Monday, August 16, 2010

Village Books, Washington, Maine

My friend Karen Jelenfy, as many of you know, not only accompanies me on Knitting Out Loud trips (thereby making them even more fun) but has a business of her own right here in Maine. Karen has a delightful used book shop called Village Books. And she specializes in, you guessed it, fiber-related books (see her knitting shelf above!) as well as just plain fiber (see the fiber table below! hand-spun yarn and roving!).
If you are looking for a particular book (on any subject) Karen will do a search for you. Below is pictured a shelf of books on Maine.
And she has books on tea. And tea pots.
And a great selection of books on other subjects. I especially loved The Historian, pictured in the stack below. It's a kind of vampire mystery, beautifully written, which moves between the centuries (but nothing like that other vampire writer). Karen also carries wonderful and incredibly useful hand-forged hooks made by her blacksmith husband Jeff.
Hooks above! Roving below!
Lastly, Karen and Jeff keep two cashmere goats, Winnie and Lucy.
Here's what Karen says about Maine, fiber and bookstores:

In 2004 we finally got sick of traveling the Washington, D.C. Beltway. Jeff found a job in Maine so we jumped. I had no idea what I was going to do up here except paint & write & become human again.
I took a job teaching art at a wonderful preschool in Camden during the school year, but had no work in the summers. A lovely, bright space became available in my village and I asked myself "What needs to be there?" And we all know every town should have a bookstore. The day I opened I (laughably) had 50 books. Now I have somewhere between 2-3000.

My fiber life started in 1979 when I taught myself to weave on a frame loom. I knew I wanted to make stuff with color, but couldn't find a direction. But I LOVED BUYING YARN! Eventually I gave up on weaving (hated warping) and went to graduate school to study painting & sculpture. When my daughter Roxanne was 11, she taught me to knit. Despite many holes & other
oddities, I kept knitting through my mother's final illness and buying our house here in Maine. I was definitely hooked on the therapeutic value of knitting. The rest of it (goats, knitting seriously, learning to spin, buying fleeces,knit bombing etc) is entirely the fault of my friend Kathy and Knitting Out Loud. It's a "gateway" company!

Goats. They are what happens to you when you go to fiber festivals. Well, and possibly spinning.
Happy end of summer to everyone,
- Kathy


Liz said...

Love it!!

Mr Puffy's Knitting Blog: said...

All of my favorite things in one shop!!!! For a knitter I know remarkably little about roving ~ but I'm quickly learning with an eye toward felting.

Knitting Out Loud said...

I agree, Liz! Karen has a wonderful selection of books.

Mr Puffy, Karen is entranced with the fleece to roving process. I believe the roving in her shop is made by a friend of hers who has been doing it for years. I've done a bit of felting and just loved it!