Monday, 16 August 2010

No photos... but a hidden gem

Unfortunately I didn't have my camera with me on Saturday, but a new shop opened in Newcastle upon Tyne, and I had to take a look...
The Knit Studio is hidden away within Blackfriars in Newcastle upon Tyne - for those who know a little of the Toon, if you walk up Stowell Street from the Newcastle Arms end, and turn left at the end, just before the City Walls, then left again, through the archway at the Blackfriars Restaurant and Meeting Rooms, you come to Blackfriars Green - face to your left, and you're opposite a short flight of steps - up them, then up the stairs to the left, and you're in the new shop.
First impressions are of an airy space, beamed, and lined with tempting treats. Anne, the owner, was there to greet me, and was very welcoming. In the middle was a large table strewn with yarn, information and tea and cakes. There is plenty of room around the room to browse the yarn ranges (now this is from memory, so apologies for anything I leave out), including Rowan, Artesano, Lang, Colinette and Schoppelwolle. As well, Anne is stocking some harder to find, UK based brands - these are going to rotate, and on Saturday, there was fibre (yes FIBRE) from Wheeldale Woolcrafts, and yarn from the Natural Dye Studio, the Nude Ewe, The Flying Flock and JC Rennie.
Notions and needles included DuppDupp, Lantern Moon, Boye and Brittany Birch.
Plenty of reading material - Interweave magazines, a large range of knitting, spinning and crochet books, sewing books and fabric - and a reference library - sited enticingly behind two of the squishiest sofas I have ever seen.
I snaffled "Respect the Spindle" and a one-skein project book (useful for using my handspun!), a couple of Interweave magazines, two Zauerballs - one lace, one crazy sock, a pair of Lantern Moon straights, DuppDupp buttons, and a Boye circular. Well - one has to sample, yes?
All in all, it feels like a comfortable space. There are various objects placed around the studio that make it feel like an extension of someone's home - someone's home where you're comfortable enough to pop in, settle down with your knitting or a good book, and have a good natter.
I will be returning - to shop, to knit, and hopefully to learn, once Anne has workshops up and running. Go visit!