I am convinced that it is almost impossible to open a LNS and have it be a success. I truly believe it's almost impossible to make a living owning a LNS. Yes, there are a few stores making it but I believe most small LNS will have a very rough go of it. I do believe that the stores that make it are going to be the ones with a large Internet presence. We're all familiar with Silver Needle, Stitches, N Things, Cross Stitch 123, The Attic and Elegant Stitch. Why? Because they rely very heavily on the Internet. Of course, they have good service and lots of stuff that make our hearts go crazy. But I really believe what helps them thrive is the Internet. Nothing wrong with that but it does make it hard for the smaller shops to compete. So I think the wave of the future is a number of what I will call mega-LNS's with some smaller ones scattered around.
So I'll get off my soapbox now. It's been a great 18 1/2 years and now I'm on to my next adventure.