The aptly named Warm n’ Fuzzy yarn shop opened on Aug. 1 in Cary, NC. According to a writeup in the Raleigh News & Observer, owner Rebecca Hart is focusing on the therapeutic and stress-busting aspects of knitting and crochet, as well as a sense of community.
After teaching at a local shop, Hart decided to open her own. As she states on her site, “For many years, I had this crazy idea of running a yarn-café. I pictured people sitting, sipping, stitching, and sharing.”
She has made her idea a reality, selling coffee and baked goods from La Farm, a local bakery. From the photos I’ve seen online, the shop looks gorgeous (I only wish I lived closer!). And judging from the positive response on Warm n’ Fuzzy’s Facebook page, it’s already building a loyal following in its first week of business. I wish her much success.
But I was curious as to whether having food and drink in a retail environment helps or hinders business. My own LYS is situated on a town square where local eatery options are just steps away, so it probably doesn’t make sense for them to offer customers more than a cup of tea or coffee.
Looking at random reviews on Yelp.com, which admittedly is a forum for just as many Grumpy Guses as it is Positive Paulettes, yarn cafes in general are a mixed bag. Some customers are not sure what to make of their local destination (not enough room for yarn selection, not enough food selection, depending on the point of view); others are delighted that theirs offers so much in one space. Nearly all of their happiness levels hinged upon how friendly the staff was. And the ability to have a glass of wine next to your needles seems to be a definite plus!
So, my question to readers today is, have you dabbled in dining options with your shop? What have been the benefits? Have there been drawbacks? Any best practice tips? Please sound off below or email me directly.