- This weekend we celebrate Yarn Crawl LA, a four-day event where yarn-loving Los Angelenos pile into their cars and drive all over the Southland (that’s what we natives call the Los Angeles area) visiting participating knitting stores and getting their “passports” stamped in order to be eligible for prizes. Along the way, they socialize with other fiber fanatics, eat snacks, buy yarn, sample local cuisine from parts of LA they rarely get to, buy more yarn, take mini-classes, collect free patterns and other little free trinkets, buy even more yarn, and, in general, have a lot of fun and return exhausted and happy. While many Ravellers, especially members of the West Hollywood Stitch n Bitch group, have made it their personal mission to go to all, or nearly all, of the participating yarn stores, I am only going to a couple this year. My budget and the pile of ungraded papers on my desk simply won’t allow me to go gallivanting around Los Angeles fondling yarn. Yesterday, I went to Needles & Niceties in Upland, and Sit n Stitch and Unwind, both located in “beautiful downtown Burbank,” as Johnny Carson used to say.* Needles & Niceties is not actually participating in Yarn Crawl LA, but I needed to go there specifically to ogle some hand-dyed cross-stitch floss; it’s nearly impossible to get a good idea what the floss looks like online. Although I found all the floss I needed for my 2014 goals, I did not have any luck finding the right linen for my cross stitch projects. It was still worth the trip though, and not only for the side-trip to Donut Man in Glendora, an LA culinary institution, for their famous strawberry doughnuts.
- Good news from Wildfiber! The Santa Monica yarn store has been saved from closing! The store is under new ownership and will reopen after a remodel and restocking. They are starting off with what they are calling a “pop-up shop” this weekend, the same weekend as Yarn Crawl LA (coincidence? I think not). Mel Clark, the former owner and co-author (with Tracy Ullman) of Knit 2 Together will be there and they have a bunch of new yarn from Zen Yarn Garden, Elemental Affects and Chic-a. They are also having a raffle and giving away discount coupons. Stop on by!
- And here’s an endearing story about a doctor, Dr. Bob Sansonetti, who knits little hats for each of the babies he delivers.
*Of course, the Tonight Show didn’t actually film in downtown Burbank, but instead in the Media District a couple miles away. Johnny Carson must have referred to “beautiful downtown Burbank” sarcastically since the actual downtown Burbank is completely unimpressive and is famous largely for its IKEA. Burbank really does have to be one of the most character-free cities in America, if not the world. And I say that as a current resident.