Craft Focus - June/July 2020 (Issue 79)

45 PROFILE +44 (0)1274 743 374 Our Pure Wool Superwash DK range has grown in strength, now in 25 shades this affordable 100 per cent wool yarn is fantastic for those that love natural fibres. What’s your bestselling line? Our best-selling line is our Cygnet DK, available in 60 shades. Our signature 100 per cent acrylic double knit is incredibly versatile and comes in an array of bright, neon, neutral and fashion shades, perfect for any project. Double knits are the bread and butter of the industry, so we’re especially proud to see this line as a popular choice for the most discerning of knitters and crocheters. We’re hugely delighted to have teamed up with the fabulous knitwear designer Jenny Watson to present our first collection of printed ladies’ patterns in our Cygnet DK. How often do you launch new products? At Cygnet we don’t always follow the norm of a spring or autumn launch like our competitors. We like to be different and spread our yarn releases across the year as it gives shops and retailers continuous new launches and exciting products to show to their customers. With trends ever changing, it’s great to stay current and bring out new yarns to create your own look in the market. We recently launched a super chunky chenille yarn for spring called Scrumpalicious, which was well received especially with the crocheters for homewares, it’s something different for the time of year and a fun yarn! How would you advise a retailer who is interested in stocking your products? We advise retailers who are looking to stock Cygnet to take on a variety of ranges, look at what works well within your specific market and offer products that will work for you. There’s no point taking a high-priced range when your target market is tailored to budget knits. We offer advice of our best-selling lines, top-selling shades and we’re generally very happy to talk all things yarn! What sets you apart from your competitors? Our fabulous quality and sensibly priced yarns set us apart from our competitors. We like to bring new and different yarns to the market to make us stand out from the rest. Our team may be small, but we have a quick turnaround on delivery with good stocks and have a super, friendly customer service team always happy to help. Our website is a great tool for our customers as once on board they can access pricing, receive newsletters and special offers and best of all order and pay online. This time-saving method works well for busy retailers who can place their wool order outside of normal business hours. We also have an abundance of free downloadable knitting and crochet patterns available for all. Do you visit any trade shows? We exhibit each year at Stitches at Birmingham NEC. It’s the only show we do and find it a great opportunity to showcase our latest products, catch up with existing customers and meet potential new Cygnet stockists. What’s your current status during the Covid-19 outbreak? Regarding the current Covid-19 outbreak we’ve had to adjust our working pattern and focus our staff where we can so we can continue processing and despatching yarn orders. Social distancing is working well between our warehouse, main office and sales office plus some members working from home. We ask for understanding if we don’t get the orders out just as quickly as normal, but our great team is working hard not to let the situation disrupt the business too much. What advice would you give to other businesses in similar situations? Stay positive! Stay Well! Is your website trade only or can consumers hop on and buy yarn or source patterns during isolation? We are solely trade only. Our customers can order and pay online, which is great for us and great for busy retailers. We also have a huge number of free knitting and crochet patterns in all our yarns for anyone to download and use. The ‘Hopscotch Patchwork Blanket Knit Along’ has been recently launched to keep knitters busy during isolation times. It’s a perfect KAL as it’s a quick knit in our Cygnet Chunky and is perfect for knitters of all abilities #HopscotchKAL. Our social media platforms can be a source of support and inspiration to all. What can we expect from Cygnet Yarns in the future? We have plenty of new and innovative yarns in the pipeline. We’re looking forward to launching a new yarn called Silcaress DK, it’s high twist and colourful palette makes it an ideal choice for crocheters. We also have a new baby yarn to bring to the market, a complementary printed yarn to our popular Cygnet Pure Baby DK Anti-Pilling Acrylic. We’re always launching new shades to keep up with current trends in several our popular ranges. We work with numerous small independent designers so watch out for new pattern releases on our website and in the current knitting and crochet magazines.