10 October 2012

Yarn Crawling Copenhagen/København

Cuddly Hubby spent a couple days in meetings -- this was, after all, a business trip. I love, love, love the train system in Copenhagen. If I think too much about it, it will make me either sad or angry that a city like Atlanta, which is full of railroad tracks, does not have a train system like a European city. We did not need a rental car at all. While Cuddly Hubby was in meetings in Roskilde, I took the train in to Copenhagen and went yarn shop crawling. I used the same technique I had used for Portland, Oregon -- generate a map using the yarn finding function on Ravelry. (Previous post on how to make a yarn store map here.)

I ended up visiting three yarns shops. There was a fourth for which I had an address but there did not seem to be a yarn shop on that street.
The first shop was Sommerfuglen, at Vandkunsten 3. I started at København Central Station, which is across the street from Tivoli Gardens. A good way to do it as a tourist would be to exit the station on the side towards Tivoli Gardens, turn right, walk down to the corner and cross towards Tivoli Gardens as you walk along Tietgensgade. You'll pass between Tivoli Gardens and Ny Carlberg Glyptotek. At Hans Christian Andersens Boulevard, follow Stormgade as it jogs to the left to eventually border the Nationalmuseet on the northwest. Alternatively, you can follow Ny Vestergade forward toward Christianborg Slot. In this case, Ny Vestergade borders the Nationalmuseet to the southeast. In either case, you'll end up at Fredericksholmes Kanal with Christianborg Slot on the other side of the canal. Turn left and follow Fredericksholmes Kanal northwest. Vankunsten is only about a block off the canal, just past the Albanian Embassy. You'll turn left and Sommerfuglen will be there.

Because this was the first shop I visited, and because I didn't know what I would encounter elsewhere, I did a lot of looking but not any buying. The yarn selection was wonderful, the shop had fabulous books, plenty of samples, and kits by Hanne Falkenberg. In retrospect, I probably should have purchased one of the kits, but I can get them here in the United States. If you were looking for a knitterly remembrance of Copenhagen, a Hanne Falkenberg kit might be just the gift. Sommerfuglen is definitely worth your attention. Plus, it is close to several tourist attractions and the awesome restaurants on Gammel Strand. If you have a tourist map, put a little star north of Nationalmuseet and west of Christianborg Slot and you'll be ready to stop by when you wander into the neighborhood.

The next place I tried to find was 123knit on Ny Adelgade. I did find Ny Adelgade (it is off Kongen Nytorv up near Nyhavn), but I could not find a yarn shop on that street. Bummer. Plus, that was the point where the battery in my Garmin died. Now I was by myself, in the rain, with only paper maps and my own wits to guide me.

I eventually navigated up to Fiolstræde, which is in the Latin Quarter. The center of Copenhagen is only about a kilometer across, so even walking from Sommerfuglen up to Uldstedet i City is not bad. If you decide to do so, head northwest up Rådhusstræde. You'll cross the Strøget at the open squares of Nytorv and Gammeltorv. Turn at either the next right (Skindergade) or the second right (Dyrkøb). Dyrkøb borders Vor Frue Kirke to the southeast, and the church is an obvious landmark. If you walk one block easterly, either of these streets will intersect Fiolstræde.

Just behind Vor Frue Kirke, at the corner of Krystalgade and Fiolstræde is Strikkeboden. This little yarn shop is small but stuffed full to the brim. I did look around and almost bought something. But, you know how some yarn shops just don't have friendly energy? Well, this shop just didn't have that friendly feel on the particular day I was there. Maybe kindness was lost in translation?

By this point, my wandering was beginning to bother my knees. I tend to think, "Oh, I did this sort of walking about all the time in college. I can do this, no problem." I forget that college was during the Reagan and Clinton administrations. My knees are not that young, nor that experienced in spite of the time spent on the exercise bike last spring. Phooey! So I headed up Fiolstræde because the Nørreport train station is at the end of it. And then I came across it!
Uldstedet i City!
This shop's doorstep lies below grade level. But do not let its lowly architectural position discourage you. This turned out to be a wonderfully helpful shop. There was a nice selection of yarn and helpful clerks. It was truly an oasis for me at that point in the day. My one goal in yarn shopping was to find yarn to convert my Bohus cuffs into gloves. I had the cuffs with me and was able to find some Isager laceweight alpaca that will probably work. (I may have to hold two strands together.) The ladies also pointed me in the proper direction for the train, which was just a few meters away at the end of the street.

My plan for the evening was to sit and knit, find dinner in Roskilde, and ice my knees -- not necessarily in that order. But when I got to the hotel room, Cuddly Hubby was already back early from his meeting. This would have been a good thing, except that he had left his laptop in the taxi. His coworkers -- who were heading back to Copenhagen for the night because they were all flying home to the United States -- had noticed before they left the taxi. However, this meant his laptop was with his boss in Copenhagen. "But I just came from Copenhagen!" was about all I could blurt out. In the end, we did tromp back to Copenhagen. The Cuddly Hubby's boss hadn't yet had dinner and did seem to want some company. So we ended up at Krogs Fiskerestaurant. I was going to order something light, but both men wanted the six-course meal. So I ordered it as well. It was a great evening of wonderful conversation and incredible food! Cuddly Hubby and I didn't end up back in our hotel room until about 1 AM. It was so worth it for the food and yarn. And by that time, I was exhausted and fell asleep with the ice packs draped across my knees.

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