Wednesday, April 23, 2008

The Detroit I Never Knew Existed

Detroit PBS is located one block from one of the most amazing buildings I have ever visited in my life - The Fisher Building. Not only is the building incredible but it also houses a fabulously stocked yarn store called City Knits. On Monday night, I did a talk at City Knits and tried to inspire the knitters and crocheters who came. Needless to say, an enormous amount of inspiration was just outside the brass doors of the yarn store.

Friday morning, after my PBS responsibilities were over, Karen Kendrick-Hands, the owner of City Knits gave me a special guided tour of the building. How lucky was I? It was built by The seven Fisher Brothers between 1927 and 1928 and designed by Albert Kahn, who offices are still across the street. Thank goodness they finished it before The Great Depression. It's decoration is mind-boggling. The marble, brass, mosaics, and more are worth a special trip to Detroit.

There are several mosaic tile pieces in the lobby.

Here's what the enormous lobby looks like from above.

The marble floors are remisicent of a patchwork quilt.

If you ever get a chance to visit Detroit, don't miss City Knits and The Fisher Building. And if you live in a suburb of Detroit, make sure you make a special trip to this great yarn store and fabulous building.

Another of Detroit's Crown Jewels is the Guardian Building. I had an evening tour of that building but wasn't able to snap any photos. Here you can see that one for yourself. City Knits has a small 220 square foot satellite store especially for downtown Detroit knitters in the former smokeshop in the lobby of this building. How lucky are those knitters to be able to go out at lunch time and snag some yarn.


~drew emborsky~ said...

Wow, those are amazing photos! I love the patchwork quilt tile floor!!

The Sick Chick said...

Albert Khan the Parisian financier and instigator of the amazing photo archive? I didn't know he was in to architecture...but it makes sense.

Kate G. said...

Great post. I want to swatch that amazing mosaic into a bag! Perfect place for a textile artist to visit.

lily boot said...

Oh my goodness - it took a few moments before I noticed the little people walking across the mosaic - when you said vast, you obviously meant *vast*! How beautiful.

Wendy said...

It is sad to say, but here I have lived just 50 miles outside of Detroit all my life (actually just 15 miles outside for 3 years) and I NEVER knew there was such beauty in Detroit....It was and is always a place we do not go to, because of the crime...Maybe that will have to change, since I now have little ones, and take them to see some of the wonders of Detroit. Thank you also for the link to the Michigan in Pictures blog, I will be visiting that often.
Have a wonderful day....
A Michigander of 40 years...

Susan said...

I have never been to Detroit. Thanks for sharing a bit of the city. It sounds like you had fun and worked hard for the tv show. I can't wait to see the series in the fall.

Your sister is cute. Sisters are the best.
Hope you are well.