Family-owned Green & Yellow Basket: (L to R) Kelly Metcalf with parents Ed and Susan Dogherty (Oct. 14, 2004)

Paul Wellman (file)

Family-owned Green & Yellow Basket: (L to R) Kelly Metcalf with parents Ed and Susan Dogherty (Oct. 14, 2004)

Green & Yellow Basket Closing

The City’s Oldest Retail Store Will Shut Its Doors By December

Wednesday, October 9, 2013
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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.


Independent Discussion Guidelines

Unfortunately, State Street is no longer for locally owned shops. How many hats and baskets do you need to sell to pay $9,000 a month for a triple net lease? A lot more...
The greed of the building owners is driving away local retailers and there's not much you can do about greed.

remcprmarketing (anonymous profile)
October 9, 2013 at 2:24 p.m. (Suggest removal)

remcprmarketing, it's a sign of End of Days.

dou4now (anonymous profile)
October 9, 2013 at 3:11 p.m. (Suggest removal)

As a new small business owner just off State St, this is very sad to hear.

Isa627 (anonymous profile)
October 9, 2013 at 5:50 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Maybe City Hall should consider setting up rent-controlled retail spaces before we lose the rest of our local business base to greedy landlords.

blackpoodles (anonymous profile)
October 9, 2013 at 8:54 p.m. (Suggest removal)

I'm sorry to hear of Green & Yellow Basket's closing. I enjoyed shopping there and the Doughertys deserve a great deal of credit for so many decades of success.

The store is not, however, the city's oldest surviving retail store. Jedlica's has been in business since 1932, though I don't know if the Santa Barbara or Los Olivos store opened first. And my own business, the Book Den, moved to our current location from Oakland in 1933. There may be others.

We Santa Barbarans can make a difference. We can spend our money in our own home town, keep our sales tax dollars at home and support our friends and neighbors. Or we can spend out of town and feel bad when another local institution goes under.

bookdenizen (anonymous profile)
October 10, 2013 at 12:28 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Businesses have been complaining about high rents for decades. They have my sympathy.

byronsnake (anonymous profile)
October 11, 2013 at 8:58 a.m. (Suggest removal)

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