One of my favorite things about where I live is its close proximity to New York. My town itself isn't too exciting, but there are tons of things in the area around it that make it worth living here, and the fact that New York City is right there probably tops that list. It's hard to explain the appeal of the city. Yeah, Boston is awesome and San Francisco and super fun, but New York is just... New York. I'm lucky to be living so close to one of the greatest cities in the US. Isn't it pretty much always THE city that people refer to when they say they want to go on to bigger and better things? Yep, I thought so.
I was in Manhattan today, and since I've been wanting to go to Purl Soho for forever, I decided that today was the day. But before I could get there, one of the other places I knew I had to go was sweetgreen. If you're unfamiliar with sweetgreen (yes, that's an intentional lack of capitalization - that's their official company name), it's an amaaaaazing salad place that was founded in DC. There are only about 20 restaurants so far - and they're only on the east coast in DC, MD, VA, PA, NY & MA. One of my best friends from college, Nate, works for them down in DC, and I've made my rounds through a bunch of the restaurants (sometimes just because he wanted to be able to get a free meal, the cheapo). When I was up in Boston visiting Hannah in November, I made sure that we got to the one on Boylston Street, and when I knew I'd be going into the city today, I knew that was where I was going for lunch. I got my favorite salad - the District Cobb - and a cucumber lemonade, which pretty much just tastes like a pickle in a cup but I love it. OM NOM NOM.
BUT THEN: PURL SOHO
Okay, I have a couple things to say about this place. I'd seen photos, read their blog, drooled over their pattern samples, but I'd never been there. I had no idea what it was like, but I was imagining a huge store with tons and tons of yarn.
Well, it wasn't like that. At all. To be honest, I was slightly disappointed. As far as yarn stores go, it was incredibly awesome with great selection, but because I had built up so much expectation about what it would be like, after being there for less than five minutes, I was thinking, Okay, this is nothing too special. Though, I have to admit that it was pretty darn cool to see all the samples that are in the photos they post with all their patterns on their blog (I almost squealed when I saw this one in person, even if it was looking a bit worse for wear).
The selection was mostly yarns I'd seen other places. Their prices were obviously inflated. They tried to fit a lot into a small space (but, hey, it's New York) and there were a bunch of people there constantly mumbling, "Excuse me!" or "Sorry!"
Nevertheless, I decided that I had to buy something. When in Rome, right? I had recently purchased a shawl pattern (Happy Street by Veera Välimäki) and wanted some beautiful fingering weight yarn to knit it with. And even though I spent a whole post writing about how I didn't want to spend a lot of money on hand-dyed yarn because I couldn't afford it blah blah blah, I decided to splurge and buy 3 hanks of madelinetosh tosh merino light in the colorways Paper, Maple Leaf, and Pop Rocks. I was deciding between the pink and a purple colorway, but the purple wasn't as purple as I wanted it. I was hoping to find a deep indigo shade, but I couldn't find a yarn that had both that and a bright green, so the bright pink it was! The green yarn is both autumnal and springy at the same time, and it's fabulous. I'm really happy with this purchase, even if it did cost a bit more than I probably should have spent.
(Wondering what the knit is underneath the yarn? This herringbone cowl.)
So, even if it wasn't what I had thought it would be, I can finally check Purl Soho off of my list of New York yarn shops to visit. Mission accomplished!