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View Full Version : Am I the only one scared of the LYS?


humblestumble
10-16-2005, 11:41 PM
I went to my LYS one time...and I felt a weird vibe...of course I was a fairly new knitter, and I had no intention of buying anything. There was a round table of old ladies knitting...And yarn from Russia and all over. So expensive tho! I looked through lots of pattern books, but now I'm scared to go back. I'm one of those Window shopper people, so if it's a locally owned store I feel like I'm expected to buy something, unless the people are super friendly. These people didn't come right out and say anything except "Do you knit or crochet?" and I found out that you use more yarn to crochet than to knit.

I just don't know if and when I'm going back...I don't horde yarn anymore if I don't have a project in mind (I know... it's crazy, but I figured it'd do know good just sitting there...I have two boxes full from past splurging anyway.)

should I be scared? haha. I feel kinda dumb for feeling out of the loop. Everyone is always talking about their LYS being so cool...and I go to one here and it's just...not so amazing. I prolly should go back just to see what's there again so I can make a note of it, but every skein there is like 10 bucks a pop. Egads...no job here, so I hardly have any money to spend!

Maybe I'm just a cheapskate...but some people are yarn whores.

KellyK
10-16-2005, 11:47 PM
I felt a little weird the first time I went to an LYS...but QUICKLY overcame that when I learned to kinda know what I was lookin' for. Give it another shot! Go with a pattern in hand sometime...you may get a different vibe.

humblestumble
10-16-2005, 11:50 PM
ah, thanks for the inspiration :) Maybe I will take a trip there when I have that clog pattern...if I have the cash! :lol:

I'm glad I'm not the only one who felt weird the first time.

knitqueen
10-17-2005, 12:33 AM
I'll admit I'm scared of our LYS! I mean, it's a beautiful store with beautiful stuff AND they also sell belgian chocolates....mmmmmm.......but like you, I'm scared off immediately by the price of the stuff there, still it's nice to browse around a bit. I have bought a few needles there but no yarn. The ladies seem a bit yarn-snobbish to me. :lol:

Because of my price range, I'm more likely to be found in Michael's, or my latest thrifty idea, recycling sweaters that I buy at Value Village. :D

misstialouise
10-17-2005, 12:42 AM
I must be really lucky with my LYS...

Sure, they have the $35 a ball Annie Blatt stuff, but they also have Patons and an Australian brand called "Heritage" that are at 'normal' prices.. :D

Plus, the knitting queens there all know me by face (some by name), and are all very lovely... :D

Y'all should move to Sydney :D

InterNette
10-17-2005, 01:40 AM
I know everytime I go in I am going to spend. The ladies are wonderful, someone is always sitting at a table knitting, it is a wonderful place to visit here for anyone. I have recieved so much help and met some great people. One lady I met makes clothing like a designer, I am always dropping my jaw when I see what she does. The owner couldnt be any more helpful or down to earth friendly. Just go in the waters fine. du du duuudududududu

AidanM
10-17-2005, 01:58 AM
The only LYS I have is owned by a woman who is kind of airy fairy, but knows her sh*t pretty well. I'm only afraid to go in because my poor wallet is already so abused and empty, LOL

Debbie
10-17-2005, 06:38 AM
My first LYS experience was AWFUL ... I have only been back to that store one time and again, AWFUL. Sadly, it is the only one less than an hour away and it's 45 minutes! And I live in a CITY!!! This was my first summer as a vacation/travel knitter and ... I have been in YS in Naples, FL, Ft. Myers, FL , St. Simons, GA, Lisbon (yarn department at store and no one spoke english ... and they were STILL NICE) and several in London and they were ALL WONDERFUL!!! The PEOPLE, the yarn, the needles, the accessories ... I really really think it depends on the store and the atmosphere the owner "makes".

So, how many miles away can it be to still by a "L" YS ????

Ingrid
10-17-2005, 07:58 AM
I think a lot of us are a bit intimidated in a yarn shop. I know that I always wonder how much I could find a particular yarn for on line. I usually only go to my Not So LYS--NSLYS--(its about 40 min) when I need something specific right away. Or when they have their big summer and winter sales. But even then, last time I went I bought a bunch of wool that I haven't even used yet. Next time I think I'll go with a pattern in mind.

