New LYS alert! Pix to follow. Here’s the backstory: I spent the past week at my mom’s after the passing of my dad. The funeral was on Monday (a little too fresh to talk about…). I had a few complex knitting projects with me, including Mystery Stole 3, which was wonderful, but only for the last thing before going to bed. I also had my Top Down Raglan and my Sahara in Tilli Tomas Ruby Wine, but what I REALLY needed was a straight stockinette project for awaiting arriving guests at the airport, short car rides, and conversing with people at the house. So I cast on for a new Harry Potter Gryffindor scarf in the Prisoner of Azkaban stripes (thick and thin). Unfortunately, I only had my Knit Picks Options and the shortest cable is too long. I really wanted double pointed needles. By Sunday I was absolutely Jones-ing for new DPNs, so I escaped with my dh to downtown San Jose, directions from the web in hand, for a new-to-me LYS called “Commuknity.” Picture the letters “knit” in a different color from the rest, and all in a lovely script and that’s the logo. Go here for the website, including a virtual tour (Windows Media Player only).


As soon as my dh and I drove into the neighborhood, we felt at home. Strollers and dogs everywhere, lovely old buildings next to a lot where a Farmers’ Market had set up, complete with bounce house and guitar and mandolin duo. I bought a spray of huge, happy sunflowers for my mom. The LYS was across the street from a Peet’s Coffee, best coffee in the universe. Where we used to live in the Berkeley-North Oakland area, we had 3 Peet’s within a 2-mile radius and we could call to see what each was brewing at the moment so we could pick. Fortunately there’s one in Newport Beach reasonably near us so we can get at least a weekly fix.


Commuknity is in an old building with wonderful, high ceilings that had been a furniture store, grocery and various other businesses in its long life. As soon as stepped into the “foyer,” I relaxed. There is a beautiful, antique-looking, dark wood, stand-alone swift in the window, lovely felted bags and scarves on display, lots of greenery and a fountain. Just the sound of the trickling water lowered my blood pressure. And as I gazed into the high-ceilinged, faux-finished room filled with natural light, I could feel my shoulders and neck relax and my eyes widen.


You can see from the pix on the website how open and inviting the yarn displays are. The book section is next to a comfy couch and some chairs beside a fireplace. The entire top quarter of one wall is frosted windows where you can see the silhouettes of ivy creeping along the frames. Beyond the main sales floor is the Gallery, where the current display is lace knitting. I will put up some of my cell phone pix as soon as I figure out how to transfer them. The shop participates in a monthly Art Gallery Walk. Yay for placing these handcrafted works in the proper context!


I came away with some amazing Noro Iro (wool and silk) on sale! I also got the needles I came for plus some AddiTurbo Lace circulars. One sales person (Jo?) told me she only had 32″ Addis because that’s what they sold in Germany when she lived there — no need for any other sizes, large enough for shawls, easy enough to pull the excess along for smaller projects, and they just used DPNs for other circular projects. Very frugal.


Anyway, thanks, Gail, for creating a wonderful, nurturing, creative space. I shall return!




4 thoughts on “Commuknity”

  1. My friend and I, both formerly Berkeley residents, took a road trip up to the Bay Area last year and did a little yarn crawl. Commuknity was on the list and definitely one of my favorites. The neighborhood and environment are just great.

    Hope you’re doing well.

  2. Hi Kate — So are we living parallel lives? I read on your blog that you like dancing and surfing, too, and that we share bazillions of the same favorite movies. (Endless Summer rocks over ES 2, but I loved the plane landing on the Costa Rica beach scene — we have property south of there). I’m such a LOTR fan girl (and weaver) that I ordered a shawl from the folks in NZ who crafted all the cloaks. Thanks for the supportive thoughts — family (including my big hairy Golden retriever) heals.

  3. OK Tess. There is, of course, no need for you to introduce yourself since I remember you from when you visited commuknity. My husband didn’t realize it was you that I had spoken to and he posted my thanks. We hope to see you again soon.


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