Wednesday, July 24, 2013

On the road again...

The wheels on the car go round and round Indiana...from Shipshewana to Morgantown  to Shelbyville, hosting trunk shows and planning and plotting knit retreats!

A trip to Shipshewana has been on my "bucket list" for years and I am happy to report it was all I hoped it would be...and perhaps even more.  Tucked away in Northern Indiana is a village full of history, passion, wonderful food, friendly folks and a wonderful yarn shop, D'Vine Gallery.

Chris, Peggy and Nancy were gracious hosts and my two days there were so pleasant that  I am hoping to get back again when travels take me in that direction.
D'Vine Gallery is an interesting place.  It's tucked around the corner of the main street, but it was obvious to me that it has become a destination stop for travelers.  Filled with pottery, herbs, beads and buttons and of course, yarn...and lots of it.

As we visited I noticed that many of the same projects that had once been so popular in my former shop are still quite popular with knitters.  The Wingspan Shawl, The Hitchhiker, The "potato chip" scarf were all favorites among the travelers in and out of the shop. 
It makes sense, all are easy knits and something that is simple to master while in the car.
There were plenty of husbands milling around too.  A few of them admitted to knitting, one guy told me he crocheted... but one thing was evident, those guys appreciated a chair and a corner to relax while their companions scoured the shelves and baskets brimming with yarn.

It was a perfect way to spend the 4th of July holiday and even my husband found the town a great little get away and kept busy while I worked.

Next stop for me and my baskets of yarn, patterns and shop models was Sheep Street Fibers located in Morgantown/Martinsville Indiana.  The shop sits on 20 acres of land located along the scenic highway 252 at the borders of Martinsville and Morgantown.

Nancy, Pat and Tim did a great job of getting the word out that Alpaca With A Twist would be there. The place was packed both days of my visit. They too were more than gracious and allowed me to visit with their customers and show off the fibers we chose for their trunk show.

Sheep Street is an interesting place ~ and there is plenty to see during your visit.  Pet some sheep, watch spinners and weavers, adore baskets and baskets of roving and kettle dyed fibers which have been hand spun right there in the shop. 
Along with the notions, patterns, books and fibers you would expect to find in such a place, you will see a whole corner filled with spinning wheels and looms. 

This shop too. appears to be a destination place for fiber artists to visit.  Entire families packed the shop last weekend.  They were greeted heartily by both man and beasts ~guests are encouraged to check out the livestock in the pasture and then welcomed back inside for demonstrations throughout the shop.

Regulars drifted in and out filling the place with stories and laughter.  It's casual atmosphere makes you want to kick your shoes off and stay awhile. 

A knitting retreat is being planned for early 2014 and I would guess this will become an event that will be repeated year after year. 
Pat takes care of the Sheep Street Facebook page and he has mastered keeping the humor coming day after day with his postings of cartoons and quips.
Tim is a great designer and teacher and Nancy holds things together and does a great job keeping things running smoothly. What a team!

Brick and mortar shops are each unique.  The vision of the  owner creates the space.  Support of  customers keep the doors open and as long as there are knitters there will be a need for such a place.  As great as it is that we now have U Tube videos for support and even on line classes to subscribe to, it is the day to day hands on help that will keep customers perfecting their craft and exploring new projects. 
I have been so grateful for the opportunity to meet so many fine folks!  Now let's see...what's next?  Oh, the places we will go!

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