On my trip to Paris in 2015, I thought I’d check out the yarn shops. I had been knitting for a few years and liked to see what kind of yarn is available in places that I visit.
This trip was the first one where I documented my yarn shop visits. A post of this type seems to be very popular on my site. In fact, six of the top ten most visited posts on the website are about yarn shop visits. Unfortunately, posts like this one become out of date quickly as shops close, move, or are renamed.
I have been working through my yarn shop posts, updating as I go. Although I won’t be visiting Paris in the next couple of months, I am re-researching the shops on the internet. I’ll try to actually visit them the next time I am in the city.
Paris Yarn Shops
Initially, I looked on the internet for Paris yarn shops. I hoped to find a nice listing of all the shops, but all I found were a few blogs listing the bloggers’ favorites. After piecing together information from several websites, I set out to see what I could find.
The first shop I went to was Pierre Huguet & Cie Ets (no website). Once I got my bearings after coming out of the Metro, the shop wasn’t too hard to find. The only problem was that the name wasn’t on the building. I could see it was a yarn shop, though, so I walked in. The owner showed me the little name card in the window so I knew I was in the right place. After her greeting and explanation, though, she retreated to the back room.
The room smelled old and a bit smoky, so I wasn’t too interested in buying yarn. The yarn was piled on the shelf in large hanks. I had read that some French shops store the yarn this way and just measure out the amount you need. There was very little variety – only two or three types of yarn in different colorways. I looked around for awhile but the owner never returned. I called, “Au revoir,” and left.
The shop with open hours is still listed on the internet, although there is no website. A newer picture shows the name repainted on the outside of the building. Although I can’t highly recommend it, I’d like to give it a second chance.
I walked a few blocks down the street to find the next shop. This shop was called Li’l Weasel, and it was located in a gorgeous covered passageway. The owner greeted me, and then let me browse. She was very pleasant and answered all my questions – in English.
The Li’l Weasel imports Debbie Bliss (England), Malabrigo (Uruguay), and Rowan (England) yarns, but also stocks a good amount of Fonty (French), and a couple other French produced yarns. Most of the yarn is sorted by color, giving the wall a rainbow look, with certain special yarns grouped by themselves. I bought a couple different types of Fonty and so far am very happy with it.
I’ve visited Li’l Weasel a few times since the first visit. In addition to the yarns listed above, they also carry their own line of yarn. Li’l Weasel has a fabric room across the hall where they stock several “Liberty of London” and other fabrics.
On my second day out, I took the Metro to the D’Italie stop from which I could easily walk to L’Oisivé Thé et Tricot in the 13th arrondissement. L’Oisivé Thé is a tea shop that serves delicious brunches. The walls of the tea shop are lined with bins of yarn. The name explains the shop – “thé” which means “tea” and “et Tricot” which means “and knitting.” How fun is that?
The shop sells beautiful yarn, most of it imported from Great Britain and the US, including a nice selection of Madelinetosh. The highlight of the shop, however, is the tea service. On my recent trip, my daughter and I had reservations for tea, but the shop had to cancel due to someone being ill. Regretfully, we were not able to reschedule, so we will try again next time.
L’Oisivé Thé has a sister shop, La Bien Aimee, which I wrote about in a later post.
The next shop I visited was Le Comptoir. This beautiful old fashioned shop has apparently closed.
A couple blocks away I found Cat’Laine, another small yarn shop. This shop has a large variety of different textured yarn – mostly Katia (Spain) – displayed in small shoebox-like containers.
There were several samples around the shop and in the window. The friendly, English-speaking owner sells the samples and also does custom work.
My final stop for the day was La Droguerie. I didn’t expect much because I knew this was another store where the yarn was displayed in hanks, like I had seen at the first store. However, I was pleasantly surprised. The store is bright and clean, with a large variety of yarn displayed in the front half of the store. As I explored the store, I found a side room full of beads, buttons, and patterns. In addition to the yarn, the main room has a large selection of trims, more patterns, and a small classroom area.
The store was busy and it took awhile to figure out the system. I was told I had to wait in a line to be taken care of, so I quickly decided which yarn I wanted to buy and joined the line. It took a while for my turn, but when the clerk came to me, I had his full attention. He walked with me to see the yarn I selected, taking notes as I pointed. He went to the back room to retrieve the selected yarn, wound the desired amount into a ball and then presented my purchases to the cashier.
I was pleased that I was not given yarn from the front of the store. The yarn there is just for display and had probably been fingered by countless customers. The yarn is made in France, specifically for La Droguerie. The patterns are also La Droguerie’s own brand. I couldn’t resist picking up a couple – even though they were written in French – because I love the classic French look.
I’ve since discovered that La Droguerie has 10 locations in France and five in Japan. I’ve visited one other French shop and one in Tokyo, but I still like visiting the one in Paris.
My husband and I wanted to go to one of the outdoor markets and Marché St. Pierre sounded interesting. Marché St. Pierre is a large fabric store in the middle of an entire street of fabric stores and outlets.
Although the area focuses on fabric, there were also two yarn shops. The first one, Tricot Saint-Pierre (no website), has a large selection of Phildar, but also Plassard and Cheval Blanc – all French yarns. This shop is part of the Mercerie St. Pierre, just around the corner from the Marché St Pierre.
The second shop, Laines (no website), carries a nice selection of Katia yarn. Both shops were pleasant with clerks that speak English. (This shop is listed on the internet as Maison Kermès Laines and Laines et fils à tricoter – I just know it as Laines).
I’ve returned to both shops since the first time. I’d recommend not only the shops, but the entire area – it’s fascinating.
On my last day in Paris, I visited one more shop, Elle Tricote. The Paris location of this shop has now closed, although the store in Strasbourg is still open.
I had fun searching out all the yarn stores in Paris. At the time, I thought I had visited every yarn shop there, but now I have learned about more.
In a post since my first visits to the Paris yarn shops, I mentioned several more shops and detailed the fabric shops I had visited. A quick internet search shows even more shops. I will definitely have to plan another trips to Paris.
Have you been to any of these yarn shops? Do you know of more that I should visit? Leave your comments below.