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Topic: Your LYS vs. Big chain stores  (Read 3475 times)
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« on: May 07, 2008 11:30:30 AM »

I was just visiting my LYS and I was just wondering where everyone buys their yarn?  I just found out that the store owner has to have a second job because her sales arent as good as she would like Sad. I understand that yarn at big chains (michaels, joanns, walmart, ect) are sometimes cheaper but I would rather give my money to the small business owner rather than give the big ones more money. Ive found that the quality and selection of the yarn is better at my LYS, also there is someone there to answer any of my questions or give me suggestions to yarns I would never thought of using. What are your thoughts??
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« Reply #1 on: May 07, 2008 03:11:16 PM »

I agree about supporting the little guy instead of the megastores. Of the few times I was in my LYS (now out of business-probably due to lack of sales), they had the best selection of exotic and foreign yarns. The shopkeeper was knowledgeable mostly about knitting but inviting. I never did buy anything from their shop because everything was so pricey (the most expensive skein of yarn was $125) but it was nice to look around.

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« Reply #2 on: May 07, 2008 04:43:34 PM »

I go to the LYS when I want something special, partly because they will have it where as Wally World will not. I know there are a few LYS's in my city because it's big, but they are all far from me (like 45 minute drive allll the way across town far). The one I have frequented the most is close to my mom's house.
But I am fearful when I go because some of their staff are nice, but some just glare daggers at my children, because they are children.  God forbid a customer walk through the door with two children, hands in pockets saying "where can I sit mommy?". This makes me not go there very often. [I have trained my children to find a chair & sit in any non-child friendly envirornment, I estate sale a lot and the ones I frequent know my kids and have thanked me for the way my kids behave]

I know exactly how inflated their prices are too (ok inflated isn't the best word, I know it's neccesary in a small business). The Peaches & Cream cotton yarn at Walmart? $1.87, at my LYS? $5.35, yeah ouch. So it's special needs only. But I do go there before shopping on line. I can't bear the thought of shopping for a special yarn or fabric without touching it. Practice yarn that might wind up a wash cloth? Wally world.
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« Reply #3 on: May 07, 2008 06:58:22 PM »

I shop my LYS for most of the items I want if I'm buying in small quantity (like 1 ball of yarn) but if I want a lot of one kind, I head to Walmart in the city.  I don't mind paying a few dollars more for one item but not lots of dollars more to make an entire afghan.  Also, I find that my LYS seems to run out of stuff fast or changes brands and that does me no good.  I've purchased yarn there, made a small item and then decided I wanted to make something else so I go to buy another ball only to be told that they aren't carrying that brand anymore.  My LYS seems to be doing very well and I buy lots of other kinds of craft material there (if it's available) and so I don't feel bad buying in the city when I want to save some money.

If we were talking Local Quilting store, it would be a total different story - I buy almost exclusively from them!
« Last Edit: May 07, 2008 06:59:57 PM by Homerof2 » THIS ROCKS   Logged
« Reply #4 on: May 09, 2008 01:11:20 PM »

I tend to go to the LYS when I'm making a scarf for myself because (1) scarves don't take much yarn so it's not super costly and (2) I can't stand the way manmade fibers feel against my neck. For anything else, though--blankets, bags, amigirumi--I hit up one of the chains (there are 4 within a 3-minute drive from my office). My LYS is just too expensive to visit more than a couple times a year, and inexpensive yarn from a chain will usually work for what I make.

I'm also slightly uncomfortable going into the store because it's pretty elitist. Each time I've gone, there is a huge table of knitters that you have to shuffle around, and the owner knits at the table so you have to interrupt everyone and ask her to get up to help you if you want to pay for your stuff.

« Reply #5 on: May 09, 2008 02:14:57 PM »

LOL! I just call my LYS to ask about a pattern, and she said, "no, I don't know what you're talking about, because we don't do anything with red heart." I just have to laugh. It's a cute pattern, there's nothing wrong with it.
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« Reply #6 on: May 10, 2008 01:00:56 AM »

There are no small yarn stores near my house. I'm stuck going to the chain stores.
« Reply #7 on: May 10, 2008 05:48:39 AM »

There isn't a LYS near me either, so the chain stores are really my only option unless I shop online.

« Reply #8 on: May 12, 2008 03:57:06 PM »

My main problem with every LYS that I've been in is that they are often quite unfriendly and if you aren't there to buy 10 skeins of some $30+ yarn, they make it clear that you are in the wrong place.

I'm sorry, but sometimes I don't need a natural fiber and in fact I am just looking for a plain yarn for a plain project. I might even be willing to pay more for it in your shop but if I ask you for a simple white yarn for a giant doily/blanket for a stuffed Garfield (very long story  Grin) do not show me the $35 a skein hand-dyed, brushed Alpaca stuff imported from Peru that you just got in and that is decidedly not white nor suitable for a doily/blanket for a very large toy. Oh yeah, I'd only have needed 3 skeins of it to make a blanket the size I need. Sure, lady, not only am I not buying your Peruvian yarn, I will find someplace else to purchase my yarn.

The ones I've been in where I live now have yarns to die for but I refuse to be treated like I am trespassing because I dared to walk in their doors and not rush over to their most expensive wares. Oh, yeah, I also get treated like an alien because I only crochet and don't knit.

I have heard there's an awesome store over in Asheville (that's even friendly to us hookers) but I just can't get myself to fight the traffic and find parking in the city over there. And I think I would be crushed if they treated me as poorly as so many of the others have.

« Reply #9 on: May 12, 2008 07:00:14 PM »

I must be lucky then, just the other day when i was there i saw a little basket of Red Heart. She also has some nicer yarns but i think the most expensive I've seen was $20 it think. Most of the prices range in between $5- $9. she probably realizes than being in a middle class town there wont be to much demand for that expensive of yarn. Everytime Ive gone in the owner always gets up and comes over and asks if you need help.
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