NYC Yarn Crawl: School Products Yarn

The last store I went to in my NYC Yarn Crawl was called School Products Yarn.  I almost didn't go.

When I looked it up online, it had terrible reviews.  People said that the selection was limited to only one yarn line and some expensive imports.  The yarn cost too much.  The owners were gruff and unhelpful.  Jeesh, why would I want to go there?

But I was walking to Penn Station from the Lion Brand Studio.  I had a little time before I needed to be on the train and it was sort of on my way.  I found the location on my phone.  I went to the address.  I didn't see a sign.  I looked and looked and finally, as I was about to give up, I decided to ask the front desk clerk of an office building where the address was.  He said, "second floor" in a way that made it sound like he had daily requests for yarn stores.  I took the rickety elevator to the second floor.  I stepped out into a dark hallway across from a door labeled School Products.  It was dark inside and no one was there.  The door was locked and I rang the door bell.

Suddenly, the lights sprang on inside and a man, wiping lunch from his chin, bounded to the door to let me in.

He explained what was on the walls.  There was every kind of karabella yarn ever made.  There were cones of yarn and weaving tools.  And then....there were piles and piles of imported, hand-dyed Italian yarn.  There was Merino and camel and alpaca.  And ohhhhh the cashmere.  Each little ball cost more than everything I had purchased at Lion Brand combined.

The shop owner asked me in an unidentifiable accent what I planned to make.  I explained to him that I mostly like yarn for its innate awesomeness and didn't have any particular project in mind.  (I refrained from asking him if I could bunch all his soft yarns on the floor like a pile of leaves and roll around naked in them).  I explained to him that I couldn't afford a whole project's worth of anyone of his beautiful, but expensive, yarns.

He nodded knowingly.  "Then you will just get one."

And so...I just got one.

It was skeined when I got it.  I just couldn't wait to use it, though.

250 yarns of hand-dyed fingering  cashmere.  So soft, I want to put it in my mouth or sleep with it like a teddy bear or stuff it in my bra and wear it to work.
I didn't do any of those things, though.  Just thought I would be clear.

As I went to pay for it, I noticed a copy of Runway Knits next to the register.  I mentioned that I had knit the leaf tank out of it.

"That is my wife's book," he said.

"But the writer of that book founded Karabella Yarns."

"Yes, that is why we only stock Karabella Yarns.  She was designing for runway designers and companies like Gap and wanted her own source of yarn.  So she started Karabella and this store."

"You should put a sign out front to advertise this cool fact!"

"Everyone who needs to know we are here already does."

Now that is what I call an amazing yarn find.  How could all these people online missed the coolness of this place.  It does have limited selection, in the way that the Lion Brand Studio only carries Lion Brand yarn.  It is expensive, because, um, cashmere is expensive.  He is gruff because he is tired of people telling him he has a limited selection of expensive yarns.

I am still giddy thinking about this.