Yarn Store Snobbery

Has anyone experienced this?

You walk into a yarn store so “clickish” you feel as though your shopping is an interruption. :shrug:
A fellow customer is asking the staff questions and then turns to you and comments on the yarn you are selecting. A nice conversation ensues… the staff glare at you annoyingly. :??

I am angry with myself that I actually spent $ there. So what it is the closest yarn store! I’d rather drive further and have a pleasant experience. Yarn shopping should NOT be stressful! Maybe I just need thicker skin> :verysad:

I’ve had both good and bad experiences at the small mom-and -pop LYS. At one the staff treats you like you’ve been going there from the first day they opened and at the other the woman is rude and just wants to sell you something more. Which one do you think I go to? Although the latter is closer to me, I want to feel comfortable when I’m getting my fix. The snobbery I’ve noticed is the attitude towards yarn brands and types.

Nadja xxx

I actually avoided taking up knitting again for quite some time knowing and remembering the snobbery of the LYS. Then I found out a new shop had come to town and put that one out of business 'cause everyone switch to the new friendly shop! :happydance:

I know exactly what you mean about the clickishness of some stores. My knitting teacher raved about a “to die for” knitting shop in my area. So getting very excited I made it a special field trip on Saturday. However, when I got there, the shop was packed with the owners friends sitting around knitting. It looked like a knitting bee rather than a store. This would have actually been rather fun and nice had anyone bothered to acknowledge my presence. Needless to say I left quickly having felt I was intruding and interrupting something important. I think I stick with my very handy and friendly LYS.

There is nothing worse than going into a yarn shop and feeling badly treated. i think we can generally cope with bad service in many places, but not in a shop dedicated to our favourite hobbies. Rudeness always seems much worse there

I don’t think it would have been so bad had they been rude throughout… but they were extremely nice when I brought up my $40 worth of purchases.


Although I am glad I have the items I bought, I regret spending my money at that particular shop.

We are the consumers and as such can cause problems to yarn shops who provide lousy service including their attitude. We have several LYS here in Memphis and one is particularly bad.

Just one example of what this store did:
One woman who was new to knitting signed up for a class. She was given her list of supplies and she bought her supplies and brought them with her. The owner refused to let her into the class because she hadn’t bought her supplies at this particular shop. She had not been told it was necessary to buy the products from the shop to take the class, was on a budget and found the stuff at Walmarts. On top of that, the woman was refused a refund because the policy of this shop was no refunds on classes. She couldn’t afford to buy more yarn and needles at this shop so she walked out without her money back for the class she wasn’t allowed to take. I refuse to use this shop EVER and I discourage anyone from using this shop. I have heard other stories about how snotty this shop is and I won’t darken their doors. I went in once and it was enough.

You would think with the ability to purchase high quality yarn and supplies easily online and more moderate yarns etc at Walmart, Michaels, Hobby Lobby and the like that these small shops would bend over backwards for their customers. Instead they drive business away that they think don’t belong in their shop. I can be :twisted: and I have NO problem complaining loudly in front of others if I feel that this behaviour is going on. I could care less if they think I’m tacky. My money has the same markings as everyone else and if they don’t value my business, I will find someone who does.

There’s more than a few snotty customers to keep snotty shops in business though. I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve read of knitters who won’t go shop in the big stores, not because they choose to support a local business, but they seem of the opinion that the same stuff bought there is somehow lesser, or they decry a brand of yarn, not for it’s quality or price, but because it’s sold in walmart.

i am so glad i see you all go in the yarn shops and get attitudes. i thought i was the only one. i joined a group and they are not very friendly. you ask for help and they just look at you. i have a half of vest i cant finish.and i have a hard time reading patterns so the owner said she would write it out for me and email. i haven’t got anything yet. :-x

AMEN SISTER!!! TESTIFY!!! Can we name, names on this forum? :!!!:

Nadja xxx

I have 2 AMAIZING yarn shops in this area
one is Unique 1, the sales people all take time to help someone with a question, and have even accepted input from some wierd random customer (me) in their helping the person with the questions

the other place is Heavenly Socks Yarn, she has always had time to talk to me about knitting, patterns, even interupted a chatty conversation to help a customer who came in not to buy yarn but to figure out how to turn a heel. then took time to go look up a free Sock pattern that had a particularly clean set of instructions for her
and yes she has SOFT stuffed charis in her space to sit in and just knit
maybe I will head up there tomorrow, i am almost out of Marabrigio for my Felted bag (thought 3 was enough, NOT LIKELY)

we have another store in town that is not so great a place
its like the ones previously described
if they know you, your in
if you have kids with you, you might as well tie them up outside unless they are alseep
I will not give their name
but I will give Kudos for the GOOD service
each and every day


[color=red][b]I have only been to one yarn shop and it was in North Vancouver which is known for being a very rich area of the city and caters to the wealthy, no matter what service you go to there … there were a few ladies sitting around knitting and like one gal on here said it looked like a knitting bee … my daughter and I were very taken with the appearance of the shop and it had every type of yarn you could imagine and then some (and being a new knitter I was in total awe) … one woman was flying past on her way to the cash and in passing said “may I …” and I caught “help you” after she had gone by … I felt no urge to say “no thank you just looking” because she was already gone … I saw another woman looking around and appeared lost, she picked up several balls of an expensive wool, and the woman was on her like flies on fly paper asking about her project and giving advice, instructing her what type of needles to buy to go with it … the woman was eating it up and bought EVERYTHING the salesclerk suggested (I hung around to listen because being a retired P.I., eavesdropping is something I used to get paid for and consequently have become relatively good at) … I picked up two balls of acrylic and no one asked ME what I was going to do with them … they looked at me over their glasses and kept on knitting as if to say “can’t you afford anything better than THAT?” … at that point I put the yarn down and fought the urge to tell THEM what to do with those balls of acrylic … my daughter (16 with an attitude) made a rude gesture towards the door after we got outside. :!!!:

On the other hand I have heard of a shop in White Rock that is supposed to be fabulous called Knitopia and I do plan to go there … so far I have bought all my yarns at Michael’s and Wal Mart but you are pretty much on your own, there really isn’t any service, good bad or indifferent unless you “happen” to find a salesclerk who can knit …


This is why I have yet to go to one of the more upscale yarn stores. I have only been knitting for a little over a month and I don’t need anyone looking down on me for that, or the fact that I can’t afford pricey yarn.

