Covid. A word that would strike fear into millions worldwide.
In my corner of the country the shop survived on government handouts and a brisk home delivery service. Who would have imagined that a world wide pandemic would turn so many back to long abandoned needles and hooks, and introduce a whole new audience to the pleasure of knitting and crochet. That is exactly what happened and when I was finally able to re-open the shop I discovered more and more people were into yarn and the social side of the business grew and grew.
Another shop in The Arches hadn’t re-opened and a sign went up to say it was available to rent. Out of curiosity I had a look around, then dragged the knit and natter gang with me for their thoughts. The sales area was newly refurbished by the last tenant, but beyond that… well. It needed work. The biggest selling point was that it faced onto the main road. Potential to attract new customers. And of course I could extend my existing range of wool.
It was a big step up. I had no practical experience of running a proper business and that’s what I was looking to develop into. From hobby to keeping accounts, maintaining stock levels, reordering, stockist research, suppliers etc. It was all pretty daunting.
Serendipity- an ‘unplanned, fortunate discovery’. One of the newer members of the knit and natter found herself without a job thanks to Covid. As we chatted I discovered I’d known Linda since she was a teenager thanks to her mum and dad running the best takeaway in town. By the end of the conversation I knew Linda had the practical skills I lacked, a real desire to help grow the business and was someone I could work with.
I had my first employee.
This was getting real!