Clabbergirl
10-17-2005, 10:04 AM
You aren't alone. I've only been knitting about two weeks, and looked up a LYN (at my newbie stage, I even feel funny using the abbreviation!) to visit this weekend. I was sheepish about going in, but as soon as I walked in, the feeling of being in the wrong place was quicky replaced with welcome. It might have something to do with the store, because I don't normally warm quite so fast in a strange place. The shop had a beautiful pet border collie though, so what a great ice breaker. There were women of all ages sitting in the store knitting, and the workers were so friendly and chatty.

A lot of the yarn was more than I can afford, but I still browsed and touched it, and looked at all the patterns I could stand. I felt like I should buy something, but then I found some needles that I wanted and couldn't find elsewhere and that eased the feeling. I'm glad to know my hesitation at first was something pretty common among beginners.

I loved it, and definately want to go back. My husband and son (who frankly dreaded going with me, yarn not being their thing) even said the same thing - that they enjoyed the store and thought I should go back again. I think the dog had something to do with that too. ;)

Marie

sogrammatical
10-17-2005, 10:31 AM
The one I go to is kind of intimidating too. It's really huge and I'm always there right around closing and I always feel like they just want me to get out.

But I guess I'm lucky that it's only five minutes away on my bike, though I'm a bit nervous about some of the streets I have to ride on. They really should get a bike rack though; I have to lock up to a fence in another parking lot and someday someone is going to come yell at me.

brendajos
10-17-2005, 10:43 AM
i guess i found mine overwhelming when i first went there because i really didn't have any idea what i was looking for or anything. i don't even remember what i bought anymore but i am sure it became a scarf that is around someone else's neck now. there is another LYS that i don't go to quite as often that has a lot of stuff but for some reason they light it badly and it is such a small space i feel like i am always stepping over stuff to get around it. i almost never went to that store because i looked at some LYS reviews online and that place had terrible feedback. apparently the woman who owned it wasn't the most friendly person in the world. she has since passed away and all the people i talk to in there are more than friendly. in fact they rarely just let me browse. i don't think they realize that i would spend more there if they didn't feel the need to help me with every purchase that i make and i just don't have the heart to tell them to leave me alone. i know they are trying to make up for the bad reputation they have but having a shadow around me when i shop anywhere bugs me let alone in a store that is too small for all its goods where i just want to touch everything. Soooooooo i go there when i can't find what i want at my favorite store (that is very roomy, brightly lit, and well laid out!) and i almost always call first so they have my stuff ready and i don't have to deal with being followed around like a felon!

i do love going to my LYS though and i think the worst thing about my P/t job moving to a bigger office is that my LYS is no longer on the way. though it will probably be good for the budget! ;)

Julie
10-17-2005, 11:08 AM
Definitely depends on which one!

There are five LYSs that I frequent, and they all have different vibes. Two are very small, and I feel like I'm being stared at when I browse, but not in the friendliest way. The third is friendlier, but still feels funny. The other two are soooo friendly and comfortable...and unfortunately the most expensive. :rollseyes:

Sigh. I'd love to open my own. So I could hang out and feel all the yarn, you know. :roflhard:

knitncook
10-17-2005, 11:43 AM
LYS can differ depending on the owner. There are two LYS within 45 minutes of me. One I can't stand going to because her prices are very high and she is not very friendly nor helpful :( The other one I love going to because it is warm, inviting, and friendly. The owner is happy to take a minute or two to help you with a problem and if you look perplexed she will help you with finding the yarn you are looking for. And while both stores are overpriced (I say that they are overpriced when I can get *the same* yarn online with shipping than what they have it in their stores) I much prefer to give my money to the friendly LYS that is out of my way than the dour LYS that is 4 minutes from my house.

