Whether you’re seasoned and searching for supplies or starting and scrambling for instruction, look no further
Are you aware that a new yarn and craft store has opened in Regina? Well, one has! It is called Yarn Over Fibre and Crafting Co and it is located at 3434B Regina Avenue in Regina, Saskatchewan. This store is owned by Brianna Redlich. I paid a short visit to the store and did an interview with Redlich to give you an insight into the store and her passion for yarn hobbies.
Now, let’s get to know Redlich a bit personally. Based on the shop website, Redlich used to be a veterinary technologist, and after 10 years, Redlich is “ready to hang up the stethoscope and be surrounded by yarn full time.” Redlich started partaking in yarn hobbies about seven years ago with crocheting. Since then, she’s been learning how to partake in knitting, Tunisian crochet, and spinning as well. With all these different options for different yarn hobbies and all the different types of yarn, Redlich decided to open a store of her own and follow this beloved hobby, making it into a career.
Now that we know a bit about Redlich, here’s a deeper dive into the store and its conception.
Why did you decide to open your store?
Ever since I was little I had always wanted to open my own business, and it has certainly changed over my lifetime. About 16 years ago I went to StevenBe store, […] and it was a beautiful two-storey yarn shop. You felt so welcomed there based on all the different colours and textures. So, when I first started to crochet each fall, I would go to a craft sale and sell whatever items I made over the year. But every year there were more people doing crotchet and knitting, and the art certainly became more mainstream. The market almost seemed flooded for makers but I thought people still need the supplies, and I would still love to be surrounded by yarn all day. I wanted to be the person that states “Oh, you want to make this? […] Here are the colours you need, here are the tools, and you can make something beautiful with this.”
How did the first couple of months after opening go for you?
So, I started online as a placeholder, just as there was no place in Regina to get natural fibres besides the basics at Michaels and Walmart. […] I wanted to start to bring in a little bit of stock to help people get yarn and do local pick up. […] This was a nice way to start building up a customer base while we waited for a retail location.
Who is involved in the store team? Does everyone have a good sense of knowledge of yarn hobbies to be able to help customers?
So, the store team is me, essentially! […] I am mostly a crocheter and I am learning more and more about knitting and spinning, and a lot of that is due to people coming and us having conversations or them teaching me something new I can pass along to my customers. […] We are offering classes to give the option for others to learn. Although I am not an expert in knitting or spinning, I will go out to the community and say, “Hey, I need an instructor for this.” I will bring in this person and they can answer your questions, and this is an opportunity for everyone to learn. […] This is very much a community-based business.
Based on your available stock, you have a variety of different types of yarns based on colour, thickness, brand, and feel. What is your go-to yarn depending on the hobby you are doing?
I mostly do crochet. When I do crochet, I tend to lean more towards my acrylic yarns. I like to make stuffies, and hard material and crochet uses up more yarn and is something more economical, […] where knitters tend to be geared towards natural fibres. […] It does certainly range, some people are looking for basic wool, or some people are looking for something on the higher end. But I find it also depends on your skill level.
Are there any unique items your store has that people should come and check out?
We have a local handmade area. We have fibres that are made in Saskatchewan and surrounding areas. […] We have also ceramic mugs that are handmade by someone here in Regina, we have crochet stuffies from another local artist. Plus, we also have our pattern library. We take magazine and book donations, and if there is a pattern in a book and you do not want to buy the entire book, you are more than welcome to borrow that book, take it home, photocopy it, use it, and bring it back just like a library.
Based on the website, you plan to have classes at the store. What classes will you be hosting, and can you expand on the information available on your website?
We will have crochet 101 and knitting 101. These are the basic beginner classes, […] this is where we get people started with some of the basic skills, then we are going to have 201 where we will have more complicated stitches. Beginner yarn spinning, sock knitting class, crochet thumb class or thumb mitten class.
On the schedule online on Thursday, it states 6-8 p.m. for gatherings and late-night shoppers. What gatherings are taking place at the store currently?
So, this is a time for the community to come together with friends and with a project. This is a time when we set up a bunch of extra chairs, set up a project, have a cup of tea, we share stories. This is a nice place for the crochet and knitting community to come together.
What is some advice you would give someone who is learning?
Be patient with yourself, this is the biggest thing. I have seen it in classes when people start to get a little frustrated or overthinking, and you must give yourself some slack. Especially, the biggest thing is to just get the hand movement down. It doesn’t matter what the stitches are like or [if they] look wonky, just get the hand movement. Also, there is a big community if you are starting to get frustrated. Pop in on a Thursday night, or there is a Regina group. Post it on there you will have a bunch of people commenting “This [here] is what you do.”
Visiting the store and having a conversation with Redlich was a great experience. Redlich herself and the store are both very welcoming and really make you feel comfortable. You’re instantly a part of the community, even if you are not a knitter or crocheter. I hope this encourages you to go and check out this store and learn some skills to continue a yarn hobby or start one up!