Crowing Ram

Monday, July 17, 2006
Hogwart's: Fait Accompli!
I dood it! Yet again, I've warped our poor little yarn shop into a mad alter-ego of itself. Ok. It's not that dramatic. It's just better—hopefully.
In all seriousness, as stock rolls through, we're constantly moving bits and pieces of shelves and tables around to accomodate new merchandise or displays. Eventually, we look around and realize that things just aren't working the way they're set up anymore. Then some idea for how to improve traffic flow and how to logically organize stock and tasks starts rolling through the old noodle. Then, when everyone least expects it—and seriously, it isn't planned, it just seems to happen that way—something gels, and the compulsion begins: must move shelves!!
Here are the results:
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New front counter configuration.
The front of the store is where most of the transformation occured. The big issue was that the front counter area was simply too big. It housed Sabrina's office, a full shipping station, all customer holds, staff holds, and assorted and sundry (and I do mean sundry) items that had not found a place in some other spot in the shop. There was a ton of stuff that didn't belong there, so I took as much as I could out so that we could all work more effeciently in the space that remained.
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There's more space in front of the counter for customers waiting to check out.
Shipping still remains a smaller, more efficient area on the back side of the counter facing into the shop (and of course, we'll be using that more as a customer service area on busier days), and the main cash register is further back giving anyone waiting a little more room to move around.
I also moved the books and patterns away from the main entrance. On busier days, browsers, folks entering the store, and customers waiting to check out at the counter created a gridlock in the front of the store that made everyone uncomfortable. I'm hoping that the beautiful yarns that remain near the entrance will still garner traffic without getting the kind of constant "stand/sit and look" population that is actually what we want around patterns and books.
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Front seating area and Her Highness' throne.
The books, patterns, and notions now live along the walls around the front seating area. I pulled the café tables over into this area to allow for more seating, and lined the walls beneath the windows with the pattern drawers. I was shocked at how concisely all of these pieces fit together. This arrangement actually saved me considerable room that I was able to translate into more open floor, which oddly enough translates visually into a fuller, more well-stocked appearance. Who knew? I've only learned that by trial and error. More stock does not mean a more full look; if things are so packed in that people can't step back and see what's on the shelves, they actually think there really is less there. Go reason with the human brain. Oh, and obviously Her Highness hasn't budged yet. With failing eyesight, I hate to move her around too much. She's an old girl, so we do try to make things easy for her. For those of you who don't know, that's Connor, and she'll be ten this September.
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Connor & Chachaland.
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Tate in Cottonland.
Speaking of our local canine royalty, here's His Royal Highness Potatomus Maximus—better known as Tate to his myriad admirers. He's on his way back to his little hidey-hole behind the counter. He's on the shy side, so he always has to have a place to get away... else his delicate constitution creates issues for his subjects. 'Nuf said on that topic. Anyway, he's shown here strolling through Cottonland from the front seating area back toward the black tables.
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Sabrina teaching at the black tables.
I won't intrude too far, but here's our store manager, Sabrina, teaching a Beginning Knitting class. She's awesome, and behind the big wall of Mission Falls 1824 Wool and Cotton in the middle of the picture is her new office away from the front counter. By the way, those are needles from an order of notions that just came in waiting to be stickered on the nearer table for anyone waiting for needles to arrive. Betsy got called away, but she'll be back momentarily. ;-)
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Koigu Rumba, Blue Heron, Twisted Sisters,
Great Adirondack, and Colinette.
Sliding down the wall to my left, we see Handpaint Corner. For those of you who've not been in the shop, Rob has a tendency to name the areas of the shop to give people directions as they're walking through looking for something. For example, Babyland is past the black tables and to the right through Sockland.
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Sockland and Mohair Valley.
This actually hasn't changed very much, but this is an aerial view of Mohair Valley to the right and Sockland on the left. To the left of Sockland is Babyland, though Babyland is just out of frame. Actually, perpendicular to Mohair Valley is Alpaca Alley, but that's mostly obscured by the Lamb's Pride shelves in the foreground.
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Lamb's Pride Worsted and Cascade 220 Superwash
Back on ground level, we're nearing the back of the store. You can still see the corner of Mohair Valley poking out with the Koigu Rumba there on the end (that's just left of center) and Blue Heron back behind that. That's Lamb's Pride Worsted on the left, and behind the sofa is Cascade 220 Superwash. The Lamb's Pride Bulky is on the far side of that display facing the Cascade 220 all along the blue wall on the far right.
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And turning to face the back of the store, this is the rear seating area. That's Louet Gems Merino on the spinner, and Cascade Magnum and Brown Sheep Burly Spun to the right of the fireplace. The Einstein coat that's hanging from the ceiling on the far right is made in Zitron Unikat, the throw on the chair is from Donna Kooler's Crocheted Afghans in Cascade 220, and the sofa throw is Madeira from Colinette's Toast and Marmalade book.
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Front Counter
It should be amazing to those of you who saw the place a week ago, but you can now stand at the front register and see straight back into the middle of the store. If you look very closely, you can see a bit of Sabrina's red top while she teaches class, and if you look even closer, you can see Waldo in there somewhere. I found him. Can you?
Seriously, we're still getting the area behind the counter straightened out, but you can see the shipping computer facing the opposite direction and some lucky customer's packages sitting on top of the holds/shipping area ready to be shipped.
Well, that's about it for now. Have a wonderful evening, and do stop in to check things out if you get a chance. With any luck, nothing else will be moving for a week or so... I hope.
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