This is such a busy time of year. What most of you probably don’t know, is that America’s Knitting does a mailer/fundraiser out to all the shops once a year. Yep, I ask the yarn shops to support the website if they like the website and are glad that we are here.
I start in July gathering all my supplies for the mailer. I get the mailer itself printed, order envelopes, buy labels, ink & stamps and I print out labels for all the shops. My daughter in-law Kim & I sit down in August, and label envelopes, fold & stuff the mailer and stamp them all (a little wine may be involved). All the mailers get mailed the first of September. Then it begins.
All the stores that have moved…those mailers get returned to me unable to forward. They need to be investigated as to where they moved to; then the database gets changed and so does the map. The shops that closed, they get returned to me as well, marked not deliverable as addressed. Those get a follow up just to make sure they are closed and then those stores get deleted. Also, a little money comes in and that gets deposited, and the website sustains itself.
Throughout the year, I get emails from knitters and crocheters that a shop is opening in their town, or that a shop has closed. Sometimes I will get an email from the shop itself that they are closing or opening. Just a little peek into what we do, to keep the listing accurate, up to date and complete. It’s a big task that is ongoing, but we do take it very seriously. I’ve been running the numbers and keeping track of yarn shops since August of 2007 when the website went live.
Just a little trivia…in August of 2007 when the website went live, there were 1,447 yarn shops — as of today September 29th, 2015, there are 1,127 yarn shops; with 53 stores closing just this year (so far). I love yarn shops and could go on and on, why I do what I do, but in short, I liken it to the high school band. What would a high school football game on Friday night be without the band — BORING! The LYS is the heartbeat of the craft. We need them and we want them, trust me.
Know that when you log onto America’s Knitting on your pc, your tablet or your smart phone, you not only find an accurate listing of the nations yarn shops, but you are supporting small business. Get to know your LYS, shop at your LYS, and visit yarn shops on your travels (I know you do).
If you want me to feature your yarn shop, take some pictures and email them over to me and I will. I’d be happy to support your LYS – tell your friends to book mark America’s Knitting, and look for us on Ravelry and Facebook~