Tuesday, June 13, 2006

A Plea For Wool

Dear Local Yarn Store Proprietor:

It is with great frustration that I compose this letter to you regarding your current ordering policies. After having visited your store several times over the last few months I began to notice a startling shortage in the amount of wool usually found in your inventory. At first I thought your sparse inventory due to my visit falling in between orders. No problem, I’ll just come back the following week and revel in your replenished stock, or so I thought. Having returned and encountered the same shocking lack of wool, I inquired within, to which you replied, “It’s summer.”


Forgive me, dear Proprietor, but when did the changing of the seasons ever determine which fiber content to order in a region of the country where seasonal changes are considered to be a bit of joke compared to the rest of the nation? To use the words of a good friend and another faithful fiber consumer, our lovely corner of the country experiences three seasons: cooler, warmer and slightly wet. Therefore, according to your current (and seemingly new) ordering policies, there is no need to order wool at all because our temperatures rarely dip low enough to wear it. Taking this argument a step further, your cotton inventory should be at maximum capacity year round and not just for the months constituting the “warmer” season. Although, unless you would like to brand yourself as Sunny SoCal’s Cotton Super Store, I’d stay away from the type of ordering methodology stated above.

Dearest Proprietor, what happened to the days where any fiber could be found in all of its myriad colors and iterations no matter the season? Maybe you have forgotten the fact that many of us crochet and knit our holiday gifts during the summer months? Why is it that restriction of stock has become the norm as opposed the anomaly? Often, I find myself standing with four or five balls of something in your store while asking if there is more in the back, to which you usually reply, “No.”

“Do you plan to order more?”



I just don’t get it. Knitting and now crocheting have become lifestyles from the legacy hook and needle wielders sporting blue rinsed coifs to the young, hip tweens, teens and 20-somethings running about town with their skull emblazoned bags of stash. Yarn has never been more varied, more sought after, nor more coveted. I’d think that this would be the ideal time to pack your shelves so full of fiber, you don’t have room for you behind that cash register!

Am I missing something???

No matter. I am willing to beg.

Please, oh please, Mr. or Mrs. Yarn Store Proprietor, bring back your wool, your cotton, your huddled masses of funkadelic novelty yarns no matter the weather’s whim. Treat me to mountains of mohair, autumnal alpaca and a cacophony of cool cotton blends. Give me vast amounts of variegates, hotbeds of homespun, hand-dyed creations aplenty! I need wool stocked to ceiling, standing ankle deep in angora to contain the fervor within me.

Your Proprietorship, I only ask you for choice and in turn I will pay, for my wallet is full of money. If you see fit to appease me I will surely be thankful, for Hell hath no fury like a yarn ho in drought.

Thank you for your consideration of this matter.

Yours in yarndom,


Imaginary Maggie said...

I’m sayin’!

And it’s not just the little LYS’s, it’s the big nation-wide chain stores. My local Michael’s, Hobby Lobby, and Meijers (Midwest super stores) all put their wools and “warmer” yarns on sale and are holding about 2/3 the total yarn inventory as they do in the winter. And in Michigan we have “real” seasons. Luckily I live in a small tourist town so that my small LYS keeps a much BETTER inventory in the summertime than they do in the winter, since the population more than triples during the season. Yeah, it’s good to be me.

Sachi said...


Faith said...

Amen Sister!!! Preach it!!!!

briana said...

It's heresy, I tell you.

Anonymous said...

Don't they know how far in advance some of us need to, er, like to begin winter projects?

Elisa said...

I laughed when my LYS moved the wool to the back to make room for the cotton up front; 'seasonal change'. But at least she keeps it in stock! Lots and lots of lovely stock. If you don't mind a drive, try Anacapa Fine Yarns in Ventura. Fab store. (I leave my paychecks there more weeks than I care to admit.) Big store birthday party there this Saturday. Lots of crochet demos!! Finally. I love that crochet is back "in".

Momo said...

I feel lucky that both of my lYS's are carrying plenty of wool! I like to buy my yarn in person.

susan said...

i tell ya, if i was to be knitting something now, it would have to be wool cause it would take me so damn long to do it it would definitely be winter before it would be done.
silly merchendisers.
actually our store which i go in an just look in wonder at has most everything. prolly cause nh only has about two weeks of summer. ha!
very convincing words LL.


Yarn to a yarnaholic is like water to a fish...it's VITAL to survive.


Yarn to a yarnaholic is like water to a fish...it's VITAL to survive.

Kate said...

Yup, there we are trying to be good citizens and support the LYS but this kind of behavior drives us to yarn shopping on the web.

Uccellina said...

Monstercrochet: A Yarn Ho in Drought.

(I love!)

Andy's Crafts said...

I guess is a matter of stock. Sometimes that's the main reason why I order online. I like to go to the store to get the feel of the yarn.

I made chile rellenos today for lunch.


Shell said...

Un-freaking-beleavable. This is why knitters/ crocheter/ fiberaholics need to rise up and rule the world. Their buyer must be as clueless as the owners (do they even know how to knit/crochet?). How long do they think it takes to knit (or construction method of choice) make a sweater.
They must not like money, which is a good thing, seeing as if they continue this stupidity they won't be getting much.

turtlegirl76 said...

Sadly, there are not as many knitters out there that feel the same way as you do. My LYS has to cater to the people that keep them in business, and many of those knitters are the kind that let the weather dictate what they buy. It may take them 6 months to finish a project, but they don't think ahead like that.

Bandwagoners of a different ilk is what they are.

FinnyKnits said...

From your mouth to god's ears, sister!

"Of course, that's how it should be."
-An unexpectedly perfect answer to a commonly asked (for me anyway) knitting store question of "Will you order one skein of this random yarn in color #13 for me?" "Oh, and is that free?"

Why can't they all be like that?

Alison said...

I am happy to say that I keep plenty of wool in my shop year-round for "real knitters" such as yourself. I don't like knitting with cotton, hence, my customers will not knit cotton, either. They can shop somewhere else if they want. hmph!
Thanks for the good laugh, it was well written! Why don't you write an entire manual for new shop owners!

diosaperdida said...

Oh well..I was recently told by a large Women's wear chain that a bra I wanted to buy more of was a ...seasonal item.

I tend to wear bras all year ...