Ravelry users - you've probably noticed that you can link your stash to a yarn store when you add it to Ravelry. What you may not have realized is that there is a whole bunch of yarn store stuff hiding beneath the surface. We still have a lot to do when it comes to providing information on local stops (and online shops too) but I wanted to show off a few of the things that we have today.
Whenever you see a yarn on Ravelry (on a yarn page, as part of a project or pattern, in somebody's stash) you might also see a little "buying options" box. LYS owners who advertise with us list the yarns that they carry so that we can show them as a buying option for people in the vicinity. Here is an example:
...and then if you like, you can click through to see a whole page of buying options. In this case, there is only one local store that is advertising that they carry Malabrigo to folks in Boston:
From there, you can continue on to see the LYS listing in Ravelry. The LYS listing currently shows business information, users who have shopped at the store, yarns that were purchased at the store.
We've also got the usual search and Google map thingies in case you want to find stores in a particular area or find a store's page. Our directory is built by a group of yarn shop lovin' volunteers and it contains yarn stores from all over the world. It's far from finished and certainly isn't close to being as polished as other sites (like KnitMap). However - it is nice because you can look up a store and get a feel for it - how many Ravelry users shop there and who are they? What yarn brands are commonly purchased? A few countries (including the US) are complete and the rest are getting there.
More to come...
LYS directories are nothing new on the web, but we think that this is going to be pretty cool when it is finished. A few things yet to come: shop exterior and interior photos, yarn shop notebook sections for Ravelry users who wish to track their travels and their favorites, connections to owners and employees that use Ravelry, stats on customers and popularity of different yarns, a fast and pretty iPhone interface, and all of the usual connections to the rest of Ravelry (groups, forum posts, projects...)