Friday, November 18, 2005


I have a little secret to share, and it's a doozie. My good friend Sheryl and I are opening a yarn store this April. The name of the store is Yarntopia.

This whole saga began back in spring. I was having an internal conflict as to what I was going to do when the girls started school. Having been out of the work force for what will be 6 years, I hated the fact that I was going to have to climb the corporate ladder again. Not to mention the fact that I wouldn't be there for the girls before and after school. How sad would it be that I would have to put them in pre & post school daycare after having spent 6 years of my life taking care of them? I couldn't bear it. I thought "maybe I'll open a yarn shop", but then I came back to reality. Opening a new store would require more time than an 8 to 5 job.

I vented all of this to my knitting group, whom Sheryl happens to be a member of. Soon thereafter, I get an email from Sheryl asking if I was serious about opening a shop. You see, Sheryl is retired and was thinking she might like to do the same thing. A partnership was born. I would work during the day when the girls were at school, Sheryl would work evenings, and we would share duties on the weekend. Perfect!

I couldn't ask for a better business partner. Sheryl is one of the sweetest and hardest working people I know. We also balance each other well. She's ying to my yang.

Right now we are down to the knitty gritty (pun intended) of getting this ball rolling. Sheryl is working like a demon on our business plan to present to the SBA, and I am putting together our first inventory order. Blogging may be sporadic in the coming weeks. I swear I'm working two full-time jobs right now (yarntopia & SAHM). I'll try to post some of the goodies we've gotten in for the shop. And OH....the COLOR CATALOGS!

And yes, I'm am still knitting like a fiend on top of all of this. Gotta finish my Christmas presents!

I would love to hear from y'all any suggestions you might have. You opinions really matter!


Blogger keohinani said...

omg, good for yoU!!!!! i want to open my own yarn store here in hawaii some day, so you can give me some tips on how to do that! that is totally awesome. :) congratulations and good luck to you and sheryl!
in the world we live in today, the boundary that differentiates male and female roles gets fuzzier. it's a double edged sword. i think the best we can teach children is not to be afraid to try, not be afraid to fail, and always get up after falling. the best advice i was ever given is this:
"tears and sweat are both salty, but yield very different results. tears will get you sympathy, but sweat will bring you change."

1:58 PM  
Blogger Sarah said...

I'm so excited for your store to open! Its going to be great to have a yarn store in Katy and it will be even better because I'm friends with owner! I really like your idea of sorting yarns by weight. I was recently at the LYS and trying to substitute a yarn and it was very difficult to find substitutes, even with the shopgirl's help.

2:10 PM  
Blogger knittingnurse said...

Oh YEAH FOR YOU!!!!!! I love it that you are chasing your dream. That is so FAB! Let me know when you get the online setup going as I MUST order from you!! Tee hee.

Great name, BTW. I am good friends with the owner of my LYS so if you would like to ever touch bases with someone who has "been there, done that" let me know and I'll pass on the info. Sometimes it's hard to get help from people in the area as they might see your shop as a 'threat' but considering that you are in TX and I am in OH I don't think that will be a problem for Elizabeth.

I will pray heartily for you and Sheryl and Yarntopia. What a great inspiration and role model for your girls. Will the school bus be able to drop them off at the shop? I think that would be so cool to come home to the shop! tee hee!

You will HAVE to post plenty of pix. I'm just so EXCITED for you.


2:33 PM  
Anonymous Jeanie said...

I can not WAIT to come and see your new store!!! Yeaeaea for you!!!

2:33 PM  
Blogger caitlyn said...

I just wanted to wish you the best of luck as you follow your dreams!! Can't wait to hear more about Yarntopia.

2:49 PM  
Blogger Lynda said...

That is SO COOOL!!!! I can't wait to see it evolve - it sounds like the perfect fit for you, and Sheryl (who I've only know through her blog for a short time, but already REALLY like).

3:15 PM  
Blogger Jennifer said...

That is the "awesomist" (making up a word here) thing I've heard in a long time!! How excellent for you! The only suggestion I have is to not organize by color. Although, it is striking to walk into a store organized by color, it's hard to find a yarn if I'm looking for something in particular.

4:20 PM  
Anonymous Rachel said...

Wheeeeeeeeeeee! Everything I've heard from you so far makes me think you have all the right ideas for a yarn store. Yarntopia is my number one destination should I ever make it to your part of the world.

4:34 PM  
Blogger Heather said...

OMG, congratulations!!! I am so excited for you! It sounds like it will be perfect for you & your family.

The reasons I don't particularly like my LYS is not enough selection (no Debbie Bliss or RYC Cashsoft, my staples!). So get as much variety of yarns as you can afford! I love a yarn store where there is yarn everywhere, on top of and under tables and falling off the shelves, LOL.

I can't wait to hear more about it and wish you the best!

6:37 PM  
Blogger Karen said...

Congratulations! I have dreamed of opening a yarn shop..... but it is alot of work! I just recently discovered a LYS just down the hill from me, and I am now considering working there instead. Good luck! And you can always count on us bloggers for support!

6:44 PM  
Blogger candsmom said...

Congratulations to you, Amy!!! What a wonderful way to work in a field you love! And how awesome that Sheryl's going to be your partner! True, I don't know either of you "in real life," ;-) but you both seem like such wonderful, genuine ladies, so I couldn't be happier for both of you. I admire your gumption and must be so much work right now laying the foundation full-time while mothering full-time, but they're both labors of love, so it must be so gratifying, too. I'm so happy for you and Sheryl! Hope I get a chance to visit your store someday! :-)

7:28 PM  
Blogger Lolly said...

