Tuesday, October 13, 2009

A Love Letter to the Best Knit Store in the World


Dear Hill Country Weavers,
I am just writing to tell you how much I love you. We've been together for so many years now that I think sometimes I forget to say it out loud, to your face. And I know I called you "The Best Knit Store" in the title, but that technically you're called Hill Country Weavers and that you make so many weavers happy, too. But this letter is about my love for you, and me? I'm a knitter. Boy am I.

So this past year has been hard-- I've been working on this quilt history book, which is funny, since I'm a lousy quilter. Still, writing about quilts is what I do to pay my bills. In fact, just last week I had a quilt book come out. Here's a link to it and here's a picture of it:

That book was fun to write-- my boyfriend and I traveled all over the country meeting cool textile artists. But the book I'm currently working on, which is due on Thursday, has been a beast involving tons and tons of research and... well never mind the other details. It's been hard. And working on it is part of the reason I had to skip getting on the Yarn Crawl bus this past weekend. I was totally bummed about that.

By Sunday afternoon, I had worked so many weekend hours-- I've been working seven days per week for months now-- that I finally had to just stop and do something nice for myself. I'd already been planning a trip to 78704 to drop off a hat I made for my little friend Annabelle. Even though I've been so so so busy, I have continued to make time to knit. When Annabelle sent me an email recently explaining that the hat I made her as a newborn was cutting off the circulation to her brain (and she sent a picture to show me just how tight it was) I squeezed in a few rows here and there until I had what is now officially known as the Pee-Pee Titty-Tat hat pictured above. You can figure out the "Titty Tat" part. But let me tell you the Pee-Pee thing: Annabelle is busy potty training and so this hat was a reward for all her efforts. Of all the gifts I've ever knitted, I think the Pee-Pee Titty-Tat hat is going to go down in history as one of my favorites because already it is so appreciated.

Since Annabelle lives so close to you, dear Hill Country Weavers, I could not resist popping in. I needed to pick up a special order of Manos de Uruguay to finish up a very complicated sweater I will probably complete by 2015 if I am lucky. Of course the real reason I stopped by is because you are My Happy Place. I cannot walk through your door without immediately feeling better. If I'm already happy, I get ecstatic. If I am not so happy-- if I am worn out and grumpy as I have been lately-- I find myself smiling a genuine smile. And I was thrilled to see how packed you were, filled with Yarn Crawlers from all over.

I plunked down to knit a little near the sock yarn and at least one customer mistook me for an employee. The feeling that gave me was on par with the way I feel when I am in NYC and someone asks me for directions because they think I look like I fit in and know the place. And as I looked around at all your glorious offerings, I had an epiphany. I don't know why this never occurred to me before, but here is what I think I might love most of all about you:

You, Hill Country Weavers-- you are the picture of potential! Everywhere I look, every color I see, every type of yarn and gadget and doo-dad and button and embellishment and pattern and sample project-- all of these things scream to my creative heart. I think of all the things I want to knit, and all the things I'm currently working on and I get this sensation that is simultaneously a cross between wild excitement and utter calm.

Let me say it again: I LOVE YOU!

I am going to go finish up my book now, and turn it in, and then maybe collapse for a few days. But as you know, I'll be back very, very soon. Because I can't stay away. I love you far too much for that. Thank you for being the calm through so many storms-- a divorce, several deaths, relationship woes, and on and on. And thank you for being the celebration place, where I have found so many ideas and so many supplies for so many gifts I have made and given to celebrate so many occasions.

You are the very best.
All of my love,
Spike

6 comments:

ennea999 said...

thank you for describing exactly how a i feel about that place also - it's truly a miraculous place.

Ginny said...

Spike- Last week my best friend and I went to Hill Country Weavers. I had never been there before. She was going to get a gift certificate for her son's girlfriend's birthday. We both just went into sensual overload. The place is magic. Who can walk in there and not dream of creating lovely things? Julia Cameron would consider a visit to be a perfect Artist's Date.
So she got the gift certificate only to subsequently discover that her son and his girlfriend had had an agreement she would not go into that place--too tempting for their budget. It is that kind of place!
As always you capture it just right. Good luck with the book.

knitonator said...

Spike, I have always loved your writing, but this was a mirror of my own thoughts. Not to mention that I feel like I have come home when I walk in the door. The women who work there are not employees, they are best friends and family. I always have to tear myself away when I leave, it is such a soft place to land.

Love you guys, and thanks for being who you are!

Pam

lindar said...
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lindar said...
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lindar said...

HCW is very much one Happy Place!! There are Happy Meals, there are Happy Birthdays, but HCW is THE Happy Place!! Yay, and it's right here in Austin for me to pop into and peruse all things lovely! Did I mention that I am always greeted by the nicest of people?
Well, I am!

Yes, Spike, you said it beautifully! Good luck on finishing the book!! Thanks for the link for the quilting book. ( Yes, I quilt!)

lindar aka cakefeathers