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Thread: If you owned a quilt store

  1. #111
    Senior Member captlynhall's Avatar
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    Friendly, courteous, knowledgeable service it tops in my book. There are several LQS within 30 minutes of me, plus a Joann's and a Hancocks, so I have choices. I would love to see any and all of them carry a good selection of 100% cotton hand quilting thread. If they have any at all, it is usually in one or two neutral colors. I have to load up once a year at Festival to get a variety of colors. Also, the staff needs to know what they are selling. I had one young lady, when I asked for a certain brand of between quilting needles, offer me a package of large embroidery needles. Then another lady was helping me with thread selection. I wanted a variegated thread and preferred hand quilting thread. No such luck with that, but after selling me only 100% cotton fabrics, I failed to notice she sold me rayon thread. As a somewhat newbie quilter, I hope to get help with my questions and advise from those more experienced than me. I was fortunate enough to run in to one of the quilt teachers at the same shop on day when buying fabric. I needed someone to tell me how much of each fabric I needed for the quilt I was going to make. She not only jumped right in and helped me with that, she gave me a short-cut sheet on dealing with 1/2 square triangles. I wound up about a year later taking a class with her. I did not forget how helpful she was.
    When a dying man asked his pastor "How long does it take to die?" his pastor's heartfelt reply was "A lifetime." Live life to the fullest, but stop now and then to enjoy the sunset.
    Lynda

  2. #112
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    Everyones ideas are great! Could you even imagine if we had one shop that had all of these things in it? Wow, what fun we would have going there.
    One of the LQS that I go to have a customer rebate program. For every dollar you spend a certain percentage goes into a "kitty" for you. You can spend it back right away or save up an spend on a larger purchase. This actually makes me feel like they really appreciate your business and of course it always makes you go back.

  3. #113
    Super Member seamstome's Avatar
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    I have to say, we have some great quilt stores to shop at. And I do enjoy several of the shops in my area and most of them incorporate the ideas that are on this thread.

    I have been in a LQS in a cabin. I cant remember where it was, maybe KY, but although it was cool, it was very cramped.

    I especially like the audition table concept also.

  4. #114
    Junior Member
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    Jul 2011
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    Texas
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    I walk into LQS and see beautiful quilts hanging on the wall; when I ask about the fabric I always get---we are out of it====and vinegar face. Why does the owner always use the fabric and no else can buy any like she used? I would like to walk in see a quilt and find the fabric used for the quilt on the shelf and buy it. Most of the quilts are twin size or wall hanging; so making a queen size would not infringe on her wanting the only one like it in world. Plus-- I like a smiling face and someone saying Hi- have fun; let me know if I can help you.

  5. #115
    Super Member seamstome's Avatar
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    The one poster noted that all the samples would eat into your profits....my LQS has a sample sale once a year and sells them--mostly to non-quilters but I am sure they make their money back because they are tagged for a couple hundred a piece.

    Staffing does cost money and we are obviously not discussing a one woman show here.

    Yes I am aware there are minimums. I worked in retail when I was younger and run a business now. But that doesn't mean you can't buy through a cooperative or have a class or a sample that highlights the product or run a sale.

    Would I move fabric at $0 profit to get it out the door...dang right I would. Because a "dead" bolt setting there is doing me no good and is taking up square footage which is even more expensive--at least in my business.

    It is expensive and hard work to own any business, let alone small business retail, but done right you can make it successful. I know I appreciate the creativity of the LQS owners who are doing all of these things.

  6. #116
    Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by TanyaL View Post
    I think that perhaps a quilt shop might need to operate in conjunction with another store and feed customers off each other. Perhaps a gift shop, a book store, maybe a laundrymat - something to bring bring more occasional customers in and to help keep the profit/loss ratio in the plus side. After all, making money is the whole reason for a store.
    Agreed, and a good possibility might be a hardware and/or woodworking store, so the husbands would have something to do while the wives are shopping for fabric.

  7. #117
    Super Member Peckish's Avatar
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    There's a Sportsman's Warehouse next door to the Joann's in my town. Too bad I don't shop at Joann's.

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