America’s Knitting has been tracking yarn shops across the nation since August of 2007! Every year around Labor Day we do a mass mailer out to all the yarn shops. Once a year, we garner financial support from the yarn shops with minor monetary donation – this keeps us going throughout the year, doing what we do.
Our goal is to support the LYS from the islands of Hawaii to the glaciers of Alaska, to the Dakotas and the Carolinas, from my home state of Washington all the way across the nation to New York and beyond. I really feel that the local yarn shop truly is the heart beat of our craft, be it knitting, crochet, spinning, or weaving. It’s a place where learning happens and community happens.
The mailer does garner some support, but it also serves as a useful tool. All the shops that have closed or moved, those mailers get returned to me for investigation. As we keep up with these shops throughout the year through facebook, website and telephone, this final act finishes the job. I believe America’s Knitting is the most accurate listing out there in real time. I hear from knitters and yarn shop owners on a daily basis, as shops open up, close and move locations.
Having said all of this, having any small business is a challenge. For the last 7 years, our LYS number has decreased with this year being no different. We started 2015 with 1177 yarn shops, and as of today January 6, 2016 there are now 1,090; that is a deficit of 87 yarn shops.
Please support your LYS, or an LYS on your travels. They are doing everything they can with on-line support, classes and long hours, some 7 days a week to be there for you. Every sale really does make a difference. All of the beautiful pictures you see in this post are from Myra Garcia of Fancy Image Yarn, in Shelton, Washington, one of my many shops that support America’s Knitting!
Here’s to another great year of knitting~
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