Yarn shop etiquette in the new normal

The easing of lockdown regulations means that yarn shops in England and Northern Ireland are now able to reopen and shops are getting ready to open in Wales and Scotland once permission is given.

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That doesn’t mean that every yarn shop will be open right away or that shops will be operating in the same way as before. We have been talking to retailers about some of the things they will be doing to make their shops safe to open. Not every shop will be doing exactly the same thing but the information we have here should help you with your yarn shopping.

Check first

Before you head off on an outing to your favourite yarn shop please phone or look on line to check opening hours and whether the shop will be open to drop in customers.

Some shops will be only opening for restricted hours or appointments at first – or just offering click and collect for a little while as they get organised.

Be prepared to wait

Shops will have to limited the number of customers inside at any time so please allow time to queue appropriately outside.

Plan your visit

If you are not sure what you need and that you might need a little time to decide, why not contact the shop in advance so they can prepare a shortlist of items for you to look at when you visit.

Hand sanitisers, gloves and masks

A lot of shops are planning to have hand sanitiser available when you enter the shop and customers will be asked to sanitiser before they touch anything in the shop.

Because gloves could carry the virus from place to place, you may be asked to remove or sanitise gloves. However, some shops are planning to have disposable gloves available for people wanting to look through pattern books.

Social distancing can be difficult in smaller shops so please wear a face covering as necessary or when requested.

Touching yarn

Please do not rush into your favourite yarn shop and start wildly squigging yarn, however much you really want to.

Don’t touch yarn or other goods without checking with staff first.

Many shops are planning to have a “touch sample” for each type of yarn – ie one ball of each type that can be touched with sanitised hands and then quarantined as necessary.

This will let customers get a feel for a yarn and decide if it is the right choice. Then they can choose colours at a distance which the shop staff can then pick up and pack for them.

Be patient and kind

Whenever your local yarn shop reopens and under whatever arrangements please remember that the owner will have worked hard to their risk assessment and are doing their very best to create a safe environment for you and their staff. Please do your best to be supportive.

Keep up with what services yarn shops are offering online as well as in person via our yarn shop map.

And don’t forget to enter our online yarn shop treasure hunt – find out more here.


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