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curlyq
Chatty Knitter

USA
131 Posts

Posted - 09/06/2004 :  10:12:57 AM  Show Profile  Visit curlyq's Homepage Send curlyq a Private Message
I saw a thread for VA shops, and DC shops, but I specifically wanted to post about my favorite stores in the Northern VA area, starting in Alexandria and going westward.

Knit Happens - Alexandria - http://www.knithappens.net

New yarn store that stocks a nice selection of high end yarns, such as Colinette, Blue Sky Alpaca, Rowan, Debbie Bliss, Alchemy, and Lorna's Laces. They also carry Cascade 220, Mission Falls, and Noro. The owner and salespeople are all very friendly, enthusiastic, and greet you and smile when you walk in. They offer to help, but without being overbearing. There is a huge table where you can sit and knit, and also a nook by the window with comfortable couches where you can knit or browse their extensive book selection. They carry a fairly wide selection of patterns, and Crystal Palace, Pony Pearl, and Addi Turbo needles. They have an awesome website and a "shop blog" where you can check out the latest yarns that have come in, the latest projects by their customers, etc. This is everything that a yarn store should be! The only downside is that you won't find many value yarns here (ie, Brown Sheep, Plymouth), but that's a small downside.

Uniquities - Vienna, VA

Carries a similar selection of high end and medium yarns, including Colinette, K1C2, Cherry Tree Hill, and Koigu. The staff people seem very friendly and helpful. They have the best selection of needles (especially fancy woods like rosewood and ebony) that I have seen in any of the area shops. They also have a big sale bin, which is nice to see! The shop is a little hard to find and somewhat cramped but that's only because they are full of gorgeous yarns. Definitely a nice place.

Hunt Country Yarns - Middleburg, VA - http://www.skeins.com

Carries a wide range of yarns, from the $100 a hank specialty hand-dyed yarns to the $7 Brown Sheep. They have a great selection of local yarns, like Barefoot Spinner handspun, handspun laceweight alpaca, and Cestari yarns from Virginia. They also carry Colinette, Lorna's Laces, Mountain Colors, and Babaajoe's. Very good selection of baby yarns. The owner and salespeople are very friendly and helpful. They are sometimes really busy on the weekend but will still always take a few moments to ask you if you need anything, and assist you in picking out colors or patterns or yarns. They have a fairly large selection of kits such as Hanne Falkenberg. They also have needlepoint supplies, such as threads and canvases. They sell a good selection of Addi Turbo, Inox, and Crystal Palace needles. There is a small table where they teach classes and you can sit and knit but it is a little crowded, especially during tourist season. Middleburg is a nice quaint little town and there are some cute (if expensive) shops there. I learned to knit in a class taught at this store and it remains my sentimental favorite!

Frog Eye Fiber Emporium - Winchester, VA - http://www.frogeye.com

I don't get out to this yarn store as much as I would like, unfortunately, because it is pretty far out in the country. It is run by a woman, Sue, out of her home, and she raises animals for fiber and teaches spinning also. She carries a very nice selection of commercial yarns as well, including Anny Blatt, Blue Heron, and Classic Elite. She is very friendly and helpful and can guide you through your projects if you buy your yarns there. It's best to call ahead before going because it's a long way out and her hours are usually M-F 10-4. She has a gorgeous, peaceful shop in a beautiful country setting with lovely gardens and a nice couch and rockers where you can sit and knit. This is what my dream house would be like!

anderknit
Permanent Resident

USA
2599 Posts

Posted - 09/06/2004 :  3:40:36 PM  Show Profile Send anderknit a Private Message
Thanks for the reviews!! There's also Springwater Fibers in Old Town, and Yarn Barn in Burke, if anyone wants to add reviews for them.

"Courage doesn't always roar. Sometimes courage is the quiet voice at the end of the day saying, 'I will try again tomorrow.' "
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dschmidt
Permanent Resident

3958 Posts

Posted - 09/07/2004 :  3:43:16 PM  Show Profile Send dschmidt a Private Message
Where do you live curlyq? Now for my 2 cents --Uniquities is worth the trip -- they have very nice basic yarns in good colors. They are very helpful and give excellent suggestions for yarn substitutions. They have beautiful expensive yarns also. I live closest to Knit Happens and Springwater (they are 10 minutes away from home). But Uniquities gets my business if I want yarn that will show intricate patterns and is reasonably priced. Knit Happens is my second choice -- staff is knowledgable and helpful also. Springwater serves weavers and spinners as well as knitters. I'd say their emphasis is more on weaving and spinning. Their staff is less knowledgable aboput knitting than the other 2 shops. But they have some very nice novelty yarns and hand dyed yarns. I wouldn't recommend that a beginner go there to buy yarn - most is too expensive and the help isn't what a beginner needs, IMHO.

Donna in VA
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curlyq
Chatty Knitter

USA
131 Posts

Posted - 09/07/2004 :  5:00:31 PM  Show Profile  Visit curlyq's Homepage Send curlyq a Private Message
I live out near Winchester - so Hunt Country is the closest to me, followed by Frog Eye. Uniquities is sadly over an hour trip, and Knit Happens is about an hour and a half!
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Lissa
Permanent Resident

USA
4942 Posts

Posted - 09/08/2004 :  09:12:03 AM  Show Profile  Visit Lissa's Homepage Send Lissa a Private Message
Kerrie, Laurie and Donna, I invite you to join KnitKnutz, the totally free, totally unstructured, and totally fun group that meets every other Sunday at the REston police station. It's only about 30 to 40 minutes to get there, and the group is fabulous! Email me if you'd like particulars - we meet this coming Sunday!

Other nice area stores are Aylin's at Loehman's Plaza in Falls Churc/Annandale. Lots of high-end stuff, but also Paton's, and a great sale room! There's a new store in NE DC that I haven't been to and can't review.

Lissa

Hey - I MEANT to do that!
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dschmidt
Permanent Resident

3958 Posts

Posted - 09/08/2004 :  4:12:34 PM  Show Profile Send dschmidt a Private Message
I think Aylin's is a hoot -- the staff is knowledgable -- Aylin is a character the few times I've met her. It is in the high price end of yarns -- beautiful yarns that I usually can't afford so I try to keep away from the temptation.

Donna in VA
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shear
Chatty Knitter

154 Posts

Posted - 09/08/2004 :  5:34:55 PM  Show Profile Send shear a Private Message
Old Town Needlecrafts in Manassas is a wonderful store.The owner is very patient and knowledgeable.Her selection is varied and diverse.I also think that the staff and owner at Uniquities in Vienna also provide useful help.Visited Knit Happens and loved the shop--very high quality including a large selection of Debbie Bliss Yarns and patterns.
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