I haven’t had that experience, but I’ve seen others comment here occasionally about it. :pout:

When I walk into mine they go out of their way to be friendly it seems. :cheering:

When I’m at school, I have four yarn stores near me. When is comes to service, one is great, two are good, and one is the snobby kind that sucks. If anyone is around Rochester, go to Wild Wools on South Ave. The lady that runs it is fantastic. And her gigantic white dog is adorable and big enough to pet without having to bend over. :teehee: After our first time going there, she remembered Neva-Lee and I were roommates and we were working on the turtleneck scarf from Scarf Style. We were really amused that she remembered us! The two good ones are The Yarne Source and th Village Yarn Shop.

Customer service is very underrated in the retail world nowadays it seems. It’s terrible to be treated like you don’t exist when you walk into a store, whether you buy something or not. You are a customer…even if the only reason you stopped by was to browse or ask a question; perhaps at some point, you could be a “paying” customer if you’re treated right because you’d want to return to make a purchase. My husband had a very similar experience the other day. He showed up at the store when it opened to buy me knitting needles the minute they opened (what a great guy!), and when he couldn’t find the length circulars I needed, the lady tried to tell him that it’s perfectly acceptable to substitute a 24" length for a 16" one; that you can “always knit smaller” with the circulars. !!! :?? Now, I’m not an expert at knitting, but I know that you can’t knit a 16" object on 24" circulars, but my husband wouldn’t know that–she misguided him, albeit probably inadvertently (she probably didn’t know herself). Then when he got to the counter–he was the first one there–he was completely ignored while three other women were taken in front of him. Poor guy. He was there to do me a favor and was trying to do something really nice for me, and he got treated like dirt, all because I believe he was a guy on “women’s turf”. He vowed he’d never go back there, and I can’t say I blame him. I won’t go back to places I’ve been treated shoddily. There are too many competitors out there that actually might want my business, and might want to treat me a little kinder in the process. Yes, even my $5 skein of yarn helps to pay rent and utility bills. :teehee:

I have 3 yarn shops where I go to (I can’t call them “local”, because the biggest one is a bit far away)

2 of them are really great. The 3rd is just bad. They do want to help you, but they don’t know anything about the yarn or knitting. I knew more, but they refused to listen to me, so I don’t go there anymore. The other 2 are great. The closest one of the 2 was wonderful. It’s really small, but she still managed to stuff a lot of yarn in her store and she knitted swatches with all her yarns, so you can actually see and feel how it is when it’s knitted. She was really helpfull, offered help when I’d have trouble with the pattern I chose (it was a rather difficult pattern) and tried to find the right yarn for me (which isn’t easy, concidering my woolallergy) The last yarn shop also has a nice lady. She’s always helpfull. I used to go there really often with my mom, but I haven’t been there for a while, because I found the other yarn shop, which is closer by.

We also have 3 yarn store in our area. Two of them are friendly and helpful and one is the “snotty” kind where they won’t help you. Unfortunately, the snotty store has the largest selection of yarn. I try my 2 favorite shops first, and if they don’t have what I’m looking for, I go to the third shop to browse. If I find it there, I refuse to buy from them - I go home and order it off the Internet!

I feel very fortunate. Although I live in a small area, I have 2 wonderful LYSes here. Both are small, and, therefore, have limited amounts of yarn on hand. Both will order whatever I want, though. My dh went into one right before Christmas, after having called to make sure one of the owners would be there. He was looking for yarn for me- which absolutely blew me away, BTW, and wanted to make sure someone knowledgeable was available, since he isn’t. Both owners assisted him. Also, although they sell anothe brand of interchangeables, they assured him that he had made the right choice in getting me the Options! Can’t beat that for service!! Both stores have lots of knitted objects to show off the various yarns, and both are more than willing to help with any questions. I’ve even been lent a pair of needles in an unusual size that I only needed for a few rows of one project. They were equally helpful when I first started knitting too.
My stores are Naturals and The Corner Cottage, both in Gloucester, Virginia. Natural also does nails, etc. a great combination. :cheering: :cheering: :cheering:

cookworm, you can knit smaller --my default size (and has been for years) is 29/32 inch long needles

i can knit sleeve cuffs, and baby hats, and all sorts of stuff.

Its actually easier with the 32’s than 29! (and easier still with a longer needle --and its called magic loop.

you can also sub 2 cirs, (any lenght) for DPN’s… sock knitters to it all the time, but it also works for sweaters. i knit my sweaters (i um, well lets say XXL) find it hard to fit all the stitches i need on 1 circ, but spread over 2 circs… peice of cake! (its also allows me to stretch out and see the design (2 29 inch cirs allow the stitches to not be bunched at all (even with huge sizes!) and i find errors way faster that way!

i knit all my hats (in the round) from cast on to brim with a single 29inch circ.

and its cheaper too, since box stores (like michaels/joannes/etc) often have 40% off coupons (and a limited selection of sizes/lenghts) but frequently have every size in a medium (29 to 32 inch) length.

but the shop owner was still rudeto your DH and wrong to treat him that way…