Is it reasonable for a shop owner to ask you to leave your buggy outside the shop? What about if your baby is asleep in it?
I went to my local haberdashery and yarn store today. It's one of those tiny stores with bits and pieces everywhere; the sort of place I love to explore. While there was space in the main bit of the shop for my buggy I couldn't get it there because of the amount of items in the entrance corridor. This meant I could only get my buggy just inside the door (a mere 3 metres away from the furthest side of the shop). I stopped by quickly before a baby sensory class, but as I was short on time I decided I would go back after. Shortly after I arrived 2 other people came into the shop and although there was enough space for them to squeeze past it was decided they should go outside to let me out.
After the class I went back, excited about choosing some fabric. When I opened the door the store owner (I assume) asked me to leave the buggy outside "after what happened earlier". She said she would stand outside with it.
I wasn't keen on taking my time browsing while my baby (who had just fallen asleep) was outside with a stranger. I said I would just buy the ribbon I had already selected, but I would buy my fabric somewhere else. The lady became difficult and said "I offered to stand with it". I was polite and said I would prefer not to leave my baby outside as she had only just gone to sleep and I was worried about her waking up and crying. I also didn't fancy shouting through the doorway to try and explain which rolls of fabric I wanted and how much. The store owner continued to imply I was being unreasonable which only fuelled my desire to shop elsewhere.
I think staff working in a shop have every right to make reasonable requests of their customers. I was not comfortable following her request so it was my right to choose to shop elsewhere. I don't think it's acceptable to make your customers feel guilty or to have a go at them. Instead of possibly coming back another time without my daughter, or with someone who could look after her, I now don't wish to ever go back to the store. This is a shame because it's the only haberdashery shop I know nearby.
Even with the current popularity of 'crafting' local yarn stores and haberdasheries are struggling to survive. It can be easier and cheaper to shop online. I encourage everyone to support their local stores, but in return local stores should support their customers and provide a friendly customer service. Online stores can often be faceless yet every one I have dealt with recently has had brilliant customer service and it has been a pleasure doing business with them, even if I have had to wait longer to have the items in my hands.
Anyone know any good websites to buy fabric from?