The other day I went to a small paper shop on Girona Street to buy some carbon paper for copying patterns (just in case I eventually decide on a pattern), which reminded why I really like small shops.
1. Because you have to talk to a person and hold a polite conversation for a minute or more, not just take stuff from a shelf.
2. You can buy stuff in strange numbers, such as 17, 34 or 2 and a half (as opposed to buying things in 100/500/1000 pre-counted, pre-packaged, pre-cut sets).
3. Even though most of the times it is kept simple and functional, the packaging makes it feel like a small treasure.