Updated January 1, 2021.
Happy New Year!
When I moved to California in 1980, I was lost for needlepoint.
Yes, there were some stores in San Francisco, but I didn’t have time during my lunch hour to visit them. There was a knitting and needlepoint store on my way home from work, but it was not too exciting.
But all that changed when I moved to Rockridge, a neighborhood in North Oakland.
On the main street and just at the bottom of my street was a wonderful needlepoint store, The Crewel World. Owned by a lovely lady named Diane, this place was needlepoint heaven. There was lots of thread, more than the Persian Wool and floss combo of most places, canvas, books, charts, painted canvas, classes.
In those days Jane Zimmerman, who lived nearby, also taught there, and Diane and the other employees who worked there were unfailing in their support. They were such thread addicts they would buy odd threads and sell them to people like me. I bought all sorts of things from them, DMC matte cotton, Empress Silk, and some mystery threads.
After a while, Diane sold the store and the new owner, Linda, kept the same friendly atmosphere. By that time I had kids and they never minded me with two kids in the stroller coming in (a sign of a great store to my mind). Linda had a second shop in Walnut Creek, which became my LNS when I got a job out there.
Like good friends, good shops aren’t just stitchy enablers; they become your friends, a haven, a place for creativity. Where would we be without them?