The oldest surviving retail store in Santa Barbara announced Tuesday that it’s going out of business.
The Green & Yellow Basket, perhaps best known for its large selection of hats, will shutter its 911 State Street location by December. “We can’t afford to be here anymore,” said Susie Dougherty, co-owner with her husband, Ed, since 1976.
She cited the sluggish economy and a $9,000 monthly rent as the major reasons for calling it quits, but sounded optimistic over the phone. “We’ll have some time to enjoy time on our boat,” she said.
The store’s been downtown for 63 years. Lemm and Flo Eldridge opened the store in 1950 and sold baskets, hence the name. The Doughertys bought it from them 26 years later and focused more on hats starting in the 1990s.
As of late, Dougherty said, their customer base has been 50/50 — half locals and half tourists. She said they’re the only licensed Croc dealer in town, too. “And we have the best wind-up toy selection in the city, if not the county,” she said.
Merchandise will go on sale at discount price starting next week.