Today’s interview is with Christina Pridie, knitwear designer and owner of the Pridie Collection- Boutique Yarn Shop in Peterborough, Ontario. Christina’s designs are available on Ravelry.
Can you tell us a little bit about your shop? What is the atmosphere like? Is there anything that makes your shop different from other yarn shops?
The Pridie Collection – Boutique Yarn Shop is a quaint little place that is filled with eye candy everywhere you look. There is tables and chairs inside and outside to ssk (sit, sip and knit) a while. We have a self serve station where you can purchase hot & cold beverages to suit your stay. We teach classes in both knitting and crocheting for the beginner to advanced levels. We also do some charity knitting where our customers get involved making mittens for the kids in the Public Schools and also chemo hats for The Canadian Cancer Society. Everyday is a stitch in but we also host a Knitting Bee every Thursday afternoon and evening for those who like a scheduled day and time. Everyone has a great time, especially me.
Can you tell us a little bit about yourself and the history of your shop? How did you get interested in knitting/crocheting? How did you come to open or own a yarn shop? Readers will love to hear your story – so tell it!
I am a wife, mother of 4, shop owner and knitwear designer. I started crocheting and knitting when I was 10 years old. I am self taught and also taught night school courses through the Board of Education for many years. I have been designing seamless knitwear for the last 17 years. I have 48 published patterns available in hard copy and on line with 2 more on the way. My goal is to publish a book soon.
Which yarns do you carry? Traditional yarns? Exotic or unusual yarns? Novelty yarns? Local farm yarns? Eco-friendly yarns? How large is your inventory?
We carry natural fibers, blends, cottons, bamboo, superwash and acrylics. Also, all the novelty yarns for making the fancy scarves etc…Local Alpaca yarn, fleece and rovings as well. From sock weight to bulky weight and everything in between.
We offer classes, lessons, workshops, courses, knit and crochet alongs. Beginner to Advanced levels, private or group. We also have a Knitting Bee on Thursday afternoon and evening. Really, every day is a stitch in.
What trends do you see in knitting in general, and yarn choices in particular?
Slouch hats, cowls, infinity scarves, fingerless gloves, and boot toppers are the main accessories that people like to knit besides all the novelty scarves. Baby wear is always a popular item for everyone to make. People like all the yarns for different reasons but it all boils down to what they can afford to purchase.
Do you have favorite yarns? What do you use them for?
I love 100% wool for felting purses, slippers, hats and mitts etc… For the summer, I like to use cotton for little girls dresses and sun hats, and blends for the fall and winter wear.
Do you have a mail order business?
We do accept mail orders. We also have a free delivery service within the city limits.
Is there anything else you’d like to share?
We also do charity knitting. We knit chemo hats for The Canadian Cancer Society and Knit for Kids – Newfie Mittens for the kids in the Public Schools.
We also have contests, prizes and free draws once in a while to keep it fun and interesting.
The customers like to display their work in the shop and also on facebook. It is a great way to inspire and encourage others.