I had a friend visiting me lately and she went to the dour LYS and asked me, "What is it about yarn shops that makes people crabby? You would think getting to work around all those fibers and patterns that you would be a warm and friendly person. My LYS is the same way!"

dustinac
10-17-2005, 11:50 AM
I was overwhelmed too cause I didn't know what to expect or what to look for and the prices were :shock: when your use to wal-mart prices for yarn LOL. I enjoy going was in there Sat. just to stop in and say hey which of course ended to a purchase of a patten ;) I do see the difference in the yarns now though and I prefer them to certain ones now. MY LYS also offers classes and so I got to know them that way too.. they are very friendly :XX:

feministmama
10-17-2005, 12:28 PM
Here in yarn store heaven Portland Oregon, most stores are great. You walk in and just smile at people and they smile back. A lot of what happens to me is folks just start talking out loud "Hmmm...would this be good for a baby?" and someone standing next to them will go "Oh no, you should try xyz over there, I made a blanket and yada yada yada......" Maybe you should make a yarn pilgrimage to Portland :lol:

Sara
10-17-2005, 01:46 PM
I think it has everything to do with the owner. The owner sets the vibe. I would imagine that sinking so much money into all that stock would be pretty stressful, but I can't imagine going into business and then treating people so badly that they won't come back to your store.

My LYS is owned by a lovely couple, they're happy to have people come in and plop down in one of the chairs (in a shop that's the size of a garden shed, mind you) and knit away the afternoon. They know that I'm budget conscious and help suggest yarns that are lower cost than what may be called for in the pattern. A couple weeks ago, they bought me lunch! In return for their great service and friendship, I take their business cards with me and tell everyone who comments when I KIP where I get my yarn and give them a card if I can. It's really important to me that they succeed, I would hate to lose a yarn store that's right across the creek from my house. The horror! **I need a screaming smiley here**

sogrammatical
10-17-2005, 01:58 PM
A yarn-trip to Portland! That would be fun, but way to far away. Alas.

They've got really good music there too, from what I've heard.

margie
10-17-2005, 02:09 PM
I was overwhelmed too the first time I went into my LYS- the women there are certainly friendly enough, but I didn't know ANYTHING, and I felt pretty foolish asking the really basic questions. Now that I've become more familiar with the layout of the store, I'm not as shy about asking for what I need. They have lots of expensive yarn, but also others that are reasonable. I've found it depends on who is working, too- everyone has a different personality, and some of the women are more approachable than others. I hope you have a more positive experience next time!!

humblestumble
10-17-2005, 02:10 PM
Yea... I'd love a trip to Portland OR...one of my fav bands ever resides there. The Cherry Poppin' Daddies!

Anyway... one of these days I must go back to the yarn store. I'm just scared because I hardly have any money, and I will be tempted and feel bad if I can't get anything since it's a locally owned place.

Dang, I should get a job.

Clabbergirl
10-17-2005, 04:39 PM
I visited the only other yarn shop in town (that I know of) on my lunch hour and wasn't near as happy as I was with my first experience at the other. Both are in more expensive neighborhoods, and yes their prices are a bit more than WalMart or Hobby Lobby, but the selection - oh my. I had to check them both out to see which I could call home, if the urge moves me. Both aren't very close to me, sadly.

Debbie
10-17-2005, 06:00 PM
If I owned a LYS ... I don't think anyone would want to come in a second time.... I can't imagine being all friendly and smilie and helpful and nice and pleasant with someone WHO WAS GOING TO TAKE MY YARN AWAY !!!!!!

Ingrid
10-17-2005, 07:28 PM
If I owned a LYS ... I don't think anyone would want to come in a second time.... I can't imagine being all friendly and smilie and helpful and nice and pleasant with someone WHO WAS GOING TO TAKE MY YARN AWAY !!!!!!

:roflhard: :roflhard: "No! I only have 500 skeins of that left! You can't have it until I approve the pattern!" :roflhard:

mintdee
10-18-2005, 12:36 AM
I went to my LYS couple of years ago and had an awful experience. The owner watched me the whole time with a frown and anytime I would ask how much a yarn was she'd inform me that it was a lot of money or that i wouldn't want it. I left pretty fast. Went back a few weeks ago and found that it was better organized and the current owners were so helpful and friendly! I also think that it is up to the owner to set the tone. Now in the previous owners defense I did find out that the woman who owned the store before was very sick and working during the worst part of her illness.
Now i can not wait to go back to my LYS. :D

brendajos
10-18-2005, 12:49 AM
okay sandra were you shopping in Omaha at Personal Threads cuz that is the exact story of the woman who owned that place too before she passed away! if it is we need to go shopping! ;)

LisaD715
10-18-2005, 01:08 AM
I went to my LYS today. I was disappointed. The owner seemed to really know her stuff, but was flittering around all over the place, and even left me to go wait on a woman who demanded that she was in a hurry. The store was cramped, but did have a nice selection of yarn. I bought my first Addi today, for the boys hats, (I tried to do them on straight needles and decided I really wanted circs that small). I am just a bit happier with the selection at Joann's or online at various stores.

scowling
10-18-2005, 01:25 AM
hey now, the cherry poppin daddies are originally from beautiful eugene ;). We've got a few nice stores here but I bet portland has lots more. my experiance has been mostly great with some really friendly people.

loofnicnad
10-18-2005, 04:46 AM
My first LYS also carried alot of other (non knitting) stuff. They were a bit aloof toward me when I was in there. I don't know if it was because I was not buying a lot, or they didn't believe that i knitted.

I found another one that is dedicated to knitting and the owner loves it when I come in. (Thinks it's sweet that a big guy knits)

Hopefully your LYS will be friendly next time. or you will discover one that you can call home.

Loof

KellyK
10-18-2005, 07:21 AM
the owner loves it when I come in. (Thinks it's sweet that a big guy knits)
This reminded me of a non-knitting experience I had yesterday....I was at Carson Pirie Scott, approaching the pajama section (my OTHER addiction) and there was a guy standing at a table of brightly colored panties talking...fairly loudly, well, certainly not whispering...on his cell phone.....
"Hey, babe...do you have the ones with the hearts and rabbits? yeah? Okay......do you have the ones with the zippers and buttons? No? Alright, Ill get those....Do you have the ones with the girls faces and purses? No? Uh huh......Do you have the ones with the bees and flowers?...."
Poor guy!!
:roflhard: :roflhard: :roflhard:

mintdee
10-19-2005, 04:19 PM
okay sandra were you shopping in Omaha at Personal Threads cuz that is the exact story of the woman who owned that place too before she passed away! if it is we need to go shopping! ;)
That is exactly where! We definatly need to go shopping always better with someone who appreciates fine yarn. :roflhard:

brendajos
10-19-2005, 05:04 PM
whew i was gonna say that was tooooo weird if there was more than one story like that. I just wish i liked that store better. Joe seriously follows me around "helping" whenever i am in there. and i know he is actually trying to be helpful but i wanna be left alone! ;>) and that store is just entirely too dark for me to be happy! but they do have what i am looking for when String of Purls doesn't. Have you been to String of Purls? I luuuuuuv String of Purls...lol...even skipped lunch today to go there cuz i needed some yarn for yet another hat that i am trying for their hat contest.

AND they have a sit and knit on thursday nights. i only have one thursday night a month off but i am going there for it next week! :thumbsup:

mintdee
10-19-2005, 05:14 PM
I have never been to String of Purls yet. I just heard about it recently. I may have to talk to my hubby about keeping that night free so that I can go to. I would love to go meet other knitters. Its next week?

brendajos
10-19-2005, 07:42 PM
it is every thursday from like 3-8 (come and go as you please of course) i just already have the fourth thursday of each month scheduled off for a committee meeting that i have resigned from. last week i was in there buying some stuff quick and the girls sitting on the couch were talking about knitpicks! ;) i haven't been before but i think it will be fun. and compared to personal threads...the store is HUGE and very nicely laid out!

humblestumble
10-19-2005, 11:44 PM
So envious... lol. I wonder if there are more yarn stores here. how do you all find out about yours? The phone book? :thinking:

Mer
10-20-2005, 12:02 AM
So envious... lol. I wonder if there are more yarn stores here. how do you all find out about yours? The phone book? :thinking:

Didn't you say you were in TX? Here are some lists: (And if you're not just go to the general page of these and pick your state!)

http://www.woolworks.org/stores/tx.html

http://knitting.about.com/library/bltx.htm

Not too frequently updated, but that's a start!

humblestumble
10-20-2005, 12:28 AM
Well dang, of those lists, I got one answer - the same place I've been to. Thanks for the lists tho :) I may visit more in Austin. And I'll try the phone book *crosses fingers*