Knitting new friendships

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The ladies of The Village Yarn Shop share life, love of stitching

By Dawn Pearson

For the last seven years The Village Yarn Shop has helped customers sew new friendships one stitch, purl two, at a time.

The women are doing this in the shop’s brick street store, in what they call a space as comfortable as if they were at home.

Making a comeback

Knitting has made a comeback over the last several years, with young girls and even celebrities taking up the hobby.

This is part of how The Village Yarn Shop’s story began to unravel into a local hot spot for friendships, snacks, workshops, education, comfort and the local knitting group.

Harriett McNabb opened her store in May 2008 after a long teaching career.

“I taught seventh and eighth grade English for nearly 30 years and I had been dreaming of a place to share my love of fiber, color and friendship,” McNabb said. “Terry, my husband of 34 years, is my partner in this endeavor. He worked for Caterpillar but supports my passion whenever he can.”

So when their daughter and her husband had twins, the timing was right and they moved to Zionsville to be closer to their family and jumped into Harriett’s dream, not feet first, but head first.

“We chose Zionsville, or rather, Zionsville chose us,” McNabb said. “When we first saw the town, the downtown shops have the homey charm that we were looking for and the people here are just so warm and helpful. They have welcomed us and wished us great success.”

Ladies who laugh and cry together

They took that hominess and spun into a place that their customers from all over central Indiana love.

Twice a week a group of women from Zionsville, Carmel, Westfield, Noblesville, Fishers, Indianapolis and Greenfield all meet in the center of the store to knit. There are big, oversized comfy sofas and chairs where these women have sewn life-long friendships along with some of what the women call “free therapy.”

The women sit for hours just knitting, laughing, and drinking coffee.

Lisa Cheraskin, Tammy Van Wyk, Kathy Treaster, Julia Grace, Diane DeMilt, Sandi Booth and Sharon Lee Baker are just a few of these women and collectively said The Village Yarn Shop has been an anchor in all of their lives.

From their meeting in a knitting class or in their group they’ve made life long friends, who have helped each other through many of life’s challenges, such as divorce, illness, marriages, empty nesting, funerals and their children’s weddings. They are each other’s support.

“You know I can’t go very long with a yarn store fix,” Cheraskin said.

DeMilt said that even during last year’s snowstorms the group made its way to the shop, and when local coffee shops were closed because of the storms, Harriett and Terry improvised.

“Harriett and Terry just make it feel like home for us,” DeMilt said. “Terry went and got us a coffee maker when we were knitting when all places where closed here.”

McNabb said Cheraskin’s dog, Kinsey, even comes to the shop, sits with them while they knit and “makes it that much closer to [feeling like home].”

“It’s just like home, with wine, coffee, goodies and all the support we need,” McNabb said.

To learn more about The Village Yarn Shop or to join in on some of the knitting club fun, visit www.villageyarnshop.net or call 873-0004. The shop is at 209 S. Main St., in Zionsville.


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