public restrooms: I hate thee.
  2. People who do not flush the urine splattered toilet left behind them: I hate thee
  3. Hotels usually suck, but not always—Holiday Inn Express: I love thee
  4. If you’ve been traveling for a few hours and decide to eat, you’re suddenly in the middle of nowhere. Brigadoon restaurants, I hate thee.
  5. If you can persuade your parents to visit a yarn store, this suddenly becomes irrelevant: Dyed In The Wool yarn store? I love thee.

 The distance between Alison, PA and my bit of West Virginia isn’t that big; maybe 3 hours traveling time. I sneakily typed the address of a yarn store into our GPS. Dyed In The Wool yarn store  is a little store, nestled into the green, green land of PA—probably not too far from Amish folk, but far enough away from the farms that I didn’t have to enjoy the pungency of a large dairy farm.

 Look, I’ve been into Amish country. I’ve seen the little girls in black on bicycles, the 80 year woman pulling groceries in a wagon up a 90 degree slope and enjoy the nostalgia, blah, blah. But I hate the farm smell. I’ve milked cows, fed chickens, chased a cow, ridden a bucking horse, blah, blah, OK? Still hate the way that a working farm smells. I envied my friend with the horse (even though it did try to buck us off) but I didn’t want the smell.

 Wow, from yarn stores to Amish farm smells. Cough. Back to the yarn. It didn’t take too long to find the store.

 Walking into the store, as it is with any yarn store, is sensory overload. I want to instantly touch, know, feel, name every yarn in the store. Carol owns the store, a slight, friendly woman with a touch of an accent—she told my sister she comes from Scotland—and Linda, who immeaditely told me to ask if I needed any help at all. I nodded, a little numb already from the overload.

Carol (on the left) and Linda (on the right) caught unawares!

 Remember how I said that I fell in love with Seascape, the lace wrap from this summer issue of Knitty? With that pattern in mind, I started to poke through their laceweight, wavering between Lacy Lamb (wrong weight, but so soft!) some beautiful lace boucle and others.

 There was plenty to distract me. I dithered between the yarn, as my younger sister learned I-Cord from Linda and my brother confided that he knit a little, too. (He’s 12, and working on a garter stitch scarf)

 Linda again.

Yarn, yarn, & more yarn.

I love the shawl that this manikan is wearing, it looks so subtle and graceful.

 The overwhelming feel that came from this shop was creativity. Shawls everywhere, sweaters, a sock here, a scarf on the needles, and a half-finished sock lay on the counter. It made my fingers itch. Again, I dithered. Carol shared their shop philosophy: they like to focus on smaller operations run by a few people, and I love that. I love that kind of intimate feeling when you pick up a skein of yarn and know that if you buy it, it goes to the same person that dyed and wound it. Dad fell asleep in the car. Like a bird, circling back to its nest, I kept coming back to same yarn over and over again.

Subtle greys call out to me like siren calls. Two skeins of Classic Elite Silky Alpaca Lace somehow hopped into my hands.

 My Seascape shawl will be a gray sea. This yarn is absolutely incredible. With 70% alpaca and 30% silk, you might think that the alpaca might have that slightly hairy itch that it sometimes does. This doesn’t. The alpaca just gives it a delicate halo that it is lovely. When I finally, reluctantly, tore myself away from the store, I put one of the skeins into my Dad’s hands.

 “Wow,” he said, “This really is soft.”

 There’s 460 yards per skein, so I will have enough left over for a scarf. For $20, I’m getting enough yarn for an alpaca-silk shawl and a scarf. All the way home today, I kept fondling the soft fibers.  Tomorrow, I’m going to my local yarn store for Knit in Public day.

 I’m considering bringing in this yarn, to start Seascape, but I’m a little shy. I can’t work on any projects that are from the store, because I’ve misplaced my straight size 6 needle, and the only other project that I have is my sweater, still in pieces. I wouldn’t want to bother LeAnne by asking her to help me when we’re all having fun celebrating, but I may just have to—every time I look at all those pieces, I start to cry inside.

 In all events, we’re going to have a blast—and there will be cookies, and I am bringing cupcakes. Food & other porn will appear on this blog in the near future—have a great weekend knitting in public, and come back Monday!


June 13, 2008. Tags: , , , , , . Knittin' Porn.


  1. knittenkitten80 replied:

    Oh yarn store,my heart beats wildly at the sight of thee. Wow, it looks great!!

  2. knittenkitten80 replied:

    BTW, did the cheesecake get there yet?

  3. jinniver replied:

    I didn’t realize there was an Amish community in western PA; I’m originally from the south central part of PA, near Lancaster county with their Amish communities. I adore going to Amish country; I’m guessing my nose isn’t as sensitive. 😉 Anyways, that LYS looks wonderful; if I’m ever out that way I’ll have to stop by. Love the yarn you’ve picked out for Seascape–I’ve seen skies over stormy seas that are just that color.

    Take the sweater pieces. WWKIP day is all about spreading our knitting knowledge, so I’m sure Elrond will be glad to help you. 🙂

  4. Sarah replied:

    Oh my gosh that yarn is gorgeous!! I can’t wait to see your shawl in progress!

  5. MJ replied:

    So weird . . .I was on my way to the North Hills Art Center when all of a sudden the rainbow sign caught my eye. I screamed “Hey! I know that place!” loud enough for my mom to have a small heart attack. I explained how I knew it and she said, “Well, since we’ll be up here for your art classes, maybe we can stop in sometimes.” Your blog found me a new LYS! Thanks!

  6. Alex replied:

    Hey I just bought that same lace yarn! In a dark scarlet though. It feels just luscious doesn’t it? I first bought 3 skeins and then thought about it for 3 days and decided to go back and buy 2 more. I will probably make a big square shawl.
    Have fun with yours!

  7. Interview With Seascape Designer, Kieran Foley: Lace & Torture « The Lumpy Sweater replied:

    […] 22, 2008 at 10:31 pm · Filed under works-in-progress  Friday before last, I showed off some beautiful grey laceweight yarn that I bought for the Seascape wrap. I’ve never knitted so much lace before, but it seemed […]

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