Flea over at One Good Thing has a great post up that offers some insight into why someone would bother to open a small business in this world of big boxes and brand names.
I have my own dream of a small business. I took up knitting as a hobby when Sweetness was born (before it became the fad it is now, but certainly, I couldn't claim to be the first knitter, or probably even the millionth person to take up knitting.) I learned how to knit from a book, and thus I am a pretty poor knitter. Let me rephrase that...I'm actually a very good knitter, I'm just bad at making my knitting look like something that one would want to wear on their person. I could knit scarves and blankets all day long, but if the pattern requires counting, increasing, decreasing, or finishing, I can guarantee you it will never be completed by my hands.
Still, I love yarn, I love the actual act of knitting, and so I drew up some plans for my yarn shop, which I will call "Ripping Yarns", a name Loki really liked because it could be the same place where we could fulfill his small business dream of owning his own used Sci-Fi/Fantasy bookstore. (I realize it is also the name of a defunct BBC series that members of Monty Python wrote and performed on. More power to the name, I say.)
I am always scouting locations for the shop. I have drawn up floor plans, I designed some shelving that I want my father to build for the shop. I have lighting fixtures picked out. What I don't have is money, or any idea how one runs a retail business. I'm going to have to ask Flea how she ended up with her store.