LYS Day 2021: April 17!

Join us Saturday April 17, 2021 for the fourth annual Local Yarn Store Day!

Here we are, a year into the pandemic. Fortunately, there is an end in sight! Not soon enough to promote packing people into brick and mortar shops, but there is a light at the end of the tunnel. This has been a very challenging year for so many of us, both retailers and vendors. We do know many of our shops have closed, but it’s heartening that so many are still with us and adapting to the current environment. Our hope is that next year we’ll be able to go back to our usual Local Yarn Store Day, in-store events!

The mission of this effort hasn’t changed. Local Yarn Store Day is designed to drive traffic to Local Yarn Stores. As every shop and every location is different, it’s impossible to make LYS Day a one-size-fits-all event. As with previous LYS Days, it’s up to the Local Yarn Store to create the event that makes sense for them. In these days of limited openings and social distancing, we all have to get creative to show the importance of the local yarn store.

This year, we don’t know how many of our vendor partners will create something unique for the day. Talk to your key vendors and see if they have any plans to create unique items for LYS Day. With all of the disruptions, many of them are probably not focused on this. The same as last year, it’s OK to offer LYS Day merchandise on-line for 2021. If you’ve participated before, you know what a big success it has been. Local Yarn Store
Day has brought thousands upon thousands of ‘yarnies’ from across the US and Canada to go to their local shop. This year, and for the next couple of years, we all have to be creative!

Other Ideas for LYSDay:
• Hold a socially distanced event outside! Perhaps in the parking lot, on the street, in a
nearby park, or anywhere you can be outside and safe.
• Timed entrance. Schedule times for people to come to your event, inside or out.
• Create an LYSDay kit (if none of your vendors are doing one) to make it easy for
people to do curbside pickup and pay
• Promote your event through your web site, social media, email, signs, and any other
way you can
• Ask your vendors if they’ll have any special LYSDay merchandise this year

Tips for a Virtual LYS Day

Given the realities of the day, we are all going to do our best. While it has been a difficult time for most of us, as brick and mortar retailers we are used to being flexible and creative.

As you know, Local Yarn Store Day was designed to drive people to visit their local shops. However, with the current pandemic raging in the United States, that mission may not be the best thing for everyone concerned.

For this year, let’s look at this as a day to celebrate our brick and mortar shops. Even in a global pandemic, fiber lovers everywhere are connecting with their local shops. This may be through the phone, the web, by scheduling appointments, or via curbside pickup. The numbers reported by the Commerce Department are showing this as well, as in-store retail is making a big come back from it’s pandemic low of 88% of all retail sales. That means online sales got as high as 11.8% of all retail sales while most of the country was shut down, but in-store retail is charging back and e-commerce is dropping. back to pre-pandemic levels.

The message for this September is to buy from your locally owned brick and mortar yarn stop, even if that means you’re buying from their online store, by the phone, or other socially-distanced method. As local shops, the bedrock of our industry, is doing the hard work of curating a collection of valuable products rather than just amassing a large catalog of “stuff”. Encourage customers to capitalize on the unique relationship the LYS makes with the community.

As before, it’s up to the each local store to create the excitement for their customer base. You know your market best and what approach will work for you and your customers.

Here are some tips and tricks for how to make your Local Yarn Store day successful, even during COVID-19.

Special Items

Ask your vendors if they have any special merchandise this year. Special items make the event a memorable can’t-miss day. Create an LYS day kit – even if your vendors aren’t doing one!

Outside

Hold a socially distanced event outside — Perhaps in the parking lot, on the street, or in a nearby park. Think of anywhere outside that can be safe.

Go Virtual

Hold a virtual events before the day to promote your special items. And of course, on the day have a special online celebration–this can be anything! Think of fun things like live streaming a walk-through of your store, holding a small (socially distanced) party in for a small group and live streaming it, have a virtual craft-together online, anything that brings your customers together.

Timing

Schedule times for people to come to your event, inside or outside.

Promotion

Promote your event and products through your website, social media, email, signs, newsletter, and any other way you can.

Raise Money for a Cause

Create a charity stitch along or other fund raising event. Many organizations are in need right now; bring people together to help others.

LYS Day 2020 Postponed

Announcing The Third Local Yarn Store Day:
LYS Day has been postponed to September 12, 2020

Due to COVID-19, Local Yarn Store Day has been postponed to September 12, 2020. Local Yarn Stores are the backbone of our industry. TNNA knows that our member LYSes are being impacted around the world by closures and quarantines. Please visit this page, where stores can list their shops, links to their online storefronts, and any virtual events they may be having.