Whenever we go back to Ohio for Christmas, we like to go to one of the nearby towns to get our yearly Skyline Chili fix. This year, we went even further. We dropped by YarnMarket.com for a visit!
We knew that YarnMarket.com is an online store. I’ve visited that site quite off (though I’ve never bought anything from it). I also knew that they don’t really have a brick-and-mortar store. But I figured that, if they were willing to let visitors in, I didn’t want to miss the chance to see more yarn than I’ve ever seen in one place!
From the minute we arrived, I knew this would be unlike any experience that I’ve had before. The entrance was easy to find. When we entered, we found that we were right in the middle of the shipping area. Boxes were piled shoulder high, and a woman was busy in the corner.
When I tolder her that we would like to shop for yarn, she smiled heartily and invited us to follow her. She explained that we were entering a real working online business and asked our patience with the fact that nothing was out on display. “Feel free to look at anything you want though.”
We left the shipping area and entered what is best termed “the library”. Several tall shelves were loaded down with magazines, both current and back issues of a variety of magazines. I thwapped myself mentally for not checking to see if there was some back issue that I wanted and then thwapped myself again for not coming during a time when I could stand and browse through everything for hours. She then showed us the shelves of needlework books. Practically every book that I’d even considered buying was there.
We then entered the first warehouse. Overwhelmed doesn’t even begin to explain my first reaction!
Aisles of helves at least 15′ tall stretched the length of the warehouse. Each shelve held a series of bins, each neatly organized by company name, yarn name, and yarn color. As we went from aisle to aisle and then warehouse to warehouse, the employee (whose name I unfortunately forget) rattled off the name of yarns that might interest me.
The employee then stopped at what seemed to be a random shelf. “You’ll want to see this! You’ll want to tough this!” she said. She pulled out a bin, opened it, and pulled out a tiny ball of yarn. “This is the most expensive yarn we carry.”
My husband looked a tad perplexed. I knew from looking at their site what it was. The little ball of yarny goodness was Qiviuk, a laceweight yarn made from Muskox. According to YarnMarket.com, it’s as soft as cashmere, eight times warmer than wool, and hypoallergenic. It was indeed soft. VERY soft! It’s expensive too… almost $70 for less than 218 yards. (I can’t even imagine spending that much for so little!) We passed several minutes fondling the Qiviuk then reluctantly put it back in the bin and moved on.
Four warehouses later, the nice employee told us that we were free to look around as much as we liked. She invited us to pull bins off the shelves and dig in them if we wanted. We were free to open up new bags if we wanted something from it or just wanted to touch the yarn inside. The only thing that we weren’t welcome to do was climb a ladder. “Please let me know if you need anything up high.”
With that, she was gone.
Now, I love yarn. I can spend hours in a yarn store, wandering around, touching this and that, admiring colors. Before we got there, I had a mental list of everything that I wanted to investigate, but suddenly… Every coherent thought that I had seemed to disappear with the employee. I didn’t know where to start!
We explored for a bit and took some more pictures.
I examined some of the yarn as I went along. I eventually ended up in the Noro section. It was amazing! Noro is one of those yarns that I find nearly impossible to buy online unless I’ve first seen it myself. The colors never seem to show up right on my monitor. So I spent a good deal of time digging through bins of Noro.
I finally decided on three skeins of Kureyon in a color I just adored (in case my Booga Bag ever needs replaced) and moved on to the Cherry Tree Hill section.
I also find it difficult to conceive buying Cherry Tree Hill potluck yarns online unless I’ve seen them. “Potluck” could mean anything, especially when you pair it with rather vague color groupings like “earth” and “jewels”. So it was a treat to see the potlucks in person. I knew that YarnMarket.com is one of the last places to find CTH’s Twister, and I knew that I wanted to get more before it was no longer available. To my surprise, there were a few bins of it on the shelves.
I had a really tough time deciding and took a few pictures so that I could tell my knitting friends what colors were available. I finally chose one from the Earth group that I knew several people would envy and dear hubby chose another. (I looked at him strangely because he insisted that I get two. I don’t think he knew that they were $32 per skein! That didn’t stop me from wishing that I’d grabbed one of the Twister Brights too!)
We looked around a bit more. I wished that I had made a shopping list rather than trusting my memory. There was just so much to look at, and with everything in bins and bags, I felt that I needed to have a clue what I was looking for before I opened one of them.
We needed to leave so I browsed the magazine and book area for a little bit and then went to check out. I vowed that I’ll be more prepared next year.
If you’re in the Pickerington area, I highly suggest a trip to the YarnMarket.com warehouse. They are constantly adding to their inventory, and the color range is greater than what most LYS can carry. Just take a list and allow yourself plenty of time!