Holey moley! I can't believe it! that is SOOOO cool, Amy! Absolutely amazing. I am so happy for you and Sheryl. That sounds like a wonderful partnership, and I wish you both ALL the best in the process -- it will be difficult, but you have a great community here to rely on too.

That is simply amazing~I am so excited for you! ;)


9:44 PM  
Blogger Sheryl said...

Great job partner! We are SO out there out world!

3:26 AM  
Blogger geoknitter said...

Yay!!! That is so cool! If you're interested, I bet that I and lots of other knitty folks woult be interested in designing "Yarntopia-exclusive" patterns that you could give away in your store. I love hearing about people starting businesses like this, it really is one of the things that makes our country great.

Good luck on all the prep work!

6:46 AM  
Blogger Joanna said...

Amy, that sounds so wonderful! How exciting!! I don't really have any advice to offer, but I wish you the best of luck!

8:51 AM  
Anonymous knit chick said...

Congratulations! It sounds like a great business venture for all. I wish you good luck & can't wait for more details on Yarntopia!

9:49 AM  
Blogger Donna said...

I am so happy for you!!! Good luck!

11:03 AM  
Anonymous Brynne said...

Christian is convinced that I'm personally going to spend enough to put your kids through college, but we'll see... :)

11:15 AM  
Anonymous JessaLu said...

Holy Secret, Batman!! Congratulations and good luck!! Let me know where to sign up for the mailing list ;o)

My friend and I have been tossing this idea around for a while but have no idea where to start, maybe when you have a chance you could answer some questions....? You know, when you only have ten thousand things to accomplish instead of ten million ;o)

11:27 AM  
Blogger Jen said...

Amazing news Amy!!! Have fun...owning your own business can be tough, but the rewards are plenty! If only I could convince hubby to branch his business out to include a bit o' yarn!

Kudos for finding a solution to that heart breaking decision every working mom out there needs to make...I have another year until my little guy is in Junior Kindergarten...and I'm struggling big time!

You go girl!

1:46 PM  
Blogger Mintyfresh said...

Amy, this is wonderful news! I wish you good vibes and happy selling. Congrats!

7:42 PM  
Anonymous Christine said...

The only question I would have would be ... where can I apply for a job? *grin* Actually, Katy would be too long of a drive for a job that costs me money to work at - considering my yarn habit - but it still sounds like a dream job!

I can't wait to hear more details so I can plan a yarn trip!

8:38 PM  
Blogger Mom (a.k.a. Mary Ann) said...

So the big secret is out. Once again, your post made me a little weepy. First of all because I am SO proud of you. And second of all because of the terrific support and encouragement you got from your friends. It is really true that the knitting community is full of wonderful folks.

4:57 AM  
Blogger Julia said...

That sounds perfect for you. I'm sure you have your own ideas, but if you want any advice on which lines to carry, send me a note. I've worked at my LYS(s) a lot, and as a long-time knitter I have some ideas about what you'd need. I'm very excited for you!

8:57 AM  
Anonymous wendy said...

congratulations! i've come here through good to be girl, but i wanted to wish you the best of luck with your yarn store venture! if you are planning on having an online presence for your store and need a good designer, let me know. i can recommend a good one for you.

9:23 PM  
Blogger Stephanie said...

I will definitely be a customer when I come and visit my brother! I am excited for you!

8:16 AM  
Blogger Suzanne said...

Yay Yay....Go Amy...Go Sheryl. You guys will rawk the yarn world!

11:54 AM  
Blogger Ruth said...

wow that is so cool!! congrats and good luck on your new endeavor!!! definately keep the rest of us posted. =) =)

5:19 PM  
Blogger D said...

Congratulations Amy! I'm too far away, but if you ever take online orders let me know...I love keeping things "in the family" so to speak.

Love the name too!

6:30 PM  
Blogger Pixiepurls said...

My dream kntiting shop does not have to be big, but has an area that can seat 4 to 5 people comfortably. A couch, and some little chairs!

It would also have tea/coffee, maybe self service would be fine, but just the idea of a nice cup of tea. So I could have an excuse to stop by, even just to look at the yarn (I need a hot tea!). Nice cups, kinda like starbucks. The cups are part of the asthetic people like about starbucks!

It would carry Rowan Felted Tweed, and calmer. CacheSoft which I adore and it would have Baby Alpaca by Plymouth.

It was also have some Solid Lorna's Lace sock yarn. Which I have heard about but have yet to buy. I hate rough sock yarn, and so much of the standard sock yarn sold in shops is rough.

7:15 AM  
Blogger Knitterista said...

Well Miss Amy...I'm a little behind the times...just now catching up on your busy little life. The yarn store sounds fabulous and love the name! How's always a good thing when you choose to go into a business doing something you love and are passionate about. You will do very well at it! Hopefully I will get down to Katy someday and check you guys out and buys some yarn. Congratulations!
A little research note: you might check out the yarn store out of Guthrie, OK that I go to (about 30 miles north of Oklahoma City). They have a full store website now and are a very busy might give you some ideas. Check out their site

11:23 AM  
Blogger Jesse & Alissa said...

Oh, thank you! A yarn shop in Katy - wonderful news. I haven't read all of this Blog - and the answer to my question is probably on this page...where exactly are you planning on setting up shop?

Congrats on the new business!
A future faithful customer!

1:09 PM  
Anonymous Paula said...

Hi! I am in your Mom's "Knit Together" guild in Weimar, TX. We can hardly wait for your shop to open! All the best to you with this new endeavor. We will come to your shop on our first guild field trip! Happy Knitting!

By the way, we all love your Mom. She is an awesome teacher and a blessing to each of us as we learn and grow with our knitting.

10:53 AM  

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