Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Support Your Local Yarn Store (when you can)

I'm thinking lately about my favourite yarn store. Being on Ravelry, I'm learning all kinds of new methods, browsing many lovely patterns, hearing other knitters' ideas about the best needles, the best stores, the best websites, and so on. But I'm concerned. There are a lot of people ordering their yarns online, often at lower prices than our local stores can afford to offer.

I love my favourite yarn store. The women who work there are more than yarn experts. They're friends, supporters, champions, and more. With all the online buying, how long will we have these stores. I don't want to think about a world without yarn stores.

I myself ordered yarn online once. But it was a specialty fibre that my store didn't carry. Many knitters order online because they don't have the luxury of a yarn store close by. Others order online because of the cost savings. I can't hold it against them. If I were in their shoes, I'd order online too. eBay is probably the most economical place to find yarn. Many knitters fuel their passion as economically as they can using eBay. I don't blame 'em.

I also want to support some of the local online stores. They are the new Mom & Pop stores and they bring unique products to the market. I rally against the big box stores. They're killing our small businesses and removing any semblance of charm or intimacy in our retail interactions.

So, you can see my dilemma. I love my yarn store. I applaud the small online companies. I respect shoppers getting the biggest yarn bang for their bucks. But what will we do when these independents are gone? Will they be gone?

I guess I'm thinking today about the plight of the little guys. I'm going to continue to shop at my favourite store when I can. And I'll order patterns or fibre online when I can.


Deb-VA said...

I'm also an equal opportunity spender. I support my local yarn store, a couple of online stores & when traveling, make it a point to support local shops too. It's such a wonderful obsession.......

Knitting Alchemist said...

Oh, YEAH! Travel yarn shopping is the very best!