Veritas

On my first visit to Brussels, a friend who was well aware of my yarn addiction, but not sure of whether there were any yarn shops around, remembered Veritas – a craft-slash-accessories chain where she had seen some colourful yarns.

The idea of a craft chain was somewhat new to me, as most craft shops I’ve encountered thus far were one-of-a-kind, though I had heard of things like JoAnn in the US. I have to admit I was a bit skeptical. When I think of my craft, I usually think of words like ‘unique’, ‘small scale’, while a chain shop implies mass production, and I wasn’t too keen on that association. However, Veritas surprised me pleasantly, and I have come to appreciate the advantages of a chain craft shop as well!

The knitting equipment they sell is mostly from Prym, which was the first ever brand of knitting needles I used – they’re not amazing but they are good value for the price and I wouldn’t shy away from recommending them to someone looking for a budget option. Seeing Veritas stocked with Prym equipment gave me the impression that, above all, it was a very sensible shop. Nothing fancy, good quality, at a good price. And above all, well stocked. So far, every one of my visits to Veritas has resulted, in terms of knitting equipment, in finding everything I had come in looking for.

Unfortunately, smaller yarn shops are not always able to restock their equipment regularly, and that can be quite a problem when you’re looking for a particular needle size. Especially in Croatia, I’ve found that yarn shops order a batch of knitting needles – with say 10 pieces of each size – every three months or so. Can you guess what happens? The ‘most popular’ sizes (e.g. 4mm) sell out as soon as they arrive, but no new ones are ordered until it is time for a new batch. So unless you’re lucky to walk into the yarn shop a few days after the new batch arrives, it’s more likely that you’ll be faced with a whole bunch of 7mm needles and no 4mm ones at all. In light of that, I really appreciate the reliability and well-stockedness (hehe :) I’ve found in Veritas.

And then there’s the colourful yarn, too.

My friend was quite right! Yummy! The yarn, like the equipment, is reasonably priced and sensible. It’s not really the kind of yarn you’d go impulse buying, but I have turned to this shop on a few occasions when I knew exactly what I needed, and it would definitely be my choice for a larger project, say a blanket, where I would want to go for a cost-effective yarn. There is a good selection of fibre contents and colours, and there are even regular discounts with the seasons. Lovely!

All in all, I like Veritas – it’s well-priced, reliable for equipment, has a good selection of yarn, and the space is large and inviting – allowing you to hover around petting the yarn as long as you want until you finally make your choice. It also puts a big emphasis on sewing, and has a good amount of equipment for other crafts, so if you are looking for a one-stop-shop for your multi-crafting, this is the place. The one thing you’re not seeing in these photos, though, is that it is also (maybe even primarily) a clothing and accessories shop. The craft section, while large, is usually at the back, and you might not notice it peeking in from the street. So if you come across a Veritas and see nothing but bathing suits in the shop window, don’t say to your travel companion “I don’t know what that Fridica is thinking, this is clearly not a craft shop at all!” but have some faith, poke your nose in and enter the sensible knitter’s heaven… ;)

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About fridica

I started knitting completely by accident, when I was visiting my parents for a holiday in 2008. On a boring Sunday afternoon, I decided to dig through their stash of books to see if there was anything interesting to take back to my apartment. A knitting manual happened to be one of the books I found. I got curious, my mom immediately dug out her old needles and yarn stash (which she hadn’t used in a decade at least), and in a few minutes we were both casting on - she by memory, I by following the instructions from the book… :) Since I normally prefer learning from books, this was ideal.. I took the book home with me, and very very soon - I was an addict.

17 thoughts on “Veritas

  1. Good to know! I love those big stands of colourful yarn and I can see why they’d catch your friend’s eye!

    I’ll look out for them on my travels…

  2. I’m afraid I disagree… I think Veritas is really expensive !
    The prym circular needles are 4,5 to 8€ and they’re no good at all, I used to use them but bought some drops needles recently (4,5€) and was so amazed by how well they are, they don’t curl, don’t bend, are so much easier to pull through, it was a real eye-opener for me !!
    The yarn as well is more expensive. You pay easily 4,75€ for 1 skein (50gr) of sock yarn, while online you can find so much beautifull yarn for less.
    I do agree that’s nice that you can spend hours choosing and touching, and that’s easy to pick up some other supplies !

