Monday, February 15, 2010

Favorite Shops: Home Ec. Workshop, Iowa City

The fabric cutting table at Home Ec
. Photo from Dreaming Bear

This past weekend, my husband and I were FINALLY able to take a road trip out of town without the children. We went to Iowa City to see our old friend William Elliot Whitmore play a rock show at the Blue Moose Taphouse in Iowa City. We got into town a little early and had time to visit some of the shops that have opened up since we moved away in 2001.

I visited Home Ec Workshop on the recommendation of Arin and Karen from Ephemera in Des Moines. The shop is on Linn Street just North of Market, on the west side of the road. Back in our I.C.days, the building used to house a guitar store and a used book store that is still on the corner. The Hamburg Inn will probably always slop it out across the street, and I have to admit a twinge of jealousy when I realized that the "Chill and Grill" has now become a falafel restaurant.

Home Ec, which is in a small store front in the middle of the block, has a small front room with fabric, a middle room with yarns, and a back classroom/workshop area. They have also incorporated a small coffee and snack shop.

I ordered a chai (and imagined eating one of the red velvet cupcakes) and browsed around. Their fabric room is small, but well stocked. They did not have quite as much space as someplace like Crafty Planet in Minneapolis, but the prints they do stock were well coordinated, made me drool, and the prices are comparable. I do not knit or crochet, but I found it impossible to avoid petting the stock of yarns, particularly some of the finer spun japanese yarns.

The chai was fabulous, perfectly sweetened with honey (not sticky sweet like the crap they serve at Starbucks) and made with milk from cows who eat real grass (GASP)! Aside from the great stuff (they even had a little vintage and a little handmade mixed in), I would come back just to visit with the ladies. Codi and her partner Alisa could not have been any nicer.

If you live near Iowa City or find yourself in town, take a few minutes to stop in the shop to admire the colors, drink some chai, and stock up on something lovely for your next project.

Home Ec. Workshop
207 N. Linn Street
Iowa City, Iowa 52245

We hope our next stop can include a visit to White Rabbit.

The yarn room. Photo from Dreaming Bear

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