This shop proved to be quite a hike from the other shops, mostly because I walked there and took several detours to see the sights. I love the walking in big cities. If I could only move to one for, say 6 months, I know I could drop off all these lattes and cookies hanging out on my stomach and butt. I was a little disappointed to see that the store was also closed, but unlike Cat' Laine, it wasn't closed for Holiday, it was no longer in business. Bummer. It looked promising based on the cute neighborhood and the wooden facade. The Shop girl at Le Comptoir couldn't believe it had closed. She said it had been around for years.
Le Comptoir.What a cute, friendly shop. Small. Just like La Droguerie. Knitters here have little selection. No sock yarn. They must go barefoot! Oh...and no cute little knitting tools. No stitch markers, tape measures, stitch counters, handy plastic safety pins, sheep shaped needle gauge thingamabob's, no Chibi's and hold on for the shock---not a circular needle to be had at any shop I went to. What do they do? No wonder nobody is knitting. Obviously--I am biased to circulars. Straight needles? Ugh! I never touch 'em!
Le Comptoir had a little something of everything. A little wool, a little cotton, a little bamboo, a little alpaca and even a little camel. AT the very bottom of a stack of swatches my fingers stumbled often some luxurious softness, 2 balls of Bouton d'orr "ksar" became my souvenir from this shop! I think I'll make some mittens. I don't know much about camel, though I have been wanting to knit it. Is it okay "wet" from snow and ice?
I spotted up high behind the counter, really high, higher than my tip toes, some unlabeled Colinette Fandago that was marked so low in price I couldn't believe it. The lovely shop girl climbed up and retrieved it for me, sure enough it was Fandago, but a very small hank, unlabeled. I'd guess it was about 1/3 the size of a labeled one from my LYS @ about 1/3 the cost.
This store also doubled as a button/trim/fabric shop. It had nooks and crannies all over just jam packed!!
My last stop, way up high on a hill in Northern Paris, literally in the backyard of the awe inspiring Sacre'-Couer was the last shop:
Don't worry, it was worth the steep, climbing hike, if not for the yarn the yarn than the cute shoes I bought on the way and the fabulous bath salt and scrubby thing I found a few shops down. (After from my only truly scary encounter with a French creep minutes before, I needed some retail therapy to slow my beating heart).
This store sold mostly Katia yarns. I saw a little Buton"D or and literally a few balls of Amy Blatt. Despite my decision to not buy any more sweater yarn until I knit some sweaters from my stash I couldn't resist this gorgeous color of yarn. It is Katia Austral, shockingly an acrylic and merino blend (I think). (The yarn snob in me cringes at anything man made). Shame on me. Anyway, I closed my eyes and bought bought 11 balls and will keep my fingers crossed that when I find the right pattern, it 11 will be enough. The shop owner was friendly despite a big language barrier. She was amazed by my Knit Picks circular needles. Notice I didn't say impressed. She'd never seen anything like them but couldn't figure out why I'd use two. Why not one big long one? (Okay, time to get over my apprehension of the Magic Loop if even uniformed knitters can see the logic...). I asked her about knitting in Paris. She said 20 years ago there were lots of knitters and lots of shops. Now she said, "not so much". Here's a pretty yarn shot from my hotel window:
Another observations. They definitely do not have the "touch" thing going on here. At Le Comptoir you couldn't even get to it to touch it. At Chatmaille she actually had a sign posted that said don't touch. WTF??? No fondling? I feel bad for any of you strange yarn sniffers out there that I've read about. There's no way you'd be able to smell French yarn!