    • I meant cheaper in comparison to the other yarn shops I’ve visited in Brussels, where you easily pay 15 euros for a skein of sock yarn. I agree that Prym circulars can be quite poor, but I find the straights and DPNs to be just fine, and they’ve been improving the cable on their circulars too.

      As for online shopping, it’s just not my thing when it comes to knitting supplies, so you can pretty much always assume I don’t take it into account when talking prices. It’s funny, I have no problem buying books and other stuff online, but when it comes to my knitting, I just like to hold it in my hands before I buy it! :) I do assume, though, that most things one gets in physical yarn shops could be gotten at a better price online.

      Thanks for your comment, I’m sure readers will love to see another point of view too! :) One of the reasons I’m doing this series of posts on yarn shops in Brussels is the fact that when I tried searching for info on them (before my first visit), I couldn’t find much. So I really love it when other people chime in with their opinions too. I hope that in the future, when people search “yarn shop Brussels” on Google, this might be helpful. :)

      • You are very right of course, it depends on what you compare to.
        I find that I’m more often disappointed with yarn I buy in LYS than what I order online, bizarre now I come to think of it…
        It is a nice initiatif to do this survey on yarn shops, good luck and thanks !

      • Hehe, that is strange! But maybe it has something to do with yarn weight? I also find it much easier to choose my yarn with the help of Ravelry, compare composition and thickness, figure out how much I need exactly. I’m not good at estimating the weight of yarns, and it’s hard to get all these details when you’re standing in a yarn store without Internet :)))) but in the end I still prefer it :)

        Thanks for your comments, I hope to see you around more! :)

    • I have to say I’m very happy with Prym DPNs in larger sizes (4mm upwards, even 3mm if I’m not knitting too tightly), but I found it impossible to knit socks on the 2mm! They were very hard on my fingers, I could only knit for 10 minutes at a time… With the Addis I have I can knit for much longer. How do you get around the painful spots on your fingers (is there some trick I don’t know about? :)

  3. We have a lot of these types of chain craft stores in the US and while I’m not a huge fan, they’re really useful when you need to buy needles and such. The chain craft store near me is hopeless when it comes to yarn — they mainly stock acrylics (and not the nice kinds which I know exists out there in yarn land) and colors that are not so subtle. But I turn to these chain stores when I need to stock up on needles or hooks or stitch markers, etc. And I’m with you on the online shopping for yarn — I’ve done it and it’s “saved” me when I’ve needed to find a specific brand that my LYS doesn’t carry but there’s nothing comparable to seeing yarn in person, both in terms of color and texture.

  4. What a neat idea!! I can see why they would carry a lot of different merchandise, it broadens out their customer base. clever!!

  5. Ooh I love the yarn color selection! One thing I hate about Jo-Ann’s (and Michael’s and Beverly’s, all crafting chains) here is that they always carry the same generic stuff in the same generic brands, and in order to keep their prices low, it’s mostly just acrylics in garish colors. I love that this shop seems to have ten different shades of each color!

  6. Looks like you have found a good shop. I have used the Prym circulars for my mobieus knitting and found them to be great. Maybe they have made a change in their quality???

    • There have definitely been changes. Some Prym circulars I bought when I just started knitting (and that was only 3 years ago) have cables that are practically impossible to manage, very thick and unflexible. But others that I bought a bit later have a much nicer and more flexible cable. It’s good to see that they’re evolving :)

  7. Veritas looks very cool (way cooler than JoAnn). I’m with you on not being able to shop for knit stuff online…needles maybe, but unless I’ve touched it before, it’s such a gamble to buy it online.

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