Alladin’s Cave

Now, you know that the idea of a shopping trip as entertainment is complete anathema to me. So you will be surprised when I tell you that I jumped at the chance of going shopping with my dear friend Ann yesterday. You will be less surprised when I confess that she offered to take me to a yarn shop! In fact a yarn shop that is closing down and that we had been planning to visit for a while… namely the Colinette factory shop, These creators of yarn in amazing colours are based in the depths of mid-Wales, but sadly I have never visited them before and never will again, because from 22 January, they will only be selling online.

I’m saddened that a ‘real’ shop like this is disappearing; partly because it provides an opportunity to see the actual colours and feel the texture of yarn before buying (just not the same online) and partly because of the jobs that will disappear as a result.

Anyway, off we went and experienced temptation and inspiration…

It’s hard to capture the lustre and depth of colours in the yarn, but at least the pictures give an idea of the variety.

I know that, like last year, I plan to reduce my stash this year, but since this was a one-time-only visit I did succumb… some multi-coloured 100% wool from the sale room that will be used to make hats and fingerless mittens, plus an amazing lilac wool/bamboo mix, of which I can’t quite capture the gorgeousness in a photograph.

In fact, the day was about much more than shopping… it was about spending time with a friend and sharing an experience. It was also about lunch – we ate at the Quarry Cafe in Machynlleth… it used to be owned by the Centre for Alternative Technology, but when they decided to close it, the workers too over. If you are ever in mid-Wales, it’s well worth a visit.

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  1. All that yarn has made me weak.

  2. Seeing the abundance of yarn makes me happy; hearing the shop is closing makes me sad! You’re right–one really needs to see and touch these fibers to appreciate them. I’m glad you had the chance at least once!

    • I’m much more likely to order online having actually seen and felt the yarn. I know that the company sell through various shops, but nowhere other than the factory shop has the full range, so it really is a sad decision on behalf of the owners.

  3. Gorgeous yarn. We went to the centre for alternative technology back in 1988!

  4. Ooh, lush! What a colourful and gorgeous experience. So sad you won’t be able to touch and feel before you buy, but at least they are staying in business, even if it’s only online. I do quite see it’s absolutely your kind of place!

    • I would have liked to sit and gaze at it all for an hour or two with a cuppa in hand!

      • I’d have liked to grab handfuls of colour and mix them up, a bit like an abstract painting. Such a shame I can’t make proper use of yarn… But life is short, and my heart belongs to quilting!

        • I do understand – there is a local quilting supplies shop that I love to go and visit… the fabric is beautiful and I can see so much potential… but I know where my heart lies!

  5. You showed remarkable restrain around all of that gorgeous yarn.

  6. I have the same feeling when I go to a fabric store or book store sale. It’s hard to leave it all behind but there is only so much time and so much energy to do it all. You did have your priorities in order. Spending time with a good friend tops it all. The eye candy is a secondary treat, That would have been hard for even me to resist and I don’t knit. I buy inexpensive yarn on sale for my niece who is doing a great deal of crochet even though she is a novice still. They had some beautiful yarn in that shop and I too need to feel things before buying.

  7. Oh be still my heart! If there was a shop like that in my vicinity I would never be out of it! I have seen many patterns using Collinette yarn, but we don’t have that name here – perhaps on-line is better than nowhere! 🙂 Love your colour choices!

  8. Commuter Knits

     /  January 6, 2016

    This is stunning, what a dream! How sad that it will no longer be a real shop.

  9. We have been visiting for many years, an annual ‘must’ when in the area. A truly inspirational colour experience. We’ll be sad to miss it this year, but apparently there is a natural hand dyed mill slightly further north which we are hoping to track down.

  10. If you were visiting this end of the country I wonder if I could get you out of our local Abakhan Wool shop long enough for a cup of tea.
    xxx Huge Hugs xxx

  11. Wow what a shop oozing with colour and texture! Sadly I guess it’s showing a sign of the times with its closure.

  12. What a feast for the eyes. I love all that rich color and the shape of the twisted yarn.

    I’m glad you got in a visit before they convert to online only sales. That is a shame, but seems to be the trend with so many things. We’ve actually had a resurgence of yarn shops here in the Bay Area in recent years. It’s nice to see. Most of them offer classes or lessons in addition to offering the product. That may add to their success. Some shops have a better chance of survival when they have a larger pool of potential buyers. That said, rentals and leases have increased rapidly in the last five years, making it harder and harder for small businesses to succeed.

  13. Ah I’m still so saddened to have seen Colinette close, living only 30 minutes away from it I’ve grown up with it! The colours and yarns are what got me into knitting.

  1. A work of Art | The Snail of Happiness
  2. Colours of my life | The Snail of Happiness

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