Arcadia Knitting

Welcome to the blog of Arcadia Knitting, Chicago's largest yarn store! Owned by sisters Kathy and Sharon Kelly, Arcadia has been serving the Chicago knitting and crocheting community for over six years. Keep up with shop news and read more about our ongoing adventures in yarn...

Saturday, March 22, 2008

The everyday thrill of owning a yarn store

I know people think owning a yarn store is all about the knitting when it really is running a small business. I would say our atmosphere and surroundings are much nicer than the guys at the Shell or the cell phone guys on the corner but my day is probably a lot like theirs.

So, here's a little look into an average day:

10:30 - get to shop, place orders, dust some stuff
11:30 - give Smitty, our mailman, the outgoing mail
12 noon - open door, sell yarn
12:30 - check email, respond to stuff, sell yarn
1:30 - answer phone call from woman in California trying to track down a yarn I have never heard of or carried, hop on the internet while explaining to her that it's going to be very tough because that brand has changed distributors twice in the past 2 years, on the internet I find a shop in Vancouver, Canada that has the yarn and I realize that the Canadian distributor hasn't changed in the past two years and so she should concentrate her search to Canada
2:00 - open boxes and check in inventory, review new books, since I can't see many of the books before I order it's kind of a crap shoot, this time most everything is good, Sharon finds copy of "Selbuvotter" which is all about Selbu mittens, she will be lost in it for the next hour, how much you wanna bet she comes to work tomorrow with a half a mitten?
3:00 - eat lunch
3:30 - help Sylvia finish her vest: we pick up some stitches around the neck
4:00 - try to figure out why the Malabrigo bill matches nothing we have in the computer, email Tobias, answer comes back: we're both wrong!
4:30 - start researching email marketing services on line, ugh, I am not a techie but these days I have to be able to do this, realizing that my business depends more on being able to do this well than my knowledge of Japanese short row techniques, must keep at this long after I am bored and my eyes go wonky from the buzz words
5:00 - rearrange misfiled needles on needle wall, cripes - where did all the #5, 6 inch dpns go? didn't we open a box three days ago?
5:30 - go online to find interesting roving for the spinners, end out 20 email to small breeders around the country, Sharon wants Icelandic roving
6:00 - snack, read Bloomberg to see what the market did, hmmm
6:30 - see how we're doing saleswise for the day - hey - who sold $180 of Riverstone? where was I when that happened?
7:00 - class comes in, Sharon goes over unknitting and relieves anxieties, I check inventory in the computer vs. what is on the shelves, luckily no big surprises
8:03 - lock the door, close the cash register, try to put the right numbers in the checkbook, go home.

PS - Sharon did come to work with half a mitten the next day. She is so happy with that book.
PPS - a week later some very special yarn arrives from Simply Shetland and Sharon is mitten mad.



Blogger Martha said...

Oooh, save a copy of Selbuvotter for me!

3/31/2008 11:02 AM  
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3/31/2008 9:40 PM  
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