The traditional crafts of knitting and crocheting have in recent years made a big comeback. In the age of digital detox, knitting and crocheting reduce stress and, according to some studies, may even go a long way toward preventing memory loss. But while there’s much to be said for the calming effects of grabbing yarn and needles and getting to work on a sweater, an equally important part of this centuries-old tradition is its ability to bring people together.
This is the idea behind Yarn Queen, a new shop opened on Vinohrady’s Korunní Street since January. Owner Šárka Mošová envisioned a place with natural, quality yarns sourced locally and from around the world as well as a spot where people could regularly sit and stitch together. Mošová, who has been crocheting since the age of 10 says knitting has a strong tradition in the Czech lands.
“During the Communist era, I knitted and sewed many things, especially for children. Knitting was very popular under Communism because there was no offer of clothing in stores.” She says that after the Velvet Revolution, the availability of yarn in stores wasn’t great.
“Eventually, a friend took me to a café, where I met other knitters. I then began to get into natural yarns. I was sad that there were no stores in Prague where I could choose yarn. I shopped online; so did other knitters. That’s when I first thought of having my own shop.”
Mošová’s new shop is the second natural-fiber yarn store in Prague; it carries a wide selection of brands that focus on organic yarns. She says that while there are many stores that carry acrylic yarn in Prague she stocks all-natural yarns such as GOTS certified yarns as well as recycled yarn made from old jeans and PET bottles.
When asked to explain the recent boom in knitting and crocheting in the Prague she says, “People are more interested in the origin of clothing and where and under what conditions it was made and the ecological aspect of knitting from natural recyclable and already recycled materials.” She also sees knitting as making good financial sense.
“The return of my generation [to knitting] is certainly due to the possibility of knitting from such high–quality materials what’s not possible to buy for a comparable price.”
Yarn Queen will host its first knitting group this week on Thursday, March 5. It also hosts classes for beginning knitters. Mošová adds, “I’m getting ready for my first knitting meet, I’ll be glad if we meet regularly.”
Where to meet up for knitting courses or groups in Prague:
- Yarn Queen kicks off its first knitting group on March 5 at 18:00. See FB event for more details.
- Free knitting courses led by the group behind the Socks from Grandma initiative take place every Thursday at the Elpida center in Pankrác and every other Monday in Holešovice at Přístav 7. For more information visit www.elpida.cz.
- Knit Sisters host regular knitting courses in Prague; the next class is March 6, but check the website as courses tend to fill up.
- Woolpoint arts and crafts store hosts regular knitting and sewing meet ups and organizes paid-for courses. Visit www.woolpoint.cz.
- Stitch’n’Bitch Prague typically meets on the first and third Saturday of the month in Prague; meetings center on knitting, crocheting, and cross-stitching.
- A Maze In Tchaiovna’s first knitting club kicks off March 15; meetings will take place once a month, on Sundays, from 1:00 to 4:00 p.m.
Where do you go for craft supplies and meet-ups in Prague?