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A knitter's paradise

By MOLLY HARLOW

Shaw News Service

GENEVA 3/28/2005 - "It's got charm written all over it."

First-time shopper Karen Baudino has phrased it nicely. Her words sum up the essence of owner Lesley Edmondson's knitting shop, Wool & Company.

With the variety of knitting supplies, classes and gifts offered at Wool & Company, it's easy to see why this little knitting company has grown into a successful business with a faithful customer following.

Edmondson and her daughter run the store, which opened in 2000 in St. Charles. Knitting always has been close to their hearts, and they enjoy sharing their passion with others. In addition, each person on their staff shares an enthusiasm for knitting. Knitting, they said, is all about possibility.

Last year, Wool & Company outgrew its space in St. Charles, and Edmondson decided to move the shop to Geneva to accommodate their growing customer base. The new store almost is twice the size, which allows for more merchandise space and work areas.

"We needed more space," Edmondson said. "And Geneva has a great little downtown shopping area. We've been very happy and extremely successful here."

The quaint downtown shopping area lured Ottawa native Baudino to Geneva in the first place. Her neighbor discovered Wool & Company and persuaded her to stop by on her next shopping trip.

"She's raved about this place for a year," Baudino said of her neighbor. "I see now why she's so passionate about it."

The shop is a second home to people who live down the street, as well as downstate. Located at 23 S. Third St., the shop's inviting front windows, filled with completed knitting projects and unique gifts, spark the curiosity of passers-by.

Inside, wooden cases and cubbies line the brick walls with the finest and latest knitting supplies. Elegant baskets overflow with brilliant, gorgeous bundles of yarn. Antique coffee tables are covered with binders and books containing projects and "how to" instructions.

"I love to shop here. I won't shop anywhere else," customer Ann Shrowang said. "The staff is amazing. They treat customers more like friends."

Selection and service are two features that draw people to Wool & Company. In addition to yarn and knitting supplies, the shop also offers more than 30 classes and workshops for knitters of all levels. Novices should not be intimidated, either.

"Knitting 101 is definitely one of our most popular classes," Edmondson said.

In addition, Wool & Company also offers what is termed "Drop-In and Knit Fridays." Although knitters are allowed and encouraged to come by and work on one of the comfortable sofas any time, these casual, non-structured gatherings, held every Friday at 10:30 a.m., invite all knitters to bring their latest projects to the store and skit, knit and chat with fellow knitting friends.

"This place," Baudino said, nodding, "is definitely a little piece of heaven."

news and update

We are constantly adding new classes to our schedule, make sure that you register here to get your advance notice of additions and changes.

We are always pleased when the press helps us to spread our love of knitting.  Recent articles:

Knitting To It

Knitters Share Their Craft

Wool and Company - Hey, dude, where are the books?

Wool and Company - Knitting a New Tradition

Wool and Company - Knitter's Paradise

Wool and Company - Knitters Enjoy a Fine Twine

Wool and Company - Women Knit Purls of Wisdom

Wool and Company - Boy Meets Purl

Wool and Company - Swedish Days - Knitter's in Stitches