My tour guide Joy, wisely provided me with the address, hours of operation and directions for Art Fibers, and it was the first place I went when I arrived in San Francisco.
What I liked the best about this yarn shop, was that I didn't know what to expect. While all yarn shops are a delight in their own way (even if they're filled with scary patterns and tons of acrylic--you can still pretend it's like a wax museum or a throw-back to the sixties) this one was filled with shelves of yarns that I had never seen before.
I was instantly drawn to this way filled with ribbon and sari silk with all the bright shiny colours. It was funny that I looked there first, because it's not the yarn I like to knit with.
Another nifty thing about this shop is that there is a swatching area--a circle of chairs, boxes of their yarns and needles--and you're invited to sit and swatch whatever you like to give it a test run. If you like, a free custom pattern can be made using your measurments and gauge--a very cool service. So of course, I did that for a while and took notes and compared, and had fun with new fibers. I also learned that this yarn that I was always intrigued with, was a total bitch for me to knit up--better than learning it after it arrives in the mail. A
The hard part was deciding what to buy. I already had some Art Fiber yarn in my stash from Jenna, in my usual palette of blues and purples, so I decided to stretch myself and try textures and colours I hadn't used much before. I decided to do a sampler shawl/scarf with the help of Kira the manager who eased me into a green palette by making me pick all the green yarns that caught my eye and then we added and substracted until we came up with this.
If it wasn't so hot I'd be knitting it up now, but there's a lot of brushed silk and furry alpaca in there. It's definitely a cool weather project. I do keep pulling it out and looking at it, it's so very pretty.