To all those Greenwich residents who despaired after The Knitting Niche and then String closed their doors, I’m here to tell you that the demise of the Greenwich local yarn shop was greatly exaggerated.
While it’s not exactly in Greenwich, the Yarn Yard, opened last summer by the owner of The Nimble Thimble in Port Chester, N.Y., is just over the border. And that’s probably a good thing. In my opinion, the store does a fabulous job of bridging the gap between affordable yarn and luxurious indulgences.
That’s the idea, said Debbie Wortman, a longtime knitter who was asked by friend and Nimble Thimble owner Jo Ann Pellicano-Alvarez to run the store.
“We try to make everyone happy,” said Wortman, who on my recent visit was knitting up a baby item to display in the store as a sample.
The selection ranges from sensible Lion Brand Yarn to fancy Filatura Di Crosa. There’s even local yarn from Connecticut-raised sheep. And if there’s something special you want, Wortman said she’d be happy to order it. Last fall, I picked up one ball of fluffy Angora yarn from Plymouth for under $10 to make baby booties on display. (The sample is pictured below. While mine turned out very cute, white Angora and my dark wool coat did not mix well.)
The atmosphere is also very homey and comfortable, with a mock-living room complete with couches and an electric fireplace up front where people often pop in and knit. Wortman said the store has gained quite a following, with people coming from as far away as Dobbs Ferry, N.Y. It might help that the Nimble Thimble, a sewing supply shop at 19 Putnam Ave., has been in business for 16 years. Greenwich residents don’t even need to hop on I-95 to get to Yarn Yard, which is located next door at 21 Putnam Ave. There are also classes, though you should check with the store (914-934-2934) for a schedule.
The only drawback is the store’s hours — 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Friday, closing earlier on Saturdays and completely closed Sundays — which aren’t very conducive to working people’s schedules. (I happened to be working on a story nearby when I popped in recently.) Wortman said they are looking to change that, and plan to eventually be open late at least one night a week. When that happens, I will happily make a trip here after work to unwind.