The Only Black Woman-Owned Yarn Shop in Detroit Knits Together Friendships, Art, and Community

Sally Moore shares a laughter with members of the Detroit knitting community at Parker Avenue Knits in Detroit on Tuesday, Dec. 28, 2021. (JUNFU HAN, DETROIT FREE PRESS)

Sally Moore’s belief in her power to “make magic” is unshakable. 

As Moore has faced challenges dished out by law school, high-stakes litigation cases and competitive entrepreneurial competitions, along with the destructive impact of breast cancer on her support circle, the magic has still been with her.

Even during this present time of uncertainty for many, due to a global pandemic that does not seem to be lessening, Moore’s response is guided by her own magic, which in this instance involves opening a new business in the city she loves.

“Energy is going to flood the space and we’ll watch what grows from having a collective group of individuals that are going in the same direction,” said Moore, four days before the grand opening of Parker Avenue in Rivertown, the only Black woman-owned yarn shop in the city of Detroit.

A practicing attorney for 25 years and a self-described student of people for even longer, Moore has added “business owner” to her resume to “positively impact socioeconomic and racial disparity” in Detroit. With a name that pays tribute to Dorothy Parker — the celebrated writer, poet, editor, playwright and critic who was part of a famous clique that assembled daily for lunch in New York during the Roaring ‘20s — Moore’s shop offers all things related to knitting and crochet and more. And it is the “more” part of the equation, which has the shop owner fired up.

“I am passionate about this business and what can happen when fiber-crafting women from all walks of life have a place to call home,” said Moore, who grew up in Palmer Woods and graduated from Cass Tech in 1985. “The pandemic has taught us that interaction is what makes us human and the shop is all about connection, just like the yarn we knit with — we touch it, feel it. When you get people together around this common activity, they will see each other and have meaningful conversations about real things that matter most in their lives.”

Moore further explains how mere yarn can transform lives and enrich her city by telling a story about driving west on I-94 this summer. It was a route that Moore had become accustomed to traveling while checking out other yarn shops across metropolitan Detroit. But on this day it was the conversation that was going on in her vehicle among women she adores (Dondi Roberts Parker, Joye Watts Mosley and Moore’s sister Sharon), which held her attention.

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SOURCE: Detroit Free Press, Scott Talley