Where the Yarns, and the People, Are Colorful

Neighborhood Joint

A series of articles profiling favorite local haunts.
What’s your neighborhood joint?

There is a store on the Upper West Side where the walls are splashed with a thousand colors — deep indigo, lime green, creamy beige and grape-gum purple, among them. There are reds, oranges, blues and black. But not from paint; the walls are lined with cubbies filled with knots of colored yarn.

The store, Knitty City, is a place for knitters. There are knitting needles in dozens of sizes and shapes; yarn made of wool, acrylic and alpaca; books and how-to classes; and even men’s knitting nights. But the owner, Pearl Chin, says you don’t have to be an expert to find your way around. Ms. Chin and her staff cater to everybody.

So on a recent Saturday afternoon, I presented them with a challenge: me.

I am the sort of girl to whom “crafty” means taking clothes in need of mending to the dry cleaner. But, in spite of my own ineptitude, I borrowed some knitting needles and headed out to Beginner Knitting Part 1.

“I’ve literally taught hundreds of people,” said our instructor, Maxine Levinson, a small woman with brown bangs and a faint Brooklyn accent. “And nobody has died!”

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