This week – just in time to get yourself a project for Easter – my focus is on the Wisbech Wool Shop, in Union Street, just off the Market Place.
It’s been a wool and needlework shop for 60 years – I think that’s a testament to its staff and products in itself!
I’m a recent customer of the shop (some have been going there since the ’50s!) but have always found it to be everything I love about independent traders – the skills and knowledge of the owners and staff are exceptional, and I think it’s great that you can go into the shop and ask for help, and they’ll take the time to teach you right there and then.
I had a long chat with Linda about her recent takeover of the business and her plans. I was especially excited by a comment she made:
“I moved here from Brighton, a very creative place, but Wisbech takes the prize for sheer talent and craft skills. It’s a hotbed of creativity – craft groups and independent creative souls everywhere! It’s amazing.”
I couldn’t agree more! I’m looking forward to the Arts Festival in May and all the projects I’m hearing about – or am involved with – from local artists, craftspeople and organisations.
I’m starting to make more decorative pieces, so I find the Wool Shop useful as it has tools, embroidery floss, needle felting supplies, buttons, ribbons (as well as tapestry, rug and cross stitch kits to get you started with those!)
Linda told me about her colleagues. “I’m really proud of them. Imagine my apprehension at taking over!
“They dealt with it really well and are always coming up with new fresh ideas. I have taken on new staff too, they’re all a real asset.”
It’s obvious they enjoy their work, and they are definitely skilled craftspeople – they wear their own creations!
Linda also said they’re starting a list of people interested in a knit/crochet/craft group to help and inspire each other.
And with their cross section of ages, experience and skills I’m sure it will be a great success.
n If you want to see more from my chat with Linda go to the website RedBarnCreative